WILKES-BARRE -- With a vote of 7-4, Luzerne County Council selected David Pedri as the county's new manager.
Pedri, the county's former solicitor, served as the acting county manager for the last four months.
“The County of Luzerne means a great deal to me. This is my home. This is where I chose to raise my children. I'm going to do the job,” Pedri said after the votes were tallied.
Pedri was one of two candidates for the position and will earn an annual salary of $120,000.
The position was left vacant in December with the resignation of then manager Robert Lawton.
Taxpayers who spoke Tuesday night took council to task over this search process.
“I know the search committee chairman said he would go on his own nickel to vet these people and he did a poor job, but I'll say thank you next because you don't give a damn what I have to say, thank you for nothing,” said Ed Chesnovitch from Jackson Township.
“That politics is being taken out of the system when in fact politics is being injected into this county-wide system,” said Stephen J. Urban from Wilkes-Barre.
“Basically nobody wants this manager job because you don't want to work with this council, you don't know what in the hell you're doing half the time,” said another speaker.
After Pedri was voted in, three of the four members who voted against him walked out.
“It's an 11 person board so obviously there's going to be some changes of opinion. Now, it's up to me to work with them. It doesn't matter if they voted for me or not, I'm looking forward to working with them,” said Pedri.
As for the job, Pedri is ready to get to work.
“First off would be our debt issue, our finance issue has to get in, has to get into a better location, the second step would be Luzerne county, we got to get out of our self-confidence problem, Luzerne County's an amazing place to live.”