County offices merge

Restructuring expected to save $135,000

WARREN — In a move Trumbull County officials expect to save the county at least $135,000, the grants department and the planning commission are merging.

The board overseeing the Trumbull County Planning Commission unanimously voted Tuesday to appoint Julie Green as the interim director of the planning commission.

Green will earn approximately $84,000 per year. She was earning about $68,000 as the county grants manager.

Her duties as grants manager will come under the umbrella of duties on the planning commission, said Trumbull County Commissioner Mauro Cantalamessa. The commissioners are members of the planning commission board.

“This move makes the most sense financially and strategically,” Cantalamessa said.

Green will remain interim director while Trish Nuskievicz, the director of the planning commission, is on unpaid leave until Oct. 17. Nuskievicz has been on leave for medical reasons since July 2018.

Mitzi Sabella was earning about $48,000 a year in the grants management department and will earn about $54,000 at the planning commission.

Nicholas Coggins, a former economic development specialist with the planning commission who served as interim director when Nuskievicz went on leave, was transferred in June to the position of assistant director, earning $27 per hour. He will remain in the position.

The board also hired Boston-native Thomas “TJ” Keiran as a planner at about $56,000 per year.

The move should be “seamless,” Cantalamessa said.

The personnel changes bring the planning commission up from a department that dwindled down to one employee, Coggins, over the past year to a department of four.

Richard Jackson, Trumbull County director of human resources, said by merging the departments, the county will save about $135,000 and provide a “more streamlined service” for the townships and others that rely on the planning commission.

Green and Sabella previously worked for the planning commission handling grants, but were transferred out of it after Nuskievicz became director, to create the grants department.

Nuskievicz and Trumbull County Engineer Randy Smith clashed and she accused him of creating a hostile work environment, inducing medically diagnosed stress. She accused him of bullying her.

She, her wife and Smith are involved in a Trumbull County Common Pleas Court case accusing the Nuskieviczs of defamation against Smith.