Essex County set to hire new probation director

Photo by Keith Lobdell.

— Juliann Beatty was introduced as the new Essex County Probation Department director March 25, although her appointment must still go before the entire board of supervisors.

Beatty spoke to members of the County Ways and Means Committee, which unanimously approved her preliminary hiring. The vote is expected to go the same at the full board of supervisors meeting Monday, April 1.

“I have some very big shoes to fill and I am very proud that you have chosen me to continue on the legacy that Scott McDonald has created in this department,” Beatty said.

Beatty will serve as the Probation Director II at a yearly salary of $64,000. McDonald was a Probation Director I, which references the size of the department.

“It does not affect pay,” County Manager Daniel Palmer said. “It affects the test that has to be taken for the position.”

Palmer added that the promotion of Beatty left a vacancy within the probation department.

“With Julie moving up, this does create a hole in the department and it is justified to bring in a new person to the department,” he said. “With the case load that they have, it does justify bringing in a new person to backfill the position because Julie was hired from within.”

Palmer said the new position would either be classified as a officer trainee or officer position.

Supervisors said they felt filling the position was justified.

“This is the one department that has always kept their increases and always have kept their funding at a minimum,” Moriah Supervisor Tom Scozzafava said. “If they did not need the position, they would not be asking for it.”

“I am convinced that this is a position that is needed,” Wilmington Supervisor Randy Preston added.

Minerva Supervisor Sue Montgomery-Corey said that while she supported the decision, she felt the position needed to go through committee.

“We have this process that we have asked the other departments to do and we need to go through that,” she said.

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