The Commissioners for the Lackawanna County, Jim Wansacz and Corey O’Brien, would like to overcome the entire fiasco that has gone on with the HR director position. They want to fill the position as soon as possible, as it has been left vacant by the man who was first chosen for the job. It was Joseph A. Refice who was chosen for the Human Resources director position. However, only a few hours after his first day on the job, Refice chose to resign from the position amidst allegations made against him. It came to the attention of The Times-Tribune that Refice did not graduate from the University of Scranton as his job application said. When asked about this, Refice said he did, in fact, graduate from the university but was not sure why he was not listed as having graduated from the school. He accused the newspaper of being jealous that he has the position, stating that they simply did not want him to have it. However, he was not able to prove that he did graduate from the university and decided to leave the position instead.
The commissioners are now stuck figuring out how they will replace Refice, especially since he resigned after his very first day of work. Wansacz says that the application process may be re-opened but that it also may not be re-opened. They are simply not sure what to do just yet.
Refice was the deputy secretary of administration for the Department of Revenue throughout the 90’s. He was chosen for the Human Resources director position because of his lengthy experience and abilities. Many people believed that he was the right fit for the HR position. However, he stepped down shortly after the Times-Tribune question him on the status of his education. The employment application Refice sent in for the position claimed that he received a Bachelor’s degree for Business Administration from the University of Scranton. While Refice did attend school at this particular university, he never obtained a degree like he said he did.
Both Wanscaz and O’Brien understand how important it is to have the position filled, especially because the chief of staff, Maria Elkins, is currently serving as the HR director until the position is filled and because of this, she has been unable to attain to her usual duties.
Joseph A. D’Arienzo was hired at the same time that Refice was but he will not begin his position as the communication director for the county until the 6th of March. Because of all of the controversy surrounding Refice and his false education information, the University of Scranton did confirm that D’Arienzo actually graduated from the university, earning his Bachelor’s degree in communications.