BROOKVILLE — The Jefferson County Commissioners announced William Becthel as the new Veteran’s Affairs director during the meeting Tuesday.

“We’ve worked hard to come up with the veteran’s position that was vacant here. We have a veteran’s team… that have interviewed some really good candidates, and we have filled the position,” Herb Bullers said.

The veteran’s team was made up of Herb McConnell, Bob Anthony, Bill Littlefield, Scott Miller, Jack Matson, Jeff Pisarcik, and Herb Bullers.

Becthel will start next Monday with Dave Reitz, who has filled in as the interim Veteran’s Affairs Director. He will be formally introduced at the next commissioners meeting on Aug. 11.

Tracy Zents, director of the Jefferson County Department of Emergency Servcies, provided an update on the COVID-19 cases in Jefferson County. Zents said that according to the Department of Health, of the 51 cases the county had on Tuesday, 22 of those have recovered, and 29 of them are still active cases.

Eight of the 51 cases are also probable, which means they are indicative of those who have the antibodies, and not necessarily an active infection.

As a positive, Zents said the PCR tests done with active infections are down from 2.4 percent to 1.9 percent.

“While that’s down, we still want everybody to be very cautious, because the virus is still out there, and it is still spreading.

The department has filled 103 requests for resources, and are continuing to secure PPE. He said the county is continuing to prepare for an increase in active cases or a second wave.

He said the department has gotten a lot of calls and questions about different groups and events going on. While he shares the same concerns as those calling, he said they have to reach out to the Department of Health to provide guidance on the mitigation measures being put out.

“We’re not going to try to interpret what they’re saying, because we may be wrong in that information,” Zents said.

He recommended people reaching out to the DOH through or calling 1-877-724-3258. Zents also recommended calling the PA 211 hotline or go to to find social services for those struggling through this time either emotionally or financially.

“Again, we want everybody to practice good mitigation measures… use common sense when around groups of people,” Zents said. “And probably the biggest thing, we want people to be respectful to each other and their concerns. There’s no need to degrade anyone based on their own situation, because we don’t know what everyone’s situation is.”

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