TribLIVE

| Neighborhoods

 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Carnegie Borough Council insists bookkeeper would help

Email Newsletters

Click here to sign up for one of our email newsletters.

'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

By Jeff Widmer
Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2012, 9:02 p.m.
 

Members of Carnegie Borough Council last week said they remain “mystified” as to why officials at the volunteer fire department would not want to accept a free bookkeeper.

Council President Rick D'Loss said as much, when he said he “does not know what the (fire department is afraid of).”

“We are paying for this bookkeeper. Are they expressing fear of us shutting down the fire department? I don't know. It is just one more thing. But I can tell you that this has created a level of mistrust between the fire department and the borough,” D'Loss said.

“Now, the way I see it, this could be a bump in the road in the relations between the two sides. Or it could be something that makes us think they have something to hide,” D'Loss said.

D'Loss and fellow councilman Mike Sarsfield have been involved in talks with fire department officials and the department's attorney, Dan DeMarco of Carnegie. Carnegie Solicitor Joe Lucas also has been involved in the talks.

The fire department receives an annual stipend of $177,567 from Carnegie Borough, said Carnegie Manager Jeff Harbin. This includes $142,000 for services rendered to Carnegie and Pennsbury boroughs.

There has to be “some level of accountability” for this money, Lucas said.

“This is taxpayer money. Now, is it fair to expect the volunteer firefighters to do the bookkeeping? No. They are volunteer firefighters. They are putting their lives on the line. But looking at it another way, we are trying to help them, trying to make the place sustainable. The bookkeeper would only be there to assist them,” Lucas said.

There was a verbal agreement between the two sides, council said, for Peekz Consulting of Pittsburgh to be the monthly bookkeeper for the department. Council agreed to pay for these services at an hourly rate.

DeMarco and Lucas have had some talks and will continue to talk in the hopes of clearing up the matter, Sarsfield said. In the meantime, DeMarco has made it clear that department officials want to know exactly what the bookkeeper's duties would be before an agreement is reached.

“The fire department has nothing to hide. We have no problem with a bookkeeper coming here. But we just need to know about what the bookkeeper will be doing,” DeMarco said.

Jeff Widmer is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388-5810 or jwidmer@tribweb.com.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.

 

 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Stories

  1. Pirates acquire pitcher Blanton from Royals for cash
  2. Teenage boys arrested in connection with armed robberies in Shadyside
  3. Starkey: Garoppolo baffles Steelers
  4. Peduto blasts Wolf’s plan to borrow $3B to shore up pensions
  5. Pittsburgh authority hires firm to end long vacancy at North Shore retail space
  6. Tight ends’ role in Steelers passing game continues to lessen but players remain selfless
  7. Work release inmate walks away from Armstrong County Jail
  8. ‘Greed is not criminal,’ says judge in McCullough trial
  9. Multiple delays to slow travel between Alle-Kiski Valley, Greensburg
  10. Police: Avonmore mayor found stranger’s lost wallet, took cash from it
  11. Connellsville man arrested for firing handgun at city’s East Park