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Pitcairn hires former Harmar treasurer

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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 Kyle Lawson
Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2014, 9:00 p.m.
 

Pitcairn officials said this week they're confident the new manager is a good fit for the borough.

Annette Dietz of Penn Hills took over as Pitcairn manager last week after council voted unanimously to hire her. Dietz, 54, was chosen from more than five applicants interviewed based in part on her experience as Harmar Township Treasurer for the past six years, officials said.

“She answered all the (interview) questions correctly, and she impressed everybody,” Pitcairn Councilman Doug Crothers said.

She has a $52,000 salary but no contract.

“I had no problem with that,” Dietz said. “I understood that going into (the job).”

Former Pitcairn manager Malisa Migliori resigned from the position in January after council voted to keep her as manager but denied her a contract.

Migliori's former contract with the borough ended at the end of last year.

Council approved a three-month, $13,500 severance package for Migliori. The value equals three months of her $54,000 salary in 2013, Prucnal said.

Dietz applied for the manager position after she was voted out of the treasurer/secretary position in Harmar. Harmar supervisors voted 3-2 last month to seek new candidates for the job.

At the time of the vote, Supervisor Bob Exler said the change had nothing to do with how Dietz performed her duties. Phone calls placed by Pitcairn Council members to Dietz' former coworkers confirmed that her performance wasn't the issue, Crothers said.

“All of her references said if it wasn't for political change, she'd still be there,” Crothers said. “Everyone I talked to was impressed with the work she did.”

Dietz said her removal was one of multiple personnel changes in Harmar this year.

“There was an election, and the balance of power changed,” Dietz said. “(The board of supervisors) had every right to put the people of their choosing in those positions.”

Pitcairn Council members said they are confident Dietz can manage unusual administrative issues — such as borough-owned cable and electric companies — that are part of the Pitcairn manager's job.

“It is a challenge,” Dietz said. “There's a select few boroughs that own utilities. But everyone has been so supportive and helpful. Everyone cares about Pitcairn, and I'm here to be part of that team.”

Staff writer Jodi Weigand contributed to this report. Kyle Lawson is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 8755.

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