Bires rehired as assistant to the director in Penn-Trafford

| Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2013, 9:01 p.m.

The Penn-Trafford Area Recreation Commission hired a familiar face this week to return as the assistant to the director.

Board members voted 6-2 on Jan. 14 to rehire former PTARC employee Linda Bires to work 30 hours a week for $14 an hour.

Bruce Light, Randy Dreistadt, Toni Ising, Nick Petrucci, Greg Capoccioni and Rita Windsor voted in favor, while Larry Harrison Joe Lapia voted against the hiring.

Bires, a Level Green resident, is replacing Lisa Black, whose resignation after five years took effect on Jan. 2.

Bires started as PTARC's administrative secretary in October 2002, then served as Director Cheryl Kemerer's assistant from February 2003 to December 2007.

Kemerer recommended hiring Bires because she preferred having someone who has experience in recreation programming. About 12 people applied for the job.

“She has a lot of experience and very, very good personal skills dealing with people,” Kemerer said.

Bires' annual salary of $21,840 will be about $1,340 less than Black would have been paid this year. The job does not include benefits, but board members approved a series of potential performance bonuses last year.

Board members briefly discussed delaying the vote until they could interview Bires and another candidate, who has been working for Kemerer on a part-time, temporary basis.

But Kemerer said she couldn't wait another month to get permanent help in the office.

Both Harrison and Lapia said they were interested in meeting the other candidate.

Lapia also said he preferred to cut the position to 25 hours.


PTARC ended 2012 with $20,312 in its general account balance, a nearly $7,400 increase over the past year.

Both revenues and expenses were down from their budgeted amounts in 2012.

The organization originally budgeted to collect $233,910 in income, but the total came in at $208,084. Meanwhile, expenses were $200,693, about $31,000 less than budgeted.

Officials said that program registrations have fallen, but PTARC saved money on postage and printing, among some other internal changes.

Auditing contract

The board voted to hire Greensburg accountant Edward Opst to perform audits for the years 2012 through 2014.

Opst will charge $2,000 for the PTARC audit and $500 for an audit of Friends of PTARC's finances.

Kemerer said that the nonprofit pays for its audit, but a past solicitor recommended that the two audits be completed together.

Chris Foreman is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-856-7400 ext. 8671 or

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