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Trafford hires manager

| Wednesday, March 20, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

Trafford officials hired a borough manager Tuesday night — and the person they chose has a background in community revitalization.

Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to hire Jeffrey McLaughlin, 51, of North Braddock, as its first manager since the mid-1990s. McLaughlin, who will be paid $44,000 this year, is scheduled to start working in the borough on Friday.

McLaughlin spent the past five years as the Elm Street manager and “weed-and-seed” site coordinator for Uniontown.

Councilman John Daykon said McLaughlin's background in municipal revitalization pushed his candidacy to the top. Borough officials collaborated with the Trafford Economic & Community Development Corp. a few years ago on a plan to improve downtown Trafford.

“He was pretty much the complete package we were looking for,” Daykon said.

In Uniontown, McLaughlin headed the Elm Street program, a state grant-funded initiative to spruce the up the residential corridors near downtown commercial districts. He also led a 3-year-old program that focuses on “weeding” out crime by planting the seeds for neighborhood restoration.

After laboring over the borough's finances last year, council members said it was a priority to bring in a professional manager who could run the day-to-day borough operations and track the $1.8-million budget.

Councilwoman Rita Windsor said a new manager will be able to find new grants to support or grow borough programs.

McLaughlin also will oversee rentals of the Manchester Room, the community room in the public safety building.

Other Westmoreland County boroughs — such as Scottdale, Mt. Pleasant, Irwin and Manor — have had managers to coordinate governmental operations.

In 2011, the salary for a new manager in Scottdale, which has about 1,200 more residents than Trafford, was $50,000.

Manor, which has about 65 more residents than Trafford, started its manager at $32,000 in 2010 but now pays Joe Lapia about $35,000.

Council intends to schedule a meet-and-greet to introduce McLaughlin to the community.

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

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