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Dobos, Peduzzi square off again in Trafford mayoral race

| Wednesday, Oct. 16, 2013, 9:01 p.m.
DOBOS-MARY Mary Dobos is the east newsmaker for sunday, jan. 27, 2002

Former Trafford Mayor Mary Dobos is trying for a second time to unseat incumbent Mayor Rey Peduzzi.

Dobos won a write-in campaign for the Democratic nomination in the spring to be able to face Peduzzi in a rematch of their 2011 race.

Two years ago, Peduzzi, a Republican, beat Dobos by receiving 59 percent of the 752 votes cast in Westmoreland and Allegheny counties.

In a borough like Trafford, the job mostly is ceremonial, but the mayor is responsible for overseeing the police department and breaking a tie vote among council members. The election is on Nov. 5.

Dobos, a retired teacher who was mayor from 2002 to 2005, said she received a lot of support from residents who wanted her to run again. She lost a re-election bid to Kevin Karaszia in 2005.

She said her accomplishments as mayor included establishing a National Night Out event and a crime watch in Trafford. Neither community activity has been active in recent years.

Dobos also said she instituted a tip line for the police department and helped to organize a borough youth commission and drug-awareness meetings.

“I feel that public safety is still a priority of mine and the mayor's oversight is imperative, and my approachability and visibility demonstrate why I would be a good choice and (why I) decided to run,” Dobos said.

During Dobos's term as mayor, she suspended a police chief who allegedly used a sexist slur toward her. In 2005, Council fired David Bossar, who lost an appeal to Westmoreland County Common Pleas Court.

Asked whether she would recommend any changes to the police department's operation, such as its staffing levels, Dobos said she hadn't discussed those types of matters with Capt. Carmen Disso.

“I really can't make a statement on that right now,” she said.

Peduzzi, a retired high school principal, served as mayor and a councilman during the 1990s. Council appointed him as mayor in October 2010 to replace Mike Brinko, who resigned.

Peduzzi said he is pleased with the staffing for the police department, which has four full-time and five part-time officers.

“I think that our police department — with the new facility and the cooperation of the council and the financing we have — is a very, very good, efficient police department,” he said.

Peduzzi has been a proponent of using police officers to help the code enforcement office, which has had a revolving door since January 2012. Three code officers have resigned since Brian Lindbloom left the job after seven years.

Peduzzi said he thinks the code position should be full-time. Council has budgeted to pay a code officer for 30 hours per week.

“I'm a firm believer in code enforcement,” he said. “If we're going to maintain a quality community, we have to expect that property owners maintain their properties within the code.”

Chris Foreman is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at cforeman@tribweb.com.

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