Plum council OKs public works realignment
Plum Council put the wheels in motion to realign the public-works department.
Members on Monday night voted to approve early retirements for longtime public-works director Bill Berchick and Domenic Franco, a 10-year employee.
Council also approved hiring four laborers: Shaun Williams, Edward Brodak, Justin Lauffer and Richard Ruskiewicz. Manager Michael Thomas said the four are expected to start work Jan. 7 at a rate of $15.50 an hour.
“We hired four new employees,” said Council vice president Keith Nowalk who chairs the personnel committee. “It wasn't done on the spur of the moment. We worked all year on this, and we have these timely retirements.”
Manager Michael Thomas said under the retirement agreements, the borough will pay for Berchick's health benefits until October 2014 when Berchick, a 24-year-employee, turns 65. Thomas said Berchick's retirement date is May 10, 2013. Berchick's salary is $80,000.
The package for Franco, 61, includes a cash payment of $5,000 as well as paying for the health benefits of Franco's wife for several years until she turns 65. Franco's benefits will be paid for by the borough until Franco turns 65 under the public-works collective bargaining agreement. Franco's retirement is scheduled for Jan. 8, 2013. His salary is $50,000, Thomas said.
Thomas said the restructuring of the department that includes eliminating the public-works director position and promoting two employees to administrative positions — one to oversee the streets-and-roads portion of the department and another to manage the buildings-and-grounds operation — is expected to save the borough $95,000 a year.
Thomas said the administrative changes are expected to take place in April 2013, just prior to Berchick's scheduled retirement.
“The borough has grown so much in the last 15-20 years,” Thomas said during the council work session earlier this week. “It's too much for one person to manage the whole thing.”
Thomas said the four employees will help beef up the department.
Thomas last week said the department had 21 laborers in 2005, compared to 14 now.
Council on Monday night also approved various change orders for the multimillion dollar public-works facility including nearly $150,000 related to moving unsuitable soil from the construction site in the Renton section of the borough.
A portion of the new public-works facility — the salt storage building — has been completed, Thomas said.
Construction of a 21,000-square-foot building and garage with a capacity for 25 vehicles, bays for mechanics and lifts for vehicles, is under way on borough property between Renton Road and Old Leechburg Road.
Karen Zapf is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 8753, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- New school resource officer hired for Oblock Junior High
- Contract perk allows Plum teachers early dismissal on pay days
- Plum bus drivers, district agree to early long-term contract
- Plum Council approves plan for studies of current borough building site
- Plum artist shares his love of nature in hospital photo exhibit
- Plum plans early dismissals for teacher’s pay days