Corbett names 2 attorneys to Westmoreland bench
One Republican and one Democrat were appointed Friday to fill vacancies on the Westmoreland County Court of Common Pleas.
Gov. Tom Corbett on Friday announced that Greensburg lawyer Harry Smail and Lower Burrell attorney David Regoli were selected to replace recently-retired judges John Blahovec of Hempfield and Gary Caruso of Rostraver.
Each candidate must be confirmed by the state Senate for a $173,703-a-year position.
Their appointments are part of a package of selections announced by the governor to fill court vacancies in Philadelphia and Allegheny County, along with other openings in the state.
Smail, 48, a Republican, made two unsuccessful runs to be elected to the bench, including a defeat in 2013.
“We started working on this right after the 2013 primary,” Smail said of the gubernatorial appointment. “I bring a common-sense, conservative view to protect the citizens of Westmoreland County.”
Smail has practiced law since 1998. He worked as a county probation officer while earning his law degree in night school.
Smail serves as solicitor for the Westmoreland County Sheriff's Department. He served as solicitor for the county clerk of courts office and the Westmoreland County Republican Committee.
Regoli, 49, a Democrat, is the son of John Regoli, a former county commissioner and state senator.
“It's something I've always wanted to do, but the timing was always an issue,” David Regoli said.
“I made a decision several months ago to run and getting the appointment certainly helped,” he said.
Regoli has served as a lawyer since 1991 and has a private practice that focuses on civil, criminal and corporate law. He serves as a councilman in Lower Burrell, a position he said he will leave next month.
Regoli serves as the solicitor for county Clerk of Courts Bryan Kline.
Both Smail and Regoli will have to run for election in 2015 for a full, 10-year term.
It is expected there will be three judicial slots on the ballot.
Judge Al Bell will retire next month, accounting for a third vacancy on what should be an 11-member bench.
Westmoreland County Court Administrator Paul Kuntz said Friday's appointments come as the court system has been backlogged because of the retirements.
“It's been difficult to keep up with the backlog with these vacancies,” Kuntz said.
Rich Cholodofsky is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-830-6293 or email@example.com.
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.
- Ex-Penguins defenseman Niskanen still miffed by coaches’ firings
- Pouliot scores in NHL debut as Penguins tame Panthers
- Starkey: Chryst a miserable failure at Pitt
- Pitt players support Rudolph for job
- IBM’s Watson supercomputing system to be applied to PTSD
- South Fayette football team distributes Steelers tickets to Carlynton, Wilkinsburg
- Sony hack signals new, public front in cyber warfare
- Jeannette company’s miniature steam engines coveted for decades
- Energy sector adjusts to global oil plummet
- Steelers’ Bell, Chiefs’ Charles elevating running back position in NFL
- Steelers notebook: Bell says he’s prepared to test Chiefs defense