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Connellsville Redevelopment Authority employees' hours cut

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Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013, 12:41 a.m.
 

Two employees of the Connellsville Redevelopment Authority will face a temporary reduction in their work hours while the authority waits for the 2013 allocation of Community Development Block Grant funding from the state.

Following a 14-minute executive session for personnel reasons, the authority voted to appoint Chairman Tom Duncan to monitor the hours of Michael Edwards, the authority's executive director, and Paula Grubach, administrative assistant, until the state releases the authority's CDBG funding.

“We have heard that the state might not release the funding for 2013 until next year,” Duncan said. “We're going to have to wait to see what happens.”

Meanwhile, Duncan said that each employee will probably work 20 hours a week until the funding comes through.

“We will split their hours until we have enough money to pay our two employees their full salaries,” Duncan said. “We want to keep the office open so we can take care of business.

“But we don't have enough money to pay them their full-time salaries,” he added. “We have done this in the past when we were waiting for grant money. From what I've heard, cities, authorities and nonprofit agencies that rely on state funding have been doing the same thing. Connellsville is not alone.”

The authority asked Widmer Engineering to come up with proposals for replacing sidewalks on Gibson Avenue and Pittsburgh Street.

In 2011, Edwards said $51,000 in CDBG funding was earmarked for the Gibson Avenue sidewalk. An additional $20,000 was set aside for the Pittsburgh Street project.

“We did not use the money for the sidewalk projects because we thought we might need to reallocate it for demolition of the Aaron's Building,” Edwards said. “Since the Aaron's Building is no longer scheduled for demolition, the authority can move ahead with the sidewalk projects.”

The authority adopted a conflict of interest/code of conduct policy, a drug-free workplace policy, and an anti-displacement policy, which are required by CDBG funding.

Cindy Ekas is a contributing writer.

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