Officials, officer strike deal on care for K-9
Penn Township commissioners approved a $5,000 settlement Wednesday with a police officer who sued the municipality for overtime pay for caring for a now-retired police dog outside of normal work hours.
Township Solicitor Leslie Mlakar said Officer Ross Piraino will receive $1,666 of the settlement for payment of back wages. The remainder will be for Piraino's attorney fees.
Piraino claimed in the suit that he should be compensated at an overtime rate for the time he spent providing food and water, grooming and veterinary care outside of normal working hours. The suit was filed in April in U.S. District Court in Pittsburgh.
Court documents do not indicate an amount Piraino was seeking.
“His initial demands were ... very high,” Mlakar said during the township's regular meeting.
Piraino joined the force in November 2006 and began working with Charro, a German shepherd, in early 2009. The dog was retired in January after behavioral issues and township commissioners agreed the following month to sell Charro to Piraino for $1.
Piraino claimed in the suit that he is entitled to relief under the Fair Labor Standards Act, claiming that “off-the-clock” work included maintaining and cleaning the kennel and yard, ridding his house of dirt and hair, providing water and food, grooming, applying flea and tick treatments, and exercising and training the dog.
Mlakar said the settlement will help the township avoid ongoing legal costs.
“When you look at the costs of litigation, etc., it's not worth it,” he said.
In other business, commissioners approved the purchase of three police vehicles for $68,250. Also, the sale of four older model, “surplus” vehicles for $5,345 was approved.
Renatta Signorini is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-837-5374 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.
- Initials carved into pig in Georges Township
- Murrysville home damaged in blaze
- Hempfield woman seriously injured in crash
- Jewish congregations dwindling, forced to mull viability of worship sites
- Facelift approved for historic La Rose building in Greensburg
- Hempfield bicyclist gets one last chance from Westmoreland County judge
- Hempfield woman donates music inspired by WWI ‘doughnut girls’
- Youthful actors bring Disney classic ‘Tarzan’ to life at Geyer in Scottdale
- Former Jeannette coach held for trial on charges of assault on teen girls
- Group takes veterans, seniors in WWII-era planes at Unity airport
- Purple Heart recipient Krinock to lead July Fourth parade in Latrobe