O’Barto to start work as Unity roadmaster before returning as supervisor
Mike O’Barto, approved by Unity voters to return in January to his previous role of township supervisor, will resume his former appointed job — township roadmaster — more than a month earlier.
Chairman John Mylant and fellow supervisors Ed Poponick and Tom Ulishney, who ended his term on the three-member board this week, appointed O’Barto to resume employment as a roadmaster beginning Monday .
Unlike his fellow supervisors, Ulishney doesn’t hold down a dual roadmaster position. In the past, the position’s duties were divided among all three supervisors.
Township roadmasters manage the maintenance and repairs of local roads.
Appointing O’Barto particularly will ease the burden on Poponick as a roadmaster, Ulishney said, noting. “Ed has a lot of work on his plate.”
“It would be a lot simpler and easier to have another guy come on and help with the workload,” Poponick said.
Mylant agreed that having three roadmasters is best for overseeing work on the township’s 166 miles of roads.
“My main focus is going to be winter maintenance and, at the same time, making an assessment of the township roads,” said O’Barto, who previously worked in the role while also serving as an elected Unity supervisor.
He said he wants to “make sure there’s not a lack in service” and to get to know recently hired road crew members.
Township solicitor Gary Falatovich said O’Barto will receive the same pay as the other roadmasters. The township auditors have set an hourly wage of $27.75 for the position, representing a base salary of $57,724.58 for a 40-hour work week. The roadmasters are paid $41.63 per hour for working overtime.
O’Barto served as a supervisor for 24 years before resigning two years ago to accept election to a seat on the Greater Latrobe School Board. He resigned as a roadmaster in May 2017 to work in the private sector.
By law, O’Barto must give up his seat on the school board in order to rejoin the township board. “I wish I could serve on both, but I can’t,” he said.
O’Barto has said he wanted to return to the board of supervisors to lend his experience to the township and to be part of what he considers will be a promising future for Unity. After winning the Republican nomination, he defeated opponent Doug Murphy, a Democrat, in the Nov. 5 election.
O’Barto said he intends to resign from the school board after participating in the Dec. 17 meeting. The school board will need to appoint someone to fill the resulting vacancy.
Jeff Himler is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Jeff at 724-836-6622, [email protected] or via Twitter .