Trafford hires borough manager
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Trafford council is looking to a longtime Mt. Lebanon municipal employee to provide leadership in the borough.
Richard Sahar, 61, of West Newton, started work last week as borough manager. Council on May 5 voted 6-0 — with Councilman Henry Schultz absent — to hire Sahar, who was the executive director of the Mt. Lebanon Parking Authority from 1976 to 2011.
Council turned to Sahar after Rae Ann Tronetti declined a March offer to take the job. Sahar will be paid $43,000 annually, council President Jay Race said.
“Mr. Sahar, we feel, is the best fit for the borough of Trafford moving forward,” Race said.
Sahar becomes the third manager within the past year. Jeff McLaughlin, who was hired in 2013, resigned last July. Virginia Finnegan worked on a part-time basis from last summer through early April.
Councilman Dennis Hockenberry said he hopes that Sahar’s hiring will help rebuild the local government’s rapport with residents. In recent months, residents have complained to council about their inability to reach local officials or receive return phone calls.
“I think having somebody in that office will clear up a lot of (residents’) complaints with not getting a hold of people,” Hockenberry said.
Borough police officers will receive an annual 3-percent raise to their base hourly rate in the new three-year contract finalized this spring.
Council agreed to the tentative terms in March, but the details of the deal — which runs through Dec. 31, 2017 — were not released to the media until this month. The contract is retroactive to Jan. 1.
Based on the hourly rate and longevity pay rate, new Chief Carmen Disso will be eligible for a salary of nearly $58,000 this year. Council designated Disso, a borough officer since 1998, as the chief last month, but he remains in the police union.
Full-time patrol officers this year will earn $24.40 per hour, which calculates to nearly $51,000 per year. They are eligible for an additional per-hour payment that is dependent on the number of years they’ve worked in the borough.