GRACETON — The Center Township board of supervisors elected John Bertolino and Robert Pozik to serve as chairman and vice chairman, respectively, for 2014.
At a reorganization session Monday afternoon, the board cast a divided vote to retain Gibson-Thomas Engineers as the township’s engineering firm of record.
Bertolino voiced dissatisfaction with the company’s design and management of the nearly completed construction of a new truck garage at the township office along Neal Road.
“I am not pleased with the work from Gibson-Thomas on this building. I am not happy with some of the things that happened during the bidding process and there were a few deficiencies that I found,” Bertolino said. “Fortunately, I stayed here every day as the building went up and we corrected those deficiencies as we went along.”
He didn’t discuss specific problems.
“The building, as far as I’m concerned, they are done. We got stuck with $12,500 on the insulation, and we paid that. Currently Gibson-Thomas owes us about $3,000 but there will be more invoices coming and we will just deduct the $3,000 that they owe us.
“We are down to making the final payment on the building, and we don’t need Gibson-Thomas in order to make that payment,” Bertolino said.
Pozik called for keeping the company, saying Gibson-Thomas provides vital help with bridge inspections and posting required signs.
“I need them for that stuff,” Pozik said.
Pozik and Supervisor David “Butch” Smyers voted to retain Gibson-Thomas, while Bertolino voted no and said he supported Young & Associates of Indiana as the consulting engineer.
The board also elected Bertolino to represent the township for a five-year term on the Central Indiana County Joint Sanitary Authority board. He will replace Robert Alexander, whose term expired Jan. 1.
In other reorganization matters, the supervisors voted to hold public meetings at 3:15 p.m. on the first Monday of each month except September, when they will meet Sept. 2 instead of Labor Day, and on Dec. 8 instead of the opening day of deer season, and at 3 p.m. every other Thursday beginning this week except for meetings on Nov. 25 instead of Thanksgiving and Dec. 23 instead of Christmas.
The supervisors appointed one another as road masters for the year, granted 2.5 percent wage increases to all other employees, reappointed Robert Nymick to chair the vacancy board, designated Esther Yankuskie as secretary and treasurer, and recommended that the auditors set the treasurer’s bond at $1 million.
The board reappointed Charles Westover and Robert White as ordinance enforcement officers, voted to continue depositing township money at area banks and agreed to retain all insurance carriers.
They reappointed Bert-olino and Yankuskie as the delegate and alternate to the Indiana County Tax Collection Committee, named Yankuskie as the voting delegate to the Pennsylvania Association of Township Supervisors, and designated the township emergency management coordinator, Harold Lockard, as an emergency worker on an on-call basis.
During the supervisors’ regular business meeting that followed the annual reorganization session Monday, Bertolino reported that Kriebel Resources will extend natural gas service lines to the township office, shop and garage, in connection with the construction of a supply line from area wells.
Although Kriebel is a drilling company and does not routinely serve natural gas customers, the company can supply the township office because it has a well on township property.
The supervisors asked township residents to extend courtesy to plow and salt truck drivers during winter weather and to keep vehicles off township roads to allow plow trucks to get through.
The supervisors also were told that Samuel McAdams has been named chief of the Coral-Graceton Volunteer Fire Department for 2014. Firefighter Gary Alsop told the supervisors that he has been appointed first assistant chief and that Leroy Shaffer will serve as second assistant chief.