Content about Doug Sample


I have never laid claim to being a math whiz, but sometimes it just comes down to common sense. Sometimes -- no matter how fast you talk -- things just don't add up.

The proposed Bellevue vacation policy is one of those things -- just doesn't add up.

Right now, if you get hired full-time by Bellevue Borough, you get two weeks of paid vacation after you have worked for a year. So if you are hired on June 1, 2011, on June 1, 2012 you can take off for two weeks.


Tuesday night's Bellevue Council meeting was, in every way, classic Bellevue Council.

All the elements were there: off the cuff motions, nobody showing up for a hearing, documents not distributed, a procedural change that created complete confusion and, after three or so hours, an extended debate over some trvial thing.


For the first time since March, the Borough of Bellevue has a director of administrative services on the job in the borough hall. Former Crafton manager Doug Sample began work Monday. The position has remained vacant since Connie Flasher resigned last spring.


Bellevue Council unanimously voted Tuesday to hire a new director of administrative services, a position that has been vacant since March, when former DAS Doug Sample resigned to accept a position with Ross township.

Professional Partners has supplied an acting DAS for a the past few months, and will stay on for two days to help Ron Borczyk take over the administrative helm later this month.

Borczyk currently is employed as the borough manager for Springdale, a position he has held since 2011. From 2006 until 2010, he was the manager of Sharpsburg Borough.


Bellevue’s former director of administrative services will be getting a nice check from the borough, representing salary for sick days he had accrued while working for Bellevue for two and a half years.

Following an executive session at Tuesday’s pre-council meeting, council voted to pay former DAS Doug Sample more than $5,700 as required by his contract with the borough.

Sample accepted a position as manager of Ross Township in January.


A management firm has been hired by Bellevue Council to help run the borough when director of administrative services Doug Sample leaves next week for his new job as manager of Ross Township.

Council voted 5-2 to hire Public Partners, a company of former municipal managers, to work 20 hours per week as the interim borough manager.


Bellevue Council is expected to take action next week on hiring an interim borough manager while a search is launched for a replacement for director of administrative services Doug Sample.

Sample resigned last month after being hired as the manager of Ross Township.

Two professional management firms will be submitting proposals, according to Sample. The borough also will touch base with Pitt’s public affairs graduate school and the Local Government Academy to see if less expensive options are available.


Not only will Bellevue be starting the new year with a new solicitor, but a new manager will be hired as well.

Director of administrative services Doug Sample notified council this week that he would resign in late January. At the same time that Bellevue Council was meeting last Monday night, Sample was being hired by the Ross Township commissioners to work as manager of the neighboring municipality.

Sample began work as Bellevue’s DAS in July of 2010.


Bellevue Council came close to rejecting payment of an invoice from the company responsible for producing a streetscape design, expressing dissatisfaction at Tuesday’s regular meeting with the fact that, after a year, no final design has been presented to council.

The invoice from Civil & Environmental Consultants, Inc. totaled $4,813. Director of administrative services Doug Sample said that, with this payment, the borough will have paid the company a total of about $20,000, which is half of the $40,000 grant received for the project.


With precise figures still hinging on a delayed Allegheny County assessed property value number, Bellevue Council has produced a proposed budget for the borough in 2013 that trims a couple expenditures and some personnel costs from the spending proposal submitted last month by the mayor.

The $5.4 million budget is now available for public inspection, and a public hearing will be held Dec. 17, with final adoption scheduled for Dec. 27.


Although Bellevue Council awarded a contract for the second phase of the skate plaza construction last month, they will have to do so one more time to satisfy Allegheny County.

Director of administrative services Doug Sample reported at Tuesday's pre-council meeting that the county had rejected the sole bid received by the borough on "technicality."

The project has been readvertised, however, and council will hold a special meeting on Oct. 23 at 6:30 p.m. to award the contract. Sample said that work still will begin before Thanksgiving.


Allegheny County Council representative for Bellevue, Amanda Green Hawkins, toured the borough Wednesday evening with director of administrative services Doug Sample and council president Linda Woshner. Among the stops they made was the Bellevue Dog Woods site at Memorial Park, where government and the private sector are working together to build a dog park.

Touring the Dog Woods are, from left, Doug Sample, Amanda Green Hawkins and Linda Woshner.


Pre-formed sections of Bellevue’s new skate plaza were lowered into place by crane this past week. Director of administrative services Doug Sample said that construction on the Bayne Park plaza is expected to be complete within the next two weeks.


Who is entitled to see phone call records for cell phones provided by the borough to municipal employees and paid for entirely by taxpayers?

Bellevue Council president Linda Woshner said that the borough pays for cell phones carried by the director of administrative services, police chief and code enforcement officer. The borough does not receive itemized call records in the regular bills, she said, and she had asked DAS Doug Sample to obtain those records for the finance committee to review to determine if the borough could get a better rate for service.


A free summer lunch program for children will be coming to Bellevue as part of Allegheny County's summer lunch program.

Children will be able to get bag lunches at the gazebo in Bayne Park. Bellevue director of administrative services Doug Sample said the program should begin in late June or early July.

The program was approved unanimously by Bellevue Council at its regular meeting on tuesday. Frank Camello was absent.


Government officials usually are criticized for giving jobs to their relatives, but it was the lack of nepotism involved in summer hiring that resulted in an explosion at Bellevue' s pre-council meeting on Tuesday.

Before storming out of the meeting in a rage because his son was not selected to be a public works laborer this summer, Mayor George Doscher disparaged members of council, told one to shut up, and refused to cede the floor and stop yelling when council president Linda Woshner called him out of order.


A new skate plaza should be open in Bayne Park by July, as the final approval for the project’s design is expected to come from Bellevue Council next week.

Local skateboarders requested a few changes to the design submitted by Spohn Ranch, the company that also will build the facility.

The project as planned consists of three independent phases, with construction of the first phase occurring this spring. Council then has the option to add to the plaza with the subsequent phases, or to stop after the first.


Bellevue has received two more grants, according to director of administrative services (DAS) Doug Sample.

Sample said the borough has been awarded two Community Development Block Grants (CDBG), both of which will require the borough to provide a 15 percent matching share.

The first grant, for the second phase of the skate plaza, totals $76,392, with the borough contributing an additional $11,450. The second grant is for the Lincoln Avenue streetscape that is currently being designed. It totals $143,235, with the borough adding another $21,485.


Despite projecting nearly $400,000 in unbudgeted surplus funds, Bellevue Council has approved a proposed 2012 budget that not only increases property taxes by a quarter mill, but increases the sewer surcharge by 25 cents per 1,000 gallons of water used.

The $7.4 million budget includes 2 percent pay increases for non-contract employees and the hiring of a new, part-time code enforcement officer. It also includes expenditures of more than $100,000 in matching funds for the skate plaza and downtown streetscape projects.


While Bellevue's director of administrative services thinks the Artober Fest benefit raised about $6,500 to benefit a proposed skate plaza in Bayne Park, officials have some serious questions about the unauthorized expenditure of almost that much to put on the event.

DAS Doug Sample told council members last week that the event grossed about $12,500, apparently including a $5,000 matching grant from Allegheny General Hospital. Sample said about $6,000 was spent on the event.


Bellevue officials are still debating which company to hire for tax and fee collection, possibly including garbage fees in 2012.

Council's finance committee has recommended hiring Jordan, which currently i used by the solicitor's office to collect delinquent real estate taxes. The company's performance in that task has been "above and beyond our wildest expectations," according to director of administrative services Doug Sample. Sample said the borough budgeted about $90,000 in revenue from delinquent property taxes, and has received about $170,000 so far and is expecting $100,000 more.


Although it appeared that few people on Bellevue Council actually wanted to pay a new part-time office clerk $15 per hour, a resolution doing just that was approved by officials at Tuesday’s work session.

Miscues, misinformation, lack of preparation, bad acoustics and outright distrust factored into a series of events that ended with the hiring of a temporary office clerk at the same salary paid to the former assistant director of administrative services.

DAS Doug Sample defended the higher hourly pay rate, arguing that job would entail more than just clerical work.


Refinancing Bellevue’s bond issue has netted the borough almost double what officials hoped to earn.

Director of administrative services (DAS) Doug Sample reported that council had authorized refinancing the bond at the point it became possible to save at least $125,000. That point was reached and surpassed recently, he said, netting th borough $238,000.

Sample said that the money would be used to offset the borough’s 2012 bond payments.


Barely a month after voters rejected allowing liquor licenses in Bellevue, the borough is dealing with a proposal to sell beer in Bayne Park -- a proposal from the borough's own employees.

The idea for a "beer corral" in the park developed from plans to hold an arts festival to raise money for the borough's matching share of a grant to build a skate plaza in Bayne Park.