Fitzgerald Posts Prior Administration Reports, Notes Deputy Manager Hires

PITTSBURGH – Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald today announced that two reports that were begun under the prior administration have now been posted for public review.  The Allegheny 365 Report and the Gender and Race Equity Audit are both posted on the County’s website on the County Manager’s page, under Reports.

“While both of these reports were undertaken under my predecessor, they contain a great deal of information that may be helpful in making improvements to our county, its employees and residents,” said Fitzgerald.  “With Willy McKain, the new County Manager, beginning tomorrow, I am turning these reports over to him and his deputies and asking that he review both of them to determine what recommendations we may be able to implement and possible action plans for other steps.”

The Allegheny 365 committee was charged with developing an action plan to ensure that all individuals, including those living with disabilities, could engage fully in the broad spectrum of county services 365 days a year.

Committee Co-chair Dr. Rory Cooper, Distinguished Professor at the University of Pittsburgh and Director of the Human Engineering Research Laboratories in the VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System is pleased to see the release of the report:  “It was a pleasure to contribute to the Allegheny 365 Report, which is comprehensive, innovative and forward thinking.  I am confident that it will make a positive difference in the lives of people with disabilities and their families in Allegheny County.  Further, it will serve as a model for municipalities and counties across the United States.  It is time for full-participation of people with disabilities, and Allegheny County is once again at the forefront of transformation.”

Co-chair Joyce Bender, President and CEO of Bender Consulting Services, Inc. also had praise for the report:  “I am so proud to be part of Allegheny 365.  We are a county leading the effort in Pennsylvania to break down the barriers to employment for people with disabilities. Allegheny 365 means we want to see freedom, through competitive employment 365 days a year.  Lead on!”

In order to assess the position of women and minorities within Allegheny County government, County Council and the County Executive approved Ordinance 29-09-OR that required a gender and race equity audit to be conducted to provide “a detailed analysis of payroll data by the gender and race of employees and of human resources policies and practices to identify where gender and race pay differences and gender and race pay issues exist.”  The audit was conducted over several months, from May to December 2010 with various information was analyzed, including payroll data, human resources policies, procedures and practices, employee surveys and focus groups, and grievance and complaint records.

“The information in this report leads the way for critical improvements to be made,” said Heather Arnet, Chief Executive Officer of the Women and Girls foundation, a primary advocate for the initial legislation which directed that the study take place.  “County Executive Fitzgerald was a champion for this issue on Council.  We look forward to working with him and his administration to begin to develop a pathway to improve wage equity and leadership numbers for all women throughout county management.”

County Executive Fitzgerald also announced that two Deputy Managers have been hired.  Mr. Steve Pilarski, a 27 year employee of the county who has most recently served as a Manager of Administration, has been named Deputy Manager and began his new position this week.  Additionally, Ms. Barbara M. Parees will begin her role as Deputy Manager in September.  She currently works as a consultant with the Pittsburgh Public Schools, but brings experience from roles in the Commonwealth and the City of Pittsburgh.

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