New PWSA Director Takes Flak For Incomplete Resume

Jul 28, 2016

Credit Deanna Garcia / 90.5 WESA

  The Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority is defending its newly hired executive director, a county administrator from Virginia who reportedly parted ways from a similar post in South Carolina under less-than-ideal circumstances.

The authority's board of directors voted unanimously Wednesday to hire K. Charles Griffin to replace Jim Good, who resigned in March amid billing problems and customer complaints

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported Wednesday that Griffin was terminated from his post as general manager of the Beaufort-Jasper Water & Sewer Authority without explanation in January 2013. The Beaufort-Jasper position, which manages 37,000 accounts comprising 150,000 residents, was not listed on a lengthy biography released by the PWSA on Thursday.

 

K. Charles Griffin
Credit King William County Government

PWSA said in a statement Thursday that Griffin "provided a full resume detailing all of his positions, educational and professional achievements dating back 25 years. In addition to checking references he provided, all of which were very positive, the Authority commissioned an independent background check which cleared. We have discussed with Dr. Griffin the circumstances around his departure from one of the positions, and he has advised us that he resigned."

Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto demanded full accountability from the PWSA board regarding the vetting and hiring process.

  "If there are any errors or inconsistencies, the public deserves immediate and full disclosure from the Board and Dr. Griffin, including a complete and detailed explanation of the circumstances regarding any possible error or omission," Peduto said in a statement Thursday.   

PWSA supplies water and sewer services to around 300,000 customers in the Pittsburgh area.

Griffin formerly served as the long-time director of the largest water authority in Mississippi, and comes to Pittsburgh from King William County near Richmond, Va., where, according to its website, he was appointed county administrator in April 2015

Donahoe said he'll remain as the interim executive director until Griffin arrives and would assist with the transition on a volunteer basis.

Griffin's start date hasn't been determined. He'll receive an annual salary of $190,000. Good made $50,000 more.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.