McKeesport solicitor says he still has job
Posted in the McKeesport Forum
#2 Apr 26, 2012
Ignoring handicapped citizens is no way to run a city.
#3 Apr 26, 2012
McKeesport solicitor says he still has job
Thursday, February 16, 2012
By Moriah Balingit, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
The McKeesport solicitor says he has no indication that his job is in jeopardy after charges were filed against him in connection with a car crash in January.
J. Jason Elash, 40, was charged Friday with driving under the influence, driving without required financial responsibility and speeding. The charges came three weeks after he crashed his car into a building in McKeesport in the early morning hours of Jan. 22 after attending Mayor Mike Cherepko's inaugural ball at the McKeesport Palisades.
"I am the city solicitor and I am working in that capacity presently," Mr. Elash said Wednesday. "No one has made any comments to me about my job being in jeopardy whatsoever."
But his support on council may be waning.
Councilman A.J. Tedesco, who said he voted in January before the accident to appoint Mr. Elash "with some reservations," said he would not vote to approve a contract for Mr. Elash should it come up for a vote.
"It doesn't reflect well on the city, and you got to look out for the best interests of the city," he said.
Mr. Elash currently is serving on a month-to-month contract.
When council was due to vote Feb. 1 on a long-term contract for him, council President Darryl Segina had that item removed from the agenda pending the outcome of the investigation.
Mr. Cherepko could not be reached for comment Wednesday.
According to a criminal complaint, Mr. Elash drove through a wooden fence and into a building about 100 feet off Long Run Road about 1:30 a.m. Jan. 22. A McKeesport police officer arrived on the scene to find Mr. Elash being treated by medics. As the officer questioned him, he said, he could smell alcohol on Mr. Elash and overheard him tell medics that he had been drinking.
Mr. Elash was taken to UPMC Mercy, where he remained until at least the following day. Police obtained a warrant last Thursday to obtain blood that was drawn from Mr. Elash at the hospital. Tests showed his blood alcohol content was 0.196, more than twice the legal limit of 0.08 in Pennsylvania.
Police said the damage done to the building "shows speed was a factor."
Mr. Segina said he was "extremely disappointed" in Mr. Elash, but he declined to say what, if anything, would happen concerning him.
"This is something that has diverted our attention away from other things that are more important," he said.
Elaine Bixler, secretary for the disciplinary board of the state Supreme Court, could not comment specifically on Mr. Elash's case but said attorneys typically receive a private reprimand or private admonition if convicted of driving under the influence. The sanction does not impact their license and is not made public.
First published on February 16, 2012 at 5:24 am
Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/12047/1210504-...
Different laws based on position held. Citizens of the United States are held to the full extent of the law.
#4 Apr 26, 2012
Disciplinary board should look at all his liens also and how he is doing with his earned income and business taxes.
#6 Apr 28, 2012
DUI Public Transparency - McKeesport
DUI Attorney McKeesport PA
McKeesport Solicitor Listed
Public Transparency #1 Priority
McKeesport solicitor Elash charged with DUI after crash
Tuesday, February 14, 2012
By Moriah Balingit, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
The McKeesport solicitor who was badly hurt in a car crash following the mayor's inaugural ball declined comment today after being charged Friday with driving under the influence in connection with the accident.
John Jason Elash, 40, also faces summary offenses of speeding and driving without financial responsibility in connection with the crash, which occurred Jan. 22.
A blood test showed Mr. Elash had a blood alcohol content of .196, more than twice the legal limit, at the time of the crash, according to a criminal complaint.
#7 Apr 28, 2012
LOLOLOLOLL !!! LMFAO!!!!!!Ha!
#8 Apr 28, 2012
Will the brilliant and crony four council persons, McCall, Carr, Dellapenna and Soles explain how the City will operate if the disgraced solicitor is behind bars for 90 days?
We all know this is his second DUI offense. The first was reported in the Daily News and he was charged by WO Police and gave the name John J.
I wonder how the esteemed mediator and pacifist Keith Soles will explain this to the public and his PO constituents.
Yea, Keith hire him to avoid going to court but he may be going to jail if the law is upheld.
Pennsylvania DUI Statutes
75 3802(c) DUI Highest Rate of Alcohol – BAC .16 and higher
− Misdemeanor 1
− OGS = 5
− 90 days minimum imprisonment
− $1,500 minimum fine
− 18 month license suspension
− Attend Alcohol Highway Safety School
− Mandatory 1 year Ignition Interlock
− CRN evaluation
− Mandatory full D&A assessment and compliance with D&A treatment as condition of sentencing
#9 Apr 28, 2012
Elash has been cited for traffic violations in the past. In 2001, he pleaded guilty to a charge of speeding in East McKeesport.
In 2003, he was charged with driving without a license, careless driving, following too closely and failure to obey a yield sign in White Oak, but those charges were later dismissed.
(The judge that pulled the favor, suspected a DUI cover up).
#10 Apr 28, 2012
Interesting -- why did he not have a license? DUI?
#11 Apr 28, 2012
" Ward!," "Weren't you a little rough on the beaver last night"?
#12 Apr 30, 2012
#13 Apr 30, 2012
#14 May 6, 2012
Taxpayers stuck with the bill for the DUI.
#15 May 7, 2012
What specific bills are you talking about: DJ fees, lawyer fees, rehab fees, state fines, court fees, medial fees, commercial building deductable, SUV deductable, probation fees, landscaping fee, damaged fence fee, parking fee?
#16 May 7, 2012
Why not a golf outing in September for all the vendors to defray all the expenses?
#17 May 8, 2012
Golf ball driving is not on our agenda.
#18 May 14, 2012
Holy water is made by boiling the hell out of it!
#19 May 14, 2012
Golf courts are best when mowed!
#20 Jun 7, 2012
Since light travels faster than sound, some people appear bright until you hear them speak.
#21 Jun 7, 2012
Machine say: Crush. Crumble. Destroy, Beeeeeeeyaaaaaaaches. Word to your mother.
#22 Jun 16, 2012
Mayor Wants Two Agencies Out of City Hall
Category: News || By Jason Togyer
Two economic development agencies charged with helping businesses move into the city are themselves being moved out of McKeesport's city hall.
The Mon-Yough Area Industrial Development Authority and the McKeesport Industrial Development Authority have had their lease terminated effective June 30. The agencies, which share board members, occupied about 200 square feet on the fifth floor of city hall.
A letter to Dennis Pittman, chairman of MYAID, from city Solicitor J. Jason Elash said that Pittman's presence in the building was damaging the morale of city employees, and the agencies were being asked to leave by Mayor Michael Cherepko.
Pittman, who has been affiliated with the city since the 1980s, was McKeesport's administrator for eight years before being replaced by Cherepko on Jan. 1. MIDA and MYAID received no warnings of any problems prior to the letter, he said.
The agencies have had the office since 2002, when the building was owned by the former Three Rivers Bank.
"It's nothing against the (MIDA and MYAID) board members," said Cherepko, adding that city hall is "at capacity" and there are better uses for the office. "There's plenty of space in town at similar rates," he said. "I want them out June 30. My decision is final."
During former Mayor Regis McLaughlin's term in office, Pittman and Cherepko, then the city council president, tangled repeatedly. At council meetings this year, Cherepko has publicly accused McLaughlin and Pittman of failing to execute legal documents related to the sewerage authority's early repayment of $24 million in debt to the city.
MIDA and MYAID are being unfairly targeted as a result of Cherepko and Elash's professional and personal disagreements with him, said Pittman, who noted that the city attempted unsuccessfully to block his unemployment and severance pay.
"If this is not a personal issue with me, then I think we deserve to know the reason why our lease is being terminated," Pittman said. Personal disagreements "have nothing to do with these organizations," Pittman said, adding that "the mayor and solicitor may be working at cross-purposes" to the city and council.
MIDA helps businesses that are moving to McKeesport to obtain low-interest loans, while MYAID plays a similar role, processing loans from the Pennsylvania Industrial Development Authority for McKeesport and surrounding communities.
MIDA's board is appointed by the mayor and approved by city council. It includes Maury Burgwin, executive director of the Mon-Yough Area Chamber of Commerce; city attorney Clifford Johns; former city controller John Knezovich; city councilman A.J. Tedesco Jr.; and Jim Haughey, executive director of the McKeesport Housing Corp. and the Redevelopment Authority of the City of McKeesport.
Burgwin, Johns and Knezovich attended this month's council meeting in a show of support for Pittman.
"You have agencies here that are resources for the mayor and your city," Pittman said. "Why would you want to evict them from the building?"
Cherepko said he was offended by Pittman's decision to air his complaints publicly and said he didn't want to go into detail about his complaints against Pittman.
"There are major issues," Cherepko said. "My number one priority is my employees. When I came into office, staff morale was at an all-time low."
Cherepko added: "If the (MIDA) board had come to us and talked to me privately, I believe that we could have worked things out."
Council President Darryl Segina called the decision "disappointing."
"I think there's always room for conciliation, and I think this is a time for it," Segina said. "If there were numerous issues, I wish we had sat down and talked about them."
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