By MIKE FAHER
JOHNSTOWN — Cambria Somerset Authority has hired an experienced local engineer as its new manager.
Earl Waddell will start work Monday at the Johnstown-based authority, which owns five local dams including the Quemahoning Reservoir in Somerset County.
Waddell is a Pitt-Johnstown graduate who previously worked at Richland Township-based H.F. Lenz Co.
“He has many years of experience as a project engineer,” said Jim Greco, the authority board’s chairman. “He has supervised multiple projects at once.”
Greco has been serving as the authority’s acting manager since the end of July, when longtime Manager Tom Kakabar left to pursue other interests.
Kakabar had been with the authority since 2001 and had helped guide the organization through its early years.
Officials from Cambria and Somerset counties had formed the authority in 1999 to purchase the Quemahoning, along with Hinckston Run Reservoir, Wilmore Reservoir and two smaller dams, from a former Bethlehem Steel Corp. subsidiary.
Along with its primary mission as an industrial-water supplier, Cambria Somerset Authority also oversees a wide variety of projects and regular maintenance. The authority owns more than 5,000 acres of land, 1,200 surface acres of water and 233,000 feet of large-diameter water lines.
The authority’s latest project involves installation of a whitewater-release valve at the Quemahoning. So Waddell will be multitasking from day one.
“We have stuff all the way from fish-habitat projects to fixing breaks in the Quemahoning line,” Greco said.