The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Local News

August 21, 2013

Taranto chosen for housing authority

JOHNSTOWN — A major change came to the organization that oversees Johnstown’s public housing on Wednesday.

City Council voted to appoint  Dr. Joseph Taranto to the Johnstown Housing Authority. Five other individuals, including the JHA’s current chairman, Brian Vuletich, applied for the position. Only Vuletich and Taranto were nominated for the final vote. Taranto, a member of City Council, voted for himself, as did his colleagues Frank Janakovic, Rose Howarth and Marie Mock. Mayor Thomas Trigona, William Gentile Jr. and Pete Vizza supported Vuletich.

Taranto is scheduled to start his new term at the next JHA meeting.

“I’m happy that I was (appointed),” said Taranto, whose City Council term is set to expire in January. “We’ll see how it goes from here.”

Vuletich joined the authority in August 2008. He served one five-year term before being denied a second. Tension grew between him and some members of council concerning how JHA should operate over the past year.

“I’m disappointed, but it’s not unexpected,” said Vuletich. “I’m disappointed because I’ve worked hard for the past five years to keep residents safe in their housing.”

Vuletich said he plans to seek legal advice and possibly challenge the decision. He raised concerns about Taranto voting for himself. He also felt Howarth should have recused herself because she works for Johnstown Lease Housing, which is located in the same building as the housing authority. Dan Kanuch is director of both organizations. However, they have their own boards and deal with different types of housing issues.

“They’re two separate entities,” said Howarth.

The Johnstown Housing Authority operates 1,700 units between public housing and Section 8 vouchers, a rental program designed to help low-income individuals obtain living accommodations.

Taranto hopes to help address issues of blight, crime and nuisance residents while serving as a link between the board and council. “I think the housing authority and the city, if they work together, have a better chance of accomplishing some of those goals,” Taranto said.

Dave Sutor is a reporter for The Tribune-Democrat. Follow him on Twitter at

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • new councilman Judge fills City Council vacancy

    A lifelong Johnstown resident who has never sought election to public office was named Thursday to fill the vacancy on City Council.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Cawley Lt. Gov. Cawley pushes jobs plan during Johnstown visit

    Lt. Gov. Jim Cawley got to see firsthand many of the training tools used by Hiram G. Andrews Center students on Thursday and took some time to promote a program called Jobs for All, part of Gov. Tom Corbett’s JOBS1st PA agenda.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • home VIDEO | Volunteers ‘blitz build’ replacement home for Upper Yoder man

    One week ago, Joey Varmecky had almost nothing.
    In October, a flue fire claimed his Swank Street home. That night, Varmecky, a deaf and partially blind man who doesn’t speak, showed up on the doorstep of his friend’s home. His feet were covered only by a pair of stockings.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Toomey & Shuster Bill would help identify unclaimed remains of veterans

    The cremated remains of an estimated 47,000 veterans are stored throughout the United States, sometimes in nothing more than nondescript metal canisters on shelves.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • million Lucky Seward man finds ticket to riches

    People often play the lottery and dream about the things they would do if they won the big one.
    That dream came true for Karl Kadi of Seward, who won $1 million on a $20 Max-A-Million scratch-off lottery ticket.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Farrish, James State police make another drug bust on turnpike

    A Pittsburgh man was jailed Thursday after state police said they found about $120,000 in suspected heroin during a traffic stop on the Pennsylvania Turnpike in Stonycreek Township, Somerset County.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sisco, Ryan James & John Patrick Two brothers charged in beating at bar

    Two Johnstown brothers were jailed Wednesday after police said they beat a man so badly he suffered a concussion and may end up blind in one eye.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • path of flood Path of Flood entries due

    Anyone interested in participating in Johnstown Area Heritage Association’s  Path of the Flood Historic Half Marathon and 5K race will need to get in gear before the April 30 registration deadline.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Drilling fees should fund education, Democrats say

    Democrats running for governor seem to be competing to convince voters they will dip deepest into the pockets of gas drillers to replace $1 billion that Gov. Tom Corbett has cut from education spending.

    April 17, 2014

  • Local briefs 4/18/2014

    April 17, 2014


Do you think that Jack Williams will get the 270 signatures from city residents needed in order to have a referendum placed on a municipal ballot to have the city's pressure test mandate repealed?

I'm not sure
     View Results
House Ads