The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

February 26, 2013

Outside work – specifically prohibited – brings Repak's demise

Randy Griffith

JOHNSTOWN — The infraction that cost Johnstown Redevelopment Authority’s chief his job may sound familiar.

Executive Director Ronald W. Repak was criticized for similar consulting deals more than a decade ago, leading to an ethics agreement cited in Monday’s termination action.

A statement by the authority following Monday’s vote said, “Mr. Repak billed for work for an organization in Johnstown between 2004 and 2007 for an amount in excess of $130,000 through a business organization named Diversified Development Technologies. An examination of Mr. Repak’s Ethic Statements and his submitted requests for approval of outside employment failed to reveal any such entry.”

Leaders said the work involved development of the former Greater Johnstown Technology Park, now Conemaugh Medical Park. The redevelopment authority partnered with Conemaugh Health System to construct the facility and the two organizations share ownership interests.

By accepting consulting fees through his Diversified Development Technologies business, Repak violated an agreement inked in 2000 after his board learned he was moonlighting on other economic development projects.

Repak helped develop a $14 million ice arena in Jamestown, N.Y., with Dynamic Design Engineers Inc. of Johnstown, led by the late Lou Guzzi.

Board members voted 4-1 in August 2000 to allow employees to engage in reasonable amounts of outside work, provided there is full disclosure and board approval in all cases.

Repak did not report the Tech Park consulting payments, Monday’s statement noted, adding that the policy forbids moonlighting work in Cambria County and on redevelopment authority projects.  

The Jamestown Savings Bank Ice Arena project was spearheaded by The Gebbie Foundation of Jamestown. Its website lists Repak and former administrative assistant Deborah Walter as “strategic consulting/redevelopment specialists,” with Repak’s home address in Richland Township.

Walter was placed on administrative leave earlier this month, along with Repak. Her resignation was accepted Monday.