WRTA officials defend $2.2M in stimulus money for office work

YOUNGSTOWN — Officials with the Western Reserve Transit Authority defend the $2.2 million its receiving from the federal stimulus package to renovate and expand its administration offices as a job-creation project.

“A sizeable number of people will be employed” for the construction project, said Don Meszaros, WRTA’s director of maintenance. “It will provide people seven to eight additional months of employment. It will hopefully employ people from” the area.

The $2.2 million was among a $3.51 million allocation WRTA is to receive from the stimulus package’s transportation funding program.

The $787 billion federal stimulus package is designed to create and retain jobs.

A number of posters on Vindy.com made negative comments about the funding, questioning how the project creates or retains jobs.

James Ferraro, WRTA’s executive director, said the 24-year-old office on the lower portion of Mahoning Avenue needs to be improved and expanded.

“People will be put to work,” he added.

For the complete story, see Saturday’s Vindicator and Vindy.com

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