facebooktwitterRSS
- Advertisement -
  • Most Commentedmost commented up
  • Most Emailedmost emailed up
  • Popularmost popular up
- Advertisement -
 

« News Home

Mahoning engineer defends his hiring of felon



Published: Sat, May 4, 2013 @ 12:09 a.m.

Ex-turnpike worker convicted of theft employed as laborer

By Peter H. Milliken

milliken@vindy.com

YOUNGSTOWN

Mahoning County Engineer Patrick Ginnetti stands by his hiring of a Canfield man who admitted stealing from the Ohio Turnpike Commission while working as a toll collector there.

Paul A. Bindas, 47, of Beech Court, started his new full-time, $33,301-a-year job as a laborer with the county April 17.

On April 3, 2012, Bindas pleaded guilty to a one-count information charging him with fourth-degree felony theft from the turnpike between Jan. 1, 2010, and Nov. 4, 2011.

Last October, Judge Lou A. D’Apolito of Mahoning County Common Pleas Court sentenced Bindas to six months’ probation supervised by the Ohio Adult Parole Authority and ordered $35,949 withheld from his state retirement account and sent to the turnpike as restitution.

On Feb. 11, Bindas’ probation officer recommended that Bindas be discharged from supervision because “he has complied with the rules and regulations and is no longer in need of supervision.” Judge D’Apolito then ordered Bindas’ supervision terminated.

“He’s paid the price. It was time to go back to work,” Ginnetti said of Bindas.

“He was accused of something. He pled. He paid restitution and he admitted it,” Ginnetti said. “He’s not going to be in a position here that’s handling money. He’s a laborer, and I felt he deserved a second chance to move on with his life.”

Bindas acknowledged his theft conviction on his job application, Ginnetti said.

Bindas, who is physically fit and passed a pre-employment drug test, is still within his 60-day probationary period as a new employee, Ginnetti said. “He’s a hard worker. The guys on the crew get along with him,” the engineer added.

Bindas was hired Dec. 8, 1991, as a turnpike toll collector and fired Nov, 22, 2011, for theft, said Atty. Kathleen Weiss, turnpike general counsel. His final annual salary as a full-time toll-taker was $50,772.

The restitution amount that was deducted from Bindas’ Ohio Public Employee Retirement System contributions will reduce Bindas’ pension amount, Weiss said. The $35,949 in restitution covers all the money the turnpike could prove Bindas stole from it, Weiss said.

Bindas would collect tolls from truckers making long turnpike trips, destroy the tickets they submitted and replace them with tickets he’d generate for much-shorter trips, pocketing the difference in cash, according to Weiss and Nicholas Modarelli, chief assistant Mahoning County prosecutor.

A typical trip by an 18-wheeler across the entire 241-mile Ohio Turnpike costs $35 with EZ Pass and $44 with cash, but a trip from Market Street Extension in North Lima to the East Gate near the Pennsylvania line, where Bindas worked, costs $1.25 or $1.50 respectively, Weiss noted.

The theft was investigated by the Ohio State Highway Patrol.

Weiss said she was unaware of any request from the Mahoning County Engineer’s Office for verification of Bindas’ turnpike employment.

“I didn’t feel I needed to [make that request] because he’s going to be in a laborer position,” Ginnetti said.


Comments

1BigJim2234(57 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

This is just the start of what is coming, Now they make him Sanitary Engineer

Suggest removal:

2koevolution(39 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

No..... He's white !!

Suggest removal:

3retguy(7 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

The Vindey News needs to do a further indepth investigation into the story and find out who this guy is related to ! This guy has some powerful connection somewhere ! The last time I heard a felon being hired like this was when the fiscal officer that was prosecuted after he was suspected of using county money to buy and sell guns from gun shows in summit county was picked up after his prison release by the county sewer department!
Doesn't a non felon deserve a chance at one of these plum public positions as well! LETS HERE THE REAL DIRT! WE CAN READ BETWEEN THE LINES! SEE WHAT THE TURNPIKE EVALUATIONS and APPLICATIONS SAY!

Suggest removal:

4Not_Gilligans_Ginger(129 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

This makes 2 people from my old neighborhood who are now convicted felons. How many of you remember the PharMor scandal? Mickey Monus and his right hand man who stole $500 million from PharMor's coffers. Well, the right hand man now has his hands in the coffers of the Diocese of Youngstown where he works as a business manager. I guess Bishop Murray is either ignorant to this or just doesn't care?

Suggest removal:

5Not_Gilligans_Ginger(129 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

I agree with you, retguy. I was just thinking the same thing myself... How about hiring someone who kept his nose clean all his life rather than a convicted felon? I suspect this has an odor of Ursuline High Alumni just like the other case I stated above.

Suggest removal:

6stan_smagala(56 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

Get over yourself, Ginger. Paul Bindas is a proud Haney alum.

Suggest removal:

7Not_Gilligans_Ginger(129 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

Stan, I guess you're right... Although the neighborhood was comprised mostly of Ursuline kids. What is it I should get over, exactly? The fact that I progressed past 6th grade spelling and you didn't? Also, the kids of the Bindas family were known as the Bindas Brats... They even broke into my next door neighbor's house through a kitchen window to steal games while still 9 and under. Their mother never suoervised them and was rarely seen outdoors and their father was always working. Maybe I know more than you do afterall. Oh, and the guy from the PharMor scandal... definitely an Ursuline grad.

Suggest removal:

8TERRAPINST(302 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

I agree that a charge of Theft is a crime that may require second consideration, BUT he was said to have fully complied with all aspects of sentence to the point of early termination. GDOG that means he has paid. Exercising poor judgment or just plain f---ing up shouldn't mean you're not allowed to have a life again. I respect Ginnetti's stones to hire someone who has paid his debts despite the public outcry. Its honorable. RETGUY should non-felons be hired even if unqualified? Again, this is small potatoes jealousy from those who don't have a public job. Give a guy a chance. I bet if Bindas was your kid, husband, brother -son you'd think different. Its' amazing to see the pleasure people take in punishing others. So weird. Those commenting: none of you ever stole anything huh? Nothing-ever. BS

Suggest removal:

9stan_smagala(56 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

Move on, Ginger. It really doesn't matter what people did in the '70's, or where they went to school.

Focus on things that you can impact. Although, I realize that probably isn't much.

Suggest removal:

10nojimbo(223 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

TERRAPINST that's right nothing to see here, let's move on. Are you freaking kidding me? The restitution of $30,000 plus from the Turnpike was just what they could PROVE he stole. This guy should have kissed the ground every day he got off work there for making freaking $50,000 a year for collecting people's tolls. Think Walmart cashier with a MUCH better union behind you. Oh, but that wasn't enough. He had to steal from us, the taxpayers and honest people who pay for the Turnpike. THEN Ginnetti, has the gall to talk about "paid the price" Bull$!** How about some truth telling? Hey, this is an elected position maybe Czar Betras can tell us who put the screws on to hire this slug.

Suggest removal:

11sue(171 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

Yo! this is Youngstown. Budda Bing.

Suggest removal:

12grand4dad(196 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

TERRAPINST, "should non-felons be hired even if unqualified?" Give me a break!! The job he's been rehired for is a LABORER. There are plenty of non-felon persons in this valley qualified to be a laborer and would give their eye teeth for a $33,00/year job with the county getting health care and other bennies. This is just sickening. Furthermore, what kind of restitution did this guy make? The money paid to the turnpike was withheld from his state pension fund. That's right, nothing came out of his pocket. They just took some money out of his pension fund, big deal. DISGUSTING!

Suggest removal:

13steelwagon(284 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

Tradition is alive and well in the good old Mahoning Valley.

Suggest removal:

14retguy(7 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

A felon who has served his time and paid his debt should be allowed to get a job somewhere but should he be allowed to continue to work in the Public employment retirement system when there are others as equally or more qualified to do road department duties, who have not broken any laws and who have not been given the opportunity because they dont have the same political conections! since the engineer is an elected Political person WHERE IS THE CIVIL SERVICE TESTS??? THIS STINKS OF MORE PATRONAGE AND PAY TO PLAY CORRUPTION IN THE VALLEY!

Suggest removal:

15Not_Gilligans_Ginger(129 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

Retguy, I'm with you all the way. Stan, I'm an educator. I teach autistic students. Rather important, isn't it? What is it that YOU do? Obviously, the petty things Bindas did in the 70's came to full fruition later in life. It's called GREED. As for people graduating from Ursuline, it's like the "Good 'Ol Boys Club." I also agree that Bindas paid NOTHING. Whoop-Dee-Doo... It came out of his state pension. He shouldn't even HAVE a pension if he stole from the state. In answer to your question, TERRAPINST, yes, I stole a pack of Fruit Stripes gum when I was very little and my father made me go back to pay for it. When we got home I was spanked and it was a lesson well learned because I never took anything without paying for it again.

Suggest removal:

16Joe_Catz(3 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

This is for all you negative idiots out there everyone deserves a second chance unless it’s for murder, rape, child abuse, child molestation things on that order. How is a man or women supposed to support his family without a job? You people are the first ones to bitch if the man went on welfare that you would have to support him and his family. If he went out and choose the life of stealing and went to jail you would be bitching that you as tax payers are paying for him to be in jail and his family is on welfare. Paul Bindias admitted what he did was found guilty and was punished. The man deserves to go on with his life. He went out and got a JOB no matter what the job is he got one. I admire Mr. Ginnetti the Mahoning County Commissioners or who ever gave him the job for hiring Paul Bindas more people should grow some Balls and do the same. Our laws really need to change on some cases on convicted felons.

Suggest removal:

17Joe_Catz(3 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

This is for all you negative idiots out there everyone deserves a second chance unless it’s for murder, rape, child abuse, child molestation things on that order. How is a man or women supposed to support his or her family without a job? You people are the first ones to bitch if the man went on welfare that you would have to support him and his family. If he went out and choose the life of stealing and went to jail you would be bitching that you as tax payers are paying for him to be in jail and his family to be on welfare. Paul Bindias admitted what he did was found guilty and was punished. The man deserves to go on with his life. He went out and got a JOB no matter what the job is he got one. I admire Mr. Ginnetti the Mahoning County Commissioners or who ever gave him the job for hiring Paul Bindas more people should grow some Balls and do the same. Our laws really need to change on some cases on convicted felons.

Suggest removal:

18Not_Gilligans_Ginger(129 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

Joe_Catz... He should have thought about supporting his family and the consequences of stealing before he ever stole from the Turnpike. 'Nuff said!

Suggest removal:

19stan_smagala(56 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

You are important, Ginger. Self important.

Congratulations.

Now, get over yourself.....

Suggest removal:

20Joe_Catz(3 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

He made a mistake. He stole he pled guilty and was convicted. At least Paul Bindas had the balls to go out and look for another job .DOSE NOT matter how he got it who gave it to him he went and got a job rather than go on welfare. And for the idiot who said it came out of his state pension fund nothing out of pocket THAHT WAS HIS MONEY it wasn't yours or mine it was his. He lost that money he could never regain. TOOOO MANY IDIOTS giving there point of view that have nothing better to do than bad rap people. People in glass houses shouldn't throw stones. Everybody in this world has baggage WHAT'S YOURS

Suggest removal:

21Not_Gilligans_Ginger(129 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

I doubt he had to "look" for this job. I bet if he was a black man and had been prosecuted for the same crime that he would still be "looking" for a job.

Suggest removal:

22janeyblue(227 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

@ Joe,this scumbucket didn't make a "mistake". He thought long and hard about how much he could get away with taking and from who. Totally premeditated. A "mistake" is spilling your coffee on a stack of important papers or knocking over the Cheeto display in Wallyworld,a "mistake"is not robbing your employer day in and day out. If he well and truly wanted a job scrub toilets at Mickey D's,wash dishes deliver newspapers. Like most every other poor sod does around here. It must be nice to have another job handed to you. His labor should be shoveling crap for the rest of his days. Build some character instead of having his hand out and his nose up someone's arose.

Suggest removal:

23OKthen(23 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

We can't have all of the convicted felons on welfare. Some have to be put to work.

Suggest removal:

24rickybobby(1 comment)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

Birds of a feather......these 2 are one in the same. Both thieves. Ginnetti knows alot about stealin money. Just ask his former employees he stole money off of by not paying the payroll taxes he deducted out every two weeks. He fits right in with county govt. Dont fault Bindis for applying, fault "Waggs" for walking in this dudes shoes already and feelin sorry for him. I believe "Waggs" is still making his restitution for his theft.

Suggest removal:

25retguy(7 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

Since Joe_Catz feels so strong about hiring Criminals maybe he is this guys uncle How come Congressman Trafficant wasn't hired by the engineer He paid his dues and penalty and did his time Why isn't Joe _Catz standing up for Jim Trafficant, he did more good in his years of public service for the mahoning valley then this Toll Taker did during his short Career! Besides there are alot of hardworking non criminals who did not even get a shot at the Job! What were the dates of the job posting and who else was interviewed for this position! Bet The vindy will find NONE if they do a freedom of information Request! CORRUPTION AT ITS BEST YET AGAIN MAYBE THE FBI WILL DO a case like they did in Cleveland! WE CAN ONLY HOPE!!!!!!

Suggest removal:

26lumper(281 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

what about don slater ? search wkbn news for him.

Suggest removal:

27esssie(4 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

I agree that all felons must support their families. If one deserves a second chance, they all deserve the chance if qualified for the position. There should have been some sort of posting for the position. I know many people in Y-town who need jobs that pay more than minimum wage. There are quite a few college-educated persons who are working in positions they are overqualified for.Why is someone who has a PhD from Youngstown State working as a security guard? It's all about "who you know."

Suggest removal:

28auntiem4cabs(113 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

I would like a job working the toll booths!!!

Suggest removal:


News
Opinion
Entertainment
Sports
Marketplace
Classifieds
Records
Discussions
Community
Help
Forms
Neighbors

HomeTerms of UsePrivacy StatementAdvertiseStaff DirectoryHelp
© 2014 Vindy.com. All rights reserved. A service of The Vindicator.
107 Vindicator Square. Youngstown, OH 44503

Phone Main: 330.747.1471 • Interactive Advertising: 330.740.2955 • Classified Advertising: 330.746.6565
Sponsored Links: Vindy Wheels | Vindy Jobs | Vindy Homes | Pittsburgh International Airport