At its annual reorganization meeting on Monday, Jan. 4, the Town of Ellicottville’s new supervisor, Matt McAndrew, and the board appointed Mark Alianello to the position of Town Highway Superintendent.
Alianello, who also serves as the town’s engineer and runs his private civil engineering firm, MDA Engineers, says his role, per the board, is to organize the department, develop long- and short-term capital and infrastructure repair plans and manage the department budget.
“Mark is perfect for the job,” said McAndrew. “He understands the big picture better than just about anyone.”
The official job description for the Superintendent position is now described as a part-time, contract job with high-level oversight responsibilities for the highway department. Alianello will not be driving highway vehicles, operating equipment or repairing roads.
“I expect to begin by inventorying all of the roads, signs, culverts, etc. and determining their conditions, then prioritize the order of repairs and replacements, develop a five-year plan and budget accordingly,” he explained. “It will help the board and the taxpayers if the department has everything organized and put into a clear, updateable format with a well-reasoned plan.”
Alianello’s two-year contract requires him to work no fewer than 250 hours per year in his role as highway superintendent, which pays $28,472. He also will work with the department as Town Engineer to help determine the best, most cost-effective ways to make infrastructure repairs.
“There definitely will be overlap with the engineer role,” he said. “The town engineer must be and always has been involved in decisions about highway department projects.”
The board feels that the new approach and contract model for highway superintendent works because the job description of “working supervisor” in the department calls for that person to manage all day-to-day department decisions and tasks. The board is in the process of searching for the right person to hire as working supervisor.
Department employee Frank Moore was appointed Deputy Superintendent by the board per Alianello’s recommendation.
McAndrew said he supports the direction the board is taking with the highway department. “This is a new approach for the town,” he said, referring to the town’s decision to make the highway superintendent an appointed, rather than elected, position. “Mark has worked for the town for some 30 years and knows its inner workings. There is no one better suited to setting things up and putting long-term plans in place than Mark,” he said.