Village of Pelham board eliminates combined bldg inspector/public works post held by Senerchia, will create two new jobs


The Village of Pelham Board of Trustees abolished the combined position of superintendent of public works/building inspector, terminating incumbent Joseph Senerchia, because the board said in a resolution the new in-house garbage collection operation required the creation of two new positions.

The village will have a building inspector and a general foreman for public works as separate positions “for reasons of efficiency and economy,” according to the resolution adopted unanimously by the board in February.

As the village is heading into in-house trash collection, “one of the kind of final pieces here that we’ve been struggling with for some time is—and this is something that is always front of mind—is thinking about what is the best structure for the village organization,” said Mayor Chance Mullen at the Feb. 14 regular meeting of the village board. “And we feel really strongly that the most efficient way to structure our DPW and our buildings department is to have a dedicated building inspector and to have a dedicated DPW foreman. And so we need to, as a result of that, abolish the role of superintendent of public works/building inspector.” 

Senerchia’s employment ended on Feb. 14, and he received eight weeks severance pay, the resolution said.

Mullen went on to thank Senerchia for his service to the village. 

None of the six trustees spoke on the resolution. Typically, the village board reviews agenda items during the work session that precedes the regular board meeting. The resolution eliminating the combined position was not discussed during the Feb. 14 work session.

Mullen did not respond to three requests for an interview.

It is unclear when the mayor and trustees publicly discussed changing the staffing structure during the year and a half they have been planning for the village to takeover garbage collection—and only weeks before the operation was slated to start.

Also unknown is how long it will take to hire both the new DPW foreman and the building inspector, the cost difference between staffing the two new posts instead of one and the job description of the foreman.

In September 2021, the village board voted to buy four diesel-garbage trucks, paving the way for the village to collect trash rather than contracting out the service. This action meant a contract with Oakridge Waste and Recycling would end when the new sanitation department started operations. The service was projected to begin in mid-January but was delayed to March because of supply-chain issues hampering the production of the trucks.

Senerchia, a Republican, serves as an elected member of the Village of Pelham Manor Board of Trustees. He began working for the Village of Pelham in March 2017 and is a co-owner of