The Mayor is moving forward with plans to install security cameras wherever they may be necessary, and of "wide-spread information sharing" with any other existent surveillance systems.
He and Police Chief Nate Harper dismissed concerns that cameras might be deployed or used in ways that disproportionately affect minorities. (Rich Lord, P-G)
They also seem to be dismissing privacy concerns, on the grounds that people in crime-ridden communities would prefer the added security.
Meanwhile, P-G columnist Sally Kalston just refuses to let the police promotions story die! She suggests that those cameras ought to be turned on the police themselves.
Way harsh, I know. But what reaction did Pittsburgh Police Chief Nate Harper expect when he promoted not one, not two, but three police officers with domestic abuse allegations on their records?
Did he think the public wouldn't notice? That women, in particular, wouldn't view this as a giant step backwards? That it wouldn't reflect badly on the entire police force?
Also, we have not been entirely at peace with the selection we chose from last week's Tony Norman column. Here is a different one, which may be more representative:
There's a reason Chief Harper was popular with the rank-and-file. The cops knew he would put their interests and aspirations first. They especially liked the fact that their new chief would be an African-American family man who did not have a reputation as a mealy-mouthed pragmatist.
We don't have a link, but yesterday on WPXI we saw Mayor Luke Ravenstahl speaking some very gracious words at the Garden Party on the North Side, praising ten years of work by lots of individuals, and his being present only to acknowledge those efforts.
In related news, after weeks of the official city website featuring a photo of "a beautiful June day in Pittsburgh," it now bears a photo of the O'Connor family at the Bob O'Connor Summer Tennis Classic.
Finally, Luke hired a bunch of people.
The quintuple hiring "fulfills my commitment to diversity once again," Mr. Ravenstahl said. "Three of them are women, two of them are African American, and all are very highly qualified in terms of their previous experience and their educational experience." (Rich Lord, P-G)
Already, the most controversial hire is David White, who will be earning $88,859 annually to fulfill "a very interactive role with the community and various agencies, other outside community organizations, other government entities, boards, authorities and commissions, the business community."
He was the athletics trainer back when Ravenstahl played football at North Catholic High School, but since then has worked for UPMC Health Plan, among others.
Council President Doug Shields today called Mr. White "talented, seasoned. He's an experienced administrator."
Good will is in the air.