Thursday, October 25, 2007


Mr. DeSantis said his campaign also is attracting some 300 volunteers, many of whom are Democrats and independents, which he said should be scaring the incumbent. (P-G, Timothy McNulty)

The real news is that Mark has raised about $300,000, an insane increase over previous Republican efforts, and a respectable sum even by Democrat standards.

But it's the 300 volunteers that so pleases the Comet.


Pittsburgh Police Chief Nate Harper Wednesday removed a petition in police headquarters seeking signatures from police officers who disagree with the police union's political endorsement of Republican mayoral candidate Mark DeSantis.

The petition, which had five signatures at 1:45 p.m ... (Trib, Jeremy Boren)

This is pretty darn amusing, considering the hype this petition had received from Councilman Jim Motznik, not to mention some comments on the Burgh Report.


A draft report on Pittsburgh's Fire Bureau suggests changes over a decade that could eventually cut the number of fire stations from 29 to 23, if the city can first raze abandoned buildings and reduce the number of fires. (P-G, Rich Lord)

Fire fighters union chief Joe King is assailing the report. Luke Ravenstahl sounds extremely skeptical of it and noncommittal -- but Mark DeSantis is embracing it wholeheartedly. This should help dispel the notion that Mark is willing to sell the city dahna river for union endorsements.

One would think.


  1. Everyone (Matt H, DeSantis) is talking to rank and file members of the FOP and hearing what they want to hear. Which is fine. I would think that police headquarters is probably not a hotbed of union activitiy, but the zone stations might well be a different matter. Meanwhile, according to KDKA radio, it is Ravenstahl selling the FOP down the river, whatever that phrase actually means ...


    I want that bumper sticker.

  3. This was one issue where I believe that Mark D fumbled the ball.The reports states the deplorable conditions of the fire facilities and substandard response times.

    "The draft notes that fire deaths per capita are 42 percent higher in Pittsburgh than the national average. It finds that after six stations were closed in 2005, response times slowed to a "minimal" degree. It says it is "of concern" that it took an average of 30 seconds longer for all trucks to arrive at structure fires in 2006 than in 2004."

    "The bureau is less successful at meeting another standard, which calls for the first truck arriving within four minutes."

    Mr. King said that in some areas response times are far from the standard. Mr. Huss said the bureau does not have station-by-station breakdowns of response times.

    The report characterizes the city's fire prevention efforts as "dismal" and the condition of Fire Bureau facilities as "deplorable."

    Mr. Huss agreed that prevention efforts have been cut during years of tight budgets. For instance, a three-person fire education team was slashed to one half-time educator.

    "Our fire stations have been neglected, without a doubt," he added. During the city's years of fiscal distress, the bureau has focused on upgrading equipment rather than buildings, he said."

    So in light of that,"Mr.DeSantis said he would "absolutely" support the recommendations of the study."He then goes on to say that he is concerned with the public's safety. But we know from the study that response times are poor,deaths are high,and fire stations are in bad shape.So how does "absolutely"supporting the study's findings look after the public's saftey???

  4. Smitty you say:

    "So in light of that,"Mr.DeSantis said he would "absolutely" support the recommendations of the study."

    The draft recommendation of the study include many harsh reminders of all issues of public safety, especially noting the work of clearing vacant buildings. We can presume Mark's enthusiasm does not equate to, "Let's slash these dozen fire stations on day one."

    Also, let's not just AUTOMATICALLY assume that all cases of scaling down the number of stations means public safety will suffer! Yes we have some deplorable statistics, but aren't the best models and studies indicating that response times and the like will be little affected?

    Let's not fear change for change's sake. Maybe one of the reasons these stations are in such deplorable conditions is because we have too darn MANY of them to maintain effectively!

  5. Bram
    I think from a pre-election point of view DeSantis could have reveresed the order of his statement making public safety his primary concern and predicating approval of the study based on it's public safety impact.Either or,it doesn't diminsh his status as the more qualified candidate.