Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Wednesday: All Manner of Issues

Last week, Mr. Dowd put a hold on legislation that would formalize the transfer of state funds through the city to the URA, saying he wanted to see the agency's budget first. The URA board then passed a budget, and council got it Friday. (P-G, Rich Lord)

Good to know how to get answers.

Mr. Dowd said that the $10.3 million administrative budget, which does not include the money to be spent on bricks-and-mortar projects, includes $2.8 million that looks like one-time, unsustainable revenue.

That includes the tapping of $1.5 million in repayments of loans made with federal funds.
The budget also includes a $1.5 million payment to the city.

Someone could conclude that there's "a financial shell game here, and federal money is being used to fund the city," Mr. Dowd said.

This will be one interesting conversation among several today.


The City of Pittsburgh asked firms yesterday to submit proposals to study whether men earn more than women within its 3,300-person work force. (P-G, Team Effort)

Good for the City. The Post-Gazette News Room deserves some kind of Pulitzer for the Excellence in the Field of Blurbs for getting this one about right.


In winter 2007, as soon as the new Penguins arena was announced, Hill District residents began working together, forming the One Hill Community Benefits Agreement Coalition. (P-G, Morgan and Williamson)

Actually, in winter 2007, that was most definitely the other alliance -- then again, some elements of One Hill are now tracing their involvement in arena benefits back to 2005.

Be that as it may, an op-ed making the broad, broad, broad case for CBA's now exists.


"So now we've almost declared war, and I'm not sure that's good for anybody," said Mayor Luke Ravenstahl, who blamed council and defended a 5-year-old practice of allowing Lamar to put up one digital sign for every five or six vinyl ones it took down. "I guess it would be bad to have 42 LED billboards in communities, and that's why the swap process was done methodically." (P-G, Rich Lord)

Differing definitions of "process" and "methodically" at work, is all.

City Council is legally challenging that maneuver, which might be an administration thank-you to Lamar for providing free billboard space last year to promote the city's 3-1-1 help line and anti-litter campaign.

Those billboards featured the face of a beaming Ravenstahl, who coincidentally happened to be engaged in a mayoral campaign at the time. (Trib, Eric Heyl)

It is the looking into of such seemingly political connections that would be the most blatantly political act, obviously.

1 comment:

  1. There was an update on the PG website by lunchtime, it was part two for the take home car debate. Apparently Rev Burgess modified his legislation to match the language of the Act 47 recovery plan. One of the authors of the plan agreed they matched closely. George Specte still said the proposed legislation was illegal, that it micromanaged the day to day operations of the city (and infringes on "Mayoral power"). When pressed on that, he said that the legislation would be legal if it came from the administration. The legislation passed 4-2 on a preliminary vote.