South Pittsburgh Reporter - Serving South Pittsburgh Since 1939

By Margaret Smyka
Contributing Writer 

Boro surveillance cameras will be installed in April


March 25, 2008

The camera system that will provide surveillance at the five-point intersection at Brownsville Rd., Hays Ave., Amanda Ave., Bausman St., and Sherman St. will be installed April 7-10.

The police laptops are already programmed for the cameras.

That was the top news from the report of Mayor Jeff Repasky at the March 17 meeting of Mount Oliver Council. The camera system is funded from a state grant.

Councilmen Dennis Obeldobel and James Caylor were absent.

The mayor also read a handwritten note addressed to him from a resident offering thanks for the borough Public Works employees and the police officers.

The report of the assistant borough engineer, Justin Wagner, led off the meeting as a cost savings measure: once he gave his report, he left.

It was the first regular meeting without engineer Ruthann Omer, who announced at last month's meeting that, as a cost savings measure, she would no longer attend borough meetings. Instead, Gateway Engineers associate Wagner will be her replacement. There will be no engineer at agenda meetings.

Mr. Wagner said that the borough's application for a $1.3 million loan from PennVest, the Pa. Infrastructure Investment Authority, for mandated sanitary sewer work, is on the agency's April agenda.

It was previously turned down, and resubmitted.

He reported that a letter was sent to Brentwood Borough about its street sweeping machine, but he did not know the response. Mount Oliver would like to rent or share usage with a neighboring borough.

He also reminded council that applications for county Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) are due to the COG in May. He said the borough should start thinking about what services to apply for, such as demolitions which require matching funds.

During the public comment, a resident said that people are not clearing the sidewalks of snow in his neighborhood. He asked if citations were issued.

Councilman Patrick Malloy responded that 75 citations were issued for snow/ice in the past month.

Next, a resident complained about a white pit bull that runs loose on Brownsville Rd. and "goes to the bathroom" in her yard. This has been going on since November.

She called Triangle Pet, to no result. The mayor said the police will check if the dog has a license and, if so, will give Triangle Pet the owner's name.

Solicitor James Perich advised taking a photograph of the dog in her yard as a borough ordinance prohibits dogs without leashes.

Police Chief Frank Mosesso told the resident to call 911 next time, even anonymously.

This is a special case, said the mayor, and all residents should not call 911 for dogs in their yards.

In the public safety report, Mr. Malloy said last month the seven police vehicles logged 6,220 miles in the borough, or about 888 miles per vehicle.

Also in the last month, there were 1070 complaints and 41 nuisance properties were identified.

He also said the canine officers parked their cars and took walks 31 times. "That's a beat cop. You may not see them because there is not a specified time or length."

Under the fire marshal report, council President James Cassidy said fire chief Tom Plietz is in school learning to be a commercial building inspector. Currently, the borough subcontracts the position.

When Mr. Plietz is certified in two months, subcontracting will be eliminated. It will save the borough money, give the borough a better handle of what's going on in the borough, and benefit the borough through Mr. Plietz's daily presence there.

In the recreation report, Mr. Cassidy said the Public Works Department, and also possibly volunteers, will replace the missing shingles on the main building in the park.

The borough will be putting part-time help on for the summer for chores like cutting the grass and painting curbs.

Applicants for the seasonal positions must be at least age 18. Borough residents are preferable. Applications are available at the borough building.

The "Easter Bunny visit" on March 15, sponsored by the Mount Oliver Recreation Association in cooperation with UPMC Childrens, was a success. Held at the Hilltop Family Care Connection on Arlington Ave., it drew 100 children.

In the economic development report, Billie Michener said it took four months of prodding, but the shoes that hung from the overhead wires were finally taken down by Comcast.

The first borough "clean sweep" of the year, in which volunteers remove litter from targeted borough streets, will take place over the April 19-20 weekend. It is being held in conjunction with the April 22 Earth Day, in which trash is picked up nationwide.

For the borough clean-up, bags and gloves will be obtained free of charge from Allegheny Clean Ways. Pittsburgh Cares also provides outside volunteers.

Free coffee and donuts will be provided, as will bottled water later during the clean-up.

Ms. Michener is also trying to attract volunteers from youth organizations for the clean-up.

"I'm hoping we can do better this year," she said referring to last year's clean-ups which drew only a handful of volunteers.

In the ambulance report, she said a subscription costs $25 per year. Currently, there are 204 subscribers, marking the first time in years that 200 was exceeded.

The next economic development meeting will be on March 27 at 6:30 p.m. in the Elder-ado senior center on Brownsville Rd. Everyone is welcome. There will be no guest speaker.

During the solicitor's report, there was a first reading of a resolution formalizing procedures for bringing a dumpster to one's house. There will be a $25 permit fee, and restrictions on where it can be placed, such as in the street.

Mr. Perich also said grants are available from the Gaming Control Board for training to enforce the new gambling laws.

The next borough meeting will be on April 21. 


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