South Pittsburgh Reporter - Serving South Pittsburgh Since 1939

By Margaret Smyka
Contributing Writer 

Carrick group elects new board officers, directors


November 16, 2010

The election of officers and directors was the top story from the November 10 meeting of the Carrick Community Council.

The four officers and seven directors will serve as the board of directors of the Carrick Neighborhood Group, a tax-exempt 501(c)4 non-profit organization, from Nov. 2010 to Nov. 2012.

The officers are Julia Tomasic, president; Kris Happe, vice president; John Rudiak, secretary; and Kate Thomes, treasurer. The directors are Carol Anthony, Phyllis Bianculli, Mike Dawida, Chuck Fallert, Cindy Falls, Jean Fink and Missy Rosenfeld.

The meeting began with a slide show entitled, "2010 Year in Review and Committee Highlights," compiled by John Rudiak that touts neighborhood activities/achievements of the past year.

Highlights include: participation in Hilltop communities' Pop Up Pittsburgh festival; the removal of more than 100 tags to date by the Public Safety Committee's TAG (Totally Against Graffiti), which was formed in 2009; community Cornfest, which combined Carrick, Overbrook, and Bon Air; installation of more than 100 flags on Brownsville Rd .; and the planting of more than 100 new trees.

Other accomplishments include banners on Brownsville Rd. bringing attention to the Carrick's commercial district, and the Carrick-Overbook Historical Society's creation of more than 30 binders of Carrick history.

Since its inception, the historical society has had over 116,000 visits to its website:

The last slide in the presentation reminded residents it only costs $10 for an annual membership in the Carrick Neighborhood Group. For more information, visit:

In the public safety report, Ms. Bianculli said a targeted goal over the past year was removing graffiti to increase home values, attract new residents, and enhance the quality of life for everyone in the neighborhood.

To that end, the January meeting of the Carrick Community Council featured detectives from the Graffiti Task Force.

The officers said graffiti is a crime that attacks residents' quality of life, and can be costly to homeowners and businesses through clean-up costs and lowering property values.

A proclamation from city council was circulated in the audience. The proclamation,

dated July 27, 2010, recognized and commended TAG, Graffiti Busters, Graffiti Task Force, and the U.S. Postal Service for their contributions to Carrick and Pittsburgh.

In the education report, Ms. Falls gave attendees a survey of future topics they would like for guest speakers, workshops, or seminars.

Possible topics included: Introduction to Computers; Computer Communication; Basic Cooking Skills; Photography 101; Healthy Life Style; and Improving Communications Skills. Other ideas for topics could also be submitted on the form.

Ms. Falls said Carrick Library offered space and computers for the first nine people who sign up for the "Introduction to Computers," a basic computer class. It will be held Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.

If interested, contact Ms. Falls at excuses101@yahoo. com.

Next, Linda Warble reported the Carrick food bank has 158 clients — its most ever. As a result, it is running out of food and other items. The food bank is hoping to give clients $15 gift certificates to help them buy turkeys for Thanksgiving.

Donations of non-perishable food items may be dropped off at Concord Elementary School.

In other news, the Carrick-Overbook Historical Society will be represented on Dec. 1 at Carmalt Elementary School during its "History Day." Residents from throughout the city are expected to attend to talk about their neighborhoods.

On Dec. 2 from 7 to 9 p.m., an international wine tasting event will be held that supports the Carrick Community Council. It will be hosted at 1630 Brownsville Rd. The cost is $25 per person at the door. Light snacks will be provided.

Attendees were reminded to call 311 for ongoing problems such as trash on a property, illegal dumping, graffiti, burned-out city lights, abandoned cars, or any other violation. 311 is the city's phone number for government information and non-emergency services. Callers receive a reference number so they can call back to learn the resolution of the complaint.

However, if anyone has a problem that requires a policeman, they should call 911.

Next, Ms. Fink said she receives calls about parents running stop signs and speeding when picking up their children at Roosevelt Elementary School. The problem is that everyone arrives at the same time — dismissal time.

She suggested a police officer is needed in the area of the school a day or two a week.

The final person to address the audience was Judy Reed, from the Office of Councilwoman Natalia Rudiak.

She addressed points relateded to a report from Ms. Rudiak.

First, the new trees along Brownsville Rd. were funded through a federal, competitive grant which the city received. All residents and business owners on Brownsville Rd. were informed trees were coming, and a phone number was given to call if they did not want the trees.

Ms. Reed said areas in which the sidewalk was cut out for new trees would be completed by December.

Secondly, a small business outreach project recently took place in Carrick. Businesses were mailed a two-page survey soliciting input, such as how businesses can be better supported.

"We learned public safety is really a concern for business owners on Brownsville Rd.," she said.

Regarding 911 and 311, Ms. Reed said if a dispatcher does not want to take the call, ask to speak with the supervisor.

Ms. Rudiak also wanted to report she rejected the proposed leasing of the city's parking lots, garages, and metered spaces to a private company.

As the last point, she wanted everyone to know the schools in her district are doing very well, said Ms. Reed.


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