Dormont approves some free weekend parking, will accept bid for public works facility repairs
By Al Lowe
Dormont council has authorized free parking in the borough-owned lots on Glenmore, Espy and West Liberty avenues on weekends starting May 2.
The experimental hours are being tried to encourage shopping at local merchants and will be monitored by council for three months. Bags will be put over parking meters in those lots from 3:30 p.m. Friday until 8 a.m. Monday.
There was a unanimous vote on the proposal, which came from a suggestion by junior council member Ryan Staiger and was modified by Councilman Joseph Costanzo.
He and Council Member Louise Pitcher were absent from the April 7 regular meeting.
In other business, council agreed to advertise that the borough is accepting sealed bids on repairs at the public works facility. Manager John Marquart said the bids should be received by April 25 and will be presented to council on April 28.
“Our men need this,” Councilwoman Maggie Mitro said. “It's just a mess. The smell alone is really bad. It is a shame our people have to work there.” “The project is long overdue,” Councilman John Sparvero said.
Mayor Thomas Lloyd told council he got a complaint from a resident who has to start work at 5 a.m. and whose sleep is interrupted by bar patrons loudly departing the area after 2 a.m. Lloyd told him the problem would go away for a while when the renovation of the Tennessee Avenue public works building starts. “He was happy,” Lloyd said.
There was another unanimous vote on the motion to hire Kristen Denne as assistant borough manager at a salary of $38,500.
Council also amended the borough code regulating the number of false fire alarms allowed before fines start. There's no charge for one false alarm that is responded to by the fire department but there's a $50 charge for two to four alarms and $75 for five and over.
Council members, who say they want better maintenance of fire alarm systems by merchants and residents, said the fire department often immediately recognizes the addresses when they get the dispatch calls.
Resident David Daugherty of Texas Avenue had heard about previous discussion on reducing the borough spaces for the handicapped. He submitted the paperwork and was wondering what was taking so long. He complained about a conversation he had with Police Chief Russell McKibben. Daugherty said he can't walk 200 feet without stopping and asked why the chief thought he was a doctor.
“He is the first one to admit he isn't a doctor,” Lloyd said. The chief was not present at the meeting.
Council President Ed Good told him he would find out about his application for the space. Council members again stressed the spaces are not reserved for particular residents but are for anyone handicapped.
Among other routine business, council hired James Kolesky as desk officer/fire apparatus officer, allowed Holy Cross Church to erect a banner from June 9 to 23, accepted the low bid of $133,558 from Oakdale Construction Co. to handle various sanitary sewer projects and agreed to hire Shirley Doyle as director of the Dormont Summer Camp program.