South Pittsburgh Reporter - Serving South Pittsburgh Since 1939

The NID with some changes could be good


November 22, 2011

I have been keeping up on the possible formation of a NID in the South Side by reading all of the articles and recently the letters to the editor.

I live on Brownsville road in Carrick and thought maybe someone from one of the surrounding neighborhoods should tell you what we think about your efforts. It is about time.

I ask other surrounding neighborhoods to please do the same so those involved in the NID can get a feel for how the surrounding neighborhoods feel and are affected by South Side's booming business district.

Because of the amount of nonprofit owned land in the city it has always had limited tax resources. However, because of recent cuts to the federal, state and county allocations to the city, which helped the city maintain everything from the number of cops on the streets to the streets themselves, the city has had to tighten its belt even further.

During the spring and summer months, Brownsville road used to see a street sweeper once or twice a month but not this past spring and summer. However, when I took my wife to work at 5:30 in the morning and if it was not raining, I did see either a street sweeper or a water spray truck on Carson Street every weekday morning. The city had to make cuts somewhere.

Do not get me wrong I feel your pain. The South Side sees a lot more foot traffic than Carrick, which in turn means South Side has more trash. However, there were some weekday mornings the trashcans were half full but Carson Street, the side streets and sidewalks where all full of trash.

My personal opinion is all single-family homes under the NID's jurisdiction should only be charged $1 a month. The rest of the NID's budget should come from the business owners, the building owners, and the rental property owners.

I do not think a commercial property owner should pay and a business owner not pay or vice versa. They both will benefit from the NID's improvements by increased profits and higher property values.

However, if the business owner is also the building owner and he or she is the only tenant in that building, he or she should only pay once. In addition, I think rental property owners should be charged by the rental unit's square footage because the more people the more wear and tear and litter.

In closing, I look forward to the day when the NID is a done deal and the South Side hums along with security, better looking energy efficient old time street lighting, automated street tree watering, better sidewalks (maybe even heated sidewalks to keep the snow off) and no cars parked closer than 15 feet from the corner.

I must be dreaming.

Mike Sheehan



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