South Pittsburgh Reporter - Serving South Pittsburgh Since 1939

By Margaret L. Smykla
Contributing Writer 

New chief sworn in for Mt. Oliver Boro, new budget passes

 

Mount Oliver Mayor James Cassidy congratulated new borough police chief Matthew Juzwick on being promoted. Chief Matthew has been in charge of day to day police operations in the borough since April of 2003.

The swearing in by Mayor James Cassidy of acting police chief Matthew Juzwick as the borough's new police chief highlighted the Dec. 15 meeting of Mount Oliver council.

He has been in charge of the department's daily operations since April, 2013.

The vote to promote Mr. Juzwick to chief was 6-1, with Councilman Frank Bernardini abstaining.

Mr. Juzwick's contract is for three years, starting Jan. 1, at an annual salary of $70,000. He be on call around-the-clock, and remain the department's canine officer.

The Civil Service Commission certified he is qualified to be chief.

Mr. Juzwick replaces Frank Mosesso, who was fired as police chief by a 4-1 vote at council's Nov. 17 meeting. Published reports over the past year indicate a criminal complaint was filed against Mr. Mosesso by the county district attorney's office accusing him of stealing more than $8,000 from police department checking accounts for his own usage.

He had been on leave since Sept., 2012, with a shoulder injury incurred during police training.

Mr. Juzwick, 38, grew up in Morningside, and is a graduate of North Catholic High School. He attended the police academy while studying criminal justice at Community College of Allegheny County.

His first law enforcement job was as a part-time Mount Oliver patrolman in 2001. The next year, he became a full-time patrolman, followed by sergeant two years later.

"I want to move the borough and police department in a positive direction," Mr. Juzwick said after the meeting.

In other news, council passed a 2015 budget for $1,865,710 with no tax increase; created the office of borough manager; and eliminated the ordinance officer position.

More news is that there will be no enforcement of parking meters the week of Christmas, or Dec. 21-26.

Councilwoman Barbara Keener said the action is designed to encourage people to shop locally for the holidays.

The meeting began with Patricia Impell of the "Holiday Vendors" presenting two checks from fundraising: a $400 check for the fire department; and a $1,000 check for a vest for the police department canine.

As the dog already has a vest, the department donated the money to Brentwood for a vest for its dog.

The fundraiser was held in the borough fire hall.

Ms. Impell said she would like to hold a spring fundraiser for the fire department in the fire hall.

President Darnell Sains thanked her for all her efforts.

In the mayor's report, Mr. Cassidy said all equipment is up and running.

In November, police responded to 548 calls including 18 drug-related arrests, 33 domestics, four burglaries, one DUI arrest, and more.

Of the 18 drug-related arrests, 12 resulted from traffic stops, which is why there are often multiple police cars at stops.

In the code enforcement report, Mr. Bernardini reported there were 22 inspections; 33 units; five citations issued; one building permit; six occupancy inspections; and seven violations/notices sent.

In the parks and recreation report, he said the committee will try in the spring to generate interest among youths for varied sports.

In the public safety report, Mrs. Keener reported the position of ordinance officer was eliminated.

Beginning Jan. 1, Steve Wilharm, who held the position for years, will continue as the borough's emergency management coordinator, for which he will be paid a $500 annual stipend. He holds the same position with Allegheny County.

"He can reach out to any emergency branch in the nation," Mr. Sains said of Mr. Wilharm's contacts.

The borough position requires annual certification, which Mr. Wilharm already has through the county.

In the public works/health report, Councilman Dave Lowe reported there will be no water shutoffs this month in light of the holidays. However, the shutoffs will start again in January for those with delinquent sewage accounts.

He also reported the Keystone Collections Group will begin doing the garbage billing and handling of delinquents. The three-month garbage fee is $33.87. The bill is due within 30 days of receipt. Residents who pay for the full year in one payment will save $7.

Currently, the late fee is an additional $10 after 30 days. Under the new system, the late fee will be $3.50. If the bill is not paid within 45 days, it becomes delinquent and is subject to more fees.

For problems with billing, Mr. Lowe said to call Keystone. For problems with garbage pickup, call Republic Services.

He also reported the borough's salt for icy roads had been delivered -- 171 tons.

The meeting concluded with passage of three motions: creation of the office of borough manager; setting of the 2015 tax rate at 13.5 mills, which is unchanged; and adoption of a 2015 budget of $1,865,710.

The next council meeting will be on Jan. 19.

 

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