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McKeesport, PA

Fireworks fly at council meeting

Thanks Jack. All is pretty good here. Kids are healthy and happy and my focus is where it need be for the time being. I doubt time will permit me to post often, but if I have a good idea or a germane opinion, I will try to make time to bring them forward.  (Apr 14, 2012 | post #13)

McKeesport, PA

Vote of Confidence

It is well known that I didn't support Mr. Cherepko for Mayor. That being said, I think it should be also stated that I hold no animosity towards Mike and I do congratulate he and his team for running a very effective campaign. I don't agree with all of his actions but I always did find Mike to be one of the more reasonable councilors that I could talk to and debate logically on the issues when we were both councilors. I am posting to congratulate Mike for his impetus on eradicating crime and criminals from the city. Mike promised to be tough on crime and his actions are showing his follow through on that promise. Unlike Mr. Brewster, who seemed to bury his head in the sand concerning crime here, at least in his public statements, Mayor Mike has publicly stated the problem and seems to have a plan in place and in action, to address it. We don't all have to agree on every issue, but I do believe we should all support the Mayor in his endeavor to make McKeesport safer. I am in total agreement with him that once we can reduce crime and change the perception of McKeesport to a safe place to live and grow a business, things can and will get better here.  (Apr 14, 2012 | post #1)

McKeesport, PA

Fireworks fly at council meeting

Since I am on, I might as well say that I support the spirit of what Ms. Walker is trying to do with her idea. When I was on Council, I proposed that each Councilor should take a lead role in an area where they have expertise so that we could have gotten more involved in moving the city forward. For example, at that time, I felt Mr. Segina, with his 20 years of public works experience, could take more of an active roll in liasing with that department's head, making recommendations and helping to focus that department. With Mr. Cherepko's experience as a teacher and with youth sports, I thought he could work to see that we were maximizing our activities towards our youth via Weed & Seed and the Rec Department. I have a technology background and thought I could help us move the city's technology forward, etc.... I drew strong opposition from the then Mayor and also Mr. Segina for my idea. So be it. I still think more active council people would be a benefit to the city. In the past, the former Mayor told me that council people were not important and that we were "just one vote." I diagree then and I disagree now. If there is a flaw with Ms. Walker's idea, it is in an even numbered "committee ". However, folks are missing the point that the committees she proposes would not usurp Mayoral or Council authority. All each committee could do would be to present new ideas to them. What has been tried in the past, obviously, hasn't worked out all that well for McKeesport. Not a political shot, just a statement of fact. Look around. Insanity is defined by doing the same things over and over and expecting new results. Try something new. If it doesn't work out, you can always fall back from it. My $0.02.  (Apr 14, 2012 | post #11)

McKeesport, PA

Fireworks fly at council meeting

I had to break my topix silence and chime in here as my name was brought up. Unlike those who tried me in the press, I believe the Diggs are innocent until proven guilty of anything and are entitled to due process. Knowing them both, I sincerely doubt they were ever a threat to the young people. If Sam did have his gun outside, that was a bad decision. Let the courts decide if a crime was committed.  (Apr 14, 2012 | post #10)

McKeesport, PA

Sluggo or Cherepko for Mayor

You and your family.  (Aug 26, 2011 | post #160)

McKeesport, PA

Sluggo or Cherepko for Mayor

Thanks Carl. My political career is on the back burner for now. Work and family take precedence. I am far from perfect and have made my share (and then some) of mistakes, but it is heartwarming to see that there are people out there who can see right through all of the false propoganda and insults hurled my way. Best to you nd your family, Paul  (Aug 26, 2011 | post #159)

McKeesport, PA

Malinchak Ejected By Cherepko

Actually, Ray does introduce many ideas that others take credit for. For example, he was the first to bring the idea of Marcellus Shale drilling to the Mayor and Council. His engineering background enabled him to be the first to understand it and see the potential for financial gain for the city. About the 24 million, you are probably right. Better to have it than not. However, remember this, it was Brewster's Renaissance 2005 that according to a local news source, built 19 million of that debt! Here are the potential dowsides. 1) The city does lose substantial monthly cash payments from MACM as a result. 2) When was the last time that our elected officials had money and didn't burn through it? If they are smart with the money, it could be a good move. I wouldn't hold my breath on that one. Paul  (Aug 10, 2011 | post #36)

McKeesport, PA

Malinchak Ejected By Cherepko

X-City worker, thanks for your candid opinion. I must beg to differ. Ray nor anyone else would want to be the Mayor who takes the city into Act 47. He merely has reported to Council and the Mayor, at times, that the city has met some of thew qualifications for Act 47 status. I worked with Ray for four years and for all four of those, he was the brightest bulb in the room, present company included. Now, let me briefly discuss Act 47, for which someone has fed you a line of bull. In reality, when a community goes act 47, it does not lose its police and fire departments. What is permitted is for the city to renegotiate existing contracts to put the city into a better long term financial position. Somehow, when Clairton filed Act 47, their small PD was disbanded and the State Police came in to patrol for a while. Clairton did get its PD back with a union contract more favorable to the distressed community. Wilkinsburg, which was Act 47 for a while (they have since come out of it) never lost either of their PD or FD due to Act 47. As a matter of fact, Wilkinsburg FD was merged into the City of Pittsburgh FD YEARS after Wilkinsburg recovered from Act 47. The benefits that I can see from reading all of the Act 47 references online are that they can renegotiate union contracts, negotiate better terms with their creditors and vendors and charge non-residents working in the city a wage tax equal to the difference in McKeesport's and the workers home community. For example, if McKeesport charges 1.7 and White Oak charges 1.0, McKeesport can collect .7% tax on that person's wages made in McKeesport. That is the only additional revenue stream made available to such communities. The notion that the community will receive more government funding is possible but probably not actual. The provisions of Act 47 say that the state may for a time pay the city's operating expenses as the city's revenues are to be dedicated to debt reduction. This is only to happen if and when the state approves a city's Fiscal Recovery Plan and until it is no longer necessary. Given the State's fiscal plight, I doubt any municipality will be seeing increased state funding any time soon. So in summary, Ray has never tried to take the city into Act 47. I believe that his financial smarts are the best available to AVOID Act 47. Brewster has taken us to the brink with his overspending and mismanagement. Act 47 is not the boogie man Brewster and his boys would have you believe. They try to scare Police and Firemen into believing they will lose their jobs if the city files for such status. This is just political hogwash from a regime who will do and say just about anything to stay in power. Thanks for listening. I hope this clears some things up for you.  (Aug 10, 2011 | post #35)

McKeesport, PA

Malinchak Ejected By Cherepko

In my case, you are preaching to the choir. I was often the lone voice of reason against six votes. I did hear the present Mayor and Councilman Segina say that they were never told JB keeping the penthouse suite was part of the resolution they were presented. Why inform council so that they can make an informed decision, even if you are stepping on people who supported you for years as Mayor? That is covertness against your own troops and evidence of the lengths JB has gone to promote himself and HIS agenda. Can we expect any different as he directs his hand picked candidate moving forward? Ray Malinchak would make a great Mayor based on his qualifications alone. An added bonus would be the ending of such chicanery and self serving behavior at City Hall.  (Aug 9, 2011 | post #29)

McKeesport, PA

Malinchak Ejected By Cherepko

Unfortunately you are right. Perhaps Mr. Malinchak can bring justice and openness to McKeesport. He has a tough mountain to climb and will likely be slandered and derided for his efforts. I wish him well in his efforts.  (Aug 8, 2011 | post #27)

McKeesport, PA

Malinchak Ejected By Cherepko

My Father fought for our right to free speech against Nazi aggression. Had he known you......  (Aug 7, 2011 | post #25)

McKeesport, PA

Will Ray stand up to Mike in November?

A debate is an excellent idea. It would be the only way the voters will get a true mano y mano comparison of the candidates. I think it would be a shrewd move by the Controller to publicly challenge the council president to such an event. If the council president agrees, the controller gets the opportunity to showcase his superior knowledge and intellect and if the council president declines, he shows a sign of weakness that the controller can expose for political gain. If such a debate occurs, I would encourage the Controller to have it filmed and broadcast, at least on youtube, so that citizens could judge the candidates for themselves, rather than read about it from a biased paper and ink news outlet.  (Aug 7, 2011 | post #14)

McKeesport, PA

Malinchak Ejected By Cherepko

I apologize. Replace sslow with allow and the last word should have been post.  (Aug 7, 2011 | post #21)

McKeesport, PA

Malinchak Ejected By Cherepko

Eddie, As I don't know all of the details of the Resolution made Ordnance, let me add some info. 1) 19 Million is being used to payoff the former Mayor's "Renaissance 2005" borrowing. Do you as a citizen see any positive results from the $19 Million he spent? 2) Reducing the debt, in theory, is a good thing. However, if its intent is partially to sllow the next Mayor and Council to borrow more and make other useless investments, it is not that great. This is especially true since the city will not have the monthly influx of revenue from the Sewage Authority to offset future expenses. 3) The council President made the claim that the remaining $5 Million will be used to offset the loss of sewage income. It has not been my experience that money's available are not spent by administrations. Also, where is the city going to invest that money so that the sewage shortfall will be paid off by the interest? Any sort of investment that would (potentially) produce the type of interest needed would be too risky and also unavailable to a local government by law. 4) I am not saying that the move is good or bad. I am just saying that it has potential downsides. Mr. Segina stated that there were provisions in the move that we just presented to Council on the night of the meeting. There was no time for council to investigate if these changes were beneficial or not. Had I been in his shoes, I'd likely have abstained until my due diligence could be completed. For any Council person to give an "aye" vote under such conditions is at best reckless. Obviously those individuals presenting the move and involved in the legal issues will profit financially from it. I am not saying they are doing anything unethical but they do have a vested interest in the legislation passing. Therefore, a well meaning council person would take their "advice" with a grain of salt. Surely the interest rates are not going to change so much in one month that the concerned councilors had to be forced into a decision at the "special " meeting and the controllers questions could not be answered. I was not at the meeting but I do doubt that Mr. Malinchak's statements and questions were worthy of his ejection. My experience, from working along side the man for four years are that he is very thorough concerning all financial matters. As the fiscal watch dog of the city, while he doesn't have a vote, he certainly can bring relevant issues to light that council should have considered before voting. Unfortunately, there is currently a close nit majority of council right now that is going to vote exactly how their leader or leaders "suggest " that they do. If in the future, you see the city spending the %5 Million or floating large "Renaissance " like bonds, remember that you heard it here. Good to see you posting again. I typically don't waste my time here much any more since the board has been hijacked by the goofus who used to have the South Park (and at least two other) IP's. It is refreshing when real citizens with real opinions vote.  (Aug 7, 2011 | post #20)

McKeesport, PA

RIP Rich Dellapenna

I am both shocked and saddened to hear about Rich's passing. I respected Rich as a Father, a firefighter and a Councilman. He will be missed. My prayers are with the family.  (May 25, 2011 | post #3)

Q & A with Sluggo

Headline:

Truth Will Set Us Free

Hometown:

Mckeesport

Neighborhood:

6th and 7th Wards

Local Favorites:

Th Viking, Pepino's, Broadway, Retreat, All Hoop Courts, FireHouse Fitness, 7-Springs (Elizabeth) Golf Course, Many Churches, www.paulshelly.com ;)

I Belong To:

St. Stephen's Episcopal (they closed St. Stephen's R.C. (Hungarian)!!!!)

When I'm Not on Topix:

Raising four wonderful children , coaching and mentoring, blogging, praying for guidance,moving McKeesport forward.

Read My Forum Posts Because:

At least they are truthful

I'm Listening To:

Many trusted local advisors.

Read This Book:

The Bible

Favorite Things:

Competition, Service, Family, Fishing, Golf, Exercise, Reading, Writing, Public Speaking, Politics

On My Mind:

How do we end racism and violence in Mckeesport? Ideas for revitalizing our neighborhoods and our business district.

Blog / Website / Homepage:

www.paulshelly.com

I Believe In:

Truth, Justice, Fairness, Equality, The Golden Rule, Myself, A Positive Attitude, God, Mom, Apple Pie, Chevrolet