In this monthly column, Pittsburgh District 1 Councilman Bobby Wilson shares his message for Northsiders.
Photo courtesy of Councilman Bobby Wilson
Feb. 6 marks my first month in office. Every day has been exciting and enlightening. So far, I have met with the directors of the city’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB), Finance Department, Public Safety, Public Works, Law, City Planning, Permits, Licenses, and Inspections (PLI), and the Department of Mobility and Infrastructure (DOMI).
I had an interesting conversation with the Pittsburgh Water & Sewer Authority (PWSA) about the progress that has been made on replacing lead lines, and how Pittsburgh’s lead line removal process is so efficient that other cities have modeled their programs after it.
Meeting with the Housing Authority and Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) gave me insight into how we will partner to increase affordability on the Northside because I firmly believe that people spending over 30% of their income on housing need relief.
I made it to an early morning shift change at Zone 1 on Brighton Road, where I spoke to police officers going out and had a wide-ranging discussion with Cmdr. Ragland and Sgt. Burford about police handling of opioids in the community and the number of outstanding warrant from other municipalities that our officers process.
Finally, it was nice to see many of you at the January community group meetings, where I appreciated the opportunity to introduce myself and hear your immediate concerns for the Northside and the improvements you would like to see.
One of my duties as Councilman is to chair a standing committee. I have been appointed to chair the Committee on Land Use and Economic Development. As chair, I have authority over all legislation dealing with two major city departments: PLI and the Department of City Planning. The content of the legislation varies weekly and may involve subdivisions of each department like the Art Commission, Community Development Block Grants (CDBG), the Historic Review Commission, and Zoning. In this role, I plan on working closely with all of these offices to improve services for our residents and small businesses and to ensure sustainable and equitable development in the Northside and the entire city.
Did you know you can watch council hearings, press conferences, community meetings, and more on the city’s Youtube channel? Search for “City Channel Pittsburgh.” The city also makes a rich variety of public data available on Burgh’s Eye View.
If there is something you’d like us to discuss in the next issue of The Northside Chronicle, please let us know at (412) 255-2135 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also contact my office here. We look forward to meeting and hearing from all of you.
Let’s get to work!