Business prowess factors into Mt. Lebanon commissioners race
Both men running for the only contested seat on the Mt. Lebanon Board of Commissioners say they want to bring their business backgrounds to the panel.
Democrat Steve Silverman is the controller and co-owner of General Wire Spring Co. and Republican Jack Doyle is retired from running capital projects for various chemical companies.
“Forty percent of the township's budget is spent on capital projects and maintenance,” Doyle said. “That's what I did for 40 years before I retired. I think I can bring some insight into a lot of that spending and possibly reduce it.”
“The commission needs another perspective,” Silverman said. He used as an example when commissioners weighed additional inspections and registrations for apartment properties, until they were surprised by landlords' complaints about the potential trouble that would cause their business. “As a businessman, I've been on the receiving end of some of these regulations.”
Silverman and Doyle are running to replace Commissioner Matt Kluck, the only Republican on the panel, and represent Ward 2 in the southwestern part of Mt. Lebanon. Kluck is not running for re-election.
Both men said they'd make economic development a priority if they win the seat, and said they'd press the commission to take more action on developable but unused land, such as the overgrown Zamagias property at the corner of Washington and Bower Hill roads.
“I don't think the commission has been aggressive enough to get that property developed,” Silverman said. “We should be calling the owners into every meeting for updates ... ask them, ‘Are we there yet?' like kids on a car ride.”
“We can't force developers to develop, but we can work with them to see what they need,” Doyle said. “The thing I'm looking at is moving forward as a township, not resting on our laurels.”
Doyle said he'd like to see continued and expanded events such as First Fridays, Plein Air and ULTRAparty in Mt. Lebanon's business districts, which he said help set the community apart from suburban neighbors such as Upper St. Clair and Peters.
Silverman said he would budget more money for the traffic board, which is in charge of weighing and recommending traffic control and calming measures.
“The traffic board just isn't getting enough money,” he said. “$50,000 doesn't buy a lot of speed bumps.”
Doyle said he disagreed with the commission on its use of undesignated fund balances — money that's either unspent at the end of past years or revenue that comes in higher than expected — to fund capital projects. If Mt. Lebanon consistently pulls in more money than it's spending, perhaps the commission should consider lowering taxes, he said.
Matthew Santoni is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-380-5625 or email@example.com.
Add Matthew Santoni to your Google+ circles.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Upper St. Clair baseball field to be repaired after mine subsidence
- Young achiever: Amelia Porter Bacon
- Bellevue to repair library, add play equipment to park
- Groveton VFD receives outpouring of support after station fire
- Flag-collection effort gains steam around Pittsburgh area
- Watershed group coordinating efforts to meet Saw Mill Run deadline
- Borough takes the reins of Dormont Day