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Wilmerding plans to spruce up town

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Wednesday, May 8, 2013, 2:06 a.m.

Wilmerding officials are planning a new initiative this month designed to make the town a cleaner place.

Council vice president Sandy Smith announced at Tuesday night's meeting that the borough will be split into four wards for public works purposes.

Crews will cut grass, paint curbs and clean a different ward each day, and on the fifth work day they will clean the borough building and return to any ward that needs additional work.

“It's on a rotating basis,” Smith said. “Every Monday will not be Ward 1. Every Tuesday will not be Ward 2. It will be rotating ... We have had a discussion with the public works department, and we've told them of the plan and we wanted them to start to implement it. We want to be a little bit more forceful on the implementation and make sure they follow through.”

The borough has two full-time public works staff, and three part-time laborers were approved as summer help. The additional workers are expected to start in June.

Smith credited council president Stephen Shurgot with developing the plan.

She said a change needed to be made because residents were complaining that only a few sections of Wilmerding look presentable.

Residents at Tuesday night's meeting raised issues about high grass along Airbrake and Miller avenues.

“I think we should show definite signs of a cleaner town,” Smith said. “It should show signs that each ward is getting attention. People have always felt that certain areas of town got more attention than theirs. This will break it down and put (crews) everywhere every week throughout the entire town.”

Smith told residents the public works crews will be held accountable for their work.

“You catch these guys loafing and doing nothing, you bring me proof, we'll enforce discipline, I promise you that,” Smith said. “They know I mean business.”

Michael DiVittorio is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-664-9161, ext. 1965, or

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