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Monday, Feb. 11, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
 

Return of the Pirates: Long before the swallows return to Capistrano and the buzzards return to Hinckley, Ohio, there's another harbinger of spring. And it came on Monday. Major League Baseball pitchers and catchers reported for spring training. The Pittsburgh Pirates have returned to Bradenton, Fla., hoping 2013 brings an end to their 20-year losing streak. Perhaps Pirates fans will have more satisfaction celebrating the swallows and buzzards.

Money PIT?: Let's get this straight — Allegheny County Chief Executive Rich Fitzgerald says things just weren't “working” at the county Airport Authority when it came to drumming up new business for Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT in FAA vernacular). So, the solution is to add another layer of bureaucracy and increase costs? At least one airline analyst calls it a fool's errand. We call it bad business as usual.

Luke's baggage: Amid some hinky behavior by police Chief Nate Harper — setting up a side business with subordinates, then appearing to give them preferential treatment — Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl is calling for department reforms. Of course, this gives his primary election challengers plenty of ammunition, such as: “It took 6 12 years for hizzoner to come to that conclusion?” Mr. Ravenstahl finds himself between an election and a hard place — whether Chief Harper remains in the city's employ or not.

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