If you haven’t read “Is This Good Enough for Pittsburgh?” yet, start with that!
It’s a good question to ask about the Uptown Redevelopment Busway proposal. The short, premium bus rapid transit spur would need to win a serious dose of federal money earmarked for mass transit. Is this the best we can do with the opportunity? Peduto and Fitzgerald insist, yes it is. Some organizations are “exploring it”.
In the Pittsburgh Public School District, the teachers union has endorsed candidates for School Board seats. Now, for many, there is an unavoidable internal logic to the notion that “Whoever the teachers’ union endorses, we should support the opposite.” But not really in this case. Above all, you want to pick somebody who 1) knows what they’re talking about, and even 2) has something to add. With those as your thresholds, it’s possible this election that even a typical liberal might want to vote for a conservative or unorthodox candidate, merely so that there is one conservative-sounding voice on the Board — and thereby all his/her colleagues will actually see, hear and realize what needs fighting. “A dose of reality.”
Speaking of labor, the City and its firefighters came to terms on a new contract. Is it good enough for Pittsburgh? Please advise.
Speaking of finances, Pitt economist Chris Briem (who has a blog) says that since we don’t know what industries will drive growth in the next generation, we have to “be a region agile enough to attract and retain investment across a wide range of industries and to do so long into the future.” I’m pretty sure this is educated-progressive code for increasing human biodiversity, or becoming more accessible and advantageous to outsiders, immigrants, ambitious pioneers and students. What strikes me however is that Prof. Briem for once is not writing about the City’s budget woes or pension problem — which fills me with dread that he has concluded that the City’s only prayer for really conquering its pension problem is to grow, and I mean really boom, its way out of it.
And finally, newly elected Democratic PA Governor Tom Wolf just drew up a budget, months in advance of his deadline, and the publisher of our newspaper of record was like “How dare you?” because everywhere, major things are owned by our wealthy old suburban cousins.