Monday, September 20, 2004

local disaster

Bush declares local disaster - "'We'll get through this because we are all working together,' said Mayor Tom Murphy."

Mayor Murphy's statement about "working together" is such a joke as it comes on the day City Council is holding a POST AGENDA and the Mayor has refused to show up and has instructed others in the administration to NOT show up. Tom Murphy isn't working together when he doesn't respond and stops others from responding. This is his duty. The topic of the Sept. 20, 2004, post-agenda is, get this, EMERGENCY RESPONSE TIMES.

We'll get through this in a much better way when Mayor Murphy shows up in the PRIVATE SECTOR. As mayor, he isn't working with others. Tom Murphy isn't showing up in city council chambers to discuss a ballot question that will be in front of voters in the city in a few short weeks.

Our shared landscape has a lot of boats parked within Point State Park at the moment. But the real local disaster is when Mayor Murphy is parked elsewhere when he should be before the citizens and city council on matters such as EMERGENCY Response Times.

Mayor Murphy is absent on the agenda again.


Mark Rauterkus said...

My notes on the Sept. 20 post-agenda.

As of mid September, the second quarter data (April, May, June) has not been revealed. This data looks at the speed of each Emergency call in the city.

But, the city is not keeping the data straight. The data seems to be crooked, as per the post agenda. The city is looking at just some of the calls. Not counting others.

The last firefighter to be hired in the city was in October, 2000. The Firefighters Union is pushing the issue about meeting standards for repsonse times not because of the "jobs issues." Rather, this is an issue of being safe.

To apply for a firefighter position, you must be a city resident. The Firefighters union is the only union to have such rules. That rule is NOT in dispute from the union. They like the rule.

Joe King said, "We don't have reasonable people to deal with (speaking of the Mayor Murphy Administration)."

The ruling about the ballot question was contested in court. The judge spoke that Mayor Murphy's positions amounted to "Less than a genunie statement." And, the Judge ruled that the Murphy Administration's position was hyper-technical.

The firefighters feel and stated that Murphy does not care about public safety. Rather, the care is fully that of economics for Mayor Murphy. Furthermore, Murphy could not answer questions honestly without admitting a severe public saftey issues.

"This city is thirsty for leadership," said Joe King. King predicted that they will come out with other studies that have no degree of percision.

Pgh Firefighters now have 45 units and before had 61 fire units. Workload is up 300%. The city has gotten smaller over the decades. The fire department has gotten smaller. However, the number of calls per worker is up.

The firefighters said, "Put some reasonable people at the table and let's get some things done."

Anonymous said...

Associated Press coverage:

PITTSBURGH (AP) - The firefighters' union wants to cut $10.7 million from the city Fire Bureau's budget without closing seven fire stations, as Mayor Tom Murphy has proposed under a state-supervised plan to fix the city's finances.

Union president Joe King said the firefighters could save the money by agreeing to contract concessions on such matters as holiday pay and fringe benefits, and by reorganizing the department to put some equipment in more appropriate locations.

Murphy has proposed closing seven of the city's 35 fire stations.

The city is appealing a court decision allowing the firefighters to put a referendum on the Nov. 2 ballot that asks residents whether the city should adopt response time standards developed by the National Fire Protection Association. The standards require the first emergency vehicle to be on the scene within four minutes of dispatch, and a second vehicle to arrive within eight minutes, on 90 percent of all emergency calls.

The firefighters have said they won't be able to meet those standards if the seven stations are closed.

Because of the lawsuit, Murphy administration officials didn't attend Monday's City Council session at which the firefighters proposed the wage concessions.