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Politics & Government

City To Hold Public Hearing on 2015 Capital Budget Wednesday

The second of two public hearings on Pittsburgh’s 2015 capital budget is scheduled for Wednesday evening at the Morningside Senior Center.

“It’s a good way for the mayor and his administration to get out in the community and hear what’s on people’s minds about what they want to see in the capital budget,” said Sam Ashbaugh, Budget Director for Mayor Bill Peduto.

Peduto will submit his 2015 capital budget to City Council on Nov. 10. Ashbaugh said city departments submitted $70 million in funding requests for $30 million in funding, which is why public feedback is important.

The first public hearing on the capital budget was held in September in the Hill District. Ashbaugh said about 25 people came to speak about what the administration should prioritize in the budget.

“Infrastructure, the condition of our streets, street safety,” Ashbaugh said. “Some neighborhoods are concerned about speeding in their neighborhood, so looking at traffic safety. Of course investments in our core facilities: parks, recreation facilities, senior and community centers.”

While the 2015 capital budget proposal is still in the works, Ashbaugh said the bulk of the money will go toward two spending categories.

“Engineering and construction, which will pay for things such as street resurfacing,” Ashbaugh said. “Then we have facility improvements, repairs to our police stations, fire houses, community and recreation centers.”

Ashbaugh said around 20 people are thus far signed up to speak at Wednesday’s meeting, which will be begin at 6 p.m. at 6944 President Way. Those interested in speaking should contact Jennifer Sample Presutti at 412-255-2640 or jennifer.sample@pittsburghpa.gov. Walk-ins are also welcome.

Next year, Ashbaugh said they hope to engage the public even further, and are looking to codify enhanced public participation in the capital budgeting process.