Slopes Announces $5,000 Matching The Brashear Association Grant

For over a hundred years, The Brashear Association has served people in poverty – from those facing temporary challenges to families living in chronic, multi-generational poverty and works to move them toward self-sufficiency. In this time of need, they are changing their Food Pantry to a “Grab and Go” service and expanding the days of the week they offer service. They are facing extra need and need more help to help support our community.

The South Side Slopes Neighborhood Association is excited to announce a $5,000 matching grant for The Brashear Association Food Pantry. In an effort to help our neighbors in this very difficult time, the next $5,000 donated to The Brashear Association will be matched by the Association. To donate, click here: https://www.facebook.com/thebrashearassociation. You can also send a check to The Brashear Association: Food Pantry, 2005 Sarah Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15203 or donate directly on the Brashear Association website: http://www.brashearassociation.org/donate.

Do you have extra supplies? Food Pantry Donations are accepted from 4 to 5 PM Monday to Friday. Please call the main office at 412-431-2236 to schedule a drop off at Brashear 2005 Sarah Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15203. Please do not leave donations unattended. Pantry donations must be scheduled in advance. Suggested donations: Water, canned tuna, chicken, beans, fruit cups, pudding, mac’n’cheese cups, cereal, paper towels, and cleaning supplies.

Do you need help?

The Brashear Association staff are working from home and are available from 9am to 5pm to answer your call, provide support by registering your family for the new Grab and Go Food Pantry, assist with utility assistance, and to help you navigate other available resources. If you are a South Pittsburgh resident (15210, 15211 and 15203, 15227) and need help, they have three numbers that you may call. 412-431-2236 and 412-620-8282 and 412-620-8234. Please reach out if you need assistance getting through this difficult time.

Additionally, NextPittsburgh has compiled a list of city-wide resources here: https://www.nextpittsburgh.com/features/how-to-get-help-in-pittsburgh-during-the-coronavirus-crisis/

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2020 Slopes Board Updates

The South Side Slopes Neighborhood Association wants to congratulate and is pleased to announce four newly elected and re-elected members of our Board of Directors. At the March general meeting, Lucía Sánchez Madrigal was elected to be a new member of the Executive board. Jamie Balser, Denise Fillip, Cara Jette, Brian Oswald, and Gavin Robb were re-elected to additional terms. We want to thank Dawn Lorincy over 6 years of service on the board, most recently serving as the Treasurer.

The updated board has made the following changes to the executive members. Blake McLaren will be the new President of the Association. Former President, Kristin Raup, will be taking on the role of Secretary. Donna Tarkett was re-elected as Vice President. Cara Jette will transition from Secretary to Treasurer.

While we are all staying home and meeting virtually, stay tuned for new online developments from the board very soon!

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SSSNA General Meeting Agenda / Minutes: March 10, 2020

Meeting date: March 10, 2020
Location: St. Paul of the Cross Monastery

The SSSNA’s March meeting started with board elections. One new board member was elected, Lucia Sanchez Madrigal, who has lived in the Slopes since 2014. Dawn Lorincy stepped down after most recently serving as the organization’s treasurer and chair of the Beautification Committee.

U.S. Census workers needed

The representative announced the need for Census workers for the 2020 Census. The wage for Census takers is $23.50 per hour, with mileage reimbursement of 57 cents a mile. Census takers go no further than front doors and ask simple questions like how many residents and their ages. There are no income or Social Security number questions. Apply online at: 2020census.gov/jobs. Applicants must be over 18, a citizen, and have an email address.

Update from a community partner:  Ron Brown, The Brashear Association

Ron Brown, the new Director of Programs and Services for the Brashear Association, spoke about the organization’s programming. He talked about Brashear’s additional sites besides the Brashear Center at 2005 Sarah St. Other sites include: The Henry Kaufmann Neighborhood House, 2201 Salisbury St .; The Neighborhood Employment Center, 730 E. Warrington Ave .; The Allentown Learning and Engagement Center, 827 E. Warrington Ave .; and the Brashear Association at The Pet Shop, 212 Brownsville Rd.

The organization operates a food pantry providing food and other items to low-income individuals/families on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 3-4:30 p.m., at the Brashear Center and the Henry Kaufmann Neighborhood House.

The Brashear Association also operates utility, housing, holiday, and economic stability assistance programs. It provides job training and college readiness help.

For more on the Brashear Association, visit: http://www.brashearassociation.org/

Updates from Councilman Bruce Kraus and Zone 3 Police Commander Karen Dixon

Kraus reported about complaints his office receives about Airbnb’s in the Slopes used as party locations. Many of these parties charge admission and sell alcohol. Often, there is damage done to the property and those surrounding it, in addition to the loud disturbances that often go on into the early morning hours.

Commander Dixon said in late February officers were called to a location where shots were fired by two shooters. The incident was connected to an Airbnb house rented by a woman for her birthday. Officers found a stolen firearm in the home, and another gun present. It is the third incident in the past year in the area with Airbnb venues.

An attendee asked if there are any Airbnb regulations in Pittsburgh, Kraus answered no.

Commander Dixon said if there are three complaints in specific categories in a year, the property is put on the disruptive property list.

An attendee said in the Hillside zoned district a bed and breakfast (B&B) is not permitted. He feels an Airbnb is a B&B. He also reported an Airbnb was opened on his Slopes street, which is a Hillside district. Kraus said he would examine existing zoning and how it relates to Airbnbs.

An attendee commented there are good Airbnbs for people coming to the city for sporting events, museum visits, and more. Kraus said a balance must be struck between lawful Airbnbs and those which promote disruptiveness. For problem properties, the commander said to call 911 when there is a disturbance.

The commander reported crime statistics in the Slopes this year, saying there has been an uptick in vehicle break-ins, likely due to the mild weather.

Kraus said there may be more house parties during this year’s St. Patrick’s Day celebration due to the coronavirus.

18th St. steps lighting

Brad Palmisiano discussed new lighting options for the 18th St. steps. He said the steps were repaired in 2008 with a $100,000 grant from Duquesne Light. Half of the funding went toward the steps, with the other half for the lighting. The lighting has since failed, and most of the step lighting is out.

The issue today is whether to spend $100,000 for new LED lighting. The SSSNA will contribute $20,000, with the rest needing to come from fundraising or other sources. The new lighting must also be sustainable. Safety overhead lighting repairs are being made, funded by the SSSNA.

Kraus stated the city owns the steps and suggested a public art project and city funds, and possible a partnership with the city to improve and maintain the lighting. Attendees agreed a partnership with the city made a lot of sense.

Next, a Pius St. resident said his grandparents left money for public art in the area. Some of the ideas he shared was painting the 18 St. steps, or having murals to complement the steps. He will take the matter to the Beautification Committee.

Next general meeting: May 12.

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2020 Public Meeting Schedule

Every year, the South Side Slopes Neighborhood Association holds six public meetings open to the community (two of which are parties!).

  • Tuesday, January 14, 2020 at St. Paul of the Cross Retreat Center *
  • Tuesday, March 10, 2020 at St. Paul of the Cross Retreat Center *
  • Tuesday, May 12, 2020 at St. Paul of the Cross Retreat Center Zoom Virtual Meeting
  • Tuesday, July 14, 2020 Picnic at Bandi Schaum Community Garden Zoom Virtual Meeting
  • UPDATED: Tuesday October 20, 2020 – Virtual Zoom Meeting
  • CANCELLED: Tuesday, December 8, 2020 Holiday Party

All meetings start @ 6:30 p.m.

* St. Paul of the Cross Retreat Center is located at 148 Monastery St. (parking available)

All South Side Slopes residents are invited to attend. Join us to meet new people or reconnect with long-time neighbors, learn what is happening and planned for the community, and share your ideas, concerns and love for the Slopes.

In order to be a voting member of the South Side Slopes Neighborhood Association, you must attend at least 2 meetings and/or events per year.

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You’re invited to our holiday party Dec. 12!

Let us know you’re coming!  RSVP ONLINE

Food will be provided. Please bring your own adult or regular beverage. See you there!!

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SSSNA General Meeting Agenda / Minutes – Oct. 8, 2019

SSSNA Annual Meeting Agenda & Minutes
Oct. 8, 2019

By-Laws Change (see below: “By-laws changes and new policy addition)

Membership votes to adopt proposed changes to SSSNA by-laws – updated by-laws are on the SSSNA website (southsideslopes.org). Vote to change the by-laws to comply with criteria for becoming a Registered Community Organization (RCO) with the City of Pittsburgh. Becoming an RCO will give SSSNA formal status providing benefits including notification of public hearings, guaranteed meetings with developers/applicants, placement on official brochures, and more. The by-law changes are:

  • Establishing 10-year term limits for members;
  • Moving the annual meeting from October to March; and
  • Adopting a non-discrimination policy.

The vote was unanimous to accept the changes.

StepTrek 2019 Update

StepTrek Chair Brian Oswald reported on the Oct. 5 StepTrek event. There were 120 walk-up purchases for a total of 450 participants. The event generated a $10,000 net revenue for the SSSNA. In 2020, the StepTrek will celebrate its 20th year. Rev. Donald Ware said the renovated church at St. Paul of the Cross Monastery will be open for the 2020 event.

Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy Parks Plan

Heather Sage, director of community projects at the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy (PPC), reported on the early 2019 Listening Tour by PPC where feedback about parks was gathered at community meetings and events throughout the city. Phase II began in July 2019 and the PPC and the city are now in the process of sharing a parks investment strategy driven by data and community input collected during the first phase.

She said 3,400 people completed surveys on priorities, with 95 percent saying they would support more resources for the park system. The top priorities were maintenance, rehabilitation such as new roofs, capital investment and programming. Sage said a question was added to the Nov. 2019 ballot related to park funding asking voters if they support the creation of a dedicated Pittsburgh Parks Fund for parks improvement. Voting “yes” will provide additional resources for all city parks. The funding would come from an additional 0.5 mill levy ($50 on each $100,000 of assessed real estate value). If passed, the parks would receive about $10 million more dollars per year.

Recycling Changes in Pittsburgh

Teresa Bradley from the City’s recycling team will provide up-to-date information about what can and cannot be recycled curbside and other changes and tips. She recommended that city residents should use a blue bin not exceeding 35 gallons. Recyclables should be placed in a durable, watertight container with a close-fitting lid. Using blue bags is causing issues at the recycling facility. Bradley said to lightly rinse plastic bottles, jugs and jars that are three gallons or less and can be collected in one bin for curbside pickup. Cardboard should be flattened and bundled into a box.

For what to do with hard-to-recycle items like TVs, computers, paints, chemicals and other fluids, visit: ecsr.net/Pittsburgh-recycling. A drop-off location for hard-to-recycle items like electronics and household hazardous waste including light bulbs, batteries, oil-based paint, propane tanks, etc. has been opened in the Strip District at 3001 Railroad St. Fees may apply.

For yard debris and tires, there are six drop-off locations, including Construction Junction at 214 Lexington Ave., and McKinley Park on Bausman St. in Beltzhoover.

18th Street Pedestrian Safety Plan – Amanda Purcell, a traffic engineer from the city’s Dept. of Mobility and Infrastructure presented information about the South Side Signals initiative to improve pedestrian safety on 18th Street intersections.

The upcoming largely federally-funded 18th St. pedestrian safety project involves 18th St. and: Brownsville Rd., Bausman St., Amanda St., Hays Ave., Arlington Ave., Pius St., Mission St., Josephine St., Jane St., and Sarah St.

The same upgrades will occur at S. 18th at Pius and Mission except there will also be five ADA ramps. The work will occur in the daytime. At S. 18th and Josephine, S. 18th and Jane, and S. 18th and Sarah, there will be new traffic signals. There will also be gloss black signal poles and audible countdown pedestrian signals, and new pavement, signing and pavement markings, and lighting.

Attendees expressed concerns about crossing walk signals on 18th Street at Pius/Mission Sts., a Dept. of Mobility and Infrastructure (DOMI) official will walk the crossing walks during rush hour to determine the best course of action before final plans are adopted.

Construction is slated to start in Spring 2021.

BY-LAWS CHANGES AND NEW POLICY ADDITION

The Board of the South Side Slopes Neighborhood Association is proposing the following by-law changes and policy addition for a vote before you, our membership.

  • Instituting term limits of 10 years for board members going forward.
  • Changing the month of our public Annual Meeting from October to March.
  • Adding a non-discrimination policy.

These changes are being proposed in order to register as a Registered Community Organization with the city and to improve the quality of the Board.

 

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Get your tickets! StepTrek 2019 is October 5

We’ll be trekking in the Slopes again on Saturday, October 5, 2019 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Check-in is at 21st & Josephine Streets on the South Side. BUY TICKETS

Interested in volunteering at StepTrek? Sign-up here.

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Proposed 2019 By-Laws Changes

The Board of the South Side Slopes Neighborhood Association is proposing the following by-law changes and policy addition for a vote before the membership at our Annual elections meeting on Tuesday October 8, 2019. You can see a copy of the current by-laws here. To summarize, we are instituting term limits for board members and changing the month of our public Annual Meeting. These changes are being proposed in order to register as a Registered Community Organization with the city and to improve the quality of the Board. 

By-Laws Change – Article VI, Section 4

Change from: 

“Term of Office: The terms of office for Board members will be two (2) years. However, five members of the initial Board of Directors shall serve a term until the next annual meeting, at which time they will stand for election to a full two-year term. There will be no limitation to the number of terms a Board member may serve.”  

To: 

“Term of Office: The terms of office for Board members will be two (2) years. However, five members of the initial Board of Directors shall serve a term until the next annual meeting, at which time they will stand for election to a full two-year term. Effective for Board members whose terms begin in 2019 and thereafter, Board members may not serve more than five consecutive terms.  After being off the Board for at least one (1) year, the Board member shall be eligible to serve on the Board again.” 

By-Laws Change – Article V, Section 1

Change from: 

“Annual Meeting: The annual meeting will be held during the month of October at a location and time to be announced to the membership one month in advance for the purpose of electing directors and for the transaction of such business as may come before the meeting.”

To:

“Annual Meeting: The annual meeting will be held during the month of March at a location and time to be announced to the membership one month in advance for the purpose of electing directors and for the transaction of such business as may come before the meeting.”

NEW POLICY

Non-Discrimination Policy 

The South Side Slopes Neighborhood Association shall not discriminate against any person on the basis of age, sex, race, color, national origin, ethnicity, sexual orientation, marital status, gender identity, disability, or political or religious opinion or affiliation in any of its policies, procedures or practices.

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2019 Public Meeting Schedule

Every year, the South Side Slopes Neighborhood Association holds six public meetings open to the community (two of which are parties!).

  • Tuesday, January 15, 2019 at St. Paul of the Cross Retreat Center *
  • Tuesday, March 12, 2019 at St. Paul of the Cross Retreat Center *
  • Tuesday, May 14, 2019 at St. Paul of the Cross Retreat Center *
  • Tuesday, July 9, 2019 Picnic at Bandi Schaum Community Garden
  • Tuesday, October 8, 2019 at St. Paul of the Cross Retreat Center *
  • Tuesday, December 10, 2019 Holiday Party (location TBD)

All meetings start @ 6:30 p.m.

* St. Paul of the Cross Retreat Center is located at 148 Monastery St. (parking available)

All South Side Slopes residents are invited to attend. Join us to meet new people or reconnect with long-time neighbors, learn what is happening and planned for the community, and share your ideas, concerns and love for the Slopes.

In order to be a voting member of the South Side Slopes Neighborhood Association, you must attend at least 2 meetings and/or events per year.

 

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StepTrek 2018

StepTrek is Saturday October 6, 2018! 

Buy Tickets! – https://www.showclix.com/event/steptrek

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