Is Mayoral Fundraising Blurring The Lines Between Developers And The Administration?

Jan 13, 2017

Credit Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

The Confluence, where the news comes together, is 90.5 WESA’s weekly news program.

Each week reporters, editors and bloggers join veteran journalist and host Kevin Gavin behind the headlines for an in-depth look at the stories important to the Pittsburgh region.

Are fundraising calls made by the mayor's chief of staff to developers with pending projects too close to the administration? When, if ever, will we see development on the site of the old Civic Arena? And SCI Pittsburgh is one of five state prisons under consideration for closing. How will this affect the commonwealth?

Fundraising for the Mayor

Mayor Bill Peduto’s chief of staff Kevin Acklin used vacation days to make fund raising calls on the mayor’s behalf. Concern has been expressed over calls made to developers currently doing business with the URA board. Is this blurring the relationship between developers and the administration? Reporter Rich Lord of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Pittsburgh City Paper editor Charlie Deitch join us.

Civic Arena Development

The Penguins have owned redevelopment rights to the former Civic Arena property since 2007. The team recently announced plans for the start of Phase 1 of a proposed 1,200-unit residential complex on the 28-acre Lower Hill District site. Will these plans come to fruition and why has it taken so long? Reporters Tim Schooley of the Pittsburgh Business Times and Bob Bauder of the Pittsburgh Tribune -Review weigh in

Closing State Prisons

Last Friday, state officials announced plans to close two state prisons by June 30, including SCI Pittsburgh. Listen in for Karen Langley, Harrisburg bureau chief for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Mark Scolforo of the Associated Press.

Past editions of The Confluence can be found here.