Following two shootings and a police officer struck by a suspected drunk driver Saturday night, the South Side’s nightlife has again become an issue the city must deal with according to one Pittsburgh councilman.
Bruce Kraus, who represents the South Side emphasized it isn’t his place to enforce changes, but rather Mayor Luke Ravenstahl’s office, which he feels has remained stagnant on this matter.
“Again, I’m going to argue that our role as council members are to advocate and to legislate, but we do not administrate,” Kraus said.
Kraus said the mayor has not implemented or enforced a plan researched and created by Kraus and presented by the council more than a year ago. Kraus said that plan was a product of 500 hours of research and included a $100,000 contract with the Responsible Hospitality Institute, which would “organize a front-end proactive plan to manage the situation.”
Saturday’s shooting occurred outside of Zen Social Club in Station Square. Officer Edward Polly was struck by a sports utility vehicle in the same location an hour later. He suffered minor back and leg injuries and was taken to UPMC Mercy Hospital The South Side Flats neighborhood led the city with 147 violent crimes in 2010. Kraus said there is only so much begging he can do, but he has no authority to enact change.
“I do not direct the chief of police, I do not direct the chief of fire, nor do I direct the chief of the Bureau of Building Inspection,” Kraus said. “Those are all directly under the purview and the leadership of the Mayor Luke Ravenstahl.”