News

January 3, 2022

Ed Gainey Sworn In As 61st Mayor of the City of Pittsburgh

The City of Pittsburgh announced January 3, 2022 that Ed Gainey has been sworn in as its 61st Mayor. Mayor Gainey pledged his commitment to prioritize community and police relations, economic inclusion, affordability, and transportation and create a “Pittsburgh for all”. Mayor Gainey took the oath of office in the City Council Chambers. The ceremony was held virtually in accordance with guidance from public health officials.

“I am honored to have the privilege of serving the people of Pittsburgh,” said Mayor Gainey. “My promise is that we will work to make Pittsburgh a city where economic opportunity is abundant for everyone, a city where affordability isn’t a luxury, and a city that is prepared to lead into the future.”

During his inaugural address, Mayor Gainey pledged to support and enhance the City’s economic development efforts to ensure the growth of strong job creation. He also announced his intention to invest in transportation projects in conjunction with the Port Authority and PennDOT that include multi modal transit options, walkability, technology, and connectivity.

“While Pittsburgh is a leader in many areas including health care, technology and our University system – under my Administration, we will work to build the foundation for the next generation of Pittsburghers by establishing policies that create and sustain investments in literacy, career and workforce development, civic infrastructure and partner with our schools to create a world-class education system that benefits everyone,” added Mayor Gainey.

Mayor Gainey also acknowledged the historical significance of his election as the first Black Mayor of the City. In his speech, Mayor Gainey paid homage to Civil Rights activists and elected officials including Harvey Adams, Alma Speed Fox, Marcella Lee, Nate Smith, Byrd Brown, Dock Fielder, Bubby Hairston, and Chuck Frazier.

“My victory represents another step forward in advancing the vision of a country where all people have access to opportunities to succeed,” said Mayor Gainey. “Our City is at its best when every resident has a seat at a table. We are at our best when we are defined by the strength, compassion and boldness of our collective spirit.”

Additional Information

The full official remarks from Mayor Gainey is available online.

News

June 17, 2020

Pittsburgh Families Invited to Receive Free Children’s Books

Since the City of Pittsburgh’s Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library launch in February 2019, the program has grown to include over 3,200 local children and recently sent its 30,000th book. Thanks to funding received from the Hillman Family Foundation and McCauley Ministries, the program will continue to sustain and grow services in Pittsburgh.

About the Program

The Dolly Parton Imagination Library is a free program for any child who lives in the City of Pittsburgh age zero to five to receive one book a month in the mail until their fifth birthday. When they turn five, they will have their own library of up to 60 books.

The City of Pittsburgh’s program is affiliated with the national initiative started by music legend Dolly Parton. Participating children will begin receiving books through the U.S. Postal Services approximately eight weeks after the registration form has been received.

Eligibility

To be eligible for the program, preschoolers must:

  • be a resident of the City of Pittsburgh,
  • have a parent or guardian fill out an official registration form, and
  • notify the United Way of Southwestern Pennsylvania of any address changes.

Registration

To sign up for this program, register your child(ren) online via the Imagination Library website!

Interested in mailing in or submitting your registration in person? See their webpage for more details.

More Information

For any questions, please contact Tiffini Simoneaux at tiffini.simoneaux@pittsburghpa.gov or 412.255.2505. To view the booklist, visit the Imagination Library website.

News

May 15, 2020

Changes Made to Summer Activities During COVID-19 Pandemic

On May 15, the City of Pittsburgh announced how summer activities will be impacted by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. While many activities will be allowed, others will be cancelled or postponed. All decisions follow federal and state guidelines.

About

In a City press release, Mayor William Peduto praised Pittsburgh residents, stating, that “Pittsburgh residents have done a great job during these trying times staying safe and looking out for each other.” However, he recognized that the battle against COVID-19 is far from over, and social distancing and other measures must remain in place to win this fight.

With a larger number of residents venturing outdoors as the weather warms, the City has outlined lists of activities that will or will not be permitted during the pandemic. Decisions on closures and activities may be revisited as pandemic circumstances and federal and state guidelines change.

Permitted Summer Activities

Activities that can safely comply with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) social distancing guidelines will be allowed. Permitted activities include the following:

    • Drive-in movies (by the Special Events office)
    • Farmers Markets
    • Pickup of bulk trash
    • Road closures in City parks (more information below)
    • Tennis courts (singles matches encouraged)
    • Pickleball courts (singles matches encouraged)
    • Skate parks
    • Fields (but not for organized group sports)
    • Frisbee Golf
    • Lawn Bowling
    • Bocce
    • Expanded summer food program (likely to begin June 15)

City crews are working to reopen facilities starting May 15 and will continue their work into next week. Drive-in movies organized by the Special Events office will begin June 13. More information will be released later. Farmer’s Markets will begin June 3 in Carrick and begin in other neighborhoods thereafter. Social distancing and safe purchasing requirements will be in place.

Non-Permitted Summer Activities

Large group events that cannot safely comply with social distancing will not be allowed. Non-permitted activities include the following:

    • July 4 fireworks
    • City-sponsored concerts
    • 5Ks, the Great Race and other races (though they can be held virtually)
    • Summer Camps
    • Citiparks summer youth baseball
    • Summer Line Dancing
    • Pistons in the Park

Playgrounds, park shelters, and spray parks will remain closed until further notice. Swimming pools (including the Oliver Bath House) will also remain closed. While the CDC says that swimming itself is safe, the guidelines require at least six feet of distance between users and no more than ten people would be allowed at any time. It has been determined that city pool waiting areas, locker rooms, and lounging areas are too cramped to allow for appropriate distancing under these guidelines.

Activities To Be Determined

Final decisions on other activities and facilities have not yet been made, including decisions on the following:

    • Recreation centers
    • Senior Healthy Active Living centers
    • Block party permits
    • Mellon Tennis Bubble
    • Art Cart
    • Water fountains and water features
    • Park restrooms
    • Organized group sports including deck hockey, soccer, baseball, and basketball

DOMI Task Force

The City Department of Mobility and Infrastructure (DOMI) has established a task force to study methods of using some streets and sidewalks to allow for safe recreation and business activity. Its recommendations will be issued soon. In the meantime, plans are underway to close some streets in City parks to vehicular traffic. No timetables are yet set, but plans are for the following closures:

More Information

For more information, read the full press release.

*Information provided by the City of Pittsburgh

News

April 30, 2020

Mayor Peduto Calls for Online SNAP Purchasing Options

On April 28, Mayor William Peduto issued a letter to U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue in support of efforts to expand affordable SNAP purchasing options — including food delivery and online ordering — for vulnerable populations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

About

Mayor Peduto’s letter follows calls by U.S. Senator Bob Casey and others to expand the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which provides eligible low-income residents with an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) debit card to purchase food.

Currently, SNAP recipients cannot make any food purchases online. While other consumers can use online ordering and delivering to protect themselves and others from spreading the virus, these options are not available to low-income residents and families who are forced to make their purchases in person, increasing their likelihood of contracting COVID-19.

Senator Casey has been calling on the USDA to expand SNAP delivery options since March when stay-at-home guidelines were put into effect in Pennsylvania and across the United States of America. The Food Policy Council wants the USDA to allow SNAP recipients to purchase food for delivery and to allow other safe food purchasing options, such as allowing users to use their EBT cards for Instacart or online farmers market services.

What is SNAP?

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) provides nutrition benefits to supplement the food budget of low-income families so they can purchase healthy food. Eligible applicants receive an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) ACCESS Card to make food purchases. To check your eligibility or apply, please visit the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services website.

For questions about SNAP, call the Department of Human Services helpline at 1.800.692.7462 or your county assistance office. For individuals with hearing impairments, please call 1.800.451.5886.

More on SNAP Purchasing Options

To learn more, view the full press release or a copy of the letter to Secretary Perdue.

*Information provided by the City of Pittsburgh

News

May 22, 2019

City Receives Grant to Support Safe Travel for Schoolchildren

On May 22, 2019, officials from Mayor William Peduto’s administration discussed a state grant of more than $450,000 to support safe routes to school for elementary and middle school students in Pittsburgh.

About

A bill was discussed at Pittsburgh City Council’s standing committees meeting accepting $464,000 from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s (PennDOT) Transportation Alternatives Set-Aside Program, which provides assistance to municipalities to support the creation of safe and appealing alternatives to single occupant vehicle travel.

More than 30 million Americans nationwide transport their children to and from schools every day, which research shows increases hazardous road conditions and harms the environment. The Safe Routes to School program seeks to address that by supporting walking and biking to school, leading to eased traffic conditions and better health for schoolchildren.

“The ability to walk or bike to school has long been one of the classic characteristics of Pittsburgh, but over recent decades it has become increasingly hazardous for children, who are our most valuable and vulnerable travelers,” said Department of Mobility and Infrastructure (DOMI) Director Karina Ricks. “This grant will allow us to dedicate resources to help us collaborate with school leaders and parents to identify areas where low-cost improvements can be rapidly implemented.”

What’s Next?

DOMI is proposing using the PennDOT grant to hire a Safe Routes to School coordinator who is part educator, part engineer and will work on programming for students to walk and bike more easily. The coordinator will work on traffic calming and other safety improvements on streets near schools best suited for walking and biking.

Once approved, DOMI plans to have a person in the position by the beginning of the 2019-2020 school year.

Learn More

To learn more about PennDOT’s Transportation Alternatives Set-Aside program, visit their website.

*Information provided by the City of Pittsburgh

News

May 14, 2019

Imagination Library Online Registration Now Open

On April 27, 2019, Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto announced that a new program will offer free monthly books to Pittsburgh children from birth to age five. The program is currently accepting applications from parents and guardians.

About the Program

The free book program – in conjunction with Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, the Benter Foundation, and the United Way of Southwestern Pennsylvania – will mail all eligible children an age-appropriate book every month up until their fifth birthday. Participating children will receive their first book through the U.S. Postal Services six to eight weeks after the registration form has been received.

Eligibility

To be eligible for the program, preschoolers must:

    • be a resident of the City of Pittsburgh,
    • have a parent or guardian fill out an official registration form, and
    • notify the United Way of Southwestern Pennsylvania of any address changes.

Registration

To sign up for this program, register your children online via the Imagination Library website!

Interested in mailing in or submitting your registration in person? See their webpage for more details.

More Information

For any questions, please contact Tiffini Simoneaux via email (tiffini.simoneaux@pittsburghpa.gov) or phone (412.255.2505).

News

February 4, 2019

Pittsburgh Launching New Book Gifting Program

With support from The Benter Foundation, Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto’s administration plans to launch a free book program for children from birth to age five. Tomorrow, Pittsburgh City Council will introduce legislation to accept $250,000 from the foundation, introducing Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library program to the city. Since starting in 1995, this program has sent more than 113 million books for free, to children in the United States, Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom.

The Role That Access Plays

Studies of the Imagination Library have discovered:

  • Parents believed their children were more interested in reading when receiving the books every month
  • Parents read aloud to their children more often
  • Children were excited when books arrived in their name
  • Positive views of the program transcended demographics and longer participation provided better outcomes

The City’s Role

The Imagination Library covers overhead costs, databases, monthly mailings, and a book selection committee. The City of Pittsburgh, as an affiliate of the Imagination Library, would cover the ongoing costs for mailing each book every month, as well as enrollment and promotional activities.

Once funding is approved, outreach and communication plans will be launched, as well as engaging with local organizations that work with young children and families.

Quotes from the Partnership

Tiffini Simoneaux, manager of the City’s Office of Early Childhood in Mayor Peduto’s Bureau of Neighborhood Empowerment:

“Research shows that early literary experiences, including access to books in the home, are fundamental ingredients for academic success. This program will enable young children throughout the city to build a home library of up to 60 books.”

Bill Benter, president of The Benter Foundation:

“We’re pleased to partner with the City of Pittsburgh and other community allies to help children develop a lifelong love of reading. Having your own books at home unlocks a new world of learning and language that can help Pittsburgh’s children thrive.”

*Information provided by the City of Pittsburgh

News

June 12, 2018

Free Child Care Approved for City Employees

Mayor William Peduto will sign legislation approved June 12, 2018 by Pittsburgh City Council to provide free, on-site child care for city employees and those attending designated community events.

The legislation will cover the costs of child care at up 15 days per year that the Pittsburgh Public Schools have scheduled closure days but are City of Pittsburgh work days: such days could include in-service days, certain holidays and parent-teacher conference days. Child care on such days would be provided at the City-County Building.

Child care will also be provided at up to 20 citywide community events, such as Capital Budget hearings, as designated by the Mayor’s Office.

The services will be provided under a contract with Flexable LLC, a pop-up child care company, at a cost not to exceed $43,875. All Flexable caregivers have pediatric safety training and state-mandated clearances.

The Mayor submitted the child care legislation to Council on May 21. (shared via the Office of the Mayor)

News

March 28, 2018

Mayor Issues Executive Order for Lactation Rooms

Mayor William Peduto issued an Executive Order on March 28, 2018 requiring the Office of Management and Budget to consider the installation of lactation rooms during major renovations and new construction of City facilities.

In April of 2015, the City announced the opening of two lactation facilities – one in the City-County Building (414 Grant St.) and the other located in the John P. Robin Civic Building (200 Ross Street). In August of 2017, then-Councilman Gilman was awarded by the Allegheny County Health Department “The Breastfeeding Friendly Place” award for these achievements.

“It is critical that we promote gender equity in the City of Pittsburgh, specifically in our facilities. I believe that all mothers in Pittsburgh deserve a safe, sanitary, and private place to breastfeed and pump breast milk for their children. These spaces should be available for both employees of the City and guests of our various facilities,” said Mayor Peduto.

Read the full Order here.