We’re hiring: Community Organizer for PEP Rally program

Lawreneville United is seeking a highly passionate, productive, strategic community organizer to join our team of dedicated community advocates and professional to staff the PEP Rally program, which works with families and community partners to strengthen and support Lawrenceville’s neighborhood public schools. To read the full job description, click HERE. Interested applicants should submit a cover letter and resume to HR@LUnited.org by March 16, 2021.

LU testimony at PPS public hearing re: proposed school closures on 2/22

In response to a proposed plan to reconfigure Pittsburgh Public Schools, LU provided testimony at the February 22nd public hearing in front of PPS administration and the School Board. Read our full testimony HERE. Are you a parent, caregiver, student, or community member interested in supporting strong public schools? Get involved with our PEP Rally program by reaching out to us at info@LUnited.org or 412-802-7220. We will be keeping the community posted on the status of this proposed plan.

Update: new design standards for driveway curb cuts

New legislation (Council Bill 2021-1085) at the City of Pittsburgh is being considered for design standards for off-street parking for single-family attached homes. This comes after advocacy from Lawrenceville United and 11 other organizations called for this additional measure, among other measures, to limit the propagation of driveway curb cuts on walkable streets, due to the damage they do to public off-street parking, safety and accessibility, housing affordability, the creation of street trees, non-vehicular mobility, and neighborly interaction.

A Planning Commission hearing on the legislation is scheduled for Tuesday 2/23 at 2 p.m. Planning Commission will then provide a recommendation to City Council, who will also have a public hearing and then take final action on the zoning text amendment.

LU and partners will be providing testimony to support the proposed legislation, and once again advocating for further steps to limit the spread of driveway curb cuts on our walkable blocks. Read our full testimony HERE and contact Dave@LUnited.org or 412-802-7220 to get involved in this campaign.

We’re hiring: Shared Finance Manager

The Pittsburgh Community Benefit Organization (CBO) Collaborative–comprised of Lawrenceville United, Lawrenceville Corporation, Bloomfield Development Corporation, and New Sun Rising–is seeking an experienced, highly organized professional in non-profit financial management to be our Shared Finance Manager!

Read the full job description, salary, and benefits package HERE and apply with cover letter and resume to HR@LUnited.org by 3/12/2021.

Recap of February Happenings Meeting: Crime in Review

On Tuesday, Feb. 16th at 6:30 p.m., LU hosted our February “Happenings” meeting, with a focus on recent crime trends. Dr. Heath Johnson from the Bureau of Police led a presentation on crime statistics for Lawrenceville in 2020 compared to 5-year averages. Lieutenant Lackner, Acting Commander of Zone 2 Police, provided an update on recent issues of concern, including a murder on the 4400 block of Davison Street, the arrests related to the bomb explosion in Lower Lawrenceville, and more. LU also provided some community updates.

Some key takeaways from the conversation with the Police:

  • Following City trends, total crime in Lawrenceville went down significantly in 2020 from the previous year (15%) and from the 5-year average (28%).
  • Violent crimes in Lawrenceville, however, went up by 14% in 2020, driven by an increase in robberies. There was also a murder on Kent Way. Zone 2 Police provided context that the robberies were largely people known to each other. Even this increase in violent crime in 2020 represents a 39% decrease over the 5 year average. No arrests have been made in the murder on Kent Way and the investigation is ongoing.
  • Property crimes were down 31% in 2020 from the previous year and 43% from the 5 year average, driven by reduction in Burglary & Theft.
  • Part II (less serious) crimes were also down 6% from the previous year. In particular, the year saw big decreases in simple assault, DUIs, and public drunkenness. However, 2020 saw an increase in vandalism and disorderly conducts.
  • Heroin overdoses dropped significantly since highs in 2017, however have been increasing year by year since.
  • Regarding the murder on Davison Street, police believe this was not a random shooting. While they have made no arrest yet, they have a suspect, who they believe was in the car at the time of the case, and they are building a case.
  • Regarding the bomb incident in Lower Lawrenceville, an arrest was made with federal charges, and they believe the threat has been removed from the neighborhood.

To access all the materials from the meeting:

  • Watch the full recording of the meeting by Zoom HERE or by Facebook Live HERE.
  • View LU’s presentation HERE.
  • View Dr. Johnson’s presentation on crime trends in Lawrenceville for 2020 HERE.

 

 

Lawrenceville Landlords Resource Workshop

We hosted a terrific, information-packed workshop today with the Housing Authority of the City of Pittsburgh, The State Historic Preservation Office, and the Urban Redevelopment Authority, providing lots of resources available to landlords! Topics discussed include:

– Historic Preservation Tax Credits for eligible unit rehabilitation
– Small landlord loan program
– Higher payment standards for renting to section 8 voucher holders (for Lower Lawrenceville units)
– Low-interest loan program to support unit rehabilitation
– The Preferred Landlord program
– CARES Act funding for landlords entering new leases
– An improved, streamlined process for housing choice voucher contracts
– Incentives for landlords to provide ADA-approved modifications
And much more!
You can access the recording here. And if you’re a landlord in Lawrenceville, we encourage you to complete our landlord survey, where we’re gathering information on your experiences, priorities and needs, to help better define our work with Lawrenceville landlords going forward. Please share both of these links widely!

Recordings & Resources from Homeowners Workshop

Thank you to our participants and speakers who joined our homeowners workshop on Mon 11/16! We apologize for the mid-presentation interruption, and invite you to watch the recordings of all the scheduled speakers and their presentations below.

Each presentation is linked separately with times provided so you can go directly to the topics of most interest to you. We hope you find this information useful. Please contact the event organizer at sara@lunited.org if you have any questions or would like to connect further with any of the speakers!

Lawrenceville Homeowners Workshop

Presentation 1 (begins at minute 04:35 seconds) : Jeremy Carter, URA – Mortgage & Rental Assistance + Tangled Titles 

Presentation 2 (begins at minute 00:03 seconds): Andrew Shull, Action Housing – Home Weatherization, Utilities Assistance & LIHEAP Program

Presentation 3 (begins at minute 11:48 seconds): Grace Orsatti, Duquesne University Law Clinic – Estate Planning, Health Directive and Free Wills Prep Clinic (presentations accompanied by current law students representing the clinic)

Presentation 4 (begins at minute 32:12 seconds): Ed Nusser, City of Bridges Community Land Trust – Buying & Selling a Home through a Community Land Trust to Access + Preserve Affordability 

Lawrenceville Homeowners Workshop

Workshop for Homeowners in Lawrenceville (and beyond!).

On Monday, 11/16 at 6pm, Lawrenceville United is hosting a workshop for homeowners with fantastic and knowledgeable speakers from Action Housing, Urban Redevelopment Authority, City of Bridges CLT and the Duquesne University Law Clinic.

Join us to learn about local resources available to help you with:

  • mortgage & rental payments
  • home weatherization & energy savings
  • tangled titles
  • buying and selling in a community land trust
  • estate planning & will preparation
  • and much more!

Bring your questions! All are welcome. We’ll be on zoom at https://zoom.us/j/93779384765 or facebook live: facebook.com/lawrencevilleunited. More details below.


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