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Streetlights Remain an Issue for Some Baldwin Residents

'The street is dark.' - Dave Brogan, Meadowcrest Road

Residents from close, parallel streets in south Baldwin Borough didn't plan to show up at Tuesday night's regular Baldwin Council meeting with the same complaint, they said. It just worked out that way.

The complaint: It's too dark in Baldwin.

Speaking to the council first during public-comments time was Sandra Beyer of Blossom Drive. This marked Beyer's third time in front of the council since June regarding the topic of streetlights reduction in Baldwin, including the elimination of 11 lights on Blossom.

On Tuesday, Beyer pointed out that multiple homes in her 600 block of Blossom, where at least two of three scheduled light-eliminations have been completed, have been victimized recently by burglaries. Baldwin police Chief Michael Scott said that those burglaries occurred during the day, but Beyer said, "The complete darkness would have made it very easy to check out homes at night and then return when no one was at home."

Speaking next was Dave Brogan of Meadowcrest Road. Brogan brought a map with him showing the five locations on Meadowcrest where streetlights once stood.

"If it's not all complete (the elimination of lights), please reconsider stopping," Brogan said. "I know you're not going to put my streetlight back. I know that you're not going to put the five or so streetlights that you took off of my street back(, but don't take down any more).

"From my standpoint, the street is dark. I would question the education ... of the person who said that every other streetlight could be eliminated on my street."

Brogan's map actually shows a different staggering of eliminated lights.

Crews from Duquesne Light have been removing streetlights in Baldwin, a move that borough Manager John Barrett said is expected to save borough taxpayers an estimated $66,000 annually in energy costs.

A joint recommendation by Baldwin Mayor Alexander R. Bennett Jr. and police Sgt. Kim Reising was to take away 376 borough lights, but after hearing concerns from residents during two special public meetings (1, 2) on the subject—as well as from emails and phone calls—Bennett and Reising pared their elimination list down by 10 lights. And the council eventually approved that list.

Nevertheless, the borough is losing over 27 percent of its streetlights.

Significant energy savings will not be realized until after Duquesne Light is paid approximately $58,000 to remove the lights, Barrett said.

"I suggest you should look at other alternatives—LEDs, something—for a savings measure," Brogan said. "I feel that you have chosen very poorly, and shame on all of you."

What are your opinions? Some borough residents do not mind the darkness and appreciate the savings and increased ease of sleep. Others agree that safety is too big of an issue to overlook. Give us your thoughts in the comments section below.

Click here for more Baldwin Borough news.

And check back with the Baldwin-Whitehall Patch on Wednesday for more odds and ends from Tuesday night's council meetings.

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Melanie Leitch January 16, 2013 at 06:59 PM
I live in the 5000 block of Blossom. The street is VERY dark, walking from the bus. A few nights ago, a man was walking his dog. They were on the other side of the street from me, and I didn't even see them, until I heard the dog.
joe momma January 16, 2013 at 07:04 PM
Now that's an idea! L.E.D street light's or maybe even solar ones....i grew up in south baldwin been here for 27 years and recently had the lights taken down around my area, and it is very dark! Its dangerous to take your dog for a walk at night anymore, you can barely see on half the street ..Instead of eliminating the lights all together for them to blow the money on something else they should have found a safe alternative! were saving money but have to pay more money out for the colewood crick??.....anyway give us light!!! Stick together South Baldwin!! Take north baldwins lights and give em to us! K T.Y!
Mrs. Unicorn January 16, 2013 at 09:00 PM
I live in Whitehall. We don't have streetlights. I can't understand why everyone in every neighborhood can't leave their porch lights on. It would help illuminate every street in every boro every night!
KMan January 16, 2013 at 09:36 PM
If given the opportunity, I would have gladly paid for the utility costs for the street light that was remove from service in front of my house. Philips Company has a lighting program that they have offered rebates on the purchase of replacement bulbs to companies to reduce their electric usage by installing more efficient lights.These lights replace 800+ watt metal halide and multi-vapor lights typically like the ones in street lights. Did borough personnel even research that before deciding the removal of the lights was the best option. As must as I'm am sickened over increasing taxes, I would have gladly paid more taxes to cover the escalating costs electric needed to run these lights. Once again....our self serving government fails again.
Audra Ihrig January 17, 2013 at 01:31 AM
I live in North Baldwin and we are also losing street lights. I think it is a dangerous situation. As for my location the light was removed from across from my house making it extremely dark and 3 of the surrounding houses all have children
JC January 17, 2013 at 02:22 AM
The money saved is hardly worth the $8.00 per household savings. My taxes remain the same as the person living at the top of my street that still has a street light yet I have to live in darkness. I still do not understand why we have a borough manager making these decisions and he does not even live in the borough. The job of Borough Manager should go to the most qualified borough resident whoever that might be. Bring back the street lights to central Baldwin!
Margaret French January 17, 2013 at 02:42 AM
I am in Whitehall too and I just don't get it. I am glad we don't have street lights! I suppose if you have them and lose them you don't like it and we just don't know how it feels since we never had them.
NB resident January 17, 2013 at 05:02 AM
I live in North Baldwin, You can have the street light outside of my house, its useless, my old neighbors don't come out after dark anyway. If it saves money do it. If you want light outside of your house then put up a light pole at the end of your property, I don't understand the big deal here. You cant expect government to do everything for you, put up your own light and move on with your life, there are more pressing issues in Baldwin then these darn street lights, you people are making a mountain out of a mole hill
Margaret French January 17, 2013 at 05:11 AM
Amen NB resident.
bd January 17, 2013 at 12:46 PM
Thank goodness there is someone left with common sense in Baldwin Borough and understands that street lights are meant to light up specifc areas of the street and not act as a porch-light for someone's yard.
loyalbaldwinfan January 17, 2013 at 05:42 PM
NB resident, I understand what your saying but not all of us live next to '" old " people. There are 20 kids on my block alone. There is also a drug house that has been a big issue for a long time. The police and boro are aware of this place but still took out the lights. Makes things that much easier for them to run their business...
bd January 17, 2013 at 07:06 PM
loyalbaldwinfan - Did the street lights stop your local drug house from selling drugs? I doubt it. I find it funny that you believe a few unnecessary street lights being turned off to be a problem yet the real danger in your neighborhood is a drug house that you claim to be an issue for a long time. I would suggest you and your neighbors go to the police or to council to have this alleged drug house issue resolved.
loyalbaldwinfan January 17, 2013 at 07:24 PM
bd- first of all , having that street light slowed down some of the " drug transactions" at night. Now that the light is gone those people run up and down the streets and you can't see them. Police have been notified and are doing nothing because it's not The residences of south hills. Use your head, if the street light slows down the activity from the drug house, that means that it is less likely that those all hopped up on drugs will do something else illegal around our homes. It's really not that hard to understand. Oh and we did put up our own lights. It does not compare to a street light.
Pappy huppy January 17, 2013 at 07:51 PM
Leave the address residents want to know
NB resident January 17, 2013 at 08:09 PM
Loyalbaldwinfan, by your own admission the drug house has been there for a long time. Which means they dealt drugs before the street lights were gone. So bringing them back won't change anything. The more pressing issue is why you people have let the drug dealing go on for so long. I have been a police officer for 6 years, and when we get a new drug house in the community I work in the people call the police and I don't just mean once. We had a lady who write down ever license plate that stopped at that house. They started a neighborhood watch and had patrols, they went to council, and we dealt with it. I highly doubt BPD ignores your issue but they police can't be there all the time we nerv citizen help, you guys need to get together along with the police and fix the underlying issue the drug house, the street light are not a big deal. Lastly we have 15 kids on our street and they play just fine now it's a cul de sac but that not the point the point is your street light won't deter crime inflated involved citizens will.
NB resident January 17, 2013 at 08:11 PM
Sorry informed involved citizens will. I typed all that from my phone.
Robert Edward Healy, III January 17, 2013 at 08:13 PM
Do not publish the addresses of homes on here that you believe to be the site of crimes—please. You can email me privately (robert.healyiii@patch.com). I will publish addresses only if the circumstances are appropriate.
loyalbaldwinfan January 17, 2013 at 08:42 PM
FYI NB- All of your suggestions have been done. We also had a resident on my street write down every license plate number that stopped at that house. The officer that was suppose to promptly pick up the info took a month to do so. They sat on a side street in full view for a day and that was it. SEVERAL phone calls have been made, police have visited the home for many different situations and when they go to court our "judge" 99% of the time turns a drug charge into a lesser charge??? My point is that LIGHT deters bad behavior at night. That is MY opinion and I'm specifically talking about my street. I'm pretty sure that arguing with me is doing both of us NO GOOD. I'm glad the kids on your street play just fine, that's great.... Enjoy the rest of your day.
NB resident January 17, 2013 at 09:16 PM
FYI loyalbaldwinfan obviously LIGHT did not deter the crime in the first place or your neighborhood would not have had this problem when the lights were up. Look your crying about a few street light if you think that will make the drug dealers go away you are not very intelligent. Good luck with your problem, but I doubt your getting your lights back.
Beans January 17, 2013 at 09:17 PM
I live in NB on Oakleaf. Now that the majority of the street lights are gone, our street is extremely dark. Visitors and employees of the nursing home fly up and down our street. It's a nursing home! The residents aren't going anywhere fast. Neighbors walk their dogs all the time and there are currently 13 kids on the street between 4 and 12. I've lost count of the 4 and under crowd and the ones on the way. It's too dark. Come Spring, all the kids are outside playing (not inside playing video games). As a parent, I try to stand further out into the street when the kids are one their bikes to slow these people down. They don't care and just go flying around me verses slowing down. I want our street lights back, it was dangerous enough with them, without them...I'm afraid to ask what could happen. Last summer we were talked about petitioning for a lower speed limit. It's currently 25, which means they are doing close to 35. Or maybe speed bumps like they have in Mt Lebanon. There's way to many kids, and the street is getting younger and younger, which means more kids to come.
loyalbaldwinfan January 18, 2013 at 12:27 AM
Wow and you're a police officer? You are not a very nice person......This is a web site where people express concern. I do not believe anyone on here is " crying ". I never indicated that it would make the drug dealers go away. PLEASE LISTEN ONE LAST TIME........ WHEN THE LIGHTS WERE UP THERE WAS LESS NIGHT TIME ACTIVITY, IN TURN, LESS LIKELY SOMETHING BAD WOULD HAPPEN. NOW-NO LIGHTS-MORE ACTIVITY.........NOW PLEASE STOP RAMBLING.
bd January 18, 2013 at 02:44 AM
Sounds like you want to live in a gated community. If you think there are too many people speeding, call the police department. Every department has a traffic officer or sergeant who can do a study on the street and make a recommendation to his Chief of Police to reduce the spped limit. The borough council will then vote on it and you will get your reduced speed limit. The speeders are probably your neighbors.
Margaret French January 18, 2013 at 05:32 AM
Beans-if they are speeding in the day time what makes you think they will slow down if there is street lights. They might not see you but you will see them so get out of the way off the street.
loyalbaldwinfan January 18, 2013 at 01:10 PM
bd- actually I was told that the only way you can get a reduced speed limit if it is already 25mph is A. You live by a park or school. B. You get your street deemed as a dangerous roadway and that certainly does not get voted on by our council members. I do not understand why it is that everytime someone on here brings up a personal thought about somewhere that they live, NB, bd, and Margaret French have to chime in and make assumptions or give no brainer advice. I will not speak for Beans but I know that you can call BPD all you want about speeders, Good luck with that.............That is MY experience. Let me have MY comment without telling me I'm wrong or assume something........Thank you.
bd January 18, 2013 at 05:00 PM
loyal - and, another possibility is that the Baldwin Borough Police Department has looked into your complaint and have determined that there is no "speeding." I think you should focus on the drug house in your neighborhood. I think that is a more pressing problem than the fact that they might have to learn that when the sun goes down, it gets dark.
loyalbaldwinfan January 18, 2013 at 05:38 PM
Advice,advice, advice.................
cc January 19, 2013 at 12:27 AM
Whitehall doesn't have streetlights and most homeowners on our street have poles with lights on their property that are on timers. Children use to be outside playing till Xbox and gaming systems took over and now you never see any children out on the streets.
cc January 19, 2013 at 12:28 AM
Baldwin at their finest is busting DUI's.
NE12Ukid January 19, 2013 at 03:50 AM
cc 7:28 pm on Friday, January 18, 2013 Baldwin at their finest is busting DUI's.>>>> What do you care, you're in Whitehall. Or did you get confused about where Baldwin borders are, again? LOL

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