2013 Candidate: Paul Cusick, Bellevue Mayor

Paul Cusick
Biography

Personal
My wife of 39 years, Peggy, and I have lived in Bellevue for 43 years. After serving 3 years in the Marine Corps, including 11 months in Viet Nam, I attained my degree, with high honors, in business administration, majoring in accounting, from Robert Morris University.

I retired from Verizon after 32 years of service in which I started in the mailroom, worked in various other positions, including installer and union steward, and finished as a cable engineer for my last 20 years at the company. I now publish NorthBorosNews.com, an online newspaper for our local communities.

I am currently the treasurer of Bellevue Borough. I have been the treasurer of Bellevue U.P. Church for the past 33 years in addition to serving as elder, deacon, trustee and Sunday school teacher at various times. I also serve as the treasurer of the North Suburban Chamber of Commerce. For the past 3 years, I have served as executive director/ treasurer of the John Hermann Memorial Art Museum.

Currently, I am the Commandant of the Three Rivers Leatherneck Detachment of the Marine Corps League. I also am a member of the Avalon American Legion and the West View VFW. For the past 8 years, I have served as President of the Metowers Board of Directors.

As Your Mayor
Bellevue’s Home Rule charter assigns three major responsibilities to the Mayor: The Mayor is the Chief Executive Officer of the borough. As such, the Mayor is the head of the police department and is also required to present an annual balanced budget to Council. I want to maintain the highly trained, professional police force that we have become used to. We must continue to provide training and equipment to help our officers to serve and protect Bellevue but, we must do it in a fiscally responsible manner.

I have worked with the North Suburban Chamber of Commerce on Sidewalk Sale Days, at the Halloween Parade and at the Christmas Tree Lighting Celebration. As Mayor I will continue to work with the Chamber to find ways to keep our business community viable, clean and safe, including more police visibility on Lincoln Ave.
My priorities as Mayor will include: support of code-enforcement to maintain and improve property values, use of all available resources against crime in our neighborhoods and continued cooperation with the Northgate School District to ensure the safety of our students.

Public Service
For eight years I served on the borough council, five years as its president. For the next eight years, I served as your Mayor. During my term as Mayor I initiated and worked with the borough council and the Northgate School District to implement the School Resource Officer position in our schools. These officers build lasting relationships and ensure the safety of the students. In 2006, I was appointed as the treasurer of Bellevue Borough. As treasurer, I have overseen the financial affairs of Bellevue and have advised council of problems, direction and issues concerning our financial positions.

For the past 23 years, I feel that I have served in the best interest of Bellevue; I hope that you will once again give me the opportunity to serve you as Bellevue’s next Mayor.

Paul Cusick
Candidate for Bellevue Mayor
71 N Bryant Ave
Pgh., PA 15202
412-860-4283
pacusick1@verizon.net

Vision

I would like to see Bellevue honor its past, deal with the present situations and build for the future. I believe that Bellevue’s business district will, overall, reflect the wants and needs of the residential community. The business district can also become more of a draw from outside the north boroughs with the infusion of specialty shops and services. Bellevue’s large stately homes offer a revitalization opportunity to improve the neighborhoods and attract buyers who will cascade the improvement to other potential buyers. I believe that safe, clean neighborhoods coupled with a quality school district and a vibrant business district should be the goal of our elected officials.

Strengths and Weaknesses
Strengths-

1.Bellevue’s location (6 miles from downtown, adjacent to Rt. 65 and I-279) offers a small town feel to an urban setting.

2.The full-time, professional police force, Volunteer / Paid Fire Company and a quality public works department keep the town safe and well maintained.

3.The amount of personal services in the business district; restaurants, grocery store, doctors, hair salons, pizza shops, gift shops, library, hardware store, banks, drug stores, churches, flower shop and parking.

4.Sense of community – the life-long residents together with the younger families who care about the quality of life.

Weaknesses –
1.Absentee landlords – with 60% of living units being “rental”, the effects of negligence to the property and bad renters can bring down a whole neighborhood.

2.High taxes – With Bellevue’s 1 1/2 % earned income tax and a school district tax among the highest in the county.

3.Lack of support of local businesses – Many residents do not use “locals” as their first choice.

4.Splintered efforts to address problems in the business district.

Solving the problems –
1.The code-enforcement of the borough can make the difference in the condition of houses, steps, sidewalks and trash in both the residential and business districts. I believe that the funding should be increased to have 2 full time code officers.

2.Over the years I have worked to combine the Bellevue and Avalon Police Departments. I would also like to see a merger of the Avalon and Bellevue Fire Companies while keeping the paid fire fighters.

3.The business district will reflect the needs and wants of the residents. If the residents want the business to remain, they must support the local business. I would work with the Chamber of Commerce, Allegheny Together and Council to find ways to enhance the business district through more police patrols, tax abatements, infrastructure improvements and cleanliness.

4.As Mayor, I would like to work with the Chamber of Commerce and other non-profits to coordinate projects with the police, fire and public works departments to ensure safety, prevent traffic congestion and keep the business district clean. I will also work to bring the groups together so all entities can have input to prevent duplication of efforts and conflicting schedules.

Working with the School board
The School Resource Officer (SRO) program will continue to be the most effective coordination between the borough and the school district. The problems in the schools affect the borough and the problems in the borough affect the school. The relationships built by the DARE program and the SRO have built a lasting respect between the police and the students. The borough and the school district will have to continue to update and improve the “memorandum of understanding” between the entities to prepare for events and emergencies that affect both. Evacuations, lockdowns and other emergencies need to be planned and practiced to be effective.

Please visit cusickformayor.com for more information.

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Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Election 2013: General Election is Nearly Upon Us! | Liberty in Bellevue, PA - October 10, 2013

    […] click here to read the rest of Mr. Cusick’s biography and survey response […]

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