Peduto Weighs In On Ravenstahl’s Personal Security

By: Jon Delano

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) –  The report that Mayor Luke Ravenstahl spent more on overtime for his personal police detail in just two years than former Mayor Tom Murphy spent in 12 years brought criticism from City Council Finance Chair Bill Peduto.

“It’s completely wrong,” Peduto told KDKA’s Jon Delano at a taping of The Sunday Business Page. “That’s the overtime payment. It’s not even the salaries, the bonuses, and everything else the officers get.”

Peduto saw investigative reporter Marty Griffin’s report that Ravenstahl’s three full-time and one part-time police guards have been paid over $200,000 in overtime since 2009.

“Does the mayor have just unfettered discretion to spend whatever he wants in overtime for his police detail?” KDKA’s Delano asked Peduto.

“He certainly does not. There is a set budget that the Mayor’s Office has. However, these employees, these police officers aren’t coming out of the mayor’s budget. He’s taking them out of the public safety budget,” Peduto said.

The consequence of that, said Peduto, is short-changing public safety elsewhere in the city.

“If there are three-and-a-half officers that are dedicated to protect one person in the city of Pittsburgh, that means they’re not out in the neighborhoods where they could be,” Peduto said.

Like City Controller Michael Lamb, Peduto questioned why there was any overtime at all.

“How do you earn overtime?”

“When you think about, if each of them had an eight-hour shift…”

“That means he has 24-hour, round-the-clock protection, which no other mayor has had.”

But Peduto was unclear if City Council could stop it.

“It’s something that we will look at, but again as the mayor and his public safety director, they can allocate officers to where they believe they’re needed,” Peduto said. “And for some reason, they believe that three-and-a-half officers are needed for Mayor Luke Ravenstahl.”

So far, the mayor has refused to explain why overtime is needed at all.

On Friday, his office said it also had no comment in response to Peduto’s remarks.

While overtime is a bit less this year than last, there is no indication that it has come to an end.

  • redrock100


    • FedUp

      How nice for him . . . and all he can preach is “cutting costs”. As taxpayers we should be OUTRAGED at the blatant wastefulness that goes on in government — this is just one of many examples. Government waste versus corporate waste and greed . . . not sure which is worse.

  • JOHN





      1. answer hes a crook ,and a jerk

      2. TRUE, but most of them are liars and crooks

      3 No, I would hire my friends,like he hired his

  • Level Green

    Council Finance Chair eh…. So Billy, how’s that little pension bailout problem coming along because you’ve only had the entire year to work with the mayor and come up with something????

    Pittsburgh politics, just blame everything on everyone else.

  • dan

    Over $200,000 IN OVERTIME TO 3 1/2 OFFICERS ! NO wonder the pension fund is bankrupt. Figure the retirements on that. Why is it the same Officers all the time? If OT is to be paid they should rotate Officers to keep from high pensions, and any to keep from any buddy buddy stuff going on!

  • justin

    I saw one of the mayors body guards just got promoted to Sgt, so there is more money too, Not like he’s hurting I saw him last week downtown wearing a ROLEX !

  • Can'tStandCryingPoliticians

    Mayor “The Worst Pittsburg Mayor ever” Ravenstahl.. Probably needs all the protection for cheating on his wife and their husbands.

    Maybe him and Dan Onaloser should pack their bags and move to Loser County, United States.

  • julie Major

    This is ridiculous but this Mayor has been unethical since he stepped into office and what was his punishment? To be elected into the position!!!! He’s used homeland security vehicle to take personal guests to Steeler games, snubbed his nose at women’s groups and on several occasions flat out refused to explain his actions. Forgetting that he is a public servant has been easy- how many Mayors go on the Jay Leno show?

    I would like to know how these officer’s were selected for the OT gold-mine of babysitting the Mayor. Who are they related to or friends with?

    I really hope that the people that voted him in before are paying attention and don’t make the same mistake again

    • South Hills suburbs

      They will make the same mistake again..The people in Pittsburgh, for the most part just vote straight democrat…regardless of who they are or what that person brings to the table. It’s a sad but true reality that “people that do not learn from the past are doomed to repeat it….”

      • Moved out of the City...

        COMPLETELY agree. People need to stop voting straight D and think about what they are doing. It always amazes me that the people who voted for him are the SAME people complaining about him….hence why I moved out of the city…

  • Level Green

    The people of Pittsburgh elected Mayor Skippy a mere 12 months ago now he’s Darth Vadar. Maybe next time the voters should take a hard look and elect an outsider rather than the same old people.

    It seems that the council just gets promoted to mayor all of the time.

    Take this pension disaster for example, no one in City government has any accountability or ownership. Council thinks it’s the mayor’s problem and Skippy thinks they have some responsibility.

    It’s really a joke….too bad they are playing with taxpayer money.

  • stevemuckqueen

    This doesn’t even scratch the surface of the waste, corruption and cronyism that is Pittsburgh

  • mike ference

    What do you expect from a deMOBocrat.

  • LB

    WHY DOES boy wonder need protection ? doesn’t he know batman

  • ZEB

    Sad part is this Loser will get voted in again , He is a Leech who does nothing but suck every freebie he can from the city , I’m sure if the Steelers go to the super bowl he will bring his security detail WAKE UP PITTSBURGH , also when the Blizzard hit last year and he was at 7 springs his car was towed , another reason he was late getting back to the burgh , was up there with his girlfriend and body guards WHAT A LOSER …….

  • Former resident

    Tell us again what is making Pittsburgh such a great city to live in? Is it the corrupt mayor & council, the bankrupt coffers, the dwindling transit, the rising crime rate? Yea, this city is a real gem.

  • Janet

    Why does he need protection???? He is the mayor not the president of the United States. What a waste of money and manpower. You are wasting tax payer money. What other money is being wasted??? Does he have a chauffeur that we are paying for also???? Wasteful spending that is what we are all about.

  • redrock100

    everyone vote democrat in the next election. it’s our only hope.

  • reAlity

    Every time ppl whine about the mayor it’s always the same topic, cant yinz find anything else to complain about besides what type of watch the mayors bodyguard wears? Pathetic whiners! We need a real crook like Blago or O’Bammy. That’ll teach yinz.

  • bruce USA

    Hey reAlity, Why would you back up this corrupt mayor especially in these “not so plentiful” times? But thats OK . I hope KDKA and other news sources will continue to expose these “RATS” And I hope that democratic Pittsburghers will start to see the light. Unfortunately we all have to pay for such lavish “goings on”. Why isn’t Luke responding to this issue? He runs his young inexperienced mouth on everything else!! And he’s always around when the “glam- cameras are rolling!!! But NOooo… lets tax tuition!!!

  • Jean Guy

    I have seen Tom Murphy out at several functions he would walk to his own car in a dark parking lot. This punk got togo.

  • dan

    How a police officer on a public service salary affords a $23,000.00 watch is a good question, he wears more than one also. I work downtown. I see them pull up in that white Tahoe all the time.

    They also have a lady police officer that does nothing but stand outside the city county building and guard the mayors truck. I would love to know what she gets paid because she isn’t a bodyguard for the mayor, but her whole day is spent watching his TAHOE..MORE WASTED MONEY !

    • Richard Yochus

      You need to get your facts correct before you speak. Number one, the main bodyguard of the mayor is a single male, who on this job, can make good money and if he wanted too, buy something of value. That is no business of yours. Just because you are an officer doesnt mean you cannot go out and purchase something. Did you ever hear of Credit?

      Number two, the Tahoe that the mayors detail uses is a used 2002 Tahoe with high mileage. This vehicle was used by Guy Costa of Public Works who retired three years ago. Last time I checked, that is around 8 years old.

      Third, the Officer at the city/county building is there to provide security for the City/ County building and city council. Her job is to make sure no one in this post 9/11 world, attempts to bring a weapon into city council while they are having meetings, since it is open to the public. The private security company
      that guards the building does not carry weapons, so we need the city police to protect our building. That officer also does not protect the mayors vehicle. Her job is to hand out tickets to the free loading people, probably like yourself, who want to park on 4th Ave. or around the City/ County Building and not pay for parking like everyone else does. She cites vehicles for illegal parking and patrols the perimeter of the building to make sure the building is secure of any threats. She also gets paid the same rate as any other city police officer, which is far less then what our suburb contourparts make. This position is not paid overtime. This officer does not just stand around and doesnt protect the mayors vehicle.

      So Dan, next time you open you dumb pie hole, get your facts straight. That is the problem with our world, too many Mr. Know-It-Alls that don’t know nothin and look like fools when they open up their mouths.

      • dan

        Funny RICHARD I saw the same police officer wearing another different ROLEX. Thats close to $40,000.00 in watches..It sounds to me like you are either one of these crooked pigs or a crooked council member from what you say and know. I walk by the building to and from work everyday, and I am a single male..I can’t afford $40K worth of watches, and I work hard…but then again I don’t get kick backs or special OT either…PS…. IDIOT why can’t a meter maid cite vehicles there like they do for everyone else in the city….OH I FORGOT because the mayor and all the council members are all better than every hard working person in the city who can’t afford a ROLEX…….GET IN TOUCH WITH REALITY !!!!

      • justin


      • karen

        She provides security????????? You must have a different lady the one I see in the morning is like 50, and just sits on her duff and chews gum….Hard to believe they let people like her even become cops, but I agree that she probably knew somebody to get the detail, and probably the job too. The city police are such a joke.. No wonder there is a incident at every function downtown!!!!!

      • tyree

        Whyz he gotz to roll a tahoe when there only be 2 peeps in it, they should roll a ford focus like building inspection does

      • karen

        Rich with all the OT and corruption going on in the city police force I’m surprised that all the cops arn’t wearing rolexes. The mayor gives you and your friends unlimited OT just to hang out with him and sneak him into see Tiger Woods and sit in hot tubs with girls in seven springs while people are dying in the city, I watch that lady sit on her duff all day and do nothing, see couldn’t protect anybody, and thats the truth!
        I see a bunch of cops in the north side made up stories to arrest and steal money. Then you have the Sgt who beat the hell out of his Ex wife. You really have a lot of nerve talking to me like that for just giving my opinion. Its the crooked cops like you that make people sick. Why do you think nobody wants to live in this city. I don’t know if I am more scared of the cops in this city or the gang bangers who seem to be taking it over, but then again they are pretty much the same kind of people. IGNORANT

    • Richard Yochus

      Again you open your mindless pie hole again and don’t know the facts. If you are such a hard working citizen, why do you hide behind your first name. I have nothing to hide, so I post my name. I worked just as hard all my life and if you want to purchase something in life, more power to that person. Who the hell are you to judge someone by what they wear. So I guess it is ok for the drug dealers to buy them and wear them, but you dont comment on that. I also dont get kick backs, what do you think this is “The Shield”. You watch too much television and tv shows. You realy are gullable and small minded. You must not like authority , due to your comments. But in the end Dan, when your in trouble, who do you call, the police.

      Second moron, a meter maid could cite the vehicle’s at the city county building, but in the past , the meter maid has to call the police to settle down a citizen who she cites. A meter maid is not a police officer and they cannot enforce the law , other then illegal parking in metered spaces. Plus, since you want to save the city money, why have a meter maid and a city officer at the same building, when you can save money with using the police officer to cite the parking spots and use the meter maid some where else in the city. Wouldn’t that make sense, Mr Know-it-all.

      Justin, another mindless fool talking jib jab. Hide behind your first name, since you dont have the guts to state who you are. And Justin, trust me I’m not going to lose my job any time soon.

      And Karen, I guess you must have a job that you watch people all day, cause the last time I checked that position does not have you sitting on your butt all day. Karen must not have a job with all the free time she has to sit around and watching people. I want Karen’s job. Must be nice Karen. I guess I support you through welfare, cause that is what you job seems like. Karen have you ever worked police work? No you haven’t. Karen have you ever worked that officers job? No you haven’t again. So Karen, who gives you the right to state what that officer does all day. You haven’t walked in her shoes or did her job. You are just another mindless human being that lives in a little dream world. Come work a city police job for one day and I can tell you that you would walk out the door crying wanting back your hard job you have right now. You couldn’t do our job.

      • Richard Yochus

        I suggest you go back to school and learn how to spell. Maybe then you won’t have so much time on your hands and you could get a better job.

        And again you are not getting your facts straight before you open your mindless mouth. That Sgt you are talking about was never married and he was found not guilty in a court of your peers of any wrong doing. Also the main person to testify in his court case, was a highly respected female doctor of the community. She witnessed the whole incident and saw no wrong doing. The ex-girlfriend made up the story to get back at the Sgt. Those are the facts Karen. Not the little lies you make up as you go along. Again you make yourself look stupid.
        And last , if you are so afraid of our city, I would suggest you check our crime statistics. We are one the safest cities of our size in the whole world. And it isn’t because of you. It is because of the police department and it’s hard working officers and detectives. If you dont like it, why do you work and live here? Go somewere your miserable human life will be happy. Trust me, you would not be missed. And there would be one less tree hugger in our world. Those are the facts Karen.

  • justin

    Dem or Rep , these people need to be held accountable for all the insane spending

  • dan

    Remember when stupidstal stole a shirt and snuck onto private property to see TIGER WOODS ?

  • justin

    Remember when a huge snow storm hit the city , people were dying because they couldn’t be reached and he wasn’t even in the city?

  • dan

    I’ll do you one better…Remember when they spent all the pension money, and were afraid the state would take it away so they wanted to make parking 13-15 dollars a hr by 2014…..?

  • justin

    Yea, who was really going to pay $120.00 a day to park? Thats just stupid and not even realistic. Thats $600.00 a week!

  • debbie

    sick and tired of this lame, immature, incompetent mayor….he needs to go…he’s reallllly bad for this city…in more ways than you can imagine.

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