Learn to talk to the media. Sheesh.

So a Public Works official, the director to be exact, Kevin Quigley, is under fire by Rich Lord of the P-G for having his little stretch of road repaved, a dead end that serves two other houses, one of which is not technically in the city limits, while all around Pittsburgh, a “cash-strapped” government is only able to pave 30 miles of street per year.

The work was approved by Kevin Quigley for Kevin Quigley, which anyone with half a brain in their head knows that it looks bad when a person approves their own requests or invoices or time sheets or expense reports or what not.

I’m not here to debate about whether his street needed to be repaved. Maybe it did. Maybe there were other streets in the city (I’m looking at you Fifth Avenue) that could have used the asphalt more.

I’m here to say that someone needs to teach Kevin Quigley how to speak to the media … or, to, you know, shut up.

I deserve the right to get to my house,” said Mr. Quigley, who also manages the Redd-Up crew, when asked about the surfacing of his street. “It’s never been paved in its whole entirety, and [who] are you to determine, in the city of Pittsburgh, what streets get paved, and what streets don’t get paved?”

Mr. Quigley said Edwin’s surface was evaluated by department pavement experts and rated a zero — the lowest possible rating. “The freaking mailman can’t even get to my house,” he said.

Could he BE any more confrontational?

[/Chandler Bing]

Also, he should have known better than to say that to Rich Lord, who ALWAYS does his homework:

U.S. Postal Service spokesman Tad Kelley said he could find no records of mail carriers refraining from delivering mail to Speck or Edwin streets.

“Neither rain nor snow nor gloom of night, nor the terrible potholes on Edwin Street.”





28 Comments

  1. SpudMom
    October 15, 2010 1:06 pm

    I agree with you, but to be fair, it is possible that the mailman couldn’t *drive* to his house but instead chose to deliver the mail to those three houses on foot.

    So, the mailman could get to his house to deliver but only on foot. Still makes him look like an ass though, doesn’t it?



  2. Pensgirl
    October 15, 2010 1:17 pm

    Seems there are two issues here. First, yeah, he is a moron for behaving in such an assy manner with the media. But also, he broke the rule that the appearance of propriety is every bit as important as actual propriety. In other words, he invited questioning and criticism by the way he went about having his street repaved. If it is justifiable, he did himself no favors in approving the project himself. The assessment and decision should have been made independently (meaning not by him, and not by any of his subordinates). And acting like such a jerk in response to questioning just makes him look worse. If he ever had a decent justification that his street deserved prioritizing, his behavior sure serves to discredit that justification.



  3. Dan (Not Onorato)
    October 15, 2010 1:39 pm

    Two words.

    Tool. Bag.



  4. Al Lambrini
    October 15, 2010 1:40 pm

    well according to the atricle he bought that house in march probably at a steep discount because of the street knowing all the while he could get it paved rather easily smells like a classic pittsburgh city mgt move



  5. Erin
    October 15, 2010 1:50 pm

    Ugh, just another example of this kind of thing in Pittsburgh. I too was struck by his defensive tone. And Rich Lord ROCKS!



  6. Al Lambrini
    October 15, 2010 1:56 pm

    oh and somebody should keep an eye on him selling it for a profit within a year. In the financial services industry this would be illeagal undr insider trading laws but in city government i am not so sure front running is prohibited



  7. Jagoff
    October 15, 2010 1:56 pm

    Who is he to determine, in the city of Pittsburgh, what streets get paved, and what streets don’t get paved?



  8. PA Girl in VA
    October 15, 2010 2:02 pm

    Yeah he’s a jerk, but the article does say:

    Public Works Director Robert Kaczorowski, to whom Mr. Quigley reports, said he agreed with the decision to pave Edwin. “I rode that and looked at that when [Mr. Quigley] was renting the property [before buying it], and it was in pretty bad shape.”

    So, even if Quigley did sign off on it, it was approved by his superior.



  9. PA Girl in VA
    October 15, 2010 2:04 pm

    Let me be clear – I’m not taking this idiot’s side. That money could have been put to better use paving a road that serves more than 3 houses and the mailman.



  10. Dan
    October 15, 2010 2:04 pm

    This guy should try living on Chesterfield RD in Oakland



  11. jen
    October 15, 2010 2:10 pm

    maybe he attended the Luke Ravenstahl seminars on “It’s none of your business, even if I’m a public servant” and “how to teach the media a lesson (by being an a-hole to them)”



  12. Me
    October 15, 2010 2:12 pm

    I’m just amazed that folks who work in these kinds of positions don’t realize that things like this are going to invite scrutiny and that they should expect and be prepared for it. If the project was truly worthy, he should have had his boss sign to approve it, not just say that he concurs after the fact.



  13. Al Lambrini
    October 15, 2010 2:17 pm

    He was renting it when the decision was made? are those decisions made public? if not and the ownner of the house was not informed I am pretty sure that is illeagal



  14. Jake
    October 15, 2010 2:24 pm

    “while all around Pittsburgh, a “cash-strapped” government is only able to pave 30 miles of street per year”

    So… We’re generously calling half-assed pothole repair “paving” these days?



  15. cityworker
    October 15, 2010 2:32 pm

    You need to revise your story. He is not THE director. Rob Kaczorowski is the director. He approved the paving. You can praise Rich Lord all you want, but this story was a lay-up for him and the way Quigly acted made it a slamdunk. It was an easy story. Just because you work for the City doesn’t mean that you can’t get your street paved.



  16. TripleC
    October 15, 2010 2:47 pm

    Just another in a long list of examples proving this city is run by people that have no f’ing clue! Wish I could say I’m surprised.



  17. Al Lambrini
    October 15, 2010 2:54 pm

    @ cityworker absolutely right about a city emplyee being allowed to have his street paved. But if you have non public information on a capital improvement that will raise the value of an asset and you use that informaiton to purchase that asset before that informaiton is public. That I am not so sure about.



  18. Me
    October 15, 2010 2:57 pm

    “Just because you work for the City doesn’t mean that you can’t get your street paved.”

    Oh, I’d agree. But when you work for the city managing the crew that did the repaving and sign off on the invoices, you should expect that someone is going to question it. And make damn sure that you’ve documented the decision making process to show that it is all above board and transparent. And if you have not done that, you do not answer questions from the media in the manner that Assistant Public Works Director Kevin Quigley did. As Michael Lamb said, someone higher up should have signed off on the project.



  19. Dan (Not Onorato)
    October 15, 2010 3:05 pm

    I could care less if he had his own paving company and the city paid him to pave his own road. I say “whatever” to that. That stuff happens everywhere. My issue is that he doesnt need to be an a-hole when asked a few questions about it



  20. Sooska
    October 15, 2010 3:06 pm

    Well, unreasonable confrontation when faced with facts is the current way to deal with anyone questioning anything. All politicians now do it that way. The way to deal with facts is to drown them out; yell louder than the other guy.

    I would remind Mr. Quigley ALL citizens, including media, are permitted, encouraged, to keep their eyes on tax dollars and how and where they are spent. He isn’t in charge. Supposedly the People of Pittsburgh are in charge.



  21. cityworker
    October 15, 2010 3:37 pm

    Trust me, I am not saying he handled it well, because he didn’t. But even if he handled it better the story was going to get written and he was going to look bad.

    Chances are someone had a score to settle with him because there is no way Rich Lord would have found this story if he wasn’t point to it. And with Quigly’s attitude it is hard to imagine why anyone would be mad at him.



  22. Clementine
    October 15, 2010 6:15 pm

    jen’s funny… just the idea of Lukey conducting seminars on media relations… hee hee

    Somebody needs to track down and interview the “freaking mailman”…



  23. Ang
    October 15, 2010 6:51 pm

    Love the Chnadler reference



  24. Pittsburgh Tom
    October 15, 2010 9:19 pm

    The problem is, with so many bigtime politicians taking bribes…er, I mean “donations” from lobbyist, the small politicians never learn that they don’t just have to avoid impropriety, they have to avoid the allusion of impropriety.



  25. Bram R
    October 16, 2010 1:27 am

    I dunno — dropping a “freaking” and acting indignant probably plays well to a nice chunk of town. The issue is in whether we can muster truly defensible data-driven decisions, and even more so it’s getting to a point where we DON’T have to fight about $30 million a year, and we can pave the whole $80 million that we need to.



  26. bucdaddy
    October 16, 2010 9:49 am

    Media jackals. Any man willing to serve in public offioe in these contentious times deserves to do so free of scrutiny by the filthy rabble to whom he doles out indulgences.



  27. Oracle of Delphi
    October 17, 2010 12:51 pm

    Rich Lord, like other so called “journalists” only go after the low hanging fruit.

    The citizens still do not know where Lukey was during the great snowstorm, nor how he got there and back.



  28. LaReina
    October 17, 2010 1:01 pm

    The “freaking” mailman? Really? This guy cannot be ignorant of the use of “freaking” as a euphemism for the dread F-bomb (I offered, euphemistically). So what does he have against mailmen? It’s almost as if he’s calling them MFers, which is called for only when you’re actually at the post office and there’s only one window open with 30 people in line waiting for service.