What will Doug Shields do now?
Or for that matter Corey O'Connor, Chris Zurawsky and others?
The city councilman has long planned to waive reelection this year in order to run for a Squirrel Hill district judge seat, but as expected Allegheny County's president judge has recommended that the judicial district (and two others) be abolished. Here's the breaking news story:
Allegheny County President Judge Donna Jo McDaniel has proposed elimination of three district court positions.
She will petition the state Supreme Court to eliminate the offices now held by Judges Ross C. Cioppa, whose district includes Braddock, Rankin and Swissvale; Nathan N. Firestone, whose office covers two wards in Pittsburgh; and Regis C. Welsh Jr., who covers Pine, Richland and Hampton.
They are all leaving office at the end of this year because of retirement.
The move comes in response to Supreme Court Chief Justice Ronald Castille's request for a 10 percent statewide reduction in magisterial district courts because of state budget problems.
Judge McDaniel also is proposing changing the boundaries of 14 district court jurisdictions to accommodate the closings.
Photo: Darell Sapp. A weary Doug Shields pauses during last month's pension debates.