Urban Redevelopment Authority subpoenaed in city grand jury investigation

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PITTSBURGH - The Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh confirmed Wednesday that it's being investigated by a federal grand jury.

“On September 4, 2013, the URA was served with a subpoena to produce documents requested by the U.S. Attorney's office. We will comply with the subpoena but will not disclose the subject matter. The URA will have no further comment on this matter,” the statement said.

Robert Rubinstein, the acting director of the URA, refused to release any information about the records in question.

“It does not (worry me). There’s nothing under my watch that worries me,” Rubinstein said.

Target 11 investigator Rick Earle reported that sources told him the records in question may involve parking lot leases.

“We issued a statement and there will be no further comment at this time,” Rubinstein said.

This comes just one day after Mayor Luke Ravenstahl's chief of staff testified before a federal grand jury on Tuesday but refused to discuss why investigators wanted to question the city's highest-ranking political appointee.

Yarone Zober, who also serves as chairman of the URA, declined comment as he left the grand jury room where he testified for about 1 hour and 15 minutes.

The federal panel heard also from Ashlee Olivo, who sources said had dated the mayor. They were the latest in a string of Ravenstahl associates to appear before the grand jury.

“They’re not letting any stone go unturned,” WPXI legal analyst Phil DiLucente said. “They’re following into every government entity to make sure there haven’t been any types of improprieties.”

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