Mayor Richard Thomas Weekly Report — December 9, 2017
CITY OF MOUNT WINTER STORM WARNING
The City of Mount Vernon is under a winter storm warning beginning Saturday, December 9, at 8:00am until Sunday, December 10 at 1:00am. Total snow accumulation is expected to be between three to five inches.
The City of Mount Vernon will be actively monitoring conditions throughout the day and provide continual updates to the public as necessary.
In the event of snow, residents are asked to stay off the streets and avoid unnecessary travel as road conditions may be slippery at times.
Business and property owners are reminded to keep their sidewalks clear and safe for pedestrians.
Residents are reminded to shovel snow onto their lawns. DO NOT SHOVEL SNOW INTO THE STREET.
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Lights On in Mount Vernon!
You may have noticed some streets in Mount Vernon are getting brighter. This week, the New York Power Authority met with Mayor Thomas and members of the administration to evaluate the new streetlights installed at 3rd Street and Pease Street. The team tested the new lights, took measurements, and evaluated the color temperatures. As the city begins the new installation project, we will be hosting a series of forums and public events so residents can let us know what they are looking for. Look for these events to begin in early 2018. Bright streets mean less crime, less grime, and an overall safer Mount Vernon.
2018 Budget Forum
On Monday, we held our second in the 2018 Budget Town Hall Series. We covered the lame duck council and comptroller’s budget and the catastrophic consequences it would have on city services due to their refusal to fund compliance measures needed to clean up our sewers. For example, should Walker and Apuzzo’s budget pass, garbage collection might be reduced to once per week and recycling would be picked up only twice per month. This is because the city is on a strict timeline from the Department of Justice to televise our sewers and, in order to reach the compliance deadline, employees working on garbage routes will have to be pulled off to work on the city’s sewers. The building department will be forced to streamline and reassign staff, leading to increased wait times of months to years to get a simple permit approved.
Getting a Return on Your Investment
Under the leadership of Mayor Richard Thomas, the Department of Public Works has been able to secure millions in grants including $1.6 million for sewers and $500,000 for Memorial Field.
This past week, DPW received $675,000 from a traffic grant, was able to pursue and recover $150,000 of unclaimed Federal Emergency Management Agency funds; ensured $850,000 in CHIPs monies would be reimbursed to the city and secured over $1,000,000 in additional funding for streets to be repaved in the spring.
This department is just one example of the return on investment that can come when time and resources are dedicated to pursuing grant dollars. Currently, the City of Mount Vernon has only one full-time grants administrator and each department in the city must write and pursue their own grant dollars. These extra monies are essential because they mean services can get done and taxpayers can see their money go even further. The more we invest in grant writers; the more money we can earn.
The Thomas administration has brought in a new foundation for DPW that aggressively pursues grant dollars. Begun by former Commissioner Ralph Uzzi, the new structure has supported and enabled the current leadership team, under Commissioner Joseph Nigro, to strengthen operations and continually improve performance, exceeding past administrations. It’s all about moving Mount Vernon forward.
Want a Job? Come out to our Hiring Fair
Healthcare is a growing industry and the city is actively partnering with organizations to host a series of career fairs. This week, Preferred Home Care sponsored a hiring event at the Doles Center, open to Mount Vernon employees.
On the 15th, Job seekers are encouraged to attend the Jewish Board’s hiring event at 226 Linda Avenue in Hawthorne, N.Y. on December 15, 2017, from 9 am to 12 pm. Call the Department of Human Resources at 914–840–4008 for more information. We actively encourage folks to send us their resume at MayorThomas@cmvny.com. If your company would like to host a jobs fair, please let us know!
South Fourth Avenue Study
Did you know that South Fourth Avenue is being reborn? Westchester County’s premier shopping district is coming back to life thanks to strategic partnerships that are highlighting the desire of Mount Vernon residents to spend their money in Mount Vernon.
At this week’s Planning Board Meeting, the firm who conducted the South Fourth Avenue study presented their finding publicly for the first time. The results prove our huge economic potential. Just under $400 Million is being spent by Mount Vernon residents outside of Mount Vernon. The opportunity to bring back hundreds of millions in retail spending is very real and we must take advantage of it. An economic recapturing of that magnitude, or even just half would be an explosion for Mount Vernon businesses, sales tax revenues, and would bring outside spending power along with it. It’s time for Mount Vernon to revive its downtown, beginning with South 4th Avenue.
Mount Vernon CAPP Program Celebrate “World AIDS Day”
On Friday, December 1, 2017, the Mount Vernon CAPP Program held its Annual World AIDS Day Celebration at the Doles Center. Over 65 youth and community members came out and saw speakers from Love Heals, Inc. as well as enjoyed outh performances from the CAPP Peer Educators and the Alpha Stars. This annual event provides insight into the progress made in the battle against the spread of HIV and AIDS-related deaths and makes sure our young people are educated and can protect themselves.
MVPD Citizens Police Academy Graduation and Awards Ceremony
On Wednesday, December 6, Mayor Richard Thomas, the Mount Vernon Police Department, and Citizens Police Academy Director Detective Dave Clarke held a graduation ceremony at Mount Vernon Police Headquarters. The academy is designed to train volunteers from the community to proactively monitor and report activity in their neighborhood to help the police to keep Mount Vernon safe. At the ceremony, Mayor Richard Thomas took some time out to recognize Detective Patrick Jean-Jerome, Officers Mark Todaro and Patrick Furey along with Mount Vernon High School faculty members Mireya Coadra-Hibber, Melissa Martin-Chambers, Glen Beram, and Security Officer Rochelle Brown for their fast actions to save the life of a student earlier this week. Their efforts to apply a tourniquet to the student’s leg after he was injured saved his life. We are thankful that School Resource Officers are back in schools, saving lives and mentoring our young people.
Listen to us live:
Every week, Mayor Thomas speaks to Yonkers Tribune radio with host Hezi Aris: Catch this week’s interview here for an unvarnished look at what’s happening in Mount Vernon: Mayor Thomas also hosts Mount Vernon Moving Forward every Friday on WVOX, from 5 pm to 6 pm. You can listen to this week’s show here for an in-depth discussion about the what’s going on in Mount Vernon. On the Internet, tune in to Future 98.9 every Wednesday at 8:30 am to listen to Mayor Thomas and Minister P. Tyson. You can find last week’s interview here. On Tuesdays at 8 am, you can hear Mayor Thomas on 101.5 Linkage Radio. Catch last week’s discussion here.