Yonkers, NY — Yonkers Third District Councilmember Joan Gronowski (3rd District) is calling upon the Amicone administration to immediately return police patrols to the Lake Avenue area of the Yonkers, which has long been subject to rampant drug activity and street crimes. Ms Gronowski attended a Thursday night meeting initiated by Lake Avenue residents and merchants who are so angry and disheartened by the disenfranchisement of their neighborhood and dismal quality of life that they no longer know where to turn for help.
Ms Gronowski stated, “This is the third meeting called by community groups, the second in the Lake Avenue corridor I have attended in recent months with no representatives from the Mayor’s Office in attendance, despite their having been invited. The merchants and residents of Lake Avenue have repeatedly asked the city to restore regular police patrols to neighborhoods which are literally disintegrating due to the gangs of youths who roam in and out of stores at will, intimidating merchants and residents, a large number of whom are senior citizens. Fearful employees who question whether they can continue to remain employed in an area so vulnerable to crime have jeopardized once thriving businesses”.
Ms Gronowski continued, “Mayor Amicone has continually and robotically blamed these police cuts on the City Council due to cuts in their adopted budget. It is unfortunate, and no accident, that the mayor has refused to either attend these meetings himself or send a representative – any one of the abundant highly-paid mayoral aides and assistants on his staff – to account for the fact that the costly take-home city cars, cell phones and bloated administrative staffs in the City play no small part in the fiscal crisis in which we now find ourselves. We cannot attribute all our economic woes to the global economic meltdown since the City of Yonkers has had the dubious distinction of being under the watchful eye of not one but two Emergency Financial Control Boards due to wasteful spending. As soon as they leave town we get into hot water again”.
Ms Gronowski further criticized Amicone for proceeding with a recent two-day festival at Trevor Park, despite the fact that he had canceled the July 4th fireworks citing the costs of police overtime as a prime factor. She stated, “City crews worked at breakneck speed to clear Trevor Park of the mountainous debris caused by the July storm in preparation for this festival. I am still awaiting the city’s response as to how much this festival cost the city in police, Fire, Public Works and Parks Department overtime, despite having asked for this information on two occasions and via a Freedom of Information Law (F.O.I.L.) request. The mayor has obviously made an administrative decision to prioritize neighborhood festivals over neighborhood safety with respect to his assignment of police coverage”. She also stated that she has submitted a Freedom of Information Law request for the results of a recent Police Management Study, which was done at the beginning of the year."