YONKERS, NY – April 7, 2018 — Yonkers City Council President Mike Khader, Majority Leader Michael Sabatino, and Councilmembers Shanae Williams and Corazón Pineda-Isaac commended Yonkers’ State Delegation for delivering a significant increase in funding for Yonkers schools in the New York State budget, and helping Democrats in Albany deliver a number of key wins for education across the State of New York and Yonkers.
“Our city is incredibly lucky to have Senate Democratic Conference Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, Assemblymember Shelley Mayer, and Assemblyman Gary Pretlow in our corner, fighting for us in Albany,” said Council President Khader in a statement. “We knew that with dysfunction in Washington, significant challenges in Albany facing this year’s budget, and special election politics, our state delegation was facing an uphill battle in fighting for Yonkers families. However, our state representatives accepted the challenge, and were able to secure important resources for Yonkers Schools. This year’s school funding increase is the highest percentage among the Big Five School Districts. Our delegation lead the fight to pass legislation and fund the rebuilding of Yonkers Public Schools (YPS), brought in $21 million in capital resources, including funding for a new football field, additional funding for arts and after school programming in Yonkers, and year after year, our delegation has provided record increases to funding for YPS.”
“I am really tired of hearing our Republican colleagues on the City Council whining about our state delegation not delivering funds for Yonkers,” added Majority Leader Michael Sabatino, responding to partisan allegations that Yonkers’ representatives in Albany failed to deliver additional funding to Yonkers.
“Let me point out that the current State Senate is controlled by Republicans, who reduced the amount of money in the original Assembly budget bill by millions of dollars. Where were my Republican colleagues? Not lobbying their Republican colleagues up in Albany, that’s for sure. How many trips to Albany did they make? Their job was to meet and lobby their Republican colleagues in the Senate to fight for us in Yonkers and deliver the funds, and they failed miserably. Don’t point the finger, or attempt to blame those who actually have delivered for Yonkers, as our State Delegation has – look in the mirror and assess your own advocacy or lack thereof. I give them an F. I thank our Yonkers delegation for always advocating for the citizens and students of Yonkers,” continued Majority Leader Sabatino.
“Republicans in Washington and Albany have done everything they possibly can to hamstring our efforts to deliver the support and funding that Yonkers students and families need,” added Council President Khader. “We cannot allow this obstruction and armchair advocacy to deter us from delivering for our children.”
Councilwoman Shanae Williams added “under incredibly difficult circumstances imposed by both Washington and Albany, our state delegation was able to secure important resources for our schools. I commend our representatives in Albany for delivering much needed resources to Yonkers families – we will always need more resources to aid our teachers and students, however, the work of our delegation in Albany has been critical to the operations and improvements of Yonkers schools over the last few years.”
“Each year our Yonkers delegation delivers for the City of Yonkers and for Yonkers Public Schools’ students. We have been fighting this fight for way too long, and the approximately 27,000 students in our public schools still deserve more, but we have tremendous allies in Senate Democratic Conference Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, and Assemblymembers Mayer and Pretlow,” said Councilwoman Corazón Pineda-Isaac in a statement. “Year after year they provide record increases in school aid, and Assemblymember Mayer has secured capital, arts, and after school funding. We have more to do, but the notion that our legislative delegation has not fought for us could not be further from the truth. I thank the state delegation for their tireless efforts in securing the additional funds.”
SOURCE: Briggette Sayegh, Communications Director, City Council President Mike Khader