YONKERS, NY — I would like to start by wishing a Happy New Year to my colleagues on the council. It is a new day on the Yonkers City Council and I offer a warm welcome to the new City Council President, Madam Council President, if I may add. Today we convene as a council to meet and re-organize as we do every two years and vote on the rules that govern this body. Included in our City Council rules are the big ticket items which are the choice for leadership & committee chairmanships.
Two years ago, I was voted in as Majority Leader and I am grateful for the opportunity to serve and lead this council. During my term, we experienced a pandemic, transitioning to remote everything, a struggling small business environment, and lots of uncertainty regarding our city finances. At the same time, we pushed through those uncertainties, implemented creative initiatives to help our small business owners, shifted the way we taught our children and along the way learned that we, here in Yonkers, can handle anything that is thrown our way.
The pandemic is not behind us but we move forward by taking past practices that have worked, learning from mistakes, and forging ahead to new beginnings.
I am excited to have four women of color on the council and look forward to the many successes we will have individually and collectively. I am excited about a democratic super majority and the power and responsibility that it yields. I look forward to a busy and constructive legislative session, working across the aisle while always staying true to the democratic values I hold dear.
Today, I will be voting “No” on the Rules put forth which includes Councilwoman Tasha Diaz as Majority Leader and Councilman John Rubbo as Majority Whip.
I respect all the colleagues that I serve with but at this time, I have very strong reservations about Councilwoman Tasha Diaz serving as the Council Majority Leader. My time on the council and my interactions with Councilwoman Tasha Diaz have led me to the firm and strong conclusion that she does not possess the skills and temperament needed to lead this council. She also has not shown the leadership ability to push the democratic agenda forward having voted against the affordable housing ordinance.
I respect the will of the council and will respect the choice made by this body today, but I wanted to share the reason why I am voting “No” today.
I struggle with both members who voted against the affordable housing ordinance now holding leadership roles, which aims to guide the Democratic caucus. My hope for the good of this council and the city is that they quickly grow into that role.
As I step into my 9th year on the Yonkers City Council, I am excited to continue to serve, to prioritize revisiting and passing a more expansive affordable housing ordinance, to continue to work on police reform and reintroducing the creation of a Civilian Complaint Review Board, to dig deep and provide more resources to our Yonkers public students, to protect tenants from predatory landlords, revamp our buildings department and push through progressive agendas that help the people of the City of Yonkers. The work does not stop because of a title change and I am eager and excited to continue the work I was elected to do.
Knowing how the vote will be cast I still offer congratulations to my colleagues and look forward on pushing through the Democratic agenda that best serves the city of Yonkers.
Happy New Year and let’s make it count!
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Councilmember Corazon Pineda-Isaac represents the constitutes who reside in Yonkers Council District 2.