Thursday, January 31, 2019

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Annual Port Jervis State of the City highlights accomplishments

Decker (podium): "... we must work and communicate with one another.”

PORT JERVIS – Mayor Kelly Decker delivered an upbeat and quick-hitting State of the City address at Port Jervis City Hall Wednesday night.

The address focused heavily on several fiscal and renovation successes from 2018, while looking ahead to plans for 2019 and even beyond. The address was the sixth for Decker.

“We must continue to be fiscally responsible and continue to build our fund balance for those when things aren’t so good,” the mayor said. “We might not have control over what happens outside this valley, but we certainly and collectively have a responsibility to our city and her residents. We must know that seeking help from others is fruitless and we must work and communicate with one another.”

Among the highlights from 2018 addressed by the mayor were the achievement of an all-time low crime rate; the opening of the SUNY Orange Sarfatti Education Center in Port Jervis - used currently for evening credit, non-credit and high school equivalency classes; the work on the Tri-States Bridge, specifically improved lighting; and the addition of over five miles of bike trails.

Fiscally the mayor was also upbeat, stating “we now have a steady budget that addresses our needs and wants.” Decker did caution, however, that residents and city government must stay vigilant in continuing to build the cities fund balance for years where things are not as positive.

The approximately 25-minute speech directed the city to continue to have an eye on the future while also remaining aware of its past. “Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow but also never forget the past,” Decker said.

A few other noteworthy nuggets from annual address:

  • The city recreation department continues to expand its offerings including many free programs and planned playground improvements for 2019
  • The 100 percent volunteer fire department of Port Jervis responded to 459 alarms in 2018
  • The Department of Public Works saved by the mayor’s estimation the city hundreds of thousands of dollars by handling numerous tasks that otherwise would’ve been put out to bid
  • The city plans a new dog park opening in the spring
  • Downtown business districts like the newly created promenade will continue to receive attention and further development in 2019

 


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