FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 12, 2009
MAYOR BLOOMBERG DISCUSSES NEW STEPS THE CITY IS TAKING TO MAINTAIN NEIGHBORHOOD QUALITY OF LIFE AND HELP NEW YORKERS FIND NEW AND BETTER JOBS IN WEEKLY RADIO ADDRESS
The following is the text of Mayor Bloomberg's weekly radio address as prepared for delivery on 1010 WINS News Radio for Sunday, July 12, 2009
"Good Morning. This is Mayor Mike Bloomberg.
"In tough economic times like these, our City agencies have to work harder than ever to pull our City out of the national recession - the overriding goal of our five-borough economic opportunity plan. By maintaining neighborhood quality of life, and by helping New Yorkers find new and better jobs, that's just what we're doing.
"Exhibit A: Our success in eliminating the graffiti that breeds crime and neighborhood decline. So far this year, we've cleaned graffiti off double the number of private homes and businesses - free of charge - as we did just two years ago. And that's in spite of the near-record rainfall that kept clean-up crews off the streets during much of June.
"The Community Affairs Unit of the Mayor's Office, the Sanitation Department, the Economic Development Corporation, and the Mayor's Office of Operations have all pulled together to improve graffiti-fighting procedures. As a result, we've cut the time it takes to respond to graffiti clean-up requests by better than half. For example, instead of completely stopping graffiti clean-ups once the cold weather months arrive as used to be the case, we now send crews out any day that the weather permits. We're also preparing to use Federal stimulus funds to assign supervised crews of low-level criminal offenders to do graffiti clean-ups as part of their community service sentences. And we're working with the City Council to pass a local law making it easier for property owners to request clean-ups, speeding up and increasing graffiti removal even further.
"In the meantime, if you see graffiti anywhere in our city, call 311 right away. And while you're at it, ask about the Mayor's Paint Program supporting volunteer graffiti clean-ups; it's a great way to protect, beautify, and give back to your community.
"Our Department of Small Business Services also deserves special mention for its extraordinary success in training and placing New Yorkers in new jobs. During 2008 - with the economy already in decline - our Workforce 1 Career Centers made 17,000 job placements, their most ever. Then we set an even higher goal of 20,000 job placements for 2009. And with the first half of the year just ended, we're ahead of schedule to hit that target, with more than 10,000 job placements since January.
"The reasons: SBS focuses strongly on linking people to jobs in industries, like health care, where employment is still strong, and also to the small businesses that are the backbone of New York's economy. When unemployment began to climb last winter, they also significantly increased the operating hours of their Workforce 1 Centers to include evenings and weekends. Now, using some $32 million in Federal stimulus funds, we're going to expand these efforts even further. If you're looking for a new job, call 311 for information about the hours, location, and services of a Workforce 1 Center convenient to you.
"No one can say for sure when this national recession is going to end. But end it will - and the work we're doing now to improve neighborhood quality of life and prepare New Yorkers for good-paying jobs is laying the foundation for a strong economic recovery.
"This is Mayor Mike Bloomberg. Thanks for listening."
Stu Loeser (212) 788-2958