To the friends, families and colleagues of the people who lost their lives, there are no words that can heal your pain, or ease your sadness. But please know that an entire city is sharing your loss, and that New York stands ready to help in any that we can, during this time of unimaginable sorrow for you.
I would also like to take this opportunity to commend the New York City Police Department, the Fire Department, the Mayor's Office of Emergency Management, the Community Assistance Unit, and all of the hundreds of people who worked around the clock searching for victims, and assisting the federal authorities in the aftermath of the crash. The people who work for New York City made me proud these last couple of days, in the way in which they reached out with compassion, and with healing to others who were in pain. Their professionalism, their sensitivity and their commitment exemplify the highest standards of public service.
On another subject, public safety, there is some good news. Last week our city received more Federal Crime Bill funds than any other municipality in the nation with at least $110 million coming to New York over the next three years.
The funds are being used to double the size of this year's class at the Police Academy, increasing our police force by an additional 1,500 recruits. And this money is also being used to help fund the most comprehensive anti-drug initiative in city history, which is now being expanded to Washington Heights.
This initiative blankets a specific, drug distribution area with additional police officers who will attack the drug trade at the street level, the mid-level, and the upper levels. The strategy is designed to crush the drug business in the targeted neighborhood, returning the streets, the parks and the housing to the law abiding residents of that community.
This is good news for the residents of Washington Heights, and for all New Yorkers, as we continue our crime fighting efforts that have already reduced serious crime by 36%, since 1993.
No people anywhere in the world have the heart, the resolve and the resiliency of New Yorkers. We've shown this in our response to last week's devastating airplane crash, and in the way we've cooperated together to reduce the incidence of crime. And as we all join together to pray for the passengers of T.W.A. flight 800, let's hope that through our prayers the families and friends of the victims can share in the collective strength and compassion of our great city and in their own strength and resolve.
From Gracie Mansion this is Rudy Giuliani.