City Mayor To Address Variety Of Topics In Annual Report
Jamestown’s mayor is holding his comments in his annual report close to his vest.
Once a year, Sam Teresi, Jamestown mayor, delivers a State of the City report to the Jamestown City Council detailing activities from the past year and initiatives for the future. The mayor is scheduled to deliver the report to the council on Monday, which could include several cost-cutting and revenue-generating initiatives to be implemented in 2018. Whatever those initiatives might be, Teresi wasn’t going to say prior to presenting the report to the council.
One item Teresi did reveal is that he will be following his recent trend of submitting the report without much of a speech to go along with the presentation. For the first 15 years of Teresi’s tenure as mayor, he provided a speech to along with the written report. However, in the past two years, Teresi has provided few remarks and, for the most part, just presented the State of the City report to the council.
“If I do choose to provide any remarks, it will be very efficient and to the point to set up the information in the written packet,” he said. “I do not anticipate, as I have done in past State of the (City) addresses, to give a long verbal speech. Folks can read it for themselves in the written report.”
Teresi said the speech will be mostly up beat, especially following the good news reported earlier this week by Harry Snellings, Jamestown Police Department chief and city public safety director, who said violent and property crimes were both down in the city last year.
“We look upon that as a springboard for 2018,” Teresi said. “They are encouraging, but crime states are a product of a number of factors, here and everywhere. Sometimes they are influenced from an economic standpoint, locally and nationally. Expectedly, in better economies crime trends to lighten, not always, but trends to. At this period of time, economic conditions are improving.
“Also, community involvement and good police enforcement, with other factors like housing and education, can have a hand in less criminal activity in a community,” he said.
“It bodes well for the community … an indicator of positive support and activity on all fronts,” he said. “Good law enforcement; good community involvement by citizens, local organizations and the businesses in the community; and, you have to cite the influence of a better economy than what it was nine or 10 years ago during the height of the Great Recession and the time climbing out of it.”
Teresi said there have been rumors in the community that city officials “spun” the improved crime numbers in the city. Teresi said the state Division of Criminal Justice Services generates and dispenses the numbers for all communities throughout the state.
“Those are the official numbers provided by the state Division of Criminal Justice Services,” he said. “These are not stats generated and fudged by the Jamestown Police Department. The numbers are the numbers, and those numbers are officially done by the state. They’re not internally generated.”
Teresi said he will address a variety of topics in the report that will focus on 2018 initiatives like improving infrastructure, economic development, housing and public safety. As for activities in the past year, Teresi will provide details about the advancement of Downtown Revitalization Initiative projects. Last year, the state approved around $10 million to fund several private and public projects that will include new business like the Jamestown Brewing Company and the DoubleTree by Hilton Jamestown.
The DRI will also include projects to improve streetscape and pedestrian travel and the implementation of infrastructure for future excursion train travel.
“The DRI initiatives will be front and center,” Teresi said. “It is one thing to conceive these projects, then it is another to do the planning and receive the funding and then it is another thing to get the projects completed.”
Teresi said the State of the City report will be provided to the public through the city’s website, jamestownny.net, at the James Prendergast Library, and in the office of the city clerk and mayor at the Jamestown Municipal Building, located at 200 E. Third St.