Mayor Richard Thomas Weekly Report October 28, 2017

Mayor Richard Thomas
7 min readOct 29, 2017



The City of Mount Vernon is under a storm advisory from 12:00pm Sunday, October 29th evening Monday, October 30th at 6:00am. Heavy rain and wind is anticipated. Residents are asked to use precaution and watch for downed power lines, limbs, and trees. There is a potential for scattered power outages. Residents are asked to call the Mount Vernon Police Department at 914–665–2500 and Con Edison at 1–800–75-CONED if they see a hazardous condition. IN CASE OF AN EMERGENCY, CALL 911

Repaving Warren Place

We are literally paving the way for future of Mount Vernon! For Warren Place residents, a newly repaved street is on the way. Located right in the heart of our Industrial Zone and home to many of our major companies, including international leader and maker of holiday magic, American Christmas, Warren Place is just one of many sites that’s part of our street repaving plan. Mount Vernon is on track to repave close to double last year’s total of 18 lane miles, which was already more than double the amount of lane miles in 2015. We’re doing so much more with less, just by using a strategy of maximizing efficiency and making sure that every dollar spent paves as much of Mount Vernon as possible.

Day for Doing Good

Mayor Thomas and the City of Mount Vernon proudly partnered with Regeneron to celebrate the Day for Doing Good. Mayor Thomas and a host of devoted volunteers from Regeneron participated in Kids’ Science Day at the Doles Center where they demonstrated “density” to preschoolers with their “Sink or Float” experiments. The kids were instructed to guess which objects would float and which will sink. Giving children fun activities that teach them important lessons while they think they’re just having fun is a great way to expand on learning in the classroom.

MK Illumination Comes to Mount Vernon

The most innovative and forward-thinking Christmas lighting company in the world is coming to Mount Vernon. On October 27, 2017, Mayor Thomas joined Fred Schwam, CEO of American Christmas, in welcoming their new parent company, MK Illumination, and new CEO, Klaus Mark. MK has over 20 locations across the globe and is responsible for creating some of the most spectacular Christmas magic in the industry. The deal makes Mount Vernon the North American headquarters for the multi-national company, and brings 60 NEW jobs to Mount Vernon immediately, with 150 jobs to be created over the next three years. This adds to the 200+ the are already here and positions the company to grow. Mount Vernon welcomes MK Illumination the family of Mount Vernon businesses, and would like to thank and honor Fred Schawm and his family for almost 50 years of dedication in making Christmas special for millions of people. We look forward to the great things to come!

Visit MK Illuminations’ site to see samples of their breathtaking work that we intend to install across the entire City of Mount Vernon — making us a new destination for festive lighting and tourism.

U.S. Conference of Mayors Meeting at Gracie Mansion

This week, Mayor Thomas joined New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, who is President of the US Conference of Mayors, along with New York City Mayor Bill DiBlasio, President of the National Urban League Marc Morial, and other local leaders to discuss the preservation and continued focus on civil rights in the United States. In light of numerous national attacks on human rights, local and national leaders gathered to create a compact to strengthen civil and economic polices to protect all individuals who make up this great nation. The meeting had three main themes: to lift up and encourage citizens from around the U.S. to sign up for the Affordable Care Act, to ensure DACA & the Dreamers are not left behind, and initiate an early plan of action on the 2020 census.

Mayor Richard Thomas Tells the MTA to “Cover Our Cut”

Last week, Mayor Richard Thomas testified before the Metropolitan Transit Authority’s Capital Program Oversight Committee Meeting at the Authority’s lower Manhattan headquarters.

In his remarks, Mayor Thomas formally proposed to the Metropolitan Transit Authority that they cover the railroad cut that has bisected Mount Vernon since 1901. The plan, originated by Mayor August Petrillo’s administration in 1976, has renewed interest due to the city’s proposal in front of Amazon for consideration for their second world headquarters.

Lights on After-School Day

This past Thursday, Mayor Richard Thomas, joined by Superintendent Dr. Kenneth Hamilton, Senator Jamaal Bailey, County Legislator Lyndon Williams, Assemblyman Gary Pretlow, Executive Director of the Youth Bureau Dr. DaMia Harris-Madden, and many others, kicked off a rally in support of Lights On After-School Day.

In the face of massive cuts on the federal level, Mayor Thomas proudly reminded Mount Vernon of the $5.6 million in federal, state, and grant dollars already dedicated to funding these types of programs over the next 5 years, thanks in large part to the hard work and dedication of Executive Director Dr. DaMia Harris.

Mayor Thomas reiterated the challenge that he submitted to the Bloomberg Cities’ Mayors Challenge to make Mount Vernon the most educated city in the country by increasing the current graduation rate of 65% to the county Average of 86% in the next six years. Mayor Thomas posed that challenge to Superintendent Hamilton, asking if that was something they could take on together. Dr. Hamilton responded with a big thumbs up, signifying a partnership to take on the challenge.

Superintendent Dr. Kenneth Hamilton Said:

“I have to take a moment to, first of all, give thanks to Mayor Thomas for always being so supportive of our school district and the various programs that are supported through his office under the guidance and supervision of Dr. Harris.”

Weekly Police Department Video Update

Deputy Chief Roy Hastings is back to talk stats, but this week, he is also joined by some very special guests, the Mount Vernon Police Department’s new School Resource Officers. They stopped by to give you an update on the successful relaunch of the school resource officer and the D.A.R.E. programs. If you have any questions regarding these programs, please reach out to our Office of 21st Century Policing by phone at (914) 465–2791 or by email at

The 2nd Annual Pumpkin Blaze

Tonight is the 2nd Annual Mount Vernon Pumpkin Blaze. Almost 1,000 pumpkins were carved into Jack-o-lanterns and are set to be lit up tonight at 4pm in Hartley Park. The ghoulish glow of hundreds of pumpkins won’t be the only thing keeping the park a buzz tonight, there will also be spooky hayrides, a mechanical bull ride, hot cider and candy apples. Bring the whole family out for one of the best Halloween attractions in lower Westchester.

4th Annual Youth Empowerment Showcase

On Friday, October 20, 2017, the Mount Vernon CAPP Program held its 4th Annual Youth Empowerment Showcase at the Doles Center. This event highlights teen pregnancy prevention and the reduction of at-risk behavior. The Mount Vernon Community came out strong to see to our youth engaged in a Q&A session about HIV/STD’s, dance, skits, song, and a fashion show. This event was also supported by Police Commissioner Shawn Harris and officers from the School Safety Division, Family Services of Westchester, and The Mount Vernon Neighborhood Health Center who was gracious enough to bring their mobile testing unit. The feedback was extremely positive from the 388 youth, parents and community members that attended.

Listen to us live:

Every week, Mayor Thomas speaks to Yonkers Tribune radio with host Hezi Aris: Catch this week’s interview here for an unvarnished look at what’s happening in Mount Vernon: Mayor Thomas also hosts Mount Vernon Moving Forward every Friday on WVOX, from 5pm to 6pm. You can listen to this week’s show here for an in-depth discussion about the what’s going on in Mount Vernon. On the Internet, tune in to Future 98.9 every Wednesday at 8:30am to listen to Mayor Thomas and Minister P. Tyson. You can find last week’s interview here. On Tuesdays at 8am, you can hear Mayor Thomas on 104.5 Linkage Radio. Catch this week’s discussion here.




Mayor Richard Thomas

At 33, Richard Thomas is the youngest Mayor in Mount Vernon history! (2016–2019) Facebook: