"The future of Irvington "
What inspired you to run for the City Council of Irvington NJ?
Well the main reason we are running is we believe that our town can do better. We believe that the course we are on, and have been on for sometime now is a path of that really leads to nowhere. We see a lack of progressive ideas and policies and it’s something we believe that the town desperately needs and that we feel we can bring to the table. Also here in Irvington there is a major anti democratic political culture that we want to challenge, with our very diverse population we believe that inclusion can energize our town, that giving all people a voice no matter where they come from, will help us usher in a new phase in this town.
How will you address the Homeless and the abandon houses epidemic in Irvington?
We intend to address the abandon homes problems though small business development and also we have looked at various cities who have similar problems such as Baltimore, Gary and Detroit some of the things they have implemented in those cities we feel are compatible with our current situation here in Irvington.
As a Council Member, will you vote to pass more legislation for non-profits?
Well, before we can pass any legislation we have to aid those who want to create any necessary non-profits in the town. At this current time in the town there is a great void in the area of non-profits we need to aid those who want to see a wide array of non profits and then of course support those organizations that are doing the much needed work here in the town.
What creative ideals and decision-making techniques will you bring to the Council board?
The most creative thing that we can do is involve the people because for so long they have been looked out of the process and by doing this we will see, I believe, a flowering of creative ideas and possibilities. At present time you only see our elected officials if you’re fortunate enough to make it to the council meetings or the cookouts they have once a year. But we intend on engaging folks in a more useful and consistent way because by doing this we can gain access to Irvington’s mass brain trust. We know and understand very well that we don’t know everything nor do we have all the answers but collectively the people do! With the different professions and different life experience of our residents there is a wealth of untapped knowledge here that we must utilize if we are going to grow.
Irvington has such a diverse community what are a few legislations that you would suggest to the Council?
We can address this by establishing an office of culture. The purpose of this office would be to host different cultural events educational and informational sessions that introduce our town to the various nations and cultures that exist here in Irvington.
Education is vital in society, what education reform plans would you suggest to the Council if elected?
Here in Irvington we have an elected school board so anything we would do should be done in conjunction with the board. However when we take office we will focus on developing cultural and educational programs throughout the wards that will act as a supplementary force to our school system, we need all the help we can get.
What ideas for job creation in Irvington would you implement if elected to the council?
Sometimes our solutions can be found in the mist of what we see as our problems. What I mean by that is there is a great opportunity for development in the areas of housing and real estate here in the town. We also have to focus on what our strengths are regionally. Newark airport and Port Newark are less than 15 minutes away with our diverse international population these are assets and tools that can help in our development.
Also, I see that you are civically engaged, how will that encouraged the citizens of Irvington to vote for you?
Hopefully this will help the people see that we are genuinely concerned with the well being of the community. That our history did not start with our desire to run for office that we have been on the scene for some time now in various capacities. I’ve convened conferences that have focused on progressive politics, economic development, and education. I was a student leader while in college along with being an anti-violence activist. And we intend to bring this mentality to the council and the basis of this is community.
Irvington has the highest crime compared to the surrounding cities, what type of crime plan would you implement?
We have had the advantage as community activist to study these problems from several vantage points and particularly crime we believe has to be approached from various sides. A holistic approach if you will, viewing crime a disease has proved to be very useful in understanding the root and movement of violent crime throughout our community. Our approach must be three pronged prevention, intervention, and treatment. We will release a comprehensive explanation of our plan at a latter date.
The unemployment rate in Irvington NJ is 12.3% how will you help small businesses and inspire entrepreneurship amongst the citizens?
Again, small business development, we feel, will be at the foundation of any development we will have here in the town with this being our focus we will have to ensure that our current small businesses have all of the support that is needed for them to grow and furthermore for those inspiring to become entrepreneurs they need a specific type of support as well. Also, we have to insure that our residents are being prepared to fill the jobs, educational with the proper skills. There is another important element in reducing unemployment and that is making sure that those jobs that are already available our residents have assess to those jobs and are receiving their fair share of those jobs. Making sure that businesses who have contracts with the town are employing our residents.