Mayor Brown Announces Buffalo News Kids Day in the City of Buffalo
Mayor Byron Brown and County Executive Mark Poloncarz proclaim April 25, 2017 “Buffalo News Kids Day” in the City of Buffalo and Erie County
April 18 – Mayor Byron Brown announced today that the Buffalo News’ annual “Special Kids Day Edition Sale” will take place on Tuesday, April 25, 2017 to benefit Women & Children’s Hospital of Buffalo, Cradle Beach and all children in the Western New York (WNY) region. Women & Children’s will use the funds to continue their mission to deliver the highest quality care to the children and mothers of the WNY community.
Mayor Brown was joined by Jody Lomeo, President and CEO of both Kaleida Health and the Great Lakes Healthy System of Western New York, Allegra Jaros, President of Women & Children's Hospital, Lisa Cislo, Promotions Coordinator at the Buffalo News; Carol Horton, Vice President of Marketing & Public Relations at The Buffalo News; and Andi Baker, from Tops Friendly Markets.
“Kids Day is always an event that I look forward to,” said Mayor Brown. “I’m so proud to be a part of this annual tradition for a good cause and I encourage city residents and visitors to support Kids Day by buying this special edition of the Buffalo News on April 25th. I also thank the many volunteers for their commitment and dedication to this event, which helps improve the quality of life for so many of our children and their families.”
Since 1983, the profits made from the Special Kids Day Edition Sale have totaled more than $4.6 million and have helped children all across WNY.
Mayor Brown, Council Member Fontanana Launched 2017 Citywide Sidewalk Improvement Program
April 12 - Today, Mayor Byron W. Brown, Lovejoy Council Member Richard A. Fontana and Department of Public Works Commissioner Steve Stepniak kicked-off the 2017 Citywide Sidewalk Improvement Program in Buffalo’s Lovejoy District. The city allocated $6.1 million for citywide sidewalk work this year.
“Weather permitting, we plan to do about $6.1 million in sidewalk replacement projects in 2017, touching every Council District in Buffalo,” said Mayor Brown. “Our strong commitment to new sidewalks is all about our continued effort to beautify neighborhoods, protect infrastructure and complement the more than $6 billion in economic development activity that’s currently underway in Buffalo.”
The 2017 sidewalk construction work, which also includes new ADA ramps, began in the Lovejoy District on Brinkman Avenue, as well as Dearborn Street in Buffalo’s North District, and along Downing Street in the South District.
Mayor Brown Announces City of Buffalo 2017 "Earth Month" Calendar
April 11 - Mayor Byron W. Brown today announced a calendar of Earth Day events which will take place across the City of Buffalo in April. Although April 22 is the official date that Earth Day is observed in the U.S., events focusing on the environment will be taking place throughout the month, all around the City.
“Earth Day is a time to remember the importance of our natural resources to our environment and economy and I’m proud of the city’s efforts in making Buffalo a cleaner, greener and more sustainable city,” said Mayor Byron Brown. “I encourage city residents to participate in any one of the activities the City of Buffalo has planned this year.”
Mayor Brown Announces Improved Response Times by American Medical Response WNY
AMR, the City of Buffalo’s ambulance service, has improved response times by over 2 minutes, a first for medical emergency response services in Buffalo
April 4 –- Buffalo Mayor Byron W. Brown today announced American Medical Response (AMR) of Western New York has made major improvements in its ambulance service and response times in the City of Buffalo.
“We have worked successfully with AMR to achieve a significant improvement in emergency medical response times. The company has improved response times by over 2 minutes and consistently delivers on-time performance across all areas of the City. It’s also commendable that these response times are the best we’ve ever documented in the City of Buffalo,” Mayor Brown said. “Our enhanced working relationship with AMR has resulted in improved service for all our citizens.”
The performance improvements, developed with input from City leadership, are in large part due to AMR’s investment in widespread operational upgrades. Some of the investments that AMR has made in the last six months include:
● Allocated additional resources to the City of Buffalo and AMR’s entire Western New York operation
● Hired more than 100 medical professionals to the Western New York team
● Refreshed the ambulance fleet
● Upgraded the technology infrastructure, including a computer-based system that enables continuous, real-time resource monitoring and performance evaluation
Broadway Market Easter Festival Kicks Off With Ribbon-Cutting
March 31 – Mayor Byron W. Brown and Father Michael Czyzewski, joined by other city and county officials, kicked off the annual Easter Festival season at the Broadway Market with a ceremonial ribbon cutting, followed by a traditional dance routine performed by the Harmony Polish Folk Ensemble.
“The Easter Season is always an exciting time at the Broadway Market,” said Mayor Brown. “This is a phenomenal space for small business to grow and for new entrepreneurs to perfect their craft and reach their niche audience. Under one roof, we have many unique businesses that sale food, clothing and fashion accessories. I encourage city residents and visitors to shop at the Broadway Market, especially during the Easter Season when there are additional specialty shops.”
Mayor Brown Recognizes Randi Weingarten as he Concludes Women's History Month
March 27 – Mayor Byron W. Brown today recognized the extraordinary accomplishments of Randi Weingarten, President, of the American Federation of Teachers, one of the nation’s largest labor unions, with over 1.6 million members, as he concluded the celebration of Women’s History Month 2017 – Honoring Trailblazing Women in Labor & Business.
Mayor Brown proclaimed Monday, March 27, 2017, “Randi Weingarten Day” in the City of Buffalo during a ceremony at City Hall. Mayor Brown called Ms. Weingarten a “trailblazer and true champion” who has not only distinguished herself as one of the most powerful labor leaders in the U.S., but has also championed the causes of gender and racial equality and diversity throughout her storied career.
Train Station Site Election Stakeholders Host Another Public Session Regarding Plans for a New Train Station Location
March 22 – As Chair of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Train Station Site Selection process, Mayor Byron W. Brown, joined by Train Station Site Selection Stakeholders, hosted another public session in an open house format, where engineers presented the pros and cons so far of the potential locations for the new Buffalo train station. The meeting took place today at the Buffalo Museum of Science.
Representatives from WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff, the engineering consultant hired by the state Department of Transportation, presented city residents with an update on the viability of the potential station locations for a new Buffalo train station, explaining in detail the opportunities and challenges associated with each location. The two locations being advanced for further evaluation include the Downtown location and Central Terminal location. Earlier this month, the Train Station Site Selection Stakeholders voted to remove the Larkin location from further studies at this time. The Stakeholders decided to remove the Larkin site from further consideration for multiple reasons, especially factors which would currently complicate the potential for multi-modality at this location.
Mayor Brown Proclaims Today U.S. Conference of Mayor's National Day of Immigration Action in Buffalo
Mayor Brown nominated Westminster Economic Development Initiative’s West Side Bazaar Expansion Initiative for the 2017 Wells Fargo and USCMCommunityWINS Grant Program as Buffalo’s action to aid the city’s growing immigrant and refugee community
March 21– Mayor Byron W. Brown today proclaimed March 21, 2017 U.S. Conference of Mayor’s National Day of Immigration in Buffalo. The local proclamation is part of an effort by mayors across the country to call attention to the contributions of immigrants and refugees, and to highlight resources in the City of Buffalo, like the Westminster Economic Development Initiative, that exist for all city residents, including newcomers from all over the world.
As a member of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, Mayor Brown seeks to bring resources to Buffalo that have been a benefit to other cities. In recognition of today’s National Day of Immigration Action, Mayor nomination of the Westminster Economic Development Initiative’s (WEDI) West Side Bazaar Expansion Initiative for the 2017 Wells Fargo and USCMCommunityWINS Grant Program.
Mayor Brown Announces Key Steps In The Northland Corridor Project, Advancing The Process To Accommodate The New Workforce Training Center
First Community Workforce Outreach events is held at the Delavan-Grider Community Center Demolition of a large section of a former industrial plant in mid-March
March 9 – With the start of construction just days away, Mayor Byron W. Brown today announced the next series of important steps in the transformative Northland Corridor Project on Buffalo’s East Side. As part of Mayor Brown and Governor Andrew Cuomo’s continued commitment to increase the participation of minority and women-owned firms, as well as city residents and workers, on major economic development and Public Works projects in Buffalo, Compliance & Administrative Services of New York (CASNY), the compliance specialist hired for the Northland Corridor Redevelopment Project, met with residents in the Northland neighborhood this morning at an informational session about project participation. Mayor Brown will also announce that in mid-March, crews will begin the first phase of construction, with partial demolition of a former industrial building on the site.
“We are now moving from the discussion and planning stage, into the physical transformation of this site, which is key to our efforts to revitalize the Northland Corridor on our City’s East Side and prepare the next generation for the jobs powering Buffalo’s revitalization,” said Mayor Brown. “With today’s community workforce outreach event and the start of construction later this month, progress will be visible as we advance the process to accommodate the new Workforce Training Center.”
Mayor Brown Marked The 100th Year Of The First Known Sale Of Girl Scout Cookies By Issuing A Proclamation
March 8 – As part of the 2017 Girl Scout Cookies program, Mayor Byron Brown, joined by the Girl Scouts of Western New York, today issued a proclamation, declaring Wednesday, March 8, 2017 as 100 years of Girl Scout Cookies Day in the City of Buffalo. As part of the commemorative anniversary, Mayor Brown also helped promote a new Girl Scout Cookie, called the ‘S’more’, as he took part in a Mayoral Cookie Challenge.
“Everyone has a special place in their heart for Girl Scout cookies and today I helped mark the 100th year of the first known sale of Girl Scout cookies by issuing a special proclamation,” said Mayor Brown. “I wish the Girl Scouts much success as they continue to grow the Girl Scout Cookies Program, which continues to foster a positive spirit to power amazing experiences for all of our Girl Scouts.”
Mayor Brown Leads Black History Month 2017 Celebration
The event, held in the lobby of City Hall, also honored leading Buffalo African-Americans for their commitment in the categories of Art, Education, Youth, Military & Law Enforcement, Faith-based, Family, and Health Care service
February 21 – Mayor Byron W. Brown today led a celebration of Black History Month during a noon time event in the lobby of City Hall. In his Mayoral Proclamation, the Mayor noted the theme of Black History Month 2017 is “Black Education.”
“This year’s theme examines the role that education has played in the history of African Americans from times of slavery, through the Civil War, to present day. History is full of examples of people overcoming arbitrary boundaries imposed on them. My administration is committed to clearing as many of those barriers as possible through several initiatives to ensure no one is left out or left behind on their path to education and employment,” Mayor Brown said.
Mayor Brown cited the City’s Summer Reading Rules Challenge, which has included 13,000 champion readers in the past 15 years; his administration’s steadfast support of the Say Yes Buffalo education initiative to which the City has contributed $1.3 million through 2016, which additional funds for 2017; Mayor Brown’s Summer Youth Employment Program, which has employed 22,000 youth, ages 14-21, since 2006, and new City of Buffalo Mentoring Program, through which city employees and community members will tutor Buffalo Public Schools students and serve as role models.
“I also announced in my State of the City Address last week the new $44 million WNY Training Center, which will anchor the Northland Corridor, will include a Coding School, to help local residents pursue careers in the burgeoning technology arena.”
Mayor Brown Announces Launch of CitiStat 2.0
The reinvigorated CitiStat 2.0 will be an issue-based, dialogue-driven process,structured to bring City departments together with outside experts to tackle city-wide issues
February 13 – Mayor Byron W. Brown kicked-off the City of Buffalo’s updated, CitiStat 2.0 initiative on Friday, February 10, 2017. The Mayor’s initial priority areas will be Public Safety, opportunity, economic development and quality of life.
“By bringing multiple department heads together and pooling their individual experiences and perspectives, and combining those with best practices expertise, we’ll be able to make better-informed, more strategic decisions, and identify solutions on key issues. This cross-departmental approach will also help us identify key performance indicators, set targets and achieve goals,” Mayor Brown said.
First introduced by Mayor Brown when he took office in 2006, the original CitiStat program employed a format where City department heads provided regular updates and statistics related to initiatives in their individual areas of responsibility. Those updates were used to gauge progress and measure performance. The question and answer sessions were aired live on Buffalo’s Government Access Television Station’s Ch. 22. to give the public a front row seat on the inner workings of City government.
Like its predecessor, CitiStat 2.0 programs will be aired on Ch. 22, enhancing the openness and transparency of the initiative. CitiStat 2.0 will be aided by another innovative mayoral initiative, Open Data Buffalo, which will provide a data-fueled performance analysis.
Mayor Brown and Save Our Streets Task Force Sponsor Free Landlord Training
January 30 - Mayor Byron W. Brown, in his ongoing effort to create safe, healthy and livable neighborhoods, wants to remind everyone that he is sponsoring, through the Save Our Streets Task Force, ‘Free Landlord Training’ on February 24, 2017.
Rental property owners will have the opportunity to enroll in beginner training sessions; which will focus on several areas including rapid re-housing program utilization, how to detect and prevent drug activity, housing codes and inspection procedures, housing court procedures, proper eviction proceedings, tenant screening protocols, fair housing and leases, as well as lead poisoning prevention.
The annual program is free, but registration is required. The registration deadline is Friday, February 17, 2017.
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Mayor Brown Holds Groundbreaking Ceremony for $2.8 Million Scajaquada Restoration Project
The Buffalo Sewer Authority will serve as the lead agency in the project which will resolve odor, flooding, stagnation, algae and sediment issues in Scajaquada Creek between Main Street and Elmwood Avenue
January 26 – Mayor Byron W. Brown today led a ceremonial groundbreaking for a $2.8 million project to restore Scajaquada Creek between Main Street and Elmwood Avenue to resolve long-standing issues with odor, trash, flooding and other water quality problems.
“This project is the fruit of a multi-year partnership involving my administration and several government and community entities, all of whom have looked forward to the day when we could say with certainty that this portion of Scajaquada Creek would be properly restored. This important environmental project will enhance the visitor experience in Forest Lawn Cemetery, along the shores of Hoyt Lake, and Mirror Lake’s Japanese Garden, behind the Buffalo History Museum. The garbage, debris and related odors will be gone,” Mayor Brown said.
In addition to the City’s Sewer Authority and its Public Works, Streets and Parks Department, other key partners in the project include: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Forest Lawn Heritage Foundation, Forest Lawn Cemetery, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and Environmental Facilities Corporation, Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper and Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy.
Mayor Brown Proclaims January National Mentoring Month in the City Buffalo
At a mentoring orientation meeting, Mayor Brown W. Brown thanked dozens of city employees for answering his call to take part in a new City of Buffalo Mentoring Program designed to help improve the lives of Buffalo youth
January 24 – In recognition of National Mentoring Month in January, Mayor Byron W. Brown issued a proclamation declaring January as Mentoring Month in the City of Buffalo. He also thanked approximately 80 City of Buffalo employees for answering his call to take part in a new City of Buffalo Mentoring program, designed to help improve the lives of Buffalo youth.
“There is a saying that it takes a village to raise a child,” said Mayor Brown. “I’m proud of the city employees who stepped up to help mentor our children to help prepare them to be the future leaders of our city.”
Two years ago, Mayor Brown answered President Obama’s call to become a My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) city, which included providing mentors to work with city youth. Today’s orientation is an essential step in this effort as the City of Buffalo continues its work as an MBK city. The Brown Administration is working to increase mentoring opportunities throughout the City of Buffalo to help young people reach their full potential.
Research shows that mentoring programs are highly effective. One in three young people grow up without a mentor. With mentors, 52% of youth are less likely to skip school, 55% are more likely to be enrolled in college, 45% are less likely than their peers to start using drugs, 81% are more likely to participate in sports or extracurricular activities, 78% are more likely to volunteer in their communities, 130% are more likely to hold a leadership position in a club or a sports team, and 90% of the mentees are now interested in becoming mentors.
Mayor Brown Hosts Annual Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Commemoration Ceremony
January 19 - The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Commemoration, Pledge to Service and Recognition Ceremony, is an annual event where Mayor Byron W. Brown and the City’s Division of Citizens Services recognizes groups and individuals for their contributions to the community through service.
“Dr. King once said ‘An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic concerns to the broader concerns of all humanity,’ Mayor Brown said. “ As we remember this civil rights icon, let’s honor his legacy by peacefully respecting one another and doing more to raise our community through volunteerism and service.”
This year’s honorees are:
• National Impact Award - Bishop Anthony Bronner – ELIM Christian Fellowship
• National Impact Award - Frank Mesiah – Former President, NAACP Buffalo Chapter
• Commitment to Service Award - Abdalla Mohamoud - H.E.A.L. International
• Commitment to Service Award - Rev. Dennis Lee – Pastor, Hopewell Baptist Church and President of Baptist Ministers Conference
• Commitment to Service Award - Brandi L. Haynes – Emergency Services Director, Community Action Organization of Erie County
• Commitment to Service Award - Nadia Pizzaro – Homeless Alliance of WNY
• Diversity Award - Rev. Brek Cockrell – The Renovation Church
• Racial Relationship Building Award - Captain Steve Nichols – Buffalo Police Department
• Posthumous Award – Windford J. Lucas – Honorary Past Grand Master, The Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge and Accepted Masons State of New York
Mayor Brown Unveils Phase Two of The Buffalo Opportunity Agenda
Mayor Brown will expand phase one of the Buffalo Opportunity Pledge by issuing a series of Executive Orders that strengthen the City’s minority and women business enterprise programs, promote inclusion and bolster City resident workforce goals
January 16 – Today Mayor Byron W. Brown announced the next phase of building a city of opportunity for all residents by launching the Buffalo Opportunity Agenda. This next phase focuses on improving conditions for minority and women owned business enterprises (MBE/WBE) and minorities and female workers. The Opportunity Agenda will also include several executive orders that bolster equity in contracting and hiring opportunities in New York State’s second largest city, as well as the formation of the City of Buffalo Contract Compliance Committee and the release of a request for proposals (RFP) for an operator of the Beverly Gray Business Exchange Center.
“A healthy and diverse business sector and ensuring employment opportunities for all City residents is critically important to continuing Buffalo’s economic renaissance,” said Mayor Brown, noting that a part of his Opportunity Agenda establishes a “First Source” hiring policy for major economic development and Public Works projects and encourages selection of professional services firms that have demonstrated efforts to partner with Minority and Women Business Enterprises and diversity in hiring. “The changes included in this plan reflect my ongoing commitment to advancing diversity, inclusion and equity in our City.”
The executive orders that Mayor Brown will issue create incentives for contractors who reach and/or exceed MBE/WBE goals in the city. These incentives will recognize businesses that demonstrate their commitment to hiring residents that live within the city limits and mentor MBE/WBE’s, by providing them with additional points on city bids.
The city will now employ a “First Source” hiring policy for public works contracts requiring contractors and subcontractors to make demonstrable efforts to meet or exceed the 25% residency hiring goals included in the City’s charter. Business utilization goals of 25% MBE/ and 5% WBE and work force utilization goals of 25% minority and 5% female will also be included for major economic development and public works projects. Mayor Brown’s plan also includes new procedures for subcontractor substitutions. In the event that the MBE/WBE subcontractor identified during the bidding process is unable to perform the work as needed, contractors are now required to submit a written request to the City for a replacement, detailing the inability of the subcontractor to perform and the good faith efforts to replace a MBE/WBE with another.
“Success among small businesses, including women and minority business enterprises, means more jobs and long-term prosperity for everyone,” said Buffalo Common Council President Darius Pridgen. “I applaud Mayor Brown’s decision to make these issues and concepts the focus of his next phase for the City’s Opportunity Agenda.”
Mayor Brown Announces Public Comment Period On City Of Buffalo's Proposed Open Data Program
Starting today, January 10 through January 24, 2017, residents are invited to review and comment on the draft Open Data policy which will guide the enhancement of government transparency through a new data program
January 10 – Mayor Byron W. Brown today announced the opening of the 14-day public comment period on the City of Buffalo’s draft Open Data policy. The proposed policy will govern the City’s new Open Data program and guide release of public data in the future.
“This is an opportunity for our residents to give us feedback on the policy which will greatly enhance the City of Buffalo’s open data practices. Our goal is to engage the public as we make more city data easily accessible to residents and city staff to improve service, boost efficiency and increase transparency and accountability,” Mayor Brown said.
The Brown administration’s effort to launch an Open Data program is being aided by the Bloomberg Philanthropies National “What Work Cities” initiative, which is working with 39 cities in 25 states to use data to make government more effective, while improving lives of residents. In June 2016, Buffalo was one of 10 cities selected by the What Works Cities team for assistance in advancing its goals of Open Data and Performance Management.
Mayor Brown And Common Council Host Signing Ceremony of City's New Unified Development Ordinance
The “Green Code” is the first major overhaul of City zoning laws since 1953 and will have a transformative impact on the future of continued development in Buffalo
January 3 – After 242 public meetings, Mayor Byron W. Brown and the Buffalo Common Council today hosted a special signing ceremony of the City of Buffalo’s new Unified Development Ordinance. The “Green Code” is the first major overhaul to City zoning laws since 1953 and will serve as the City’s blueprint for zoning and development in the 21st Century. The Common Council unanimously approved the “Green Code” on December 27.
“Currently there is more than $5.6 billion in economic development activity underway, and that number will definitely increase with this new zoning reform in place,” said Mayor Byron W. Brown. “This law represents the best ideas, creates modern development standards, and preserves and builds upon Buffalo’s strengths. My administration worked closely with the City Council and the community to successfully develop this legislation that will continue to bring growth and progress to Buffalo.”
"Buffalo is about to step into its own through this code," said Council President Darius G. Pridgen, Ellicott District. "The last code was created to make Buffalo look like the suburbs. With the implementation of the Green Code, Buffalo is going to look like Buffalo."