more than 14% of our children have unsafe levels of lead in their blood.…
Like many Legacy Cities in the United States, Poughkeepsie has aging infrastructure, some of which dates back more than 100 years. We’re at the point where ignoring the issue is no longer an option.
A few years ago, there was E-Coli bacterial contamination in our water supply. It took several days before the public was notified and asked to boil all drinking water. An extensive investigation failed to uncover the source of the E-Coli contamination. Two new water storage tanks to address water safety issues were expected to come on-line in 2018. We’re still waiting.
Cities around the country are experiencing issues with lead contamination due to aging water pipes. Like Newark, New Jersey or Flint, Michigan, we too have 100-year-old lead water pipes. The City of Poughkeepsie was 1 of 6 regions in New York State where more than 14 percent of our children have unsafe levels of lead in their blood.
The City’s roads and sidewalks are also in desperate need of repair. Makeshift street patching and numerous pot holes have become the norm. Our sidewalks are so uneven residents have taken to pushing baby strollers in the street. Seniors are suffering from serious falls, and many sidewalks are not wheelchair accessible in the winter.
The City’s recently announced $4.5 million-dollar expenditure on our joint water treatment plant was mandated by equipment so old that it is no longer supported by the manufacturer. Projects like this will become increasingly more frequent and expensive if we continue to defer capital equipment purchases.
My administration will give Infrastructure rebuilding the priority it deserves and aggressively seek the necessary funding. Our strategic infrastructure plan will be implemented by engineering firms who have a real track record in providing on time, quality performance on municipal projects. We can no longer afford to push these infrastructure problems down the road for someone else to solve.