FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 23, 2013
Contact: Tom Staudter | ThomasS@westchesterlegislators.com | 914-995-2819 | 914-815-4462 (cell)
Westchester Legislators Chairman Jenkins Implores County Executive Astorino to Immediately Submit
Source of Income Legislation
U.S. Justice Department Deadline to County on Settlement Compliance Only Two Days Away
White Plains, NY – Reacting to a letter sent to Westchester County Attorney Robert Meehan from U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara on Friday, April 19, 2013, a copy of which he has just received, Westchester County Board of Legislators (BOL) Chairman Ken Jenkins (D-Yonkers) today implored County Executive Rob Astorino to reintroduce Source of Income legislation to the BOL for consideration immediately in order to meet a Thursday, April 25, 2013 deadline.
The consequences of not meeting the deadline, Bharara notes in his letter, may be a contempt ruling and fines levied against the County.
“I have been asking County Executive Astorino, both privately and publicly, to comply with the fair and affordable housing settlement, especially in regard to submitting Source of Income Legislation to the Board, before it’s too late,” said Jenkins. “Now, another hard deadline is upon the County, and for the sake of all our residents and taxpayers, I’d like that legislation delivered to the Board preferably by the end of day. Any excuse to the contrary is not acceptable.”
Bharara’s letter demands that Astorino not only resubmit to the BOL the Source of Income legislation, which the County Executive previously vetoed, but also that he must agree in writing to sign the legislation if it is passed by the BOL.
Astorino is already under fire in regard to his non-compliance with the housing settlement for putting $7.4 million of 2011 Community Development Block (CDBG) grant funds promised to the County at risk. The U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) notified Astorino in March that the CDBG funds would be reallocated on April 25, 2013 if he fails to promote Source of Income legislation and submit an analysis of exclusionary zoning in the county by then.
“Obviously, the hammer is coming down, so the County Executive better act quickly and get this done,” said Jenkins, who maintained that he is furious at Meehan and the Astorino Administration for withholding the letter from the BOL until today, less than 48 hours from the U. S. Department of Justice deadline.
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