Mayor Young ran on a campaign platform of transparency and efficiency. We here at Mount Vernon exposed are convinced that he did not bother to look up those words in the dictionary. Mayor Young would much rather use words because he liked the way the words rolled off of his tongue.
On Friday April 3, 2009 Mayor Young held a press conference in his office that was pointless and baseless. Just the day before this press conference, former buildings Ralph Tedesco came under fire for illegally shutting down a business. Determined not to have the coverage of Ralph Tedesco’s corruption allegations air all weekend on News 12, Mayor Young decided he would call a press conference of his own. He decided that is was now time to get the negative attention off of him and shift it elsewhere. His target was now Mount Vernon City Comptroller Maureen Walker.
Just days before, former Planning Commissioner Gerrie Post and her accomplice Wayne Charles were convicted of defrauding Mount Vernon taxpayers. The extensive investigation into the missing funds was already conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Apparently, Mayor Young had a perceived notion in his head that they had missed something and that Inspector General Harry Stokes could do a better job.
At this press conference Mayor Young told the audience that he instructed Inspector General Harry Stokes to conduct a full-fledge investigation in how taxpayers were defrauded. Mayor Young went on the state the following remarks that left the audience totally confused because he did not explain if he would begin to investigate his own administration, the epicenter of all of the recent allegations. When the press conference was over, the Mayor invited questions from the audience. He would not answer one citizens question, citing that he was not a member of the press.
1. Corruption in the City of Mount Vernon is not and will not be tolerated
• On October 22, 2009 The Journal News reported that $12,579.90 was reported missing from the payroll account of The Mount Vernon Urban Renewal Agency. Here is how the illegal scheme went; an employee in the Urban Renewal Agency or someone close to Mayor Young very familiar with the payroll process enacted this scheme to defraud Mount Vernon taxpayers. The suspect called in the next sequence of payroll checks to the Urban Renewals payroll company. The individuals listed on the payroll called in by the suspect were not employees of the Urban Renewal Agency. The suspect then forged or was able to get a hold of the Mayor’s signature stamp and fraudulently endorsed the check. The checks were cashed at a Chase Bank and check cashing stores.
2. All Vouchers and Purchase Orders over $250.00 will have to be signed by my office.
• Mayor Young sent out a memo to department heads stating that this policy is no longer in effect
3. My administration is looking out for all citizens, not just a select few
• Mayor Clinton Young’s administration is full of cronyism, nepotism, and favoritism.
4. My administration is committed to becoming the most efficiently operated administration that this City has ever seen. Being open and transparent on all matters regarding City business
• Mayor Young administration is the most opaque and arrogant administration that this City has ever seen. He abuses taxpayer dollars on a daily basis. He has created unnecessary positions for political purposes. It is extremely difficult to obtain information from city hall through the freedom of information law. Commissioners currently employed have overdrawn their budgets by over $100K.