|EMBATTLED CITY COUNCILMAN YUHANNA EDWARDS|
Every year, the City Council tries to bring the budget down, but they end up adopting huge tax increases. The same City Council, voted to bring in more affordable housing, with tax abatements (pilot programs) for developers. Low income, tax abated projects, are the worst thing any City Official can burden their citizens with, especially Mount Vernon, a city on life support. Mount Vernon, which is already overcrowded, will be busting at the seams with more residents. Since the developers of these buildings do not pay their fair share of taxes, the already struggling Mount Vernon Taxpayer will have to pay the extra cost to educate the children living in these developments, at a cost of $29,000 per student.
The same struggling taxpayer will also have to pay the bill for the vital services for the new residents, such as police, fire, water, and sewer, and Mount Vernon’s property taxes could double. Instead of these destructive policies, the City Council should bring in retail, and other tax generating businesses. City Councilman Yuhanna Edwards complains about City Councilwoman Debra Reynolds, but she is the only current Councilperson, who voted against these low-income developments. Councilman Yuhanna Edwards and some of his colleagues have sold away Mount Vernon. What they have done is tantamount to crimes against the people of Mount Vernon. City Council members are elected to protect the interest of the citizens of Mount Vernon, however, they have pulled out the life support plug, which will surely lead to the destruction of our city.
When Mount Vernon Exposed interview Councilman Yuhanna Edwards, he stressed that Mount Vernon has total black leadership, yet we are a messed up city. He then defends Judith Johnson, the Superintendent of the worst school district in the state. Ms. Johnson heads a school system that does not educate anyone, especially children of color. Make no mistake about it, Math and English scores have gone down since Judith Johnson has been Superintendent. Furthermore, Councilman Yuhanna Edwards was a strong backer of former Superintendent Welton Sawyer, who was without question, the worst Superintendent in United States history. He destroyed the district. Councilman Yuhanna Edward’s also supports the churches that have meddled in Mount Vernon Schools for the past 20 years. Councilman Edwards’s policies have caused a tremendous amount of stress on Mount Vernon’s school system, by flooding it with students from all over the county.
What exactly has Councilman Yuhanna Edwards done as a Councilman to better the lives of the people of Mount Vernon? What has he done as a black Politician, to eliminate the misery and suffering his “brothers” and “sisters”have to go through on a daily basis in Mount Vernon? What plans does he have to make things better? Councilman Yuhanna Edwards is part of the problem, because he votes on legislation that hurts Mount Vernon. His policies raise taxes, and are responsible for Mount Vernon having the highest foreclosure rate in the state. Those foreclosures, overwhelmingly affect people of color, and the elderly.
Now the City Council wants to go into homes looking for basement apartments. What they do not understand is that the tax increases homeowners have been hit with in the last 20 years, have forced homeowners to look for extra income, just to stay afloat. As much as 40% of Mount Vernon homes will go into foreclosure without the income homeowners are collecting from these “basement” apartments, collapsing the housing market, and plunging Mount Vernon into financial Armageddon. Our City Council needs to understand what is really happening in this city. City Council members should be working to find ways to give homeowners tax relief, so that the housing issue can be resolved. The City and School District punished people by raising their taxes to obscene levels and now the City should find ways to help reduce high taxes, which have backed so many homeowners into a corner.
Yes, Councilman Yuhanna Edwards, black Politicians have failed the people of Mount Vernon. You said that you are concerned with your legacy. You can start by taking responsibility for the damage you have caused.
Next, has Maureen Walker turned her back on the citizens of Mount Vernon?