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Monday, July 25, 2016
Mayor Brown Announces New Leadership In The Buffalo Fire Department
July 20, 2016 - Swearing in of new BFD Leadership, as well as the hiring of more first responders, builds on continued efforts to lead the BFD into a new era of 21st Century fire fighting
Buffalo, NY - Mayor Byron W. Brown and Buffalo Fire Commissioner Garnell Whitfield announced today a series of appointments and plans for the Buffalo Fire Department (BFD) that build on the Brown administration’s continued commitment to further strengthen public safety to meet the demands of a growing Buffalo. Today, Buffalo Fire Captain Vincent V. Muscarella and Buffalo Fire Lieutenant Johnathan T. Eaton were sworn in as Deputy Fire Commissioners. Buffalo Fire Lieutenant James O. Otwell is the new Commander of the Buffalo Fire Investigation Unit. All three appointments are effective immediately and were announced at a swearing-in ceremony outside Buffalo Fire Headquarters.
“Keeping our city safe is among my administration’s top priorities and today marks a new era for the city’s fire department as new leadership comes in to effectively manage this complex department and the new firefighters that have been recently hired or will be hired,” said Mayor Brown. “It’s my pleasure to announce these appointments that will further bolster the leadership of the Buffalo Fire Department. With a combined experience of nearly 60 years in the department, these appointees have shown the experience, creativity and dedication it takes to lead the BFD.”
Mayor Brown also announced the hiring of a new class of 50 fire recruits, building on the 109 Buffalo Firefighters hired by the City of Buffalo last year. This new recruit class is expected to begin in early fall, continuing Mayor Brown’s commitment to ensuring the safety of residents and businesses.
“Our fire department is one of the finest in the nation and with our new leadership team in place, along with the hiring of more firefighters, we’re demonstrating our commitment to expanding our department with qualified men and women who reflect the communities they serve,” said Commissioner Whitfield.
Captain Muscarella is a 20-year veteran of the Fire Department, with over 60 Fire Department Certifications ranging from Basic Firefighting Essentials to Fire Instructor to Command and Leadership. He is a Master Instructor for the International Association of Fire Fighters. After graduating from the Buffalo Fire Academy in 1996, he received the Fire Bell Club “Rookie of the Year” award and became a Certified Fire Instructor before being promoted to Lieutenant in 2009 and then to Captain in 2013.
Lieutenant Eaton is a 14-year veteran of the Fire Department, with a law enforcement background. He served as a police officer in Winston Salem, North Carolina before joining the BFD, where he was promoted to Fire Lieutenant in 2013. He has extensive experience in team leadership and developing and implementing fire prevention and educational awareness campaigns.
Lieutenant Otwell has twenty plus years of fire and emergency management experience and 24 years of Military experience, as well as two years’ experience at the Department of State and 10 years as a private emergency management and fire services consultant. He has an extensive strategic, operational and tactical level of experience with international, federal and local governments and, during his career, has received a number of individual awards, including two superior service Awards from the Government of Iraq and the BFD 2014 Commissioners EMS Award.
The BFD leadership changes, along with the hiring of this next class of fire recruits, builds on Mayor Brown’s continued commitment to increase the number of minorities and women in the Fire Department, reflecting the rich racial and ethnic diversity in Buffalo. The addition of 50 new firefighters will bring the total number of sworn personnel in the Buffalo Fire Department to 706. All of these new firefighters must reside in Buffalo as a result of the latest fire contract.
Mayor Brown and Bluecross Blueshield of Western New York Announce Launch of Summer City Fitness
In an effort to get city residents moving in the summer months, Mayor Byron W. Brown today announced the launch of Summer City Fitness in partnership with BlueCross BlueShield of Western New York.
"Fitness in our city parks is an important part of our continued efforts to create a healthier and more vibrant city by providing more opportunities for residents to exercise and spend time outdoors," said Mayor Brown. "I applaud BlueCross BlueShield and our community partners for teaming up with us on Summer City Fitness at Martin Luther King, Jr. Park and Perkins Park as we work together on continued ways to help residents maintain healthy lifestyles and enjoy the many green spaces that Buffalo has to offer.”
The free fitness series features a mix of low- and high-impact classes, such as Zumba®, Pound, Pilates, and Aerobics. Classes, taught by popular instructors from the city’s community, will take place on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays at Martin Luther King, Jr. Park and Perkins Park from July 20 through September 3.
Mayor Brown called on BlueCross BlueShield to help launch the series. BlueCross BlueShield offers free fitness classes at Canalside and has a long history of bringing healthy initiatives to city residents.
Summer City Fitness will officially launch with the first class on Wednesday, July 20 at Martin Luther King, Jr. Park at 6:30 a.m.
Classes are open to individuals of all ages, regardless of fitness level and experience. No pre-registration is required, individuals simply show up and jump in.
In addition, free fruits and water will be provided to participants by Urban Fruits and Veggies.
All classes are weather dependent. More information and a full calendar of fitness classes can be found at bcbswny.com/play. Participants will be encouraged to share their experiences on social media through #SummerCityFitness.
Mayor Brown, Congressman Higgins Host Official Reopening of Newly Rehabilitated Ferry Street Bridge
July 18, 2016 - Nearly $8 million Project Provides Enhanced Connection to Improvements on Niagara Street and historic Broderick Park; simultaneous sea wall signing between the City of Buffalo and USACE signifies continued improvements to this area
At a ceremonial bridge lowering on Buffalo’s West Side, Mayor Byron Brown and Congressman Brian Higgins, joined by State Assemblyman Sean Ryan, Buffalo Common Council Majority Leader and Niagara District Councilman David Rivera, and LTC Adam Czekanski, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Buffalo District Commander, as well as community leaders, business owners, residents and others, celebrated today the official completion of the Ferry Street Bridge Rehabilitation project which has resulted in an improved connection between neighborhoods along Niagara Street to Broderick Park. Simultaneously, Mayor Brown also took part in a signing ceremony with the USACE to mark the start of the $505,000 Broderick Park Sea Wall Study.
“The Ferry Street Bridge is an important link to one of Buffalo’s crown jewels - Broderick Park - as well as to neighborhoods along Niagara Street,” said Mayor Brown. “This major infrastructure improvement project further strengthens the Niagara Street corridor, one of our great gateways from Canada. It also creates jobs and serves as a vital link to the Underground Railroad connection at historic Broderick Park. I thank my partners in government for being a part of this continued effort to give residents and visitors improved access to this unique cultural amenity and Buffalo’s waterfront.”
“While a great deal of public attention is focused on the area around Canalside, sites up and down the Buffalo and Niagara Rivers are experiencing a quiet renaissance thanks to millions of dollars in public investments,” said Congressman Higgins. “These efforts are enhancing areas along the water directly connected to local neighborhoods and encouraging new private sector investments from Ohio Street to Niagara Street.”
Council Member Rivera said, "The Ferry Street Bridge serves as a vital landmark to a diverse number of constituencies and its return to public use comes at an important time in our season of outdoor events and festivities. I commend the Mayor and Congressman Higgins for their partnership on restoring this bridge to its full capabilities. Residents as well as visitors should make an effort to come visit Broderick Park before summer ends, see the new historical markers, and enjoy the glorious views from this important place here in Buffalo."
Originally built in 1913, the Ferry Street Bridge is a bascule bridge crossing the Black Rock Channel. The $7.92 million reconstruction project, which began two years ago, included $5.56 million in federal transportation funding, $1.31 million in funding from the City of Buffalo and $1.05 million from the State. Read More...
Mayor Byron W. Brown invites Buffalo residents to participate in a public hearing to discuss the city's amendments for the following federal programs: Community Development Block Grant; HOME Investment Partnerships on: July 26, 2016 at 6pm, City Hall (65 Niagara Square), Buffalo NY 14202, 9th floor conference room 901.
Mayor Brown Kicks Off 2016 Summer Pool Season
July 1, 2016 -Buffalo’s outdoor pools are now open for summerMayor Byron W. Brown and Deputy Commissioner of Parks and Recreation Andrew Rabb were joined by dozens of city children, who helped them celebrate the official start to the city’s summer pool season with a ceremonial jump into the Kensington Pool in Buffalo this morning.
“We are constantly working to make our city an even greater place to live, work and play,” said Mayor Brown. “With 8 outdoor pools, 2 wading pools and 11 splash pads, Buffalo’s facilities provide a great respite for those who love the water and continue my administration’s focus on the health and wellness of our citizens by keeping them physically active during the hot summer months.”
ALL city pools opened on July First and will remain open from 11am-7pm for the duration of the summer season through Labor Day, weather permitting. All city splash pads are also open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Since 2006, Mayor Brown’s administration has invested over $52 million to improve and beautify Buffalo’s park system, including the $4.5 million MLK, Jr. Basin Project. The City of Buffalo, through the Department of Public Works, spent nearly $450,000 at the Cazenovia Indoor Pool last year and is now preparing for nearly $500,000 worth of improvements to the Lovejoy Indoor Pool, planned for later this year. All the pools & splashpad rules, hours, map of locations, etc. can be found on city’s website: http://www.city-Buffalo.com/Home/City_Departments/Public_Works_Parks_Streets/ParksDepartment/PoolsRinks
Mayor Brown Joins Mt. Aaron Missionary Baptist Church For Grand Opening Of New Apartment Complex For Seniors
June 29, 2016 - Mt. Aaron Manor, a two story, 10-unit apartment building, provides city seniors a safe and affordable housing option
Buffalo - Mayor Byron Brown, joined by Council President Darius Pridgen, New York State Assembly Member Crystal Peoples-Stokes and New York State Senator Timothy Kennedy, Pastor Dwayne Jones of Mt. Aaron Missionary Baptist Church, clergy, business and community partners, cut the ribbon today, marking the official grand opening of the Mt. Aaron Manor senior housing complex. One year after construction began, the two story apartment building, located adjacent to Mt. Aaron Missionary Baptist Church, consists of ten single bedroom units.
“The new Mt. Aaron Manor apartment complex is another example of the important development that is taking place in every section of our city,” said Mayor Byron Brown, noting that the $1.4 million project was funded by City of Buffalo HOME funds and grants sponsored by M&T Bank through The Federal Home Loan Bank of New York. “I congratulate Reverend Dwayne Jones of Mt. Aaron Missionary Baptist Church and the members of the congregation on this significant accomplishment and I’m pleased the city partnered with Mt. Aaron to build this important senior housing complex in our community.”
Pastor Jones stated, “A year and a half ago, Mt. Aaron Missionary Baptist Church had a vision to begin reinvestment efforts in the Pratt Willert community through the development of safe and affordable housing for senior citizens. We are proud to be able to say that the vision has become a reality. The Mt. Aaron Manor Apartments are a model of quality housing for a most deserving population in this community and this is just of the beginning of great things to come for this neighborhood.”
The $1.4 million project was fully funded by City of Buffalo HOME funds and grants sponsored by M&T Bank through The Federal Home Loan Bank of New York. In addition to ten single bedroom units, each apartment is equipped with a washer, dryer, dishwasher, stove, refrigerator and off-street parking. The development also provides residents with eco-friendly amenities. Read More...
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Photos by Angel Art LTP, compliments of the Greater Buffalo Convention and Visitors Bureau. Additional photos by Adrian Roselli, compliments of Algonquin Studios