NEW ROCHELLE, NY -- The word going around town has been that New Rochelle Mayor Noam Bramson is preparing to run for re-election in 2015.
Right on cue, Bramson sent out an email to supporters promoting a fundraiser to be held Sunday, December 7th at noon and asking them to join the Host Committee for the event.
Bramson says that while the timing coincides with his 45th birthday, the "real purpose" is "to bring together the widest range of people with a shared vision for our future and to prepare for the big challenges of the coming year".
In the email, Bramson lists five accomplishments over his near decade in office as Mayor.
• Responsible fiscal stewardship that has enabled us to weather the storm of the Great Recession, with the lowest city tax rate of Westchester’s urban centers and a lean, efficient workforce.
• An award-winning Sustainability Plan that is already helping to reduce energy consumption, conserve natural resources, cut greenhouse gas emissions, and make New Rochelle more pedestrian and bike-friendly.
• Significant new development in our downtown based on smart growth principles, together with imaginative, forward-looking planning to foster the next wave of investment.
• Major, grant-funded improvements in infrastructure and assets, from our new playing fields at City Park, to streetscape and traffic upgrades on North and Lincoln Avenues, to façade renovations downtown.
• A collaborative spirit that has brought together citizen volunteers and City officials to confront and overcome thorny issues, such as college-community relations, long-term budgeting, and the reuse of Davids Island.
Bramson admits to his "own share of mistakes" and describes a "sense of urgency" because the pace of progress in New Rochelle has "simply been too slow" noting that the "City’s achievements, though real, have not yet produced the critical mass of positive change that many of us eagerly desire."
Bramson says "next year’s local elections for mayor and city council will be unusually important. It is not just individuals or political parties on the ballot – it is the character and direction of our entire community."
Bramson portrays the 2015 election as a choice between "bold, effective action to uphold our values and shape our own future" and a "retreat from hard choices in the face of fear, wishful thinking, or negativity".
The fundraiser is critical for Bramson -- and will likely play a large role in his decision to run for re-election -- because his campaign coffers are empty.
"We put everything into the last campaign, leaving nothing in reserve, and the political calendar simply makes it impossible to wait any longer."