“She has served well and she had the best interests of the city at heart at all points,” Reginald Lafayette said.
Mount Vernon — Mount Vernon City Council President Roberta Apuzzo announced she will not run for a third term, at presser in City Hall rotunda, Tuesday afternoon, stating the ‘toxic and stressful’ environment at city hall for her decision not to run for a third term.
Surrounded by her fellow council members, Reginald Lafayette, chairman of both the Mount Vernon and Westchester County Democratic parties and City Clerk George Brown, Apuzzo, 72, said she deliberated for a long time before ultimately deciding this year would be her last on the council.
Unlike most people when they announce they are stepping down, it wasn’t health, her age, family commitments or even the fact that she was just giving up, she said. It was the level of dissonance, during the highly publicized Civil War in City Hall and the antagonistic relationship between the council and Mayor Richard Thomas, Councilwoman Apuzzo suggested.
“(It’s) because of the unbridled and reprehensive dynamics in this city now, with this administration, that in my opinion impedes, compromises and retards the city’s possibility,” Apuzzo said.
Not known to go to the press or social media and air her frustration, she has written several letters to the editor to BW to combat the misinformation and what she has called downright lies coming from the executive office the last few months. Councilwoman Apuzzo has even called for the mayor to resign recently.
Mayor Thomas presented Councilwoman Apuzzo with a gift moments after her announcement. He said he supports her decision but disagrees with her description of the city’s political climate.
Councilwoman Apuzzo who is the longtime executive director of Community Services Associates, which operates a Mount Vernon soup kitchen, says she will serve the rest of her term which ends Dec 31st. Her seat is one of three council seats that are up in the upcoming election. Councilmen J. Yuhanna Edwards and Marcus Griffith are running for re-election, in what is expected to be a crowded primary.