Paterson NJ adds new recreation center to US bailout list

PATERSON – Mayor Andre Sayegh has said that a new recreation center in the city should be part of Paterson’s spending plan for his $ 63.7 million allocation from the US bailout’s COVID-19 recovery program. federal government.

Sayegh announced the proposal in a virtual town hall Monday night as he described what he called “a framework” for the funding. Sewer system repairs, road resurfacing, park improvements, police headquarters and municipal court renovations were among other possible ways the city could use the money, officials said. .

“We don’t have a recreation center in Paterson,” Sayegh said at the meeting. “We’re talking about investing in our youth and the parks and improving the grounds, but what about something inside, something we’ve been missing for so long. I think we can all agree it’s time for Paterson to finally have a recreation center.

Andre Sayegh, Mayor of Paterson, speaks at the grand opening of the new Barclay Street housing at the construction site at 153 Barclay Street in Paterson on 9/28/21.

Officials have not provided any details on the proposed recreation center. The Paterson Housing Authority has two community centers that include full basketball courts. It’s unclear how Sayegh’s plan would differ from the housing authority’s facilities.

Paterson’s business administrator Kathleen Long said the city has allocated the $ 63.7 million among six funding categories under federal law. The recreation center is said to be among possible projects receiving $ 25.5 million in government services to replace lost revenue from COVID-19. Long said this category offers “a lot of flexibility”.

Other possibilities for the $ 25.5 million are police headquarters and city yard renovations, road resurfacing, surveillance cameras and a residential sidewalk repair program.

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Officials said local community groups would share funding with the municipal government. The final plan is unlikely to be in place until early 2022, officials said.

Here is the breakdown for the other possible funding categories:

  • $ 12.5 million for communities hard hit by COVID-19. This list includes improvements to the park, anti-violence programs and initiatives to tackle homelessness.
  • $ 11 million for infrastructure, including improvements to sewage and water systems, and reconstruction of River Street.
  • $ 7.8 million for public health, including vaccinations, testing, personal protective equipment, crisis response and mental health programs.
  • $ 4.4 million to deal with the negative impacts of the pandemic, including financial counseling and jobs for young people.
  • $ 1 million to $ 2 million for bonuses paid to essential city workers during the pandemic.

Officials said the final plan will be presented to city council once it is completed.

Joe Malinconico is editor of Paterson Press. Email: [email protected]

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