Budget Casualty: Jamestown Mayor Discusses Drastic Cuts To Summer Youth Job Programs

JAMESTOWN-Mayor Sam Teresi is addressing the criticism that some members in the community deliver in regards to the resources that are directed towards youth employment programs. 

“On a typical basis, and it’s been down in recent years because of budget pressures, some years in the past it’s been over 100 young people that have been hired,” said Teresi. “This year, we were only looking at 60-70 people.”

The city’s website states $16,000 was spent on the recent fireworks show that ended prematurely. The website also indicates Jamestown allocated around $10,000 for a program that employs area youth in a part-time capacity.

“You were looking at a different part of the budget,” Teresi stated.

The mayor said there are different catagories in the budget for different youth employment jobs through entities like the DPW, Engineering and the Parks Department.

“As far as the Labor Day show, very little is paid by taxpayers,” he said. “We rely heavily on parking costs, vendor sales and other purchases made at the festival.”

The Jamestown Parks, Recreation and Conservation Department released the following quote on its Facebook page following the festival Monday evening:

“Thank you everyone for your patience and understanding with the decision to cancel tonight’s fireworks show shortly after it began. The immediate and unforeseen shift in wind direction, along with first sign of falling debris, led to the decision and order to immediately shut down the show due to concern for the safety of the public. We know folks were disappointed, but the safety of our residents, workers and volunteers always has to be and was our #1 concern. The size of the planned finale and not knowing what was going to happen with the winds meant there was no way we could let the show go for another 10 minutes or so. The rest of the day was outstanding from the attendance, to the music, the attractions, and the traffic experienced by our community organization vendors. Thanks to all who attended, volunteered and worked to make it a great day. Already looking forward to a bigger and even better 2018 festival.”