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Finger-pointing, blame, obstinate political leadership, stubborn inability to compromise, allegations of criminal wrongdoing, indecisive leadership, interruption in services, gridlock, instability and uncertainty all leading to government shutdown. I had intended to write a column this week about the budget crisis in Washington and the shutdown of the Federal government over the holidays. But, as I started writing, I realized everything I was going to say about the national scene seems to be playing out in our own backyard. That long list above is equally applicable to Mount Vernon. And, we have to deal with it. Of all the commentators and talking heads to weigh in, Senator Bob Corker of


The New Year is right around the corner, and it’s time to take stock of where we are, how we got here, and where we want to go. I’ve been doing a lot of thinking in the past few weeks about these ideas and as much as I would like to keep things as positive as possible during the holiday season, the answers seem troubling. We’re not in a good place as a society. Our conversations, public and private are as coarse and unforgiving as I have ever seen. Our focus is completely inward and mostly narcissistic. Technology is exacerbating all of these trends and we are more divided than ever before, even when we’re on the same side! We’re adrift and floating along with no direction or hope that our


It’s been an eventful year in Mount Vernon especially in city government. For the most part, there has been too much in fighting, too many seemingly unresolvable conflicts, too many instances of entrenched positions with stubborn reluctance to compromise and far too many lawsuits. Yes, that has all occurred in 2018. Now is the time of year when we can reflect upon the past year and make resolve to make a better New Year. Let us leave behind our contentions as this year fades, and single-mindedly focus on the needs of our residents in the coming year. Let us make an agreement to disagree productively. Let us never forget that we are here to serve the people of Mount Vernon. Mount Vernon is


With the passing of President George H.W. Bush last week, we are given an opportunity to honor the contributions of an individual public servant. Our political focus is so torn apart today that both sides have already lined up to laud too much praise and to ascribe too much blame to this single individual. It’s so telling of our time that we cannot fairly reflect on the objective successes of a life well lived without engaging in destructive, divisive rhetoric. As a public servant myself, I understand the strain the position places on an individual and, whether or not I agreed with his politics, it is completely right and proper to take a minute to thank President Bush for his service to t

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