JAMESTOWN — In the face of comments by Gov. Andrew Cuomo that local governments are failing in COVID compliance enforcement, Jamestown Mayor Eddie Sundquist said he is proud of the city’s efforts.
Asked to respond to Cuomo’s comments by WNYNewsNow, Sundquist said his administration has been dealing seriously with ensuring safety within the community.
“I’m very proud of the work we’ve done here in the City of Jamestown,” Sundquist said. “We have been a municipality that has enforced the governor’s pause order.”
“I’ve received a lot of heat for that,” he added, listing yard sales and business noncompliance as concerns for which he was criticized.
While he admits other areas have been lax on enforcing Cuomo’s directives, he said Jamestown’s safety is paramount.
“The health and safety of our residents is the number one priority and I take that very seriously. I cannot say that for other areas, I’m obviously not in charge of those other areas.”
Seeing people not wearing masks in public is disheartening to him, the mayor said.
“I’ve been proud of our businesses and residents,” he said.
Sundquist is convinced Cuomo was not referring to Jamestown in his critical remarks.
“He wasn’t meaning specifically the City of Jamestown. There are a lot of municipalities across the state who are refusing to act on any part of the governor’s pause order,” he said.
A few weeks ago, Cuomo held a conference call with mayors and county executives from across the state and urged them to strengthen enforcement of his pause order, Sundquist said, adding that at the time he hoped Cuomo’s message had gotten through,but apparently hasn’t.
Locally, most complaints and noncompliance issues were settled easily and quickly, he said.
“In the majority of complaints we’ve sent an officer or a code enforce officer and 99 percent of the time the case is resolved right there,” Sundquist explained.