Assemblyman Phil Ramos (D-Central Islip) announced $40,000 in grant funding that he secured will be issued to the Urban League of Long Island to continue its very successful initiative to remove graffiti from our neighborhoods. The money comes from the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance (JAG) Grant Program, a provider of federal criminal justice funding. Last year, Ramos paired with the Urban League, a not-for-profit organization, to start a Graffiti Removal Campaign that resulted in more than 700 properties becoming graffiti-free.
“Last year, local residents and business owners saw tangible results from our efforts,” Assemblyman Ramos said. “This funding will provide a second consecutive year of cleaner, brighter neighborhoods for our families.”
President of Brentwood Residents Against Violence Everyday (BRAVE), Ruth Martinez says, “Not only are our neighborhoods becoming cleaner and safer places to live, but our community has unified behind this effort to rid our communities of graffiti.”
Assemblyman Ramos, a 20-year veteran of the Suffolk County police force, has worked on initiatives in the past with BRAVE, Urban League of Long Island and CitySolve, a company that specializes in graffiti-removal. Modeling last year’s use of funds, the $40,000 grant money awarded this year will be used to maintain graffiti-free zones around shopping centers as well as properties targeted outside of graffiti-free zones. It will also be used to explore resident complaints in order to direct cleanup crews to tagged and retagged areas, Assemblyman Ramos said.
“The anti-graffiti cleanup and education program has instilled community pride in the Central Islip and Brentwood area. Families are working hard to take back their communities and reclaim the American dream of living in a safe community,” Theresa Sanders, President and CEO of the Urban League of Long Island, said.
“CitySolve looks forward to making and keeping Brentwood, Central Islip and North Bay Shore graffiti-free for a second year with Assemblyman Ramos and his graffiti-cleanup program,” Bruce Pienkny of CitySolve said. “Last year, 18 commercial corridors were rid of graffiti, with over 700 properties becoming graffiti-free. Suffolk Avenue, 5th Avenue, Islip Avenue and Carelton Avenue are now some of the graffiti-free zones. In addition, over 200 residential properties were cleaned with the help of Assemblyman Ramos’ graffiti-complaint program.”
Residents who encounter graffiti are encouraged to contact Assemblyman Ramos’ office at 435-3214 or the Urban League at 232-2482.