DOWNEY – Downey remains a safe city in strong financial standing thanks to conservative spending that prioritizes public safety and quality of life, Mayor Alex Saab said Tuesday.
The mayor made the statements during the Downey Chamber of Commerce's State of the City fundraising event, held at the Rio Hondo Event Center.
"Not many cities spend like we do on our police and fire departments, but it's worth every single dime," Saab said.
The mayor's address covered many recent developments in Downey, with a couple of surprise announcements. For example, Saab revealed the creation of a Downtown Downey art walk, and announced that a citizens patrol program is under consideration by the police department
Much of the mayor's presentation centered on maintaining a high quality of life for residents. Saab said Downey was on pace to open its 200th neighborhood watch group this year (there are 186 groups currently) and street repairs on Downey roadways are at an all-time high.
"From a strong, fiscally sound budget of over $160 million to a wide expansion of our citywide street improvement projects, our commitment to you is to continue to enhance the qualify of life in Downey for everyone," said the mayor.
Park rangers – under the authority of Downey Police – will soon begin patrols of Downey parks, Saab said. Keeping the downtown area safe is also a priority, said the mayor.
Saab heaped praise on Downey's fire department, and said the city was committed to providing them "with the latest state of the art equipment." Two new fire engines are expected to go into service next month, and firefighters already received new jaws of life apparatus.
"We're committed to allocating the funds necessary to help police and fire do their jobs," the mayor said.
Saab said that the new Alfa Romeo dealership opening next month expects to sell up to 900 vehicles annually within three years, and also lauded Downey Nissan for their expansion.
It was also announced that Walmart will have its grand opening May 11 at 7:30 a.m. Walmart's new store manager was in attendance.
The mayor ended his address by imploring residents to give back to their community.
"Volunteer, join a service club....the more you volunteer, the more you appreciate Downey, and the greater our city becomes."