Rich David announces major collaboration with Binghamton schools

By Matt Porter

Rich David announces major collaboration with Binghamton schools

March 6, 2014 Updated Mar 7, 2014 at 10:44 AM EDT

Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Mayor Rich David R- Binghamton, announced major collaboration with Binghamton City School District called "Youth Success Initiative."

The initiative will address mentoring, promoting social growth and community service while working to reduce gang activity and create safer school and neighborhood environments.

"This is the first time that any sort of collaborative initiative between the city and the school district is taking place," David said.

The plan replaces the dissolved Youth Bureau whose director was not retained by David.

Instead, a new part-time position has been created to coordinate programming.

The position will be filled by Dr. Albert Penna who served as principal of Binghamton High School for 20 years.

Facilities management for youth programs will be handled in the Parks and Recreation Department.

A key portion of the plan includes hiring two new police officers to serve as resource officers for the East and West Middle schools.

The city would cover $40,000 in benefits for the two officers while the school must cover $100,000 in salaries.

David said the city can cover the benefits by saving money from having a full-time Youth Bureau director.

Superintendent Marion Martinez said the school district can afford the salaries without affecting the tax levy, but the school board must still approve the decision before any officers can be hired.

Other goals of the program include improving transportation services, providing safe neighborhoods and after school programs, and offering more professional mentors and role models for students.

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