Paterson councilman opposed to buying $52,000 van for Animal Control amid budget crisis | Paterson Times

Paterson councilman opposed to buying $52,000 van for Animal Control amid budget crisis


Councilman Al Abdelaziz came out against a move to spend $52,393 on buying a cargo van for the Paterson Animal Control amid an ongoing budget crisis.

“This is not the time to buy new vehicles in the last four months of our fiscal year when we’re looking for cuts. I’m not saying we don’t need it,” said Abdelaziz, 6th Ward councilman, on Tuesday night. “Right now, it’s just not the time to buy new equipment if it’s not an urgent thing.”

Municipal officials are on the verge of hitting property owners with a $3 million sewer fee hike on top of a 2-percent tax increase, Abdelaziz pointed out. Forgoing the purchase of the Chevrolet Express Cargo Van RWD 2500 with stainless steel cage for $52,393 from Mavron of Warsaw, Ind. will ease the budget crunch, he said.

John DeCando, chief of the Animal Control Division, said it’s an urgent purchase.

“We’re in dire need of that car,” said DeCando on Wednesday morning. He said the vehicle being replaced is a rotting 2000 GMC van with rebuilt engine.

DeCando attempted to get the odometer reading for the Paterson Times on Wednesday morning, but the vehicle wouldn’t start.

Abdelaziz wanted the resolution to award the contract pulled from the agenda. He said it will take months before the city gets the van so it makes sense to push the purchase into the next fiscal year.

“These are the areas where we can find cuts,” said Abdelaziz.

Mayor Andre Sayegh defended the purchase. He claimed the purchase was budgeted for.

“This is definitely needed,” said Sayegh.

Animal Control has five vehicles. Each one has a driver, said DeCando. His division also serves many of the surrounding towns through shared services agreements.

Abdelaziz’s colleagues disagreed with him.

Council president Maritza Davila refused to pull the item from the agenda. Council members will vote on whether to allow the purchase next week.

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  • Plumber

    Spending money they don't have buy them bicycles

  • Andres Rodriguez

    should remove the new car that has for personal use the sr.De Cando. Money of those who paid taxes.

  • Miss jamaica

    Purchase the van , I am for saving tax payer money
    This is a no brainer, someone is driving this almost 20 year old vehicle and something go terrible wrong
    Then the tax payer will be on the hook for much more.
    I see the van it definitely need a change
    Paterson should have change the van during the time when they buy all the new police vehicle.
    This would not be conversation now.