FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 3, 2020
Mayor Noble Proposes New Leadership Roles in Administration
KINGSTON, NY – Mayor Steve Noble announces the establishment of two new leadership positions in his administration, the Director of Housing Initiatives and the Director of Intergovernmental Affairs.
As outlined in his 2020 State of the City address, Mayor Noble has set forth a clear and ambitious agenda for tackling local housing issues in partnership with the Common Council and community stakeholders. His housing justice initiatives for 2020 include adopting the Emergency Tenant Protection Act and additional tenant safeguards, supporting anti-displacement efforts through participation in the NYS Attorney General’s new Learning Network program, and implementing regulations for short-term rentals. To support and advance this work, Mayor Noble is proposing to establish a Director of Housing Initiatives, who will guide the City’s housing efforts, research and draft policy and proposed legislation for consideration by the Common Council, and work closely with local housing organizations. The position will also serve as the Executive Director of the Kingston City Land Bank.
“There is no doubt that our entire region is in the midst of a housing crisis, and we are at a pivotal moment here in the City of Kingston,” said Mayor Noble. “We must continue to be proactive in our efforts to protect and support our residents who are at-risk of or struggling with housing insecurity. It is imperative that we have dedicated staff with the expertise needed to expand the availability of safe, affordable and equitable housing for all.”
The Director of Housing Initiatives will be established as part of a reorganization in the City’s Community Development department. The Director of Community Development will continue to oversee administrative and support staff and will focus on the management of the Community Development Block Grant funds made available through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, along with other related community development projects, such as the City’s Lead Line Replacement program. Economic development efforts will be conducted in partnership with Ulster County’s newly established Office of Economic Development as agreed upon in a shared services plan.
As part of the roll out of his Kingston 2020: Clearer, Bolder, Better agenda, Mayor Noble is also proposing the appointment of a Director of Intergovernmental Affairs, a new position in his office who will be responsible for a wide array of projects and initiatives that are outside the boundaries of any one department, and often require collaboration with other agencies. This position will assist the Mayor’s office in guiding key projects forward and will serve as a bridge between the City administration, the Common Council, County and State Government, along with community nonprofits and private business partners.
“Our community is changing; new needs are emerging, as are new opportunities,” said Mayor Noble. “I have sought to build a team that has the vision and expertise to move our city forward, and with the Council and the public's support, we have been tremendously successful. From Communications to Grants Management, Arts and Cultural Affairs to Health and Wellness, we have proven time and time again that by strategically expanding our staffing capacity in core areas, we can make government better.”
The Common Council is expected to review the Mayor’s proposal at its February Finance Committee meeting. The establishment of the proposed positions will not impact the 2020 City Budget. If approved by the Council, Mayor Noble expects to fill both positions in the second quarter of the year.