**copy of letter sent by shrewsbury to residents who testified this morning at W&M**
I want to thank you for taking time to come to City Hall and voice your concerns about the pending changes to our Neighborhood Stabilization program. This is the most important issue facing us during this year’s budget process.
The NST performs a crucial function for both city residents and elected officials. The officers are, in many ways, the eyes and ears of our neighborhoods. While few disagree that improvements need to be made to the program, many of us differ on exactly how to achieve this.
I am not in favor of, nor will I vote for, shifting the NST to the Board of Aldermen. The success of our Neighborhood Stabilization program is largely due to the fact that politics has been kept out of it.
Having the NST totally under the control of the aldermen will simply create more patronage workers and more bureaucracy. It is not the answer.
I, along with Mayor Slay, believe that the Neighborhood Stabilization program needs to stay within the department of Public Safety. Whatever improvements are deemed necessary can be accomplished by the aldermen communicating and working with the Mayor’s Office and Public Safety.
Again, I thank you for taking such a strong interest in your neighborhood and for wanting to see this program be the best it can be. I am confident that in the end we will make some good changes and give the NST the tools it needs to continue its important work.
-James F. Shrewsbury
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