IRVINGTON, NJ — On April 15, Irvington Mayor Tony Vauss held his State of the Township address, at which various guests from all walks of life came together to support Vauss and highlight Irvington’s many successes during the past year.
“Every year, we join at Transcend Worship Center to go over the great things that we’re doing within the township. But this year, and last year 2020, has been very different,” Vauss said. “It has been a very challenging time due to COVID-19. More than 500,000 people (in the United States) have lost their lives due to this dreaded disease. But hope is not all lost. Here in the township of Irvington, we band together, we pull each other up by our bootstraps and work together for a better community. We will defeat COVID-19. We have plenty of partners throughout the state of New Jersey and throughout this country that are here to help us combat COVID-19.”
Some elected officials, such as Gov. Phil Murphy, who made an appearance during the presentation, chose to share encouraging words for the public.
“As you take this opportunity to look back on the last 12 months,” Murphy said, “there is no denying that we have faced a difficult time. But I could not be prouder of the way New Jerseyans pulled together to support one another throughout this crisis. As we fought and as we continue to fight COVID-19, we have not lost sight of the goals we set out long before the pandemic began. Environmental justice, strengthening police and community trust, free community college, pay equity, raising the minimum wage, and so many others. These are objectives we could not have reached without the support and active participation of New Jerseyans and, of course, capable and responsive leaders like your incredible mayor and my dear friend, Tony Vauss. Tony, thank you for your partnership and communication.”
Also making an appearance was West Orange Mayor Robert D. Parisi, who spoke highly of Vauss.
“Though I wish we could all be together tonight, I am honored to be part of this virtual State of the Township address of the township of Irvington,” Parisi said. “No form of government affects our everyday lives like local government. We count on that caring for local businesses, our schools, our neighborhoods and neighbors, and our families.
“Of all the things that government can provide, none are more important than hope,” he continued. “Mayor Vauss provides that, and anyone that meets him, sees how he works, feels his energy and the commitment he brings to everything he does, they feel better about themselves. They feel hopeful, believing that things will be better for tomorrow, and Tony Vauss will make them better. Thank you for inspiring me as a neighboring mayor for continuing to inspire the community you serve.”
Paterson Mayor Andre Sayegh discussed a joint initiative between his city and Irvington.
“We’re currently collaborating on a 40 Acres and a Mule initiative to help black and brown businesses and give them the support that they need,” Sayegh said. “It hasn’t been easy these last 11 months with the pandemic, but (Vauss is) doing his best to keep his residents safe.”
Essex County Commissioner President Wayne Richardson also praised Vauss.
“He’s the guy that’s changing Irvington. He’s doing the right thing for Irvington. Irvington is really moving forward and prospering under Mayor Tony Vauss,” Richardson said.
“Irvington Strong is putting Irvington straight, center and on the map within Essex County,” Lt. Gov. Sheila Oliver said.