Tom Perez, senior advisor to President Biden, visits Buffalo

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Senior Advisor to President Biden and Buffalo native Tom Perez made a trip to the Queen City on Tuesday.

Perez, along with Mayor Byron Brown and other leaders, toured infrastructure projects in Buffalo’s East Side and downtown.

The visit comes just a week before the two-year mark of the 5/14 shooting and as the race for the White House heats up.

Perez made four separate stops around the city on Tuesday. His focus was on how federal funds are helping with redevelopment projects.

The first stop was Main Street, where money is being used to bring cars back to the road in the nearly completed Cars Sharing Main Street Project.

“Federal investments here in the great City of Buffalo are helping to transform communities, to revitalize communities, to reconnect communities,” Perez said.

Perez visited the site of the $1 billion Kensington Expressway project, backed by a $56 million federal grant. The project has spurred backlash from neighbors. A few attendees stood outside the press conference on Tuesday to have their voices heard.

Groups like the East Side Parkways Coalition say there was not enough public input on the project and expressed health concerns about the tunnel plan.

Both Brown and Perez say they have been listening to residents, but they say the tunnel is the best solution.

“We will continue to work to make this a great project to realize the benefit of reconnecting the community,” Brown said.

“The reviews have been done and they have been comprehensive,” Perez added. “I would argue that they’ve been very, very inclusive. This is a project that we will look back on and look back on with pride, because reconnecting communities is about reconnecting opportunity.”

They also stopped at the 5/14 Memorial, which is scheduled to be unveiled to the public on the two-year remembrance next week.

“We can’t invest in every community without ensuring that they are safe,” Perez said.

The final project Perez touched on during a round table discussion was transforming the Jefferson Avenue streetscape.

Brown then announced that the city will also be using American Rescue Act Funds for a comprehensive health and wellness center on Jefferson Avenue.

“We are going to look back, I believe, years from now at this moment and say we’ve never gotten more impactful things done at one time than we have now,” Perez said.

Brown says in the next few years, he estimates that more than $300 million of infrastructure spending will come into the city.

Latest Local News

Senior advisor to President Biden visits Buffalo

Buffalo restaurateur Tommy Cowan dies

Del Denby Tavern ordered to close following shooting

Man admits to fraudulently obtaining $172K from employer

Worksport plans to add 280 jobs in West Seneca

Dillon Morello is a reporter from Pittsburgh who has been part of the News 4 team since September of 2023. See more of his work here and follow him on Twitter.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *