New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio kicked off a week long stint working from the Bronx on Monday as part of his administration’s “City Hall in your Borough” series.
De Blasio, an avowed Boston Red Sox fan, was greeted on his first day by Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., who unsuccessfully attempted to get the mayor to wear a New York Yankees baseball cap and jacket.
“I’ll hold it up with you, but I can’t put it on . . . that’s asking too much,” de Blasio told Diaz Jr. jokingly at the Bronx County Courthouse, where de Blasio and his top aides will work through Friday.
Diaz Jr. replied: “While I didn’t get you to convert, we are excited about having you here.”
On Monday, de Blasio toured the Hunts Point Terminal Produce Market with local leaders, and also announced the city would allocate $30 million to improve the FDNY’s ambulance operations in the borough.
The mayor’s appearance in the Bronx comes a month after he launched the roving City Hall initiative on Staten Island, with a blitz of meetings and a town hall forum.
De Blasio, speaking at the Bronx courthouse, described the “City Hall in Your Borough” series as an effort to bring “equity in every way” throughout the city.
“For too many decades in this city, there was a tendency for the city government to focus too little on the Bronx, too little on the outer boroughs in general, too much on Manhattan — with all due respect to Manhattan and its needs,” de Blasio said.
The five-borough outreach campaign is occurring in the final year of the mayor’s first term, as he seeks re-election among a far less crowded field of contenders than four years ago. Other mayoral hopefuls include Sen. Nicole Malliotakis (R-Staten Island) and Republican real estate sales executive Paul Massey.