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Mayor Eric Adams names Kathleen Corradi new "rat czar" for New York City

Kathleen Corradi appointed New York City's official rat czar
Kathleen Corradi appointed New York City's official rat czar 02:28

NEW YORK -- There has been an ongoing effort to get rid of rodents in the Big Apple. On Wednesday, Mayor Eric Adams announced he has hired a "rat czar."

The city says when it posted the position, it got 900 applicants. Some were cats and others were dogs, but they settled on a human woman named Kathleen Corradi.

She said we'll be seeing a lot of her -- and a lot less rats.

"There's a new sheriff in town, and with your help, we will send those rats packing," Corradi said. "'Pizza rat' may live in infamy, but rats and the conditions that support their thriving will no longer be tolerated."

Corradi said she has been fighting rats relentlessly since she was a kid.

"I was 10 years old, getting signatures on petitions for anti-rat measures in my neighborhood," she said. 

FLASHBACKNew York City says enough is enough, looks to hire badass rat czar

Here are a few things to know about about the new rat czar:

She began her career as an elementary school teacher in Brooklyn, worked at the Department of Education in waste management, and led the DOE's rodent reduction efforts at 120 public schools. She says after a year, there was a 70% decline in rodent sightings.

Mayor Adams introduces new 'rat czar' for NYC 33:46

She said that got her thinking about how the city as a whole could crack down. Her inter-agency plan includes:

CBS2 was also told buildings and superintendents across the city will be getting a flyer explaining how the city is offering free training on how to prevent rats.  

@wearecbsnewyork The rats don’t run this city… Kathleen Corradi does. #ratczar #nyc #rats #nycrat #nycrats ♬ Instrumental Life Style - Beatriz Fernanda

"As New York City's first director of rodent mitigation, I will bring a science- and systems-based approach to reducing New York City's rat population. With a strong focus on cutting off the food, water, and shelter rats need to survive, and ensure every New Yorker is prepared to take up this mantle in this fight. My background is in biology and urban sustainability," Corradi said.

"Rats impact how you feel," Adams said. "Many of us live in communities where rats think they run the city. We don't need outside tenants like rats in our home terrorizing us."

The mayor also announced new targeted rat mitigation zones. He said $3.5 million is being invested to reduce rats, specifically in Harlem.

"A rat can produce eight to 10 babies up to six times a year. That's 120 rats," Rep. Adriano Espaillat said.

Officials say for the plan to work, all New Yorkers need to do their part, but some are betting the rats will win.

"I don't see it working. I just don't think everyone's going to do their part," one person said.

The new czar, however, is determined.

"Rats are tough, but New Yorkers are tougher," Corradi said.

She said rodents beware, it's time to leave the city.

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