Mayor-Elect Alvin Brown has been sworn-in as mayor at the Prime Osborn Convention Center.
Brown is now the first African-American mayor in city history. Following the historic election results in May, Brown has been meeting with supporters across all of Jacksonville. He’s been on a week-long tour of the city.
The new mayor in his inauguration address said he will make Jacksonville a better place, but can't do alone.
He outlined seven steps to progress.
1.) He wants citizens of Jacksonville to work together, he says our strength should be founded in our diversity.
2.) His second point, be good stewards of taxpayer dollars. He made it clear the budget he will be submitting on July 15 will not include any new taxes or fees but says there will be shared sacrifice.
3.) Expanding the ports has to be a priority, says Brown. He also referenced bringing a nuclear carrier to Mayport.
4.) Revitilize downtown.
5.) With one of the largest urban park systems in the country Brown says we need to not only honor our natural treasures but preserve them.
6.) He wants to keep on the downwards trend of crime rates and make sure people feel safe in the city.
7.) His last point, to make education a top priority. He says he will hire a Chief Education Officer to serve as a contact between the school district and the city.
Prior to the speech he echoed throughout his stops much of what he said he would do during his campaign, he says he will get the fiscal house in order without raising taxes, he’ll take a 20% pay cut, he wants to focus on bringing in jobs, on education and public safety.
He’ll be faced with challenges right from the start, in less than two weeks he’ll have to deliver the 2012 budget to city council. At an inter-faith breakfast on Thursday he promised he would see to it that no high school in Duval County would be without sports, music and physical education classes, but the school district is facing major budget deficits of their own.
In keeping with his theme of public private partnership, Kevin Hyde his Chief Administrative Officer will not be taking a pay check from the city.
In closing on Friday Alvin Bron said, "I ask what are you willing to give? Join me and help me take Jacksonville to the next level."