Mayors, Councilpersons, Constitutional Officers,
Elected Officials, Honored Guests and Citizens of Hartford.
Gracias. Thank you.
I would first like to thank my wife Maria and
children Eddie and Sierra for their love and support during these two
years and the upcoming four.
Let me begin by thanking the voters of the City
of Hartford and my supporters for allowing me the opportunity to continue
to lead this great city. I am deeply humbled.
I would also like to thank six former mayors who
have joined us this evening. They led this city proudly and today we stand
on their shoulders as we look ahead into Hartford’s bright future.
begin a new chapter in the history of our community.
Today is the
beginning of Hartford’s renaissance.
begin the implementation of a new government.
begin to reinvent Hartford.
Thomas Jefferson was a strong believer in
change. He believed that in order to preserve the fabric of this nation
dramatic change from time to time was necessary.
Well, my fellow citizens, that time is here for
It is time to create a government that is truly
accountable to its people.
It is time to create a government that is
efficient in its delivery of services.
It is time to give 550 Main Street back to the
people of Hartford.
We are going to make Hartford a city proud of
its history and bold about ITS future.
Hartford has been my home for 35 years. I have witnessed
the long journey of change in our community.
I watched men like Colin Bennett serve this city
with honor and respect.
I watched women like Maria Sanchez empower those
who had no voice and no future, turn their lives around.
These two great leaders lived in different neighborhoods,
and had different visions. But they had one belief in common: They
believed in Hartford, ITS people and ITS future.
Our city is at a crossroads – and today I
pledge, as we write this new chapter in Hartford’s history, to lead this city.
City Hall will no longer be a place where
residents come to find excuses. It will be A PLACE where they come to find
answers, results and action.
cannot do this alone. City Hall will offer its citizens more opportunities,
to all, but it will also demand responsibility from each and everyone. This is your city and your government.
Some call it strong mayor – I call it strong
The power to make Hartford the city we all want
it to be – is not only in the office of the Mayor or on the shoulders of Eddie
Perez, but also on the shoulders of a strong
city council, a strong board of education, a strong business community,
strong neighborhoods, strong schools and strong families – together--we--make
up a strong Hartford.
WE are at the dawn of Hartford’s renaissance.
We will be New England’s, no, The Nation’s comeback
I say “we” because this is our city, and only we
– together as one community—have the power to define our future.
Where before we saw obstacles, we must now see
Where before we saw barriers, we must now see
Where before we saw personal interest, we must
now see common good.
The next four years will see sweeping changes
across our city.
We have begun the task of rebuilding our
schools, restoring them as true centers of learning for our students.
From the first graders at Naylor and Burns, to
the seventh-graders at Quirk and Fox, to the Seniors at Weaver, their
future will be defined through all the work we do together.
It’s never too late to start, lets start now.
In our neighborhoods we see initiatives moving in
the right direction.
We see it on Park Street, where a business
district designation has meant benefits for residents and merchants by
empowering them to implement their own plans.
We see it on Albany Avenue, where collaboration
with the University of Hartford and neighborhood leaders will bring a
performing arts center that will stimulate more business investment up and
down Albany Avenue.
And soon we’ll see it on Pride and Rising Star
Blocks all over our city.
Our business community will also be stepping up
to take their share of responsibility to Hartford and its people
I have already begun working with our corporate
leaders in the areas of education and economic development.
Many of our corporations, including Travelers,
know it’s not enough to provide a tax base for the city. Rather, they are
investing in the places where they can make the most difference, in our
children and in our schools.
Others, like Aetna and The Hartford, have put
their resources into creating a neighborhood alliance to address quality
of life issues in their neighborhoods. .
Others still are looking at how they can give Hartford
residents, particularly our younger residents, the chance to work in
These kinds of efforts must be the rule, not the
Our businesses must see Hartford not as just a
location for their headquarters. they must be good corporate citizens and our
residents must see the Travelers tower and Gold Building as places for
opportunity and growth for themselves and their children.
I see a great challenge ahead of us. Over the
next four years I plan to build on the foundation of the $1 billion
dollars of new investment in bricks and mortar that has begun in our city.
We must renew the spirit of our community in a way that makes it a dynamic
urban center unrivaled in our nation.
More of our children should attain four-year
college degrees to secure not only their economic future, but also the
future of our region. i pledge to increase the numbers of children
attending 4-year colleges by 25%
Our communities should be safe places where our
children can learn and grow. it is time to rebuild the trust between our
police department and our citizens. I will not stand by and allow the
status quo. I will fight to insure that in an era of scarce resources that
we keep public safety a top priority.
Ii see Hartford as a place of opportunity. I will
continue to open doors for those who wish to own a piece of the american
dream. I will fight to increase the rate of howe ownership of Hartford
residents so that they can truly have a stake in what happens in our
Hartford is an architectural gem. I pledge to
submit a historic preservation ordinance in the next 60 days that will
recognize the economic benefit of sensible historic preservation in our
I will convene a working group to prepare a
ten-year plan to significanTly reduce homelessness in Hartford.
Homelessness is a regional problem and it is
time that our suburban neighbors joined us in recognizing that they share
the responsibility and the burden of solving this difficult problem.
I will push to increase the entrepreneurial
spirit in Hartford. whether it is working to eliminate the property tax
surcharge on businesses, enhancing the streetscape along our main
commercial corridors or opening the doors on new opportunities for
be a city that is welcoming to those who want to grow their business and
create jobs in Hartford.
pledge to invest in our own people, in their jobs and in their future.
That, my fellow citizens, will be Hartford’s renaissance.