LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Lansing’s time is now. That was the theme of Wednesday night’s State of the City address as Mayor Andy Schor highlighted some of the things his administration has already accomplished during his 37 days in office.
Mayor Schor also laid out his vision for the future which included bringing economic development to the area, strengthening neighborhoods and capitalizing on education.
During his speech, Schor highlighted some of his plans to make his campaign promises a reality and many who came out to listen said they’re excited about Lansing’s future.
“The state of the city, when we came into office, has put us in position to capitalize on opportunities,” Mayor Schor said. “We’re formulating plans to fix the crumbling infrastructure.”
The mayor announced his plans to launch new programs for the youth, establish a commission for arts and culture and said the city will partner up with different groups in the area in an effort to bring more activities and diversity to the capital city.
“We must have excellent quality of life, fun things to do, retail and businesses where people can shop, and great entertainment options,” he said.
The mayor also laid out his plans for schools
“I’ll be designating someone at the city to be a liaison between the city of Lansing and the Lansing School district. This individual will work with our schools to help the city support and promote Lansing School District programs,” he said.
He also unveiled a new initiative in public safety
“We’ll be launching a new smart phone app that can be used to report crime,” Mayor Schor said. “It is called ‘MobilePD’ and will be available to Lansing residents next month.”
One thing that the mayor said is a top priority, is fixing our roads and sidewalks.
“I will be starting my “Road Map Neighborhood Tour” in early March to talk to residents in our neighborhoods about their roads,” he said. “And I will be inviting my City Council colleagues to join me in this effort. Together, we have to prioritize where our money goes when fixing roads.”
Many who were in attendance Wednesday said they were excited about what the mayor had to say.
“He seems like a family man and he’s considered, he’s interested in academics, education and making our city better,” Sarah Riggs said.
“What I loved the most about what he had to say was the technological aspect of it,” Rina Risper said. “The secondary thing that I loved was the fact that he’s working with the Lansing School District which allows us to keep some of our talent here.”
And while Mayor Schor highlighted all of the positive things the capital city will see under his leadership, he also took a moment to recognize the pain and suffering several members of our community have faced at the hands of former MSU and USA Gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar.
Just this week, Nassar was sentenced in the third and final criminal case against him for sexually abusing hundreds of women and girls under the guise of medical treatment.
Many city officials were also wearing teal ribbons to show their support for survivors of sexual assault.
Mayor Schor created a Dept. of Neighborhoods and Citizen Engagement. This new department places neighborhoods “front and center” in Schor’s administration.
The dept. will also host quarterly housing and neighborhood resource summits, bringing important city resources and information sharing into the neighborhoods.
In the fall of 2018, the city will launch it’s citizens academy which will engage citizens to learn more about how the city operates.
The Neighborhood team will also create a new program called Serve Lansing, a citywide community service plan.
Arts and Culture
Mayor Schor announced the establishment of a blue-ribbon commission on arts and culture in Lansing.
The city of Lansing will be partnering with the Capital Region Community Foundation to update and upgrade the downtown riverfront.
New projects will also be announced including new kayak launches, boat docking, a riverbank classroom near Impression 5, a lighted forest and much more.
A new partnership with the Lansing Economic Area Partnership, also known as LEAP, that will provide small business financing to entrepreneurs in Lansing and throughout the region.
Metrics and Customer Service
The creation of a Citizen Advocate which will be an individual housed in the mayor’s office who job will be to work with residents, visitors and other businesses to ensure great customer service.
Inter-faith and Diversity
The creation of a Diversity Commission to celebrate the diversity that exists in Lansing.
The creation of an Inter-Faith Advisory Council, organized by the Lansing Office of Faith Based and Community Initiatives, as a source of input and collaboration with the faith community regarding social challenges, quality of life, and making sure Lansing is a welcoming city.
The organization of a regional summit for later this year.
Financial Health Team
Rebooting Lansing’s financial health team by challenging it to come up with recommendations and and potential cost savings for the next six months.