Mayor Williams Delivers State of the City Address
Posted on 03/27/2014 6:31 pm
On Thursday, March 27, 2014, Mayor Dennis P. Williams delivered the State of the City Address and presented his proposed Fiscal Year 2015 General Operating Budget and the Water/Sewer Fund Budget before a meeting of the Wilmington City Council.
During the address, Mayor Williams highlighted the importance of the City working collaboratively with City Council, corporate and small businesses, public safety officials and the community to impact change. Mayor Williams’ speech read:
“Now is the time to stand together—The Mayor and City Council, the corporate community and entrepreneurs, police officers and citizens. As we work toward making our streets safer, our neighborhoods stronger and our children prepared for the future.”
Mayor Williams also emphasized that his proposed budget maintains three guiding principles, which he hopes will lead to Wilmington becoming a thriving city where families prefer to live, educational opportunities for the youth are plentiful, communities are safe and businesses continue to invest.
- Ensure the City sustains long-term fiscal stability.
- Invest in key strategic initiatives addressing youth development, neighborhood development and economic development.
- Improve infrastructure throughout the City of Wilmington.
Mayor Williams’ speech also reflected on the increase of a number of uncontrollable costs and his refusal to reduce or eliminate City services, which lead to the proposed 9.9 percent property tax increase. The speech states:
“The choices for balancing the budget in the face of the uncontrollable costs, coupled with key strategic initiatives were clear. Forced to choose between eliminating City services through massive layoffs or raising more tax revenue, I made the gut-wrenching decision to do the latter.
The decision to raise revenue through taxes is never easy. No mayor, town manager, county executive or governor relishes this prospect. However, as with managing a household budget, when costs increase but your income does not, difficult decisions must be made.”