Eric Garcetti Takes Over As Los Angeles Mayor - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Eric Garcetti Takes Over As Los Angeles Mayor

Posted: Updated:
Los Angeles, CA -

(FOX 11 / AP) Eric Garcetti celebrated the start of his first term as mayor Sunday with a promise to do the basic things right while getting Los Angeles' economy rolling again.

The 42-year-old Ivy Leaguer, a veteran city councilman and son of a former prosecutor, took a ceremonial oath of office on the City Hall steps as part of inaugural festivities featuring Jimmy Kimmel and the musician Moby.

Officially, he takes over the job leading a sprawling city of nearly 4 million people on Monday.

"These times demand a back-to-basics mayor focused above all else on our economy and jobs," Garcetti said in a speech punctuated by optimism and recognition of a tough job ahead.

"We have to accept that the days of seemingly spontaneous growth in huge mega-industries are gone, maybe for good," he said.

He replaces fellow Democrat Antonio Villaraigosa, 60, who exits after two uneven terms during which he expanded rail lines in a city notoriously choked by cars and pushed to improve a school district over which the mayor has no direct control.

Garcetti sketched an agenda that included cultivating ideas with business executives and universities, stopping the flight of Hollywood productions and reducing red tape and business taxes long seen as discouraging job growth.

"You'll have a local government that's off your back and on your side," he promised.

The new mayor takes charge of a city with problems all too familiar: knotted freeways, an unemployment rate hovering around double digits, many struggling schools, battered roadways.

The lingering homeless problem was on display just steps from the podium, where park benches were occupied by sleeping bodies.

Garcetti has long said he will focus on the economy "like a laser beam" and try to recover jobs lost in the recession. His goals range from getting all city workers to contribute to costly health care to dealing with long-standing gripes about potholes and cracked sidewalks.

In a historical footnote, Garcetti becomes the city's first elected Jewish mayor. His background reflects the city's diversity: he often refers to his Italian and Mexican roots, and talked in the speech about family members fleeing persecution in Poland and Russia to come to the U.S.

Garcetti has a temperate, wonky style - he was a Rhodes Scholar, after attending Columbia University - that will be a change from Villaraigosa, who was known for his outsized personality and ability to make headlines about his nightlife and dating.

It was Kimmel who brought the laughs, at one point blaming Villaraigosa's administration for the unusually hot weather.

It also will be a generational change. Garcetti is just a few years older than Villaraigosa's eldest daughter.

Garcetti was elected with a yawn from most residents - not even one in four voters cast a ballot in his May runoff against Controller Wendy Greuel. Los Angeles is known for mostly ignoring the scrum of local politics.

That means he takes office with many residents having no idea who he is.

Garcetti was able to defeat Greuel, a fellow Democrat, by depicting her as a pawn of utility union bosses in a city long friendly to labor, an outcome expected to echo beyond California as unions nationwide face threats to their clout.

The budget remains a central issue, though he didn't address it directly. He promised to make government "leaner and more efficient," including using more technology.

Bankrupt Stockton and other California cities are in worse shape, but spending in Los Angeles is projected to outpace revenue for years and rising pension and retiree health care bills threaten money that could otherwise go to libraries, tree-trimming and street repairs.

He's also facing a new round of labor contract talks.

"I will make my share of mistakes in this job," he said at one point.

  • Share ThisMore>>

  • "Apparently" This Kid is Awesome, Steals the Show During Interview

    "Apparently" This Kid is Awesome, Steals the Show During Interview

    Friday, August 22 2014 1:24 AM EDT2014-08-22 05:24:45 GMT
    “Apparently” this kid should have a future in the news business and his You Tube Video has gone viral with more than 14 million views!
    “Apparently” this kid should have a future in the news business and his You Tube Video has gone viral with more than 14 million views!
  • FOUND: AMBER ALERT 4-Year-Old Boy Abducted & Suspect Angel Jacoba Schat

    FOUND: AMBER ALERT 4-Year-Old Boy Abducted & Suspect Angel Jacoba Schat

    Friday, August 22 2014 12:31 AM EDT2014-08-22 04:31:04 GMT
    On August 19, 2014, at 10:00 pm, Sjon Singleton was abducted from Bishop, CA. Sjon singleton is a 4-year-old, light-skinned black male, 3 feet tall, 35 pound, juvenile with black hair, and brown eyes, unknown clothing .Suspect is Angel Jacoba Schat, a 43year-old, white, female, 5 feet 7 inches tall, weighing 145 pounds, with blonde hair, blue eyes.
    On August 19, 2014, at 10:00 pm, Sjon Singleton was abducted from Bishop, CA. Sjon singleton is a 4-year-old, light-skinned black male, 3 feet tall, 35 pound, juvenile with black hair, and brown eyes, unknown clothing .Suspect is Angel Jacoba Schat, a 43year-old, white, female, 5 feet 7 inches tall, weighing 145 pounds, with blonde hair, blue eyes.
  • Firefighters seriously injured in ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

    Firefighters seriously injured in ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

    Thursday, August 21 2014 3:10 PM EDT2014-08-21 19:10:37 GMT
    Two Kentucky firefighters were seriously injured helping a college band perform an ice bucket challenge stunt. The bucket of the fire truck apparently touched power lines outside of the football stadium at Campbellsville University.  wo Campbellsville/Taylor County Fire Department firefighters were taken to the hospital after the incident.
    Two Kentucky firefighters were seriously injured helping a college band perform an ice bucket challenge stunt. The bucket of the fire truck apparently touched power lines outside of the football stadium at Campbellsville University.  wo Campbellsville/Taylor County Fire Department firefighters were taken to the hospital after the incident.
Powered by WorldNow
Untitled

WTTG FOX 5 & myfoxdc
5151 Wisconsin Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20016
Main Number: (202) 244-5151
Newsroom: (202) 895-3000
fox5tips@wttg.com

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices