A new era began in Los Angeles Monday as Eric Garcetti officially started his term as the city’s 42nd mayor.
Garcetti, a 42-year-old veteran city councilman and Ivy League graduate, was ceremonially sworn in Sunday on the steps of City Hall and said he would focus on fixing Los Angeles’ economy “like a laser beam” to recover jobs and make the city more business friendly.
He laid out a plan in which he wants to stop the flight of Hollywood productions, and trim regulations and taxes that may be unattractive to businesses.
“We want this to be a business-friendly place, whether it’s a tiny business or a Fortune 500 company,” Garcetti said before entering a meeting Monday with representatives of local chambers of commerce.
“We have to make sure we excel at our recovery and put people back to work that have been out of work.”
Garcetti will take the reins from fellow Democrat Antonio Villaraigosa, 60, who spent two terms boosting education and constructing railways in a city known for heavy traffic.
Though Garcetti will inherit a city with a plethora of problems, such as an unemployment rate hovering near double digits, a rising homeless population, a projected budget deficit, struggling schools and battered roads filled with potholes and cracks, he remains committed and promised to make the government "leaner and efficient."
“These times demand a back-to-basics mayor focused above all else on our economy and jobs,” Garcetti said during his inaugural speech Sunday. “You’ll have a local government that’s off your back and on your side.”
Garcetti trumped former LA City Controller Wendy Greuel, also a Democrat, by painting her as a pawn for union bosses. He was elected through a small turnout as not even one in four voters cast ballots in May.
Garcetti plans to release a full list of his executive staff later Monday.