HOUSTON - It's back to work for Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner as he's sworn in for a second term with his daughter Ashley Turner by his side.
It was quite a celebration at Wortham Theatre for the inauguration ceremony where the mayor mapped out his plans for his next term.
“Houston is making rapid progress to become the clean energy capital of the United States and for the first time in the city's history, the first climate action plan will be presented this month,” says Mayor Turner.
The mayor also says more Houstonians are employed and at higher wages under his watch with even more medical field and technology jobs on the way, including at Rice University's $100-million Innovation hub.
“Twelve months from now, the Ion will open as a center for innovation, research, investment and workforce development and as the heart of a 16-acre district. TMC3, a 37-acre project, in the Texas Medical Center will break ground in April and will be the largest life sciences development project in the world,” he said.
Entertainment at the ceremony included everything from the Mariachi Pumas to Houston rapper Trae The Truth performing with the Houston Grand Opera.
Many call the mayor’s speech moving and passionate.
”I actually saw a couple of grown men in the audience crying,” says Houston resident Mister McKinney.
”The mayor focused on our great diversity. He focused on inclusiveness and he focused on working together going forward for the future of our children,” says Texas Congresswoman Sylvia Garcia.
”I wanted her to witness that and so that was very important, as well as for my son also,” smiles Houston resident Crystal Walter Jn Baptiste as she refers to her 7-year-old twins.
The mayor also pledged to fiercely fight flooding.
”The Inwood Forest Detention will hold more water than the Astrodome. Kingwood Spillway Gates, there will be ten of them. The North Canal Stormwater Project which has been discussed since 1940, the largest stormwater project in the state of Texas will be completed while I'm in office. Project Braes will be completed by the fourth quarter of 2021. We are providing more detention. Three of the four priority infrastructure projects have been approved by FEMA and fully funded,” he said.
City council members were also sworn in. A record number of nine women will serve on this council. The group met for the first city council meeting immediately after the inauguration selecting Dave Martin as Mayor Pro Tem.
“Represent your districts. Be yourself but at the end of the day, recognize the diversity in our city and they (residents) are counting on each and every one of us to hold that diversity together,” the mayor told the group.
The mayor also says he’s committed to repairing roads, better public transportation and helping the homeless.
”They require more than just food and shelter. They need mental and behavioral health care, substance abuse treatment,” he said.