Nate Shaw, left, and Scott Sloan told their priorities for new Gary Mayor Jerome Prince

Attendees at swearing-in ceremonies tell their priorities for new Gary mayor

Contributed By:The 411 News

Many want Jerome Prince to tackle crime first

Asked what they'd like to see the new mayor give the highest priority – schools, economic development, or crime – attendees at Monday’s swearing-in ceremony for Gary Mayor Jerome Prince gave their opinions.

Evangelist Wendy McLaurin of River of Life Ministries and a former city of Gary employee said, "I think crime should be a first priority. But I think if we can work on schools, raise our children and give them a fear of god, that will help cut the crime. With the help of God, our clergy and our citizens, we will rise."

Second District council resident Catherine Campbell said, "Work on crime first. We need to get abandoned houses that are in good shape put back on the tax rolls."

"First thing with this new police chief," said Hank Dunham, "clean up these service stations selling paraphernalia to our young folk and the loitering around stores. If he does that to change our image, that would be a great thing."

From Marlon Mitchell, "I'd love to see the mayor streamline the process with engaging the business community and community in general. He should be more transparent so that people can know what's going on and know how they could best fit in to serve and make it the best city it can be."

Mike Suggs said, "I'm just very happy about the commitment he's putting forward. He's done an excellent job of selecting leaders to work with. I appreciate his enthusiasm and looking forward to see what he can do."

Caren Jones, the executive director of the Gary Y said, "First, the crime; it drives everything... economic development, schools. Lower it and we will get more economic development, better schools and more people coming to Gary."

Scott Sloan said, "Coming from my background in education, as we put kids in the best place for their future, everything else comes as a result of that."

Nathan Shaw said, "There are so many things he needs to do. Surround himself with good people because he can't do it alone. That's the initial foundation and he has done that today. But it's just not the people we saw up on the stage; it's everybody around him. It's the people we didn't see today, his administration, they're the people who are going to be critical to his success."

LaVetta Sparks-Wade, outgoing Sixth District councilwoman said, "Public safety should be the number 1 priority for the mayor, as it is for every level of government. When people don't feel safe in a community, they don't stay in that community. No holds barred, public safety, then everything else will follow."

Burgess Peoples said, "Economic development should be first. It will hit all the other key components of crime and education. A focus on economic development will help rebuild infrastructure, bringing in new businesses and funding to help re-imagine Gary."

Evangelist Wendy McLaurin of Gary, left, and Linda Byrd, visiting from Atlanta attended Monday’s swearing-in ceremonies

Story Posted:12/31/2019

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