Ashley Swearengin is sworn in as Fresno Mayor

January 6, 2009 5:33:28 PM PST
Ashley Swearengin officially took the helm as Fresno's new mayor. The transition happened at City Hall in front of a standing room only crowd.There was a lot of excitement here as the city of Fresno coroneted a new mayor but the mood quickly turned serious when Ashley Swearengin confirmed there may be tough financial times ahead for Fresno.

Fresno has a new mayor. Tuesday morning Ashley Swearengin became the second woman to ever hold the office.

"Still letting it sink in a little, but this is a day we really hard to get here and I'm anxious to get started," said Swearengin.

Before handing over the mayoral baton, so to speak, outgoing mayor Alan Autry took care of some business.

"So Ashley, I gotta do the formal things like hand in my cell phone. Can you please go to the top of the security building and drop that."

Swearengin took a moment to honor Council Member Henry T. Perea, her opponent on the campaign trail and now her colleague at City Hall. Then, it was down to business, listing plans for her first 100 days in office, and longer term goals that factor in the country's economic implosion.

"Our city's greatest days are still ahead despite the fact that we are in a state of economic crisis, a meltdown by many measures. Fresno is not immune from this economic hardship," said Swearengin.

Not immune, but she insists being optimistic, realistic, and ready to fight for Fresno.

"Fresno will be the city that defies the odds and surprises the experts when in 4 years we have advanced on our goals despite this economic climate, that our city, Fresno will be known as the turnaround city. I look forward to the journey ahead," said Swearengin.

Two new Fresno City Council Members were also sworn in, Lee Brand who will fill Jerry Duncan's seat and Andreas Borgeas who is replacing Brian Calhoun.

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