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Providence 2017 State of the City Address

Image from the Mayor’s Twitter feed

Mayor Jorge Elorza delivered his 2017 State of the City Address on February 1st. Below is the text of the address from the Mayor’s Office:


Changing The Narrative About Providence

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Council President Aponte, Members of the City Council, Members of the General Assembly and fellow residents.

It’s been two years since I took office and it’s been the privilege of a lifetime to represent the residents of this city as Mayor. I’ve had a chance to meet with residents from every corner of the city and from every walk of life. I’ve scheduled community conversations in every neighborhood and coffee hours in every ward. I’ve visited every school in the city and just about every park, field and court in Providence. I’ve visited scores of businesses and have attended as many events as can fit on a person’s schedule.

At every point, I’ve tried to interact, listen and learn from our friends and neighbors. And what I’ve learned throughout the past couple of years is what makes me more optimistic than ever about the potential we have here in Providence. I’ve learned that our residents’ commitment to Providence is second to none. The connection that we have to our individual neighborhoods is unlike anything you’ll see throughout the state. The kindness that I’ve seen towards others, convinces me that you won’t find a more compassionate group of residents anywhere else. And, the amazing work that’s done in our neighborhoods convinces me that when we’re working together, we’re capable of accomplishing anything.

Now, we’ve had challenges in the past and while it is important to understand the root of those challenges, it is far more important to find solutions. After all, we are elected and placed in these positions to move the city forward. Fellow residents, every decision that I have made has been with my eye towards 5 and 10 years into the future and I’ve focused not only on where we want to be and how to get there, but also on how we’re going to sustain it by doing it together.

Providence is a special city with no shortage of strengths that we have to build off of. But it is also fair to say, that we still have not fully unlocked the potential of our people and our institutions. You see, there are four key challenges (each decades in the making) that we must address to create the strong and sustainable future that our city deserves; and it is these four areas (Finances, Infrastructure, Schools, and City Services) that I’ve been focused on these past 2 years and that I need your continued help to address.

When I took office, we got to work to ensure that the city’s finances were healthy. And just as a doctor would treat a patient, we made sure that we stopped the bleeding first. At the end of fiscal year 15, the city faced a $13M cumulative deficit. Effectively, this is money that we owed on the city’s credit card. But with the support of the City Council, and by reforming the way we put the budget together, eliminating almost every one-time, short-term solution, renegotiating contracts, and keeping track of every cent that comes in and out, we ended the following fiscal year with the largest operating surplus in the city’s records. And, this means that we’ll be paying off the cumulative deficit three years sooner than anyone expected.

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Providence State of the City Address

elorza-sotc-2016

Image from the Mayor’s Office

Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza delivered his State of the City address in the City Council Chambers yesterday evening. Below is the text of the address as released by the Mayor’s Office:


Mayor Jorge O. Elorza

2016 State of the City Address

Leading the Providence Resurgence

Tuesday, February 9, 2016 (Prepared as delivered)

Thank you. Good evening everyone; Buenas noches a todos.

Mr. President, honorable members of the City Council and fellow residents of our great City of Providence

It used to be said that you had to “know a guy” to get things done in City Hall. The message I want everyone to hear is that now, “you all know a guy in City Hall”. All you have to do is call 421-CITY.

A little over a year ago in my inaugural address, I said we were going to build the new Providence — a city that works for all of its residents, a city committed to innovation, and a city that provides opportunity for all.

Over the past year, we’ve come a long way in achieving that vision, and while there are still many challenges, I’m proud of what we have accomplished together to position Providence for a better future.

And make no mistake, Providence is beginning a resurgence.

This year will see more construction projects than the city has seen in decades. It will see our school department restructured to better meet the needs of teachers and families. It will see a City Hall that becomes known for being efficient and for responsive customer service. And this year will see us tackle our financial challenges head on with an eye toward the long-term.

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2014 State of the City Address

Mayor Angel Taveras delivered his final State of the City Address last night at City Hall:


angel-twitter

Image from Angel Taveras Twitter feed

Working and Investing in Providence

Mayor Angel Taveras – 2014 State of the City Address
Tuesday, February 11, 2014

(as prepared for delivery)

Mr. President, honorable members of the Providence City Council, distinguished guests, and fellow residents of our great Capital City –

In April, I had the pleasure to be present for the Omni Group’s purchase of the C.J. Fox factory. Anyone who drives on Route 95 South through our city knows the Omni Group has been hard at work renovating the complex at the entrance to historic Federal Hill.

The Omni Group is a homegrown company, headquartered in Providence. Like most businesses, they went through some tough times beginning in 2008. Financing their project became a major challenge when Wall Street imploded and the economy went into a tailspin.

But the Omni Group made it through the hard times, and now they are moving forward and investing $5 million to convert the old factory complex into office space. Bill DiStefano, Omni’s President and CEO, told me they decided to expand their business again because they believe Providence is heading in the right direction.

I tell you this story because it speaks to the overall state of our city. The state of our city is improving.

We’ve been through the hard times of the Great Recession. But we never lost hope. And we never stopped believing that better days were ahead. We are working hard and making investments that will propel Providence into a future of greater economic strength and prosperity.

I want to talk to you tonight about all we’ve done to move Providence forward in the past year. And then I want to talk to you about what we will do in the coming months.

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Providence 2013 State of the City Address

Mayor Angel Taveras

2013 State of the City Address

Providence Is Recovering

Tuesday, January 29, 2013 • (as prepared for delivery)

Photo of the Mayor delivering the State of the City from the Mayor's Office.

Photo of the Mayor delivering the State of the City from the Mayor’s Office.

Governor, Mr. President, honorable members of the Providence City Council, distinguished guests, and my fellow residents of our great Capital City –

One year ago I stood before you in this Chamber with an urgent message for our City and the entire State of Rhode Island. Providence was in peril. Despite many difficult decisions and painful sacrifices made to pull Providence back from the brink, we were still $22 million short of closing a $110 million structural deficit.

Crucial steps necessary to navigate our City safely through our Category 5 fiscal hurricane had not yet come to pass. We still needed to reform our unsustainable pensions. And we needed Providence’s large, tax-exempt institutions to contribute more.

As I stood before you on February 13, 2012, Providence was running out of cash, and running out of time. In the months that followed, there were some who said Providence could not avoid filing for bankruptcy.

BACK FROM THE BRINK

Today it is my privilege to deliver a much more hopeful report on the State of our City: Providence is recovering.

Through collaborative efforts and shared sacrifice, we have all but eliminated our City’s $110 million structural deficit, and we expect to end this year with a balanced budget. Working together, we have accomplished what few believed possible.

We were determined to address the root causes of Providence’s fiscal emergency and prepared to act unilaterally if necessary. And we knew our City would never achieve a lasting recovery without addressing our unsustainable and spiraling pension costs.

In April, following months of actuarial analysis and public testimony, this City Council unanimously approved a pension reform ordinance that put Providence’s pension system on a sustainable path.

We recognized that passing the ordinance would likely lead to a high-stakes lawsuit with no real winners – because a decision in favor of the status quo would push our City over the brink. However, faced with the challenge of negotiating pension changes with more than 2,000 retirees who were not represented by a single entity, we saw no alternative.

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State of the City Address – January 29, 2013

State of the City Address – January 29, 2013

On Tuesday, January 29 at 5:30pm, Providence Mayor Angel Taveras will deliver his 2013 State of the City address. The address will be officially delivered to the Providence City Council in the Council Chamber on the third floor of Providence City Hall.

Mayor Taveras’ 2013 State of the City address will be streamed on the City’s website at providenceri.com. On Twitter, follow #PVDsotc for live updates during the speech.

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Mayor Taveras Town Hall presentations on the State of the City

Join Mayor Angel Taveras for a Town Hall style public presentation of the 2012 State of the City on:

Angel TaverasThursday, March 1 – 7:00pm
Jewish Alliance of Greater Rhode Island
401 Elmgrove Avenue

Monday, March 5 – 7:00pm
Washington Park Community Center
42 Jillson Street

Wednesday, March 14 – 7:00pm
DaVinci Center
440 Charles Street

Tuesday, March 20 – 7:00pm
Federal Hill House
9 Courtland Street

Contact us for more info

See also:

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Providence State of the City Address

Live Streams are over. Prepared text added to post below.

The State of the City will be livestreaming below starting at 7pm (technology willing).

WPRI Stream has better sound.

If you’re on Twitter, follow the #PVDsotc hashtag. We’ll probably be Tweeting and re-Tweeting there. Follow us on Twitter at @gcpvd.

Feel free to add you thoughts in the comments as you watch, this post will be updated during and after the address.

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Mayor’s “State of the City” Tonight

dnc-picTonight at 7 PM is Mayor Mayor David Cicilline’s “State of the City” address. It’s at the Rhode Island Convention Center, 5th floor Rotunda. Greater City Providence will be there. Does anyone know if the Convention Center has WiFi? If so, I’ll try to liveblog it…

From the press release:

The Mayor will talk about the City’s response to the difficult economic challenges facing the City and announce a bold initiative designed to help the City and Providence families get through these difficult economic times and emerge as a stronger and more vibrant city.

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