Top 5 American mayors who made news for all the right reasons: Eric Garcetti to Jenny Durkan, here's the list
It is easy to forget their contribution amid all the chaos of the 2020 Presidential elections and the action taking place at the White House
The United States of America has over 1,400 mayors, representing cities with a population of 30,000 and larger. It is easy to forget their contribution amid all the chaos of the 2020 Presidential elections and the action taking place at the White House. We have made a list of our top five mayors who were in the headlines for taking some exemplary and much-needed decisions in the past year for their states.
Here is our list:
Eric Garcetti (Los Angeles, California)
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, on October 8, 2020, announced a new initiative to deliver free Internet access for six months, in four public housing committee in Los Angeles. "Covid-19 has reinforced what was already a clear and unmistakable fact: internet connectivity is not a luxury in our time — it’s an absolute necessity for parents trying to work, students looking to learn, and families and friends seeking to communicate,” said Mayor Garcetti. “With Starry and Microsoft lending their resources and expertise, our city’s public housing residents will no longer find themselves on the wrong side of the digital divide, but fully connected to their classrooms and to the opportunities of the 21st century.”
He was seen as a progressive who hiked the city’s minimum wage to $15 during his first term. Garcetti, served as a co-chair of Joe Biden’s presidential campaign and Politico had even predicted that he might be likely tapped for secretary of Transportation given his experience as mayor of Los Angeles.
Sam Liccardo (San Jose, California)
San Jose Mayor, Sam Liccardo, in August, announced that the city will be providing, 11,000 high-end hotspots with unlimited 4G LTE data plans to unconnected and under-connected students and residents over a new public-private partnership with AT&T. “In these challenging times, we are prioritizing getting 8,000 students rapidly connected to the internet -- which will enable them to successfully participate in online learning this coming fall."
“This innovative public-private partnership between San José and AT&T builds on a history of high-impact collaboration, and I thank AT&T for their continued commitment to helping San José bridge the digital divide, and Jill Bourne, City Librarian and Director of the Digital Inclusion Branch of the Emergency Operations Center, for her critical work in executing this program," he added.
Lenny Curry (Jacksonville, Florida)
Jacksonville's Mayor, Lenny Curry passed a bill to reduce and prevent sex trafficking in the city, the bill was sponsored by Councilwoman LeAnna Cumber & City Council Vice President TommyHazouri. According to the official website, "This bill will help curb sex trafficking crimes in our community by requiring work identification cards for all performers in adult entertainment establishments and by raising the minimum age of performers from 18 to 21. It also establishes the Sex Trafficking Survivors Leadership Council, which gives survivors of these crimes a greater voice and role in how Jacksonville addresses these crimes."
Curry swept into the mayor’s office in 2015, his campaign had a central message: violent crime is up, and he will fix it.
London Breed (San Francisco, California)
San Francisco Mayor, London Breed, in June, announced a new roadmap for new police reforms, According to the official press release by the Mayor's office, "She proposed four priorities to achieve this vision: ending the use of police in response to non-criminal activity; addressing police bias and strengthening accountability; demilitarizing the police; and promoting economic justice. These policies build on the City’s ongoing work to meet the standards contained in President Obama’s 2015 Task Force on 21st Century Policing."
“San Francisco has made progress reforming our police department, but we know that we still have significant work to do,” said Mayor Breed. “We know that a lack of equity in our society overall leads to a lot of the problems that police are being asked to solve. We are going to keep pushing for additional reforms and continue to find ways to reinvest in communities that have historically been underserved and harmed by systemic racism.”
She was also praised for her handling of the coronavirus epidemic initially when San Francisco had yet to confirm a single case of the coronavirus when she declared a state of emergency in late February. San Francisco’s case count was 857 as of April 10—with just 13 recorded deaths due to the coronavirus, reports the Atlantic. It was all thanks to her decision to ban large gatherings and the nation's major sport leagues at the time.
Jenny Durkan (Seattle, Washington)
On November 4, 2020 Mayor Durkan released 'New Clean Cities Proposal' in order to address illegal dumping and trash in streets and parks. In a statement she said, "Hearing from community members all over the city that more needs to be done to clean our public rights of way and parks, departments across the city have been working for weeks on a comprehensive plan that can be quickly implemented following City Council approval of additional funds. Our parks have become an important refuge for Seattle residents during the COVID-19 pandemic, and it is critical we keep our parks and playgrounds safe and accessible to all,” said Mayor Durkan. “Building on two priorities identified by City Councilmembers – like expanding the purple bag program and needle collection facilities – we can devote some of our new revenue to keeping Seattle clean and ready for recovery for our small businesses and neighborhoods.”