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MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) — Lester Miller is officially the mayor of Macon-Bibb county. He along with the nine commissioners took the oath of office in a ceremony Wednesday.
Former Mayor Robert Reichert was part of the ceremony. He called up each commissioner and the new mayor to take their oath of office.
Once Mayor Miller took his oath he addressed the crowd, talking about where he came from and where he hopes to take the community in the future.
“We must acknowledge our community is resilient but hurting,” said Miller. He reflected on the struggles this year brought from the pandemic to addressing racial injustice. Pointing out that Macon was able to march without violence, proving that diversity is our strength.
He said change starts at the top with the leadership of elected officials. No matter who he talked to the one thing that stood out is the love everyone has for their community.
Lester Miller said:
“As elected officials, we must spend less time arguing and more time listening and addressing the concerns of those we are privileged to serve. We will not always agree. In fact, a healthy debate is a good thing. But we must begin by listening to one another, finding common areas of agreement, and making progress wherever we can. It is my firm belief we share a common interest in making this community a better, safer place to live, work, and raise a family.”
Miller says the public safety crisis is the first thing he will address. He says he will work with law enforcement, other community agencies, and the public to make the community safer for everyone.
Miller also says Macon needs to grow in other ways
“It is time for Macon to claim our role as Georgia’s central city and become the number one place in Georgia for business and industries to bring good jobs. To that end, we will partner with our school system, colleges, and universities to connect the students of today to the jobs of tomorrow and create a ready-workforce.
Together, we will create an environment where our recreation and tourism industry flourishes, making our community more vibrant while providing vital support for our local economy. By investing in code enforcement, we will attack blight, prevent crime, and make our city more beautiful and more welcoming.”
Mayor Miller says he understands the struggles of making ends meet. He talked about the sadness of learning that two homeless men died Christmas night when they froze to death. He said it was unacceptable especially in a community where caring for one another is a way of life.
“We must do more to implement comprehensive, coordinated, and proven strategies to effectively combat poverty and homelessness,” said Miller. He said his administration will join and fully support those efforts.
Before closing out his speech he asked people to commit to building upon their strengths to create a stronger, safer, and more prosperous community where every person is respected and every child regardless of their beginnings can succeed.
Miller shared Duane Allman’s New Year’s resolution from 1969. He adopted it as his own for the upcoming year, and hopes that others might take it on as well.
Duane Allmans’s New Year’s resolution
“This year I will be more thoughtful of my fellow man, exert more effort in each of my endeavors, professionally as well as personally. Take love wherever I find it, and offer it to everyone who will take it. In this coming year, I will seek knowledge from those wiser than me and try to teach those who wish to learn from me. I love being alive and I will be the best man I possibly can.”