WEST TOLEDO -- Toledo Mayor Carty Finkbeiner laid out ambitious plans for Toledo and the surrounding area in his first State of the City address of his third term as mayor. Finkebeiner delivered the speech with gusto, and many who watched told News 11 that energy is why they like Carty.
Reaction to the future of the city was positive from several sections of leaders in the area. Mayor Finkbeiner outlined many of what people told us were lofty goals, some addressing a beefed up police force. "We will increase the number of police officers in the city to keep neighborhoods safe," said Finkbeiner during his speech.
He endorsed the merger of the University of Toledo and the Medical University of Ohio with a firm handshake for both presidents of those universities. He also addressed Toledo Public Schools and called on parents to get more involved.
"I think it's excellent that the mayor...someone in his position is pushing it as well because the key to academic success is parent engagement," said TPS Superintendent Eugene Sanders. Mayor Finkbeiner wants economic development for larger businesses like Monday's 4-hour meeting with Bass Pro reps. It's a major retailer for hunting and fishing supplies that surrounding leaders would love to see in the marina district. "I said 'Wow!"' That's as good a presentation as I've seen us make to anybody," said Finkbeiner after his address.
Small businesses got support from Mayor Finkbeiner with help in planning through a new 25-person advisory council and getting through government red tape. "If we promote small business here and are business friendly through the chamber, through the partnerships with other agencies, I think we'll be very successful," said Toledo City Council President Rob Ludeman.
And Finkbeiner's ability to create partnerships impressed others. "You have to work together with the county and the city and all the players have to be willing to work together to be creative to put all of these resources out on the table in order to make things happen," commented Lucas County Commissioner Tina Skeldon-Wozniak.
Mayor Finkbeiner said he's not only determined to have Lucas County leaders on board, but many other counties in Northwest Ohio and Southeastern Michigan to help develop a technology corridor that creates jobs fit for tomorrow's economy.
Aside from economic health, Mayor Finkbeiner wants people to be physically fit, too. He's supporting the "Get Fit Toledo" program that pushes good diet and exercise programs for Toledoans.
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