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Mayor Strickland's Weekly Update: Aug. 31, 2018
Weekly Update: Job well done, Mayor Luttrell
Posted on 08/31/2018
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Friends,

I often say that nothing good happens in Memphis without a team working together to make it so.

That’s the case with many items these past two and a half years — from our successful initiative to fund Pre-Kindergarten, to the retention and Downtown move of ServiceMaster, to the multi-agency approach to reduce violent crime.

It’s an especially important concept to note in light of what’s happening across the street from us this week — the transition between the administrations of Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell and incoming Mayor Lee Harris.

All of us in Memphis should want our city and county mayors to work together. It’s as important a relationship as exists in this town when it comes to moving us forward. I’ve been fortunate to enjoy that with Mayor Luttrell, and I am excited to enjoy just the same with Mayor Harris.

Mayor Luttrell has been a stalwart champion for Memphis through his eight years. During his time, and as a direct result of his leadership, the county has made major strides in funding schools and Pre-K and also reduced its debt — all while delivering a tax cut.

Great work, Mayor Luttrell!

Mayor Luttrell was a steady hand on the ship, and Memphis is a better place as a result of his leadership. I’ve worked closely with him in my two and a half years as mayor, and even before that while on the Council. I’ve always been impressed with his love for our community and his drive to ensure ours is a more civil politics.

Mayor Harris and I go back a number of years and have already had some great conversations. Our policy goals are remarkably similar. I am eager to be in the same room with him more and more as we work on bringing more good jobs to our city, reducing poverty, improving educational outcomes, cutting violent crime, and making transit better.

One other thing: I will, however, have to give him some trouble for taking away one of the most valuable members of our administration, Patrice Thomas, to become his new chief administrative officer. That news was announced Tuesday.

Seriously, though, Patrice is an excellent choice and a superb public servant. As I said Tuesday, he definitely hit a home run with this hire.

Affordable housing is important: It’s flown under the radar a bit, but I’m proud of the work a little-known entity of City government, the Health, Educational and Housing Facility Board, has done to increase the number of quality, affordable housing units in Memphis.

Just this week, we celebrated the renewal of a big apartment complex in Whitehaven, all thanks to the board’s work. In the last year alone, some 5,000 units in our city have been improved.

Big weekend ahead: It’s Labor Day weekend, which means that solid waste pickup will be delayed by one day all of next week for customers citywide.

But beyond that, it also means a couple of fun options to celebrate our increasingly vibrant sports scene. I’ll see you Saturday night at the Liberty Bowl, where our Tigers will host Mercer in the season-opener for both teams (and the new sound system we just installed). I also know of a lot of folks who are heading Downtown to see the exhibition soccer match at AutoZone Park between Tim Howard’s Colorado Rapids and Tulsa Roughnecks FC.

Regardless of where you are Saturday night, here’s wishing a safe and fun long weekend.

Yours,
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Each Friday, Mayor Jim Strickland sends his Weekly Update email. It's a recap of events from the week, a celebration of Memphis' successes, and a frank look at our challenges. To receive the Weekly Update in your inbox, sign up here.
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