The Frederick Police Department and the Fort Detrick Color Guards presented the colors, while Bill and Alex Douwes played the bagpipes during inauguration ceremonies Thursday for the 61st Administration in Frederick. As an audience of elected officials and other citizens looked on, Mayor Randy McClement took the oath of office for a second term.
In addition, returning Aldermen Kelly Russell and Michael O'Connor were sworn into office, along with newcomers Jose Bokee and Phil Dacey. Donna Kuzemchak, who served on the Board of Aldermen from 1998-2009, and was returned to the Board in the 2013 election, also took her oath of office.
In his inaugural speech, Mayor McClement talked about a "new normal" when it comes to revenues and spending in the city. "Normal was asking that the city spend more on people, infrastructure and popular programs, comfortable in the knowledge that as assessments went up, so did city spending. I think the last four years have shown us a new normal," he said. McCLement said that "new normal" is tighter budgets, less discretionary spending and smaller state and federal pass through grants.
The Mayor said the city needs to adjust its spending accordingly. "That's not to say that things will be as bad as they have been, or that we won't be able to invest in the future," he says. "It just means we will have to be smarter about it, to make better decisions and to ask tougher value questions about future spending plans."
But McClement says the 61st Administration is up to the challenge.
As part of the inauguration ceremony, the new Board of Aldermen elected Kelly Russell as the president pro tem.
It was a time for new beginnings, but it was also a time for goodbyes. Outgoing Alderwoman Karen Young, who ran an unsuccessful campaign for mayor in 2013, had this advice for the incoming Aldermen. "Do not accept the status quo. Yesterday's practices will not meet tomorrow's challenges," she said. "Only innovative solutions will address the hurdles that will confront local government as a result of growing financial obligation and dysfunction in Washington."
Also saying goodbye was Shelley Aloi, who also made a bid for the job of Mayor in 2013. Her advice to the incoming board was "come together. Use all of your gifts and talents. Because when you join together, there's not just a doubling of your efforts, but a multiplication, an exponential growth of those efforts," she said.
Carol Krimm, who decided not to seek re-election as Alderwoman, urged the new Administration to value the city's employees. "The ones who are continuing know we have a great staff. They are knowledgeable. They are experienced. Please give them that opportunity the people who are taking our place," says Krimm.
The Oaths of Office were administered by Sandra Dalton, the Clerk of the Circuit Court. The master of Ceremony was John Fieseler, the Executive Director of the Tourism Council of Frederick County.