Despite a last ditch effort to block Polly Sierer from being sworn into office, Newark’s newest mayor took the official oath Tuesday night before family, friends and city council.
The brief swearing in ceremony was held during a special city council meeting.
“I’m very happy to be moving forward as mayor of the city of Newark, I’m looking forward really to my term and getting it started and I think there are tremendous opportunities for me to collaborate and work with city management and the residents and council to begin working on some of the concerns and issues and the good things that are happening in our city,” said Sierer.
A handful of Newark residents including mayoral candidate Amy Roe, who lost to Sierer by just 115 votes, had asked the Delaware Department of Elections to postpone Sierer’s swearing in, in order to investigate a third party that distributed campaign information on Sierer’s behalf.
That request was denied and according to The News Journal, Election Commissioner Elaine Manlove has already investigated and determined that “there was nothing that would have changed the outcome of the election.”
Sierer has denied the she or her campaign were involved with the group.
The first order of business for Sierer is to approve the city’s 2014 budget, which is due by the end of the year.
She said they’ll also discuss land use ordinance issues during city council’s meeting next Monday.
“We will have a very full meeting Monday night and I’m looking forward to leading the effort in the next few days,” she said. “I’m working with council and the city to make it a successful first meeting.”
Following her win, Sierer said she hoped to bring together the other six mayoral candidates to discuss ways to improve the city. Although Sierer said none of her former opponents have reached out to her yet, she still plans to meet with the other candidates at the beginning of the year.
“I will definitely be reaching out to them,” said Sierer. “Part of my plan and personality, quite frankly, is that I talk to people whether they’re upset with me about something or whether they’re positive about something. I will always share and listen. I will certainly be doing that with the candidates.”
In the meantime, Sierer said she’s still learning all of the different aspects of city government and former Mayor Vance Funk has been a helpful mentor.
“He and I speak several times a week and he is very willing to help me through the transition and assist me in any way that he can,” said Sierer. “He’ll be a great supporter and a great confidant and he will continue to work on things that he established in the city like the Taste of Newark and like picking up trash on Main Street. He still wants to participate in that and I think it’s fantastic. We’ll work together well.”
Sierer is the second women in Newark’s history to serve as mayor.