NEW YORK – New York City’s new mayor, Eric Adams, vowed to “get stuff done” during his first mayoral address Saturday, just hours after being sworn into office in a Times Square ceremony as the nation’s largest city rang in the new year.
“Despite COVID-19 and its persistence, New York is not closed. It is still open and alive because New Yorkers are more resilient than the pandemic,” Adams said during his first address to New Yorkers.
The mayor acknowledged many New Yorkers remain unemployed, crime is high and the COVID-19 infection rate has increased, but said everyone needs to do their part to help the city overcome the pandemic, including getting vaccinated.
Adams unveiled the theme of his first 100 days in office is “GSD: Get Stuff Done.”
“I have assembled a governement that will solve New York’s problems because it understands New Yorkers,” the mayor said. “My administration looks like the city it represents. It’s diverse. It includes individuals who struggled here, just like so many of you, often failed by the very system they now oversee. I am one of them, I am one of you.”
Earlier, Adams rode the subway to City Hall for his first day on the job. During his New Year’s Day commute, the former New York City police captain chatted with reporters and New Yorkers on the train and even called 911 to report a fight after witnessing two men tussling near the subway station.
Later that day, Adams and Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell vowed to get guns off the streets and put a stop to violence during a media briefing regarding an off-duty police officer who was shot while asleep in the parking lot of an East Harlem police precinct.
Adams, 61, faces the immense challenge of pulling the city out of the pandemic, taking office as the city is grappling with record numbers of COVID-19 cases driven by the omicron variant.
Adams, the former Brooklyn borough president, has struck a more business-friendly, moderate stance than his predecessor but describes himself as a practical and progressive mayor who will “get stuff done.” He’s the city’s second Black mayor, after David Dinkins, who served from 1990 to 1993, and the 110th mayor of New York City.
Adams said this week that he plans to keep in place many of the policies of outgoing Mayor Bill de Blasio, including vaccine mandates that are among the strictest in the nation.
The city’s municipal workforce is required to be vaccinated, as is anyone trying to dine indoors, see a show, workout at a gym or attend a conference. But New York City has also newly required employees in the private sector to get their shots, the most sweeping mandate of any state or big city and a policy Adams said he will preserve.
He’s also committed to keeping schools open and avoiding any further shutdowns in the city of 8.8 million.
Associated Press contributed to this report.