It happened quickly. Mayor Eddie Perez resigned at 5PM today, and City Council President Pedro Segarra, a Democrat, was sworn in by city clerk John Bazzano at 5:03PM.
Segarra is a former prosecutor, and corporation counsel. A native of Puerto Rico he came to Hartford via the Bronx when he was 15. He is the city’s first openly gay mayor and lives in the West End with his partner.
Here is Segarra’s speech just before taking the oath:
“This is a difficult period for the City, but we need to join efforts to overcome our current differences and move our City forward. There are too many people depending on us to get the job done and we cannot and must not let them down. These are challenging financial times as well, so it is important to develop a work plan to take-on these issues quickly and effectively. I look forward to working with the Mayors in our surrounding towns and major cities as we deal with regional efforts. I will reach out to the Governor to see how the State can continue to assist the City. I also look forward to the support of the Hartford Delegation to ensure that the City’s voice is heard at the Legislative level as we are limited in our abilities to solve several issues at the local level.
But this isn’t just about government. It is about people and positive relationships in the community. I plan to meet with neighborhood leaders with the message that I am here to listen and learn. I extend that same message to our corporate and non-profit business partners as well, many of whom have already expressed a willingness to help.
There is a lot on Hartford’s plate right now and we need to address the City’s priorities immediately. I thank you for your support and look forward to taking Hartford to even greater heights and promise. There will be changes and these changes will come quickly. I want to thank you all for your patience and for your support.”
The 51 year old Segarra lays out his plans for the city this Sunday morning at 11AM on Face the State.