BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Less than 24 hours after being sworn in as the new Mayor-President of East Baton Rouge Parish, Sharon Weston Broome challenged local businesses leaders to help her lead the recovery effort.
Weston Broome stood proudly before a packed room of more than one hundred business leaders she is called on to help rebuild the EBR. She began first by sharing her reflection of a tough 2016."I am truly astounded by the fortitude and resilience and tenacity of residences and businesses,"Weston Broom said.
Weston Broome was also quick to point out the parish is still in the very beginning stages of flood recovery.
She wants business owners to help her make sure while homeowners rebuild, the economy is not left behind. "Recovery is a long journey and a hard run marathon, not a quick sprint," Weston Broome said.
She laid out some steps she would like public and private business partners to help the city-parish recover. They include working closely with the Baton Rouge Area Chamber (BRAC) to make sure local businesses are winning and retaining contracts, working with state leaders to revamp the permitting and review process to get small businesses reopen so that people can get back to work, and finally, making sure businesses rebuild so that people return home.
She warned recovery money from the federal government could be sparse.
"We are going to have to work together across departments and agencies as well as with our non-profits and business partners to leverage every asset we have," Weston Broome said.
Meanwhile, Weston Broome said she is reviewing the budget and has some 21 committees looking at other issues facing the city. Some of those include, race relations, public safety, workforce solutions and, last but not least, traffic.
Their findings are due at the end of the month. The mayor-president has officially launched a national search for a new police chief. She said she will release more information on that as well at the end of the month.