Rolison, center, is administered the oath of office
POUGHKEEPSIE – “Together” was a word that figured prominently
during an hour-long inauguration ceremony at the historic Changepoint
Church in Poughkeepsie. The 140-year-old church was packed to the brim
with residents welcoming a new mayor, and a city council that is a mix
of new and old members.
Mayor Robert Rolison, a Republican who will work with a council that remains
seven to one Democratic, said much can be done, working together.
“Together, we’ll make our streets safer, attract and retain
businesses with new jobs, offer better drug prevention and mental health
programs, support the arts and yes, we will bring a youth center to the
City of Poughkeepsie.”
That has been a rallying point for many residents, for years.
Rolison said now that the voters have spoken, it is time for him, and
the eight council members, to put Poughkeepsie on the right track.
“Now make no mistake, while my optimism is high, I appreciate the
awesome challenges that lie ahead,” Rolison said. “The challenge
of insuring the safety of all residents, rebuilding our fiscal foundation
and turning around and growing our economy. But I also know that by working
together, there isn’t a challenge we can’t overcome, together.”
Also sworn in on Saturday were incumbent council members Tracy Hermann,
Randall Johnson, Lee David Klein, Ann Perry and Christopher Petsas, who
was reelected chairman during a brief reorganization meeting. New council
members are Natasha Cherry, Lorraine Johnson and Mike Young.
It was Master of Ceremonies Felicia Watson who began the ceremony with
“We are one Poughkeepsie.”