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Rochester Mayor Says the City is on the Verge of Greatness 

In the Community: City of Rochester News Release

Mayor Malik Evans. File photo.

An unprecedented spirit of collaboration among community stakeholders combined with once-in-a-lifetime investments of federal stimulus dollars has brought Rochester to the tipping point of self-perpetuating greatness, Mayor Malik D. Evans said in his progress report on Rochester Thursday. 

“Ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, friends and neighbors, partners and allies: I stand here tonight with a loud and clear message: That day is coming, and it is coming fast,” Mayor Evans said. “Rochester is on the verge of becoming one of America’s truly great cities and the rest of the world is about to see it too. And the reason is simple: the people of this city are finally working together.” 

Speaking at the Theater at Innovation Square, Evans presented an audience of elected leaders, residents and community stakeholders with a progress report on his first seven months in office titled “All in for Rochester.” 

He said the U.S. American Rescue Plan Act infused the Rochester region with hundreds of millions of dollars to propel the region’s growth and development. And it comes at a time when Rochester’s leaders are demonstrating an unprecedented willingness to collaborate and form partnerships.  

“The entire Rochester community is ready to come together and work together, side by side, shoulder to shoulder to move this city forward,” he said. 

Despite Rochester’s most pressing challenges, especially violent crime and a poorly functioning education system, people recognize the city’s opportunities outweigh its challenges.  With that in mind, Mayor Evans said his Administration will continue to make progress toward the future while confronting the challenges of each day. 

“There’s an African Proverb that says don’t stop planting your crops because the birds are eating them,” he said. “That’s good advice and we’re following that at City Hall. We won’t be paralyzed by hopelessness. We don’t give in to the bankruptcy of despair.” 

To further promote that cooperation, Evans highlighted some of the initiatives and programs he has launched within his six Key Priority Areas. 

“I invited you here tonight to tell you where Rochester is going to be so you can join me in getting there. And not only getting there, but also join me in actually moving Rochester forward,” he said. “Looking back on the work we’ve accomplished since January, I have a clear image of where we’re going.” 

These investments within the Key Priorities include: 

  • Public Safety: Investment in Pathways to Peace; the Peacemaker Fellowship; the Peace Collective; a second Police Academy to help fill staffing shortages.
  • Economic Empowerment: Rebooting Financial Empowerment Centers; increased investment in entrepreneurship and workforce development; increased support for Minority and Women Owned Businesses.
  • Youth Development: Increased pay for seasonal youth positions in Aquatics and R-Centers; increased internship stipends; new programs in our R-Centers and library branches; return of Police Athletic League.
  • Strengthening Neighborhoods: New positions for code enforcement and compliance, including a dedicated Housing Court attorney; increased investment in homeownership and affordable housing.
  • Building Toward a Prosperous Future: Continued progress on ROC the Riverway; Inner Loop North; closing neighborhood disparities in street trees
  • Equity, Inclusion and Justice: Embedded in all priorities; dedicates an additional $1 million to further implement the report of the Commission on Racial and Structural Equity. 

“The progress we’re making on these priorities and the people I work with are the reason I come to work every day full of hope and excitement,” Evans said. “But we need your help. So let’s work together and be all in for Rochester.” 

To learn of opportunities to support the Mayor’s initiatives, visit www.cityofrochester.gov/allinroc