AKRON, Ohio — On Monday evening, Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan delivered his 2021 State of the City Address at the Akron Civic Theatre.
Horrigan had been scheduled to give the speech outdoors at Akron's Lock 3, but the event was moved indoors due to the heat. His remarks came on the same day that Steve Mylett begins his role as the city's new police chief.
During the address, Horrigan discussed the challenges Akron faces as it embarks on a period of economic recovery and systemic change. He detailed his planned initiatives and goals for the City in 2021 and beyond, including Akron's $145 million distribution under the American Rescue Plan.
Horrigan says the funds will be spent in six areas in critical need of investment:
- Housing: $25 Million
- Public Utility Support: $30 Million
- Local Economic Recovery: $21 Million
- Youth Violence Prevention: $24 Million
- Parks and Public Facilities: $30 Million
- City IT and Budget Stabilization: $15 Million
“Akron was once called the Rubber City because we made tires. We keep the title now because we are resilient—we bounce back,” Horrigan said at the close of his address, adding, “I am confident in Akron’s recovery strategy, and in our ability to see it through. My faith in Akron, like the state of this City, is resilient, strong, and founded on perpetual hope.”
The mayor also discussed crime and police reform, pledging to work with Mylett "to urgently develop and advance strategies to address violent crime in Akron neighborhoods." Akron will also look to eliminate some of the root causes of youth and community violence with a $10 million investment into violence prevention initiatives.
With COVID numbers surging due to the Delta variant, Horrigan announced last week that Akron is resuming its mask mandate for staff and visitors at all city buildings. The decision came as Summit County’s rate of COVID-19 infection nearly doubled in less than a week and moved the county to the “substantial” level of spread, according to the latest data from the CDC.
Dan Horrigan is the 62nd Mayor of Akron, currently serving his second term. Proceeds from Monday's event will benefit the Russell M. Pry Memorial Scholarship at The University of Akron School of Law, in honor of Mayor Horrigan's friend and mentor, the late Summit County Executive Russ Pry.
You can watch Monday's entire event in the player below: