NEW MAYOR, WHAT’S NEXT FOR FLINT?

By Kimberly Crawford

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If you ask me what I think of Flint, MI I always think of the great Tupac Shakur poem The Rose That Grew from the Concrete. We are resilient, no matter what we encounter we bounce back never considering ourselves as victims.

We have a list of achievers that has come out of Flint: Claressa Shields, Kyle Kuza, Glen Rice, Andre Rison and the CEO of Home Depot Craig Menear, amongst others.

In the past few years we have experienced a crisis and during that crisis we gained our first female mayor, Dr. Karen Weaver where she has accomplished great achievements as mayor. In her farewell letter to the residents she expressed her love for the city and the “moving forward” attitude that was infectious throughout the city.

“When I look back at all of the work that we have been able to accomplish, I hope that I have made Flint proud. We have economic development, which has led to top companies wanting to come here. I know that soon, as a result of the work that we have done, Flint will be able to welcome Mahindra and over 2,000 more jobs.”

As we move forward with our new mayor Sheldon Neeley I personally hope that he will pick up where the former mayor left off. Our city will need to focus on increasing the amount of police officers and decrease crime, continue to bring jobs to the city and promote entrepreneurship. He is currently pleading with residents to call and have their pipelines replaced.

“Right now in the city of Flint, it's very important and very vital that we get every lead line replaced in the homes, and so we have about 1,000 non-responsive residents we've tried three or more times to get to these homes and the residents have not been responsive."

I reached out to Mayor Neeley on multiple occasions for an interview, but I did not receive a response.

The city of Flint has come a long way since the beginning of the water crisis. Several corporations have brought over 1,000 jobs to the city. Entrepreneurship is on high from clothing lines like Good Boy Clothing (goodboyclothes.com) to beauty and cosmetics like Elle Jae Essentials located at Great Lakes Crossing and Instagram @ellejaeessentials just to name a few. We have great attractions to visit in Vehicle City such as the Flint Institute of Arts, Flint Children’s Museum. View art exhibits listen to poetry, and concerts at the Buckham Gallery, if you’re looking for somewhere to eat Flint is known for Big Johns Steak and Onion or The Torch which has some of the best burgers.

A new mayor will not change the fight that we possess. We will overcome the crisis that was brought to us by the former governor of Michigan and we will show other cities that are currently impacted how to overcome with grace.