Eric Garcetti and business leaders discuss jobs, taxes, services

Eric Garcetti, seated next to his wife, Amy Wakeland, shoots video of the proceedings after being sworn in as mayor of Los Angeles.
(Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times)

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti began his first day in office Monday talking with business leaders and scheduling an afternoon of short meetings in which he and his aides will meet with members of the public.

The session with business leaders was open to the public and the discussion included jobs, taxes and city services.

At an inauguration late Sunday on the steps of City Hall, Garcetti became the city’s 42nd mayor, succeeding Antonio Villaraigosa, who was termed-out after eight years.

Garcetti pledged in his speech to focus relentlessly on guiding the city’s economic recovery, slash business taxes, keep film production from fleeing L.A. and spur high-tech jobs on the Westside.

“These times demand a back-to-basics mayor, focused above all else on our economy and jobs,” Garcetti told the crowd before outlining plans for “a customer-friendly government, one you can actually reach on the phone.”


Garcetti, 42, thanked Villaraigosa for leaving Los Angeles “safer, greener and stronger,” even while weathering a brutal economic crisis.

But after Villaraigosa set far-reaching goals for schools, public transit and the environment, Garcetti said his priority would be to “fix the potholes and pave the streets, pick up the litter, fix the sidewalks and trim the trees.”

“It’s no use painting a lofty picture if you don’t have the brass tacks to pin it up on the wall,” Garcetti told several thousand people before the festivities moved across Spring Street to a free party at Grand Park.


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