Mayor AC Wharton gives State of the City Address

By Kontji Anthony - bio | email

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Memphis Mayor AC Wharton delivered the State of the City Address at the Kiwanis Club on Wednesday.

The speech held no major announcements, but Wharton did brace citizens for a bare bones budget.

Wharton wants to create 5,000 jobs in 2010 and cut crime.  He also wants to propel Memphis forward by highlighting its treasures.

"We must stop being our own worst enemies and join the ranks," Wharton said.

Wharton also mentioned consolidation.

"We can eliminate the needless, wasteful bureaucracy that deters good companies and good jobs from making Memphis their home," Wharton said.

Wharton also said he hopes to keep the 17% drop in crime moving downward.

"I will be announcing a study, that will be done at no cost to the city," Wharton said, "that will take a fresh look at what is causing crime, what should we focus on."

Wharton answered bluntly when asked if he'd take back the 3% raise the previous mayor gave to city employees.

"I'm not going to do that,"  Wharton said.

Wharton said he also plans to revamp the city's troubled school jobs program, freeze non-essential hiring, reduce overtime, cut travel expenses and overlapping job duties.

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