The City of New Haven has a new mayor today. Justin Elicker was sworn in Wednesday afternoon.
Elicker defeated former New Haven Mayor Toni Harp in the Democratic primary and general elections and campaigned on platforms of change and inclusion.
"It's amazing the amount of work that we already need to get done to make sure there's a smooth transition," Elicker said during a prior interview.
A month before the swearing-in, he said he was hard at work on his transition into office and guiding the city in a new direction.
"Being able to provide more people an opportunity to access government, to feel more a part of the process is what I'm most excited to do," Elicker added.
Elicker said a transition team of 25 has been helping identify what his administration's priorities will be, using a first 100 days approach.
Elicker, a former city alder who unsuccessfully ran for mayor in 2013, campaigned this time on uniting the city. It's something he believes improving public schools will help accomplish.
"There's policies that we can implement in our city to make sure our education system has more opportunities for early childhood education," he previously said.
Creating affordable housing through inclusionary zoning and new developer incentives is another priority.
But Elicker's biggest focus is the city's crushing budget deficit.
"We have a severe budget crisis and it's likely to get worse and worse unless we implement policies to start to identify new sources of revenue, identify more efficiencies and make sure our city is able to pay for the basic services that many of our residents really want," Elicker added.