LIMA — He has been mayor for a generation, and after being sworn in for an eighth time Friday, Mayor David Berger called for the city to place a greater emphasis on its future.
With his wife holding the Bible, Berger was sworn into office Friday by Judge Jeffrey Reed at the Lima Municipal Building, with Berger swearing in members of his administration shortly after. Now in his eighth term, Berger is the longest-serving mayor in Lima’s history.
After taking the Oath of Office, Berger then reflected on that recitation, saying it is a public display of an internal resolve, the same as marriage vows or the Pledge of Allegiance.
“Those aren’t just words,” he said. “They’re more than words. They are public demonstrations and commitments to act in certain ways, and we all ought to understand that’s what those are. They are symbolic, powerful statements of intention, and we need to live with those and be measured by them. I believe we’ve done that as an administration.”
Berger also said that, with the economy now strong in the area, the city needs to make a more concerted effort to invest in the city’s children and youth to prepare them for tomorrow’s economy while encouraging them to build their lives here in Lima.
“There is a concern that we do more,” he said, “that we, in fact, invest in the lives of our children in a way that will make an absolute difference in their ability to succeed, and not just succeed, but thrive, and not just thrive, but do it here. This connects directly to the long-term well-being of our community.”
Berger called for the community to “step it up” in working with children and helping them reach their potential, no matter what background they have.
“There are a number of ways looking at the issues facing our community,” he said. “We need to grow our population. We need to have children return home after they’ve had their educations. On the other side of it, we also have children who have been abandoned to terrible circumstances, crime and poverty. We have an entire spectrum of children in our community who need much more from us as a community, as parents and as families.”