IAM # 23O5 DEPT.OF PUBLIC WORKS SCRANTON,PA International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers
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Without mentioning his run for governor and with a less friendly city council assuming office a block away, Mayor Chris Doherty was sworn in for a third term Monday and said Scranton is ready to serve as a model for cities everywhere. Mr. Doherty took the oath of office at Lackawanna College with far less pomp and circumstance than his first two inaugurations. About 60 people attended, many of them family and members of his City Hall staff. His speech lasted only seven minutes, long enough to praise his first two terms. "By anybody's estimation or opinion," Scranton is "one of the best cities in Pennsylvania," Mr. Doherty said. "And today, are we willing to accept the mantle of success? Are we willing to be the city for which other cities will follow?" he asked. "Are we willing to be the city willing to raise the bar ourself? I know we are." No one predicted the existence of the newly opened Commonwealth Medical College in the same building eight years ago, he said. He praised a raft of other elected officials who helped the city progress through cooperation, a trait he portrayed as the region's norm. "We dared to dream. We are not afraid to fail. And we set an agenda of success," Mr. Doherty said. "We believe in ourselves. ... We are now a community that measures itself by the achievements and the goals and the dreams that we have. We dream great dreams for ourselves." In an interview afterward, Mr. Doherty said he's ready to be mayor another four years if his run for governor fails. He had three staff meetings at City Hall just before the inauguration, he said. "Absolutely. I was in the office yesterday. I don't think anybody questions my work ethic," he said. But Mr. Doherty let his aspirations slip in when asked if he could balance the budget in the next four years. "The city's budget?" he asked. "We're going to work towards it." As governor, Mr. Doherty would have to balance a state budget. At City Hall, his frequent nemesis, Councilwoman Janet Evans, officially gained majority control of the council. With Mrs. Evans and her allies Pat Rogan and Frank Joyce joining the council, Mrs. Evans was named its president. Mr. Doherty again dismissed the past contentiousness between Mrs. Evans and his administration. "That's OK, but we've been successful," he said. "It's all worked out for the betterment of the city. It isn't about me; it isn't about them; it's about the city." Contact the writer: bkrawczeniuk @timesshamrock.com

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Last modified: 2/18/2010

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