Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero cited the city’s achievements and laid out his plan for the upcoming year during his State of the City address at the General Motors Grand River Assembly Plant.
Bernero began his address with M.C. Hammer’s song “2 Legit 2 Quit” blaring through the speakers near a pair of General Motors’ vehicles, signifying the resurgence of Lansing’s automobile industry. The hit song from the 1990’s coincided with Bernero’s message of perseverance.
“The city of Lansing is roaring back,” Bernero said. “We’re a cool, proud, resilient city… When we get knocked back, we get up and come out swinging for the fences because that’s how we roll.”
Bernero stressed partnership as he talked from his podium, where he was flanked by local business members and the Lansing City Council.
The Lansing Board of Water and Light’s response to the ice storm in late December was a topic of discussion. Bernero said BWL did not “live up to our expectations, and it will be fixed.”
However, Bernero did recognize BWL line workers and the United Auto Workers, both of which received standing ovations.
According to a Detroit Free Press article, the company spent $48 million on fixing damage from the storm and plans on spending another $500 million in the next five years.
BWL was not the only target of Bernero’s criticism. The mayor called Michigan roads “Third World.”
Bernero introduced two Italian companies who will be bringing their business to Lansing. According to MLive.com, Saet is a manufacturer of heat equipment and Satiz is a business communications firm.
“When it comes to economic development, we come to win,” Bernero said. He announced partnerships with the Red Cedar Golf Course, Michigan State University’s Eli Broad College of Business and Capital Region International Airport.
Long-time Lansing resident Pamela Eaton was in attendance and enjoyed the State of the City address and said it’s great to know the city is “improving.”