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In presenting his annual budget to the City Council, the mayor did what all smart politicians do—he emphasized that things were a mess when he took over, but declared that he would make the tough choices to get the city back on track.

“I inherited a government that needed to be reshaped,” the mayor said. “So, in the balanced budget I am presenting to you today, I’m guided by my ongoing determination for government to be even more efficient and to further control its size, scope, and cost. But that is balanced by my belief that we must put a priority—and find a way to invest a limited amount more—on programs that make our neighborhoods safer and that help grow our economy and create new jobs and businesses.”