Aftab Pureval sworn in as Cincinnati mayor along with new city council

11:28 a.m. – Pureval reminded of William Henry Harrison

The cold day reminded new Mayor Aftab Pureval of the inauguration of another local politician 180 years ago. 

“Before he can be sworn in, President Harrison had to step down as the Hamilton County clerk of courts. As I said the Hamilton County clerk of courts office is a launching pad to the Oval Office. So keep an eye on Pavan Parikh,” Pureval said as he opened in his inaugural speech. 

He said he learned from Harrison’s mistake on his presidential inauguration day. Harrison didn’t wear a coat and gave a long speech in the cold, leading to his death a month later. 

“As you can see I’m wearing a topcoat,” he said. 

11:33 a.m. – Pureval talks about his platform

Pureval said equity, environmental justice, and a “holistic innovated approach to affordable housing” will be a priority.

“I will serve you with a profound respect with the faith you put in me,” Pureval said. “I will work hard every day to make you proud of this city. I will not waste it.”

11:40 a.m. – Vice Mayor Jan-Michele Lemon Kearney sworn in

Vice Mayor Jan-Michele Lemon Kearney took the oath of office and then spoke about life expectancy. There’s a dramatic difference in how long people are expected to live in the city.

“Right now, we have in Mount Lookout a life expectancy of 86 years. In Avondale, 68 years,” Lemon Kearney said. 

She talked about everyone needs to pitch in and make the city more inclusive. 

“We have to bring equity, we have to all do it together …. If you are in a corporate boardroom and see someone isn’t represented pull up a chair.”

11:45 a.m. – Jeff Cramerding says council will get along

After he was sworn in as a new city council member Jeff Cramerding predicted the new council will be peaceful. 

“This is a group of people that truly enjoys each other’s company,” he said.

Noon – Scotty Johnson promises to ‘move the needle’

After taking the oath of office, former Cincinnati Police officer Scotty Johnson made a promise to make an impact on affordable housing and equity. 

“Hold me to it, hold my colleagues to it,” Johnson said. “We will move the needle when it comes to housing, and we will move the needle when it comes to equity, and we will move the needle when it comes to a just Cincinnati to make sure everybody is respected and everybody has a seat at the table.”

12:20 p.m. – Greg Landsman promises ‘historic’ investment in affordable housing

Landsman said there will be a “historic” investment this year to make living in the city more affordable. He said the culture at city hall will improve and be more cooperative. 

“We have a once in a generation opportunity to lead in a new way and get results,” Landsman said. 

12:30 p.m. – Inauguration closes as Victoria Parks sworn in as president pro tempore

Councilwoman Victoria Parks was the last to be sworn in. 

“We are public servants,” Parks said “we are here for you. We need to kindly join us as we seize this moment as we stand at this fork in the road and we choose the right way with God’s help. We need you. So it’s go-time. Let’s do it.”

Previous reporting

It’s official.

Cincinnati’s new mayor Aftab Pureval and nine-member city council were sworn in Tuesday morning during a ceremony in Washington Park.

Pureval, the city’s first Asian American mayor, was sworn in by U.S. District Court Judge Timothy Black, a friend of Pureval’s who also officiated at Pureval’s 2018 wedding.

Pureval and some of the council members biked to the ceremony from Cincinnati City Hall, a nod to the importance of biking, infrastructure and the climate that Pureval and some council members touted on the campaign trail.

Councilwoman Jan-Michele Lemon Kearney will serve as vice mayor, a choice previously announced by Pureval.

The ceremony had been planned for Cincinnati Music Hall’s ballroom, but was moved amid a surge of local COVID-19 cases. 

The crowd bundled up and braved the 30-degree chill on the lawn in the shadow of Music Hall. 

Macie and Marie Cunningham, two teenage sisters from Hamilton, performed on the television show “The Voice,” sang “God Bless America.”

The new council’s first meeting is Wednesday at 2 p.m., with public comment starting at 1:30 a.m.

More:Meet the new Cincinnati City Council: 8 Democrats, a Republican and it’s majority Black