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PR- 175-08
May 9, 2008


Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg met with London's newly-elected Mayor Boris Johnson at London's City Hall today to share ideas and strategies on how to run two of the world's largest cities and announce a new exchange program between the cities to share best practices in government innovation.  In addition to welcoming any officials from London who wish to meet with their counterparts in New York City, New York officials will travel to London as part of Innovation Exchange to help Mayor Johnson and his administration design and implement initiatives drawn from New York.

"New York and London have a special relationship as two of the world's greatest cities: we not only compete with one another, we learn from each other.  No matter where in the world you're mayor, the goals are always the same:  clean streets; strong schools; thriving businesses; and, most important, safe neighborhoods.  In New York, we've worked extremely hard in each of these areas, and now our citizens are living longer and healthier lives, our schools are turning around, crime has fallen to historic lows, and tourists continue to visit in record numbers.  Mayor Johnson and I had a productive discussion about these and other issues this morning, and I look forward to working with him on the challenges we share," New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg said.

"Mayor Bloomberg has shown inspirational leadership and I am delighted we are establishing this new era of co-operation. I have been particularly impressed by Mayor Bloomberg's achievements in expanding educational opportunities, providing more accountable government and delivering taxpayer value. I am looking forward to working closely in the future," London Mayor Boris Johnson said.

The Innovation Exchange program will focus on designing practical and effective policies, overcoming implementation challenges, and evaluating program success in making government more transparent, accountable, accessible and efficient, with an emphasis on public safety and emergency management.   As part of the exchange, New York City officials will share insights on core mayoral principles and best practices including:

Transparency and Accountability. Mayor Bloomberg has sought to make the workings of government transparent to all citizens and ensure that City agencies are accountable for their performance and for producing results.  For example:

  • "Each year, the Mayor's Management Report (MMR) serves as a public report card about the way City services affect the lives of city residents. In February 2008, the Mayor unveiled the Citywide Performance Reporting (CPR) system as a supplement to the MMR, which makes 300 of the MMR's indicators available to the public online, along with an additional 200 indicators, updated monthly.

Accessibility.  Mayor Bloomberg has worked to expand access to City services through technology initiatives and other strategies.  For example:

  • "In 2003, Mayor Bloomberg created the 311 Customer Service Center, a unique model for access to government information, social services, and referrals.  All calls are answered by a live operator, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, with the public able to receive quick and easy access to all New York City services.

Efficiency.  Mayor Bloomberg has sought to enhance project management and strategic planning, making City agencies more efficient and responsive to citizen concerns:

  • "In 2006, the Mayor's Office of Operations was overhauled, with a new Agency Services group created to assist agencies in improving service quality and delivery.  In particular, the group helps to manage multi-agency projects and offer solutions to interdisciplinary problems.

Public Safety/Emergency Management. Mayor Bloomberg has made it a key priority to improve the quality of life and safety as well as enhance the City's ability to plan for, and respond to, emergency situations.  For example:

  • "New York City will soon launch a dedicated wireless network allowing first responders to get emergency information quickly so they can save more lives.

At the same time, New York City officials will seek to draw upon the lessons learned by the Greater London Authority in recent years to address the effects of climate change and to improve transport by alleviating congestion and encouraging sustainable modes of transportation.

Since entering office in January 2002 and particularly since being re-elected in November 2005, Mayor Bloomberg has hosted new mayors from around the United States and from around the world who traveled to New York City to learn innovative approaches to the challenges facing local leaders.  These mayors include Adrian Fenty of Washington, DC; Antonio Villaraigosa of Los Angeles, California; Cory Booker of Newark, New Jersey; Bill White of Houston, Texas; Michael Nutter of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Shelia Dixon of Baltimore, Maryland; Chris Coleman of St. Paul, Minnesota; Gavin Newsom of San Francisco, California; Jamshid 'Jimmy' Delshad of Beverly Hills, California; (Premier) Steve Bracks of Victoria, Australia; Sam

Sullivan of Vancouver, Canada; and Flemming Knudsen  of Aarhus, Denmark.  Mayor Bloomberg has also hosted visits with more than a dozen mayors from small cities and towns in the New York metropolitan area.

Elected on May 2, 2008 for a four-year term, Mayor Boris Johnson governs a population of over 7.5 million and 610 square miles. Together with the 25-member London Assembly, he leads the Greater London Authority, with responsibilities for transportation, police and fire services, strategic planning, and economic development in the London metropolitan area.  The Mayor also has a number of other duties related to culture and tourism, including responsibility over Trafalgar Square and Parliament Square.

Since 2002, London and New York City have been Sister Cities, which is part of the New York City Global Partners program.  New York City Global Partners connects New York City with global cities by sharing best practices in business, security, and cultural programs, as well as people-to-people exchanges.  New York's nine other Sister Cities are Beijing, Budapest, Cairo, Jerusalem, Johannesburg, Madrid, Rome, Santo Domingo and Tokyo. Through New York City Global Partners, Mayor Bloomberg convened 26 foreign cities for a January 2007 summit on "Governing a Diverse City in a Democratic Society," and in May 2007, more than 30 cities were represented at the C40 Large Cities Climate Summit held in New York City.  Previous New York City Global Partners summits include "Rebuilding International Tourism" (February 2003); "Meeting the Challenges of Terrorism and Crime" (October 2003); "Transforming Government through Technology" (June 2004); and "Strategies for Public Art" (February 2005).  Private and foundation funds will be solicited to pay for the New York City officials' travel.


Stu Loeser / John Gallagher   (212) 788-2958

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