Archives of Rudolph W. Giuliani

Mayor's WINS Address
Sunday, January 4, 1998

Our Agenda for Permanent Change
by Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani

On the steps of City Hall on New Year's Day, I thanked the people of New York City for giving me the opportunity to serve as Mayor for a second term. During the inaugural address, I outlined New York City's Agenda for Permanent Change - how, over the next four years, we plan to make the changes of the last four years permanent, and to move forward to secure an even better New York City well into the 21st century.

Our agenda for change is based on one fundamental idea: that the spirit of New York City is renewed today because more and more New Yorkers are freer and more independent than they were four years ago, and that in order to progress further, we must liberate more New Yorkers to live their lives as they choose.

As we work to include each and every New Yorker - with no one left behind - our work will be harder than it has been over the last four years. But we're not intimidated by the size or depth of the challenge. We're invigorated by it, because we've already proven how we can succeed when we work together and focus in good faith on building a better New York.

First of all, we must ensure that New York City remains America's safest large city. Instead of being satisfied by what we've accomplished, now is the time to deal fatal blows to organized crime, to end the drug trafficking we have known in the past, and to put on more pressure and fight even harder against those who seek to destroy our children's future with drugs and violence.

That's why we are going to add over 1600 new police officers, so that the NYPD will reach 40,000 officers and be at its greatest strength in history. We will add five more drug initiatives to the four presently operating, more than doubling the resources devoted to those initiatives since my announcement of our anti-drug offensive. This will allow the Department to bring unrelenting pressure on all drug dealers in all five boroughs and drive them out of this city.

Second, we will dedicate ourselves to making our schools once again the envy of the nation, building on the success already achieved by Chancellor Rudy Crew. We will demand that all our schools have the highest standards and inspire all our students to do their best. We will work to end principal tenure, and to stop social promotions. We will encourage and expand public school choice, as well as charter schools.

And to make our schools safe havens for learning, I am once again committing myself to giving the NYPD - the most professional law enforcement agency in the world - the primary supervisory role in securing the safety of our children in our public schools.

Finally, we have to be a City that is moving more and more people into jobs - because employment gives people the freedom to make a better life for themselves and their children. We will continue to advance the proud record that has remade New York City, which was once the welfare capital of the nation, into the workfare capital of the nation. People who need help will no longer go to welfare offices. "Welfare offices" will not exist - they will be turned into job centers. Everything we do will be oriented around the centrality of work.

And hand in hand with this, New York City will reduce and eliminate more burdensome taxes and regulations so that we can grow more private sector jobs, adding to our already record job growth of the last four years. A job is the greatest social program of all. It gives people pride, stability, independence, and the precious ability to take care of themselves.

In the last four years, New York City has seen more change than at any other time in its history. But City government is not satisfied - and no New Yorker should be satisfied either. If we are truly to leave a lasting legacy, we must realize that our work has just begun. Our goal, after all, is to uphold the oath of ancient Athens, "To transmit this city not only not less, but far greater and more beautiful than it was transmitted to us."

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