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Mayor Larson delivers State of the City address

Published: Mar. 29, 2022 at 9:15 PM CDT
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DULUTH, MN. (KBJR 6) --Mayor Emily Larson delivered her annual State of the City address at the DECC Tuesday night. Larson’s central theme during her address was “Lighting the Path Forward.”

She spoke to the city about how she plans to do just that through economic development, public safety, connectivity, and sustainability.

“I’ve identified four key areas of focus this year. They are all linked, and together light a path towards a more resilient, prosperous, and sustainable future,” Larson said.

Larson spoke of improving Duluth’s economic development through infrastructure, housing, permitting, tourism, and innovation.

“My goal for Duluth is to be the entrepreneurial engine of the state of Minnesota,” Larson said.

Touching on public safety, the mayor said the city has made progress but has a long way to go.

“The public safety problems we face are complex,” Larson said. “If they were easy, we’d have fixed them a long time ago.”

One of Larson’s goals last year was to take on Duluth’s digital divide.

She said only 6 percent of the city has access to high-speed internet, something she hopes to change.

“I’m laying out a goal that every resident and business in the City of Duluth will have access to affordable, reliable, high-quality fiber optic internet within six years,” Larson said.

The mayor also pledged to make Duluth more sustainable.

“We are now committed to the Cities Race to Zero, making clear that we aim to achieve carbon-neutrality – net-zero – by 2050, in line with science, and it is essential if we are to remain economically viable,” Larson said.

All part of an effort, the mayor says, to also move past pandemic impacts on the city.

“We are on that edge going from dark to light. Emerging from the pandemic, but also stepping out of shadows of challenging decades.”

You can read the mayor’s full speech on the city’s website.

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