PEORIA, Ill., Peoria City Council inducted new members Tuesday evening.
New elects Rita Ali, John Kelly along with incumbents, Beth Jensen, Zachary Oyler, and Sid Ruckreigel were sworn in.
They each reacted with gratitude and readiness to serve the community.
Both Ali and Kelly spoke about what they plan to do for the community during their term.
“As your council member I will work to develop respect and appreciation in our city,” Ali said. “For it is through this respect and appreciation that we will begin to address issues of equity, enabling everyone in our city the opportunity to reach their full potential and enjoy success.”
Councilman John Kelly said he hopes to be a catalyst for growth in Peoria.
“..economic growth, bring in more investment, it’ll create more jobs, it’ll create more prosperity, that’s what I am after,” Kelly said.
The Peoria City Council meeting was a first for some and the last for others.
Councilman Eric Turner and Councilwoman Beth Akeson will not be serving another term.
The council showed their appreciation for longtime councilman, Eric Turner who served in his position for 24 years.
“As an African American on this council it’s a different kinda thing,” Councilwoman Denise Moore said.
She said Turner helped her understand concepts and navigate areas she was not privy too.
“I greatly appreciate that and I will always carry that with me so thank you,” Moore said.
Councilwoman Beth Jensen reflected on her time on the council with Turner.
“You will be missed a lot and I thank you for all you’ve done for the city and for all the citizens and Peoria, we are a better place thanks to you,” Jensen said.
The council recognized Akeson for all she has contributed to the council and city during her term.
Akeson was not present Tuesday. Mayor Jim Ardis said she was out on vacation.