Columbus mayor takes oath of office, shares "to-do" list

By Lindsey Connell - bio | email

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) -  It may have been her first official day on the job Monday, but don't expect Columbus Mayor Teresa Tomlinson to have any jitters.

The former attorney and former director of Midtown, Inc. in Columbus was sworn in a ceremony at the Columbus Government Center Tuesday night.

She's hit the ground running since she was elected in November, working with the city manager to find a new director for the Parks and Recreation Department after the widely reported scandal in 2010. Also on the front burner: reducing insurance premiums for the 600 retirees in the city.

But Tomlinson is also looking ahead, hoping to reap the rewards of the economic growth being created by the military with Base Realignment and Closure.

"Columbus is being looked at by a lot of employers, large companies and so we want make sure that we attract those as well. Things look very good for the jobs market in Columbus in the near future and we just need to make sure that we capitalize on those opportunities," she said.

The new mayor won't say which big companies are looking to possibly set up shop in Columbus at this stage in the game but she explained to WTVM exactly why she thinks the Fountain City is a hot spot for growth.

"When you live in Columbus, Georgia in a city that's 200,000 persons or less, you're really in a fairly optimal size for ideal lifestyle where you can live very close to where you work. If you get much larger, a city of a million up to 5,6 million people, those employers become diluted in a larger pool so they can be big fish in a small pond in Columbus and I think that's very appealing."

On Tuesday, Mayor Tomlinson will be overseeing her first city council meeting.

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