Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer's highs and lows in 2011

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by Renee Murphy

WHAS11.com

Posted on December 22, 2011 at 6:54 PM

Updated Thursday, Dec 22 at 7:24 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) – One year is now in the books and Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer says this has been the fastest year of his life. It has been marked by highs and lows in his administration.

Mayor Fischer says if you want more jobs in the city, you have to have a more educated community. That is part of his long term vision to boost the local economy. But he knows that is one of his biggest challenges ahead. The city is already facing a $20-30 million gap in next year’s budget.

“We have to produce a balanced budget. We are not like Washington where we can print money. So, everything is going to be looked at. It’s a challenge we’ll be up to but it’s not easy,” said Fischer.

The mayor is working closely with a city wide initiative to get 55,000 more college degrees to residents by the year 2020.

The expansion of Ford was one of the biggest economic accomplishments for Louisville this year.

The next wave of jobs in the area could be coming as a combined partnership with Lexington. Leaders want to build Louisville and Lexington as one big hub.

“Seeing how can we be the epicenter in terms of advancement in manufacturing jobs, good middle income jobs and white collar engineering jobs that come with that.  So, we are really a pilot for the country,” said Fischer.

Fischer had to do major overhauls of Metro Animal Services, Public Works and MSD. He also now has to select a new police chief. Fischer says 16 people are vying for the job. A selection will be made this spring.

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