As the new year is fast approaching, Akron City Council will be taking a new shape as four new members were introduced Monday night.
Donnie Kammer (Ward 7), Marilyn Keith (Ward 8), Bob Hoch (Ward 6), and Garry Moneypenny (Ward 10) will be representing Akron in 2012.
In addition, incumbents Jim Hurley III, Bruce Kilby, Russel Neal Jr, Ken Jones, Mike Freeman and Marco Sommerville were all sworn in as Council Members by Judge Elinore Marsh Stormer.
New Ward 7 representative Donnie Kammer says he plans on focusing on the crime issues within the city.
"Personally, the last few years I've been very vocal on crime prevention, and I want to expand that," he explained.
"I want all of the Council members to branch out, besides going to their monthly ward meetings, create block watches, etc."
Kammer, who has a law enforcement background says that it's important not only for the council members, but the public to get involved when it comes to keeping their cities safe.
Bob Hoch, who will be serving Ward 6, says it will be a team effort to keep Akron going during these tough economic times.
"There's a lot of quality people that work for the city of Akron and by pooling our resources together we can work as best as we possibly can to make this city as efficient as possible."
Hoch said his focus was to make sure the police and fire departments were adequately funded and had the access to state-of-the art equipment to do their job the best they can.
Ward 10 Councilman Garry Moneypenny, who's making his return to Council Chambers says the number 1 priority is bringing jobs to Akron.
"I want to assist in the economic development by bringing jobs to Akron, and helping out our unemployed base locally."
As for Ward 8's Marilyn Keith, she says her approach to Council will be a simple one.
"I'm going to show up fully, I'm going to pay attention, I'm going to tell the truth, and let God have the outcome."
Also, I want to help us keep our heads above water compared to a lot of the other cities around us such as the Youngstowns, the Detroits, the Pittsburghs around us."
Marco Sommerville, who was sworn in as President, said that 2012 will bring some challenges to the new Council body, but says that it's a challenge that they will all embrace.
"We have to work with some tough issues," he says.
"The budget restraints, funding police and fire, crime prevention, and the other things we are facing will be some of the biggest challenges in the history of this city, but I feel we have the right people in place to do what's best in moving the city forward."
Ward 9's Mike Freeman was elected Vice President of City Council, along with At-large councilman Jeff Fusco elected as President Pro-Tem.
The new council's term starts Jan 1 and their first meeting will be held Jan 9, 2012.