Slidell Mayor Freddy Drennan took the oath of office for a second term as chief executive Tuesday night at the city’s 43rd inaugural ceremony, joined by Police Chief Randy Smith, who also began his second term, and nine City Council members — two of whom were being sworn into elected office for the first time.
Judge Rick Swartz Jr., of the 22nd Judicial District, administered the oath of office to Drennan.
State Rep. Greg Cromer presided over the event, as city officials took the stage one by one with their families to officially start their four-year terms.
At-large council members Landon Cusimano and Kim Harbison, both incumbents, were sworn into second terms, followed by the seven district council members, including incumbents Sam Abney, District B; Sam Caruso, District E; Jay Newcomb, District F; and Bill Borchert, District G.
District A Councilman Glynn Pichon and District D Councilman Val Vanney began their first terms, while Warren Crockett reclaimed the District C seat that he had lost to Buddy Lloyd four years ago.
All but those three members are in their final terms, as are the mayor and police chief.
Smith, who like the mayor was re-elected without opposition, was sworn in last.
Drennan, in an inaugural address, ticked off a list of upcoming capital improvement projects, including a new dog park at Fritchie Park, an upgrade of Veterans Memorial Park and improvements at Heritage Park that include new bathrooms, a municipal marina and an ultimate connection to the Tammany Trace.
He pointed to 170 businesses that have opened, changed ownership or relocated to Slidell in the past four years and the opening of Fremaux Town Center, which he said will eventually be a city within a city.
“I believe we live in the best-kept secret in the South. I truly believe that. What a great place to raise a family, what a great place to live. ... I think we take a lot for granted. To sum it up, where we are today compared to two to three years ago — much better ... that’s where we are.
Follow Sara Pagones on Twitter, @spagonesadvocat.