In her first public appearance after securing the Democratic nomination for mayor, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake spoke briefly and in vague terms to reporters, but was tight-lipped on future plans.
"I'm glad it's over and now we can continue to do the work to move Baltimore forward," Rawlings-Blake said of the election, in which she swept a field of challengers with 52 percent of the vote.
In heavily Democratic primary, the November general election is generally considered a formality. Rawlings-Blake, who was appointed to the mayor's office last year following the resignation of Sheila Dixon, is all but guaranteed a four-year term.
Rawlings-Blake addressed reporters for fewer than 10 minutes Wednesday morning in the ceremonial office in which city leaders swear an oath of office.
"Today is about moving forward together," she said. "I think the broad support that I was able to get mixed with my olive branch to the opponents' supporters, we have a unique opportunity to move forward again."
Rawlings-Blake received broad support throughout the city, crossing color lines to win precincts in both traditionally white and black neighborhoods.
When asked about her goals for the future, Rawlings-Blake returned to the three-prong slogan that has been her motto since she was the City Council President.
"We have a shared vision for our city," she said. "Everyone wants safer streets, better schools and stronger neighborhoods."
Rawlings-Blake declined to say whether she planned to replace agency heads or cabinet members, many of whom remain holdovers from the Dixon administration.
"I'm not making any personnel announcements here," she said, noting that she was "constantly evaluating" city leadership.
Rawlings-Blake said that she planned on "continuing the restructuring" of the quasi-governmental Baltimore Development Corp.
"We're going to do a lot more advocacy in the business community, trying to retain more business in Baltimore," she said.
And she said she planned to spur economic development by "making more investment in innovation," and praised the work of Canton's Emerging Technology Center.
Rawlings-Blake said she was "frustrated" that work on the city's slots parlor had been delayed. Bids for that project are due in two weeks, a two-month extension of the original date.
She said she did not know how many bids would be submitted, but that she had "confidence that we will receive bids from people who are not just interested but capable."
Rawlings-Blake said she was disappointed by voter turnout, which, at 18.5 percent of registered voters, sunk to a historic low.
"I had hoped for a larger turnout," she said. "My campaign put considerable resources into yesterday -- feet on the street as well as money."
Describing herself as a "student of politics and a love of democracy," Rawlings-Blake said she planned to study other city's initiatives to boost turnout. She noted, however, that slightly more voters cast ballots yesterday than in last year's citywide race for State's Attorney in which Gregg L. Bernstein upset incumbent Patricia Jessamy.