Frey spends first hours as mayor thanking those who help Minneapolis run

Jacob Frey gets ready to help out an organics recycling team.
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey gets ready to help out a City of Minneapolis organics recycling team after taking his oath of office on Tuesday. Frey says he wants to experience all kinds of jobs and see how the city works.
Evan Frost | MPR News

Jacob Frey became the new mayor of Minneapolis on Tuesday. He said his new position is a dream job, but there's another line of work he's always wanted to try — working on the back of a garbage truck.

Within his first few hours as mayor, Frey donned a pair of blue jeans, work boots and a bright yellow safety jacket.

Frey didn't just fulfill a childhood fantasy by jumping on the back of a refuse hauler, he came out to thank the people who make the city run, he said. Frey also wants to visit city sewers, answer 311 calls and perform other tasks.

Jacob Frey rides on the back of an organics recycling truck.
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey rides on the back of an organics recycling truck in Minneapolis shortly after taking his oath of office in a private ceremony on Tuesday.
Evan Frost | MPR News

"The reality is the mayor and the entire City Council could die tomorrow and the city would be just fine," Frey said. "Because we have some extraordinary city employees that are working here. Whether they are picking up the trash or plowing the streets or making sure that when you turn on the faucet that water comes out."

Grow the Future of Public Media

MPR News is Member supported public media. Show your support today, donate, and ensure access to local news and in-depth conversations for everyone.

Frey also spent part of his first day across the river in St. Paul attending the inauguration of his counterpart in the capitol city. Melvin Carter took the oath of office at his former high school, St. Paul Central.

Frey said Carter is a friend and he's thrilled that the two of them will be serving the Twin Cities together. The two new mayors share some of the same priorities: eliminating racial inequality, reconnecting communities of color and police and making investments in housing.

Carter, the city's first African-American mayor, said too many people of color don't benefit from the things that makes St. Paul a great place to live.

"I know firsthand how it feels to live on a block devastated by foreclosures; to long for a teacher who looks like my child; and to be stopped by police, over and over again," Carter said in his inaugural address.

To accomplish his agenda, Frey said he wants a more cooperative relationship with the Minneapolis City Council. Frey announced on Tuesday a new open door policy for council members and their staffs.

All 13 members of the Minneapolis council have been sworn in and are ready to start work next week.

One of the council's first actions will be to select a new City Council president.