Alabama’s new governor was sworn into office on Monday.
In his inauguration address, Gov. Robert Bentley gave few details about how he plans to focus efforts on his main goal — creating jobs. He mentioned nothing about the state budget.
Bentley, a retired dermatologist from Tuscaloosa and former Republican state lawmaker, thanked former Gov. Bob Riley for his work getting new ethics measures passed in a special session of the Legislature in mid-December. Riley was term-limited out of office after eight years.
“Because of the new ethics laws proposed and signed by Gov. Riley and passed with the guidance of these outstanding legislative leaders, we have started the process of implementing the toughest ethics package in the country,” Bentley said. “Now we can focus on helping the people who elected us, rather than arguing about the need to get our own house in order here in Montgomery.”
Bentley said he would not accept a pay check until unemployment reaches 5.2% and he ordered state agencies to focus on job creation.
“I’m going to direct every state agency to do whatever it can to work with the private sector and create jobs,” he said. “We are going to have to be creative. Agencies that are not typically focused on job creation will certainly have to be now.”
The governor pledged to work with the federal government “when we can,” but warned that DC will not dictate “our every move.”
Before taking office, Bentley named David Adams Perry as his finance director. Perry is filling a position that's been vacant for some time. He most recently worked as an attorney with Maynard, Cooper & Gale PC in Birmingham.
Perry formerly was assistant state finance director under former director Drayton Nabers Jr. and has served as outside counsel to the state finance department. Nabers is a shareholder at Maynard Cooper, according to the firm’s website.
Perry, 32, received a bachelor’s degree in public policy studies from Duke University and earned a law degree from Northwestern University School of Law.