MONTGOMERY — Kay Ivey has officially taken her oath of office as she begins her second full term as the governor of Alabama.
On Monday, newly elected members of Alabama’s constitutional offices took their oaths at a large inaugural ceremony held in front of the capitol building in Montgomery.
Ivey, who was the last to take her oath of office, began by praising the citizens of Alabama in light of dim economic conditions in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We don’t need to sugarcoat it,” Ivey said. “Right now, with the state of our nation, times are tough. An unprecedented pandemic has led to the federal government spending way above our means. This has resulted in record-high inflation, which means higher costs everywhere that you turn. Alabamians in every corner of our state stepped up in a real way when the pandemic halted how we live in our country. And now, as your governor, I am doing everything in my power to step up for you and your families, to provide meaningful and responsible assistance.”
Ivey spoke extensively on prioritizing improving the state's poorly performing education system. She also announced an executive order to create the Alabama Commission on Teaching and Learning.
“This group of folks will have boots on the ground and help advise us on big changes we can make to recruit, retain and prepare the teacher of tomorrow,” Ivey said. “…Ensuring every Alabama student receives a high-quality education will be my number one focus,” Ivey said. “We will build upon the foundation we have laid so that by the end of my term, Alabama will rank in the top 30 states for the first time in our history in reading and math.”
Joined on stage by newly elected U.S. Sen. Katie Brit (R-Montgomery), the 78-year-old governor stated her disbelief at the progress in the country simultaneously with the regression of specific values.
“When I was a young girl, growing up in Camden, I could never have imagined the world we live in today," she emphasized. "Never would I have thought that the day we elect a female governor and a female United States Senator, we would also have to fight for our girls to have a fair chance when they compete in sports.”
In recent years, Ivey signed several laws protecting gender distinctions in Alabama schools.
In 2021, Ivey signed a law prohibiting transgender athletes from participating in sports designed for members of the opposite sex. In 2022, she also signed a law banning K-12 students from using a restroom, locker room or changing room that did not correspond to their biological sex.
Ivey concluded her remarks by highlighting her priorities over the next quadrennium, including expanding business opportunities, additional school choice, increasing broadband accessibility, streamlining government, and creating more accountability and transparency.
“We will tighten up government,” Ivey concluded. “For example, we will reduce burdens holding back our businesses and will cut regulations over 25% over the next two years. The bottom line is we want a government that better serves the people of Alabama.”
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