TUPELO, Miss. (WTVA) -- Tupelo Mayor Jack Reed Junior gave his final State of the City address Wednesday.
The mayor spoke for a little more than an hour.
He urged citizens to support the city and its education system.
Reed gave the city high marks for what he called "quality of place" issues.
He called Tupelo a safe city while praising Police Chief Tony Carleton and his officers.
He added that the department has been pre-notified that it will be submitted for state accreditation this spring.
The city's fire department was named Mississippi Fire Department of the Year, and the city recorded no fire deaths in 2012.
Reed said the city's financial bottom line looks good.
He pointed to an increase in the city's savings account of over $1 million.
That placed the city's savings account balance at over $18 million.
"We're in excellent shape financiallly. I would put our record up through the Great Recession up with any other city in America. The citizens can feel absolutely confident that we are in excellent financial shape," Reed said.
He praised all of the city's departments as well calling for continued support for newer projects such as the Aquatic Center and an expanded Salvation Army shelter.
And then he spoke of education. He asked citizens of all races for continued support of the city schools even though some apparently intend to take their kids elsewhere.
"If we have only minority children in our public schools, we will still have excellent schools and excellent leaders run by excellent teachers and students learning. But if our public schools become all minority or all white, we will not be the best city we can be."
Afterwards, many were pleased with the tone of Reed's speech.
"Mayor Reed did a great job today, and the passion, the charge he gave us to continue to work for our schools is wonderful," said Tupelo Public School District Superintendent Gearl Loden.
"This is one thing that we really need to do is bring forth racial harmony in this city," said Bishop Clarence Parks.
"The cash reseve fund that we've had sitting in excess over a number of years, he put it to use, and I think over the long term it will benefit the city," replied Dick Hill, a former Tupelo city councilman in attendance.
Reed has said he will not run for a second term and expressed hope he has left the city in good shape for the next mayor.