Ralph Becker reflects on time as SLC mayor

Posted at 7:45 PM, Dec 28, 2015
and last updated 2015-12-28 21:45:14-05

SALT LAKE CITY -- Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker lost a close re-election bid to Jackie Biskupski.

As his final days in office wind down, he sat down exclusively with FOX 13 News to reflect on his eight-year tenure.

One of Becker’s priorities was addressing discrimination and providing protections for the LGBT community.

"When we started people in this community were advising me, ‘you’ll never get this done. You’ll be embarrassed trying; don’t waste your time and energy,’" Becker said.

Becker is proud of the city's non-discrimination ordinances.

Other highlights of his tenure: transforming the downtown area.

"It used to be you use to do your work and go home or you come for a show and go home,” he said. “Now people living downtown, they're more people visiting downtown -- Main Street is busy."

Under his watch, light rail and TRAX lines were put in at the airport, and the Sugarhouse street car and the rebuilding of North Temple.

"Changes the character of that whole neighborhood and gives us another way to get around, both visitors and people live there," Becker said.

While he doesn't have regrets, he knows some issues hurt him.

The public safety building fiasco, the ousting of popular Police Chief Chris Burbank and plans to scrap the city's golf courses.

"As a mayor, there are some decisions you get to choose to make, there’s some decisions that fall on you, because it’s your time in office and the city needs to do things," he said.

What’s next for Becker? He doesn’t have any immediate plans yet. He’s taking a month off to travel with his family.