As many of you already know, I have been a commissioner for the City of Miami since September 3rd, 1996. For over a decade, it has been a privilege and an honor to serve the residents of our great City. Today, I ask for your support and vote as a candidate for Mayor of Miami.
It is important you understand how profound my devotion to this City really is. I believe Miami excels because it has great residents, who constantly push for a better quality of life. However, in the years past, the vision for our City has focused on an uncompromising dream of a bustling metropolis. Development and growth tightly grips the reins of our political machine. This is not greatness but rather a manifestation of affluence. When I speak of our great City, I do not envision a metropolis. I see a City whose residents are proud to call Miami their home. A City where its people feel safe, and where there is a sense of community and responsibility. Miami belongs to its residents and we as elected officials must answer to all residents, not just the wealthy and powerful.
The time has come for us to reclaim our City. I regret to inform you that for years now residents have taken a back seat to special interests under the guise of progress and development. At times, I have been the lone voice against these special interests. I have persistently tried to remind my colleagues of our responsibility to you, the residents, of this great City. As such, my mayoral campaign is not about slogans and catch phrases. I ask only that you look at my record as a leader.
Something that I would like to bring about as part of this campaign is my ardent discontent with the two-minute rule. For those of you unfamiliar with this rule, the two minutes refers to the time allotted to residents when speaking before the City of Miami Commission. I am totally against this time limit because residents are only granted two minutes, while special interests receive hours of attention before commissioners behind closed doors. How can a city government preach democratic ideologies, if the very fiber...its people...are allowed only two minutes to voice concerns?
Help me take back our great City. Help me prove, once and for all, we cannot measure the success of a city by the height of its buildings, but rather by the quality of life of its residents. Help me prove the solutions to our problems are not in higher taxes and inefficient projects tailored to fill the pockets of the affluent. I promise we can do more with less. We shall no longer spend massive amounts of public funds on unproductive development. We can do what is right not only for today's residents, but for our children's future.
My vision for Miami is simple. I picture a City where all residents and visitors can walk the streets safely at night. A City where one can decide to take an early morning jog without the slightest bit of hesitation or fear. This great city should be a place where our children can play on our baseball fields and basketball courts without trepidation. A place we can guarantee is clean and pleasant. But most importantly, a city that uses your hard earned tax money to light our streets, pave our roads and educate our youth.
My critics claim I lack vision because I speak of potholes and garbage collection. But I tell you now: I do not lack vision. I believe as public servants we have an obligation to provide our residents with the expected services they pay for. I understand that unfortunately this has become a novel concept, which many of my critics do not value. But as a resident, a father and a grandfather, I recognize the meaning behind quality of life.
So this has become my commitment to you, the residents of this great City. As your mayor, I promise to focus on our basic necessities and more importantly to use our financial resources to enhance our City from within. We need to focus on making Miami a more efficient, clean, friendly and secure city. Instead of spending millions on masking problems, let us fix them.
In the coming months, I will present my vision for this great City. But like always, I welcome and encourage your thoughts and opinions. Our campaign is not about impressing constituents but rather about amplifying the voices of our residents. We can do this. We can prove this City belongs to the everyday people who call it home. Government has the responsibility to answer to its people even if what the people want does not involve ribbons, cocktail parties and naming rights.
I implore your help in my mission to take back our great City and make it a place we are all proud and grateful to call home.
Candidate for City of Miami Mayor