Sunday, February 1st, 2015

Tracking politicians' promises


Tracking the promises of Gov. Rick Scott


Tracking the promises of Bob Buckhorn


Tracking the promises of Carlos A. Gimenez


Tracking the promises of Rick Kriseman

Promises we’ve rated recently

Protect St. Petersburg taxpayers in Rays negotiations

The Promise:

"Throughout the negotiating process I will ensure that our taxpayers are protected. While a sense of regionalism is important, especially in tough economic times, my primary duty will always be to the residents of St. Petersburg."

Update December 22nd, 2014: City council votes down deal requiring Rays to pay through 2026

Require Rays to pay a fee to look elsewhere

The Promise:

"If the Rays simply do not want to be here any longer — then they should be given the opportunity to pay an exploratory fee in order to look at other locations, provided those locations are in the Tampa Bay area."

Update December 22nd, 2014: Rejected deal didn't have an exploratory fee

Make curbside recycling mandatory

The Promise:

Q: Name three policies pushed by Mayor Bill Foster during his administration that you support and would advocate continuing. Name three others that you would want to change. A: "I will continue to support the efforts at curbside recycling but go beyond the half-measures and make it mandatory."

Update December 8th, 2014: City approves plan to start mandatory recycling by summer 2015

Treat Codes Compliance Assistance Department as a budget priority

The Promise:

"As mayor, I will ... support staff and treating our Codes Compliance Assistance Department as a budget priority. As we continue to emerge from the economic downturn and related budget cuts, we must look to restore funding to the areas that were hit the hardest, and that includes Codes."

Update November 25th, 2014: City Council approves mayor’s budget for three more officers

Have final design for new pier by September 2014

The Promise:

"I will ask them (an appointed committee) to submit their recommendations no later than April 2, 2014, with the goal of having a final design in place within the first nine months of my administration."

Update November 25th, 2014: Deadline replaced with design vote scheduled for 2015

Support referendum for Green Light Pinellas and route into downtown

The Promise:

Q: Pinellas voters are expected to vote in November 2014 on raising the sales tax by 1 cent to pay for better bus service and a light rail system? Do you support the referendum and the proposed route into downtown? A: "Yes and Yes. Light rail and other modes of public transportation are vital to our municipal and regional success and moving us into the future."

Update November 24th, 2014: Greenlight failed, but Kriseman did his part

Create a series of initiatives to improve parks and public spaces

The Promise:

"To facilitate the development of safe, enjoyable public parks, Bob Buckhorn will create a series of parks initiatives. These will include: The development of a Parks Advisory Board made up of residents and businesses in neighborhoods surrounding city parks to advocate for and help support those venues; A commitment to identify corridors for the development of a city-wide greenway/trail from MacDill Air Force Base to New Tampa using existing rail lines and new development partnerships; Developing parks partnerships with existing parks advocacy groups such as Parks Forever and the Mayor’s Beautification Committee; Encouraging the effective use of the city’s undeveloped open lots for the development of community open spaces such as playgrounds, pocket parks and community gardens."

Update November 21st, 2014: Tampa parks and greenways feel the love

Create a housing program modeled after the Challenge Fund

The Promise:

"The first year ... The question of affordable housing for first-time homebuyers and the rehabilitation of existing homes is a priority for a Buckhorn Administration. Together with our lending partners, our housing initiative will build a program modeled after the successful Challenge Fund. ... This program will ... include down payment assistance, reduction in origination fees, reduced interest rates, streamlined loan applications and assistance in preparing and packaging the loans."

Update November 21st, 2014: Not like the Challenge Fund, but other help for housing

Start an incentive program to encourage police to live in the city

The Promise:

"As mayor, Bob Buckhorn will encourage public safety officers to reside in the city by implementing a residency incentive program. This program will provide police officers incentives such as low-interest loans, or down payment assistance."

Update November 21st, 2014: Just hasn't happened; no housing perks for police

Support USF research efforts

The Promise:

"As mayor, Bob will provide continued support for research sponsored by the University of South Florida through assistance with zoning, land use and regulatory changes necessary to facilitate the development and clustering of spin-off companies. This includes development of additional opportunities around the USF Center for Advanced Medical Learning & Simulation (CAMLS) in downtown Tampa."

Update November 21st, 2014: Buckhorn cheerleads for moving the USF med school downtown

No layoffs for police; no closed fire stations

The Promise:

Gimenez "pledged to maintain services and not lay off police officers" or close fire stations.

Update September 8th, 2014: Miami-Dade averts police layoffs

Grow Florida's economy by $74B in GDP, $41B in personal income, and $1B in tax revenues

The Promise:

"In total, Florida's economy will gain an additional 700,000 jobs, $74 billion in state GDP, $41 billion in higher personal income, $1 billion in total state tax revenues as a direct result of the increased economic growth."

Update September 4th, 2014: Indicators close to goals, but Scott can't take all the credit

Expand use of nuclear power and alternative fuels

The Promise:

"As governor, Rick will work toward energy independence from foreign oil with the expansion of nuclear power, the use of alternative fuels and ensure that we can drill for oil safely.”

Update September 4th, 2014: Scott approved nuclear power plants, but not much focus on other alternatives

Will fight to repeal federal health care law

The Promise:

Said he would join efforts to repeal the health care law, including supporting a constitutional amendment that "prohibits the federal government from imposing President Obama's individual mandate, to protect Floridians' freedom to control their health care choices."

Update September 4th, 2014: Scott made exception to his fight for Obamacare repeal by supporting Medicaid expansion

Reform Medicaid with a federal waiver

The Promise:

"Reforming health care for Medicaid recipients (through a waiver) and state employees to consumer directed care will lower the cost of health care, increase choice of health plans, and save taxpayers $1.8 billion."

Update September 3rd, 2014: Florida got Medicaid waiver but we will have to wait to assess savings