Sunday, December 21st, 2014

Buck-O-Meter

Tracking the promises of Bob Buckhorn

Create task force to streamline business permits and regulation

"The first year ... Bob will immediately pull together a task force of respected leaders representing every segment of the business community as well as neighborhood and community leaders to look at our regulatory and bureaucratic processes to help us streamline and expedite plans, permits and regulations."

Consolidate departments for business permits and regulation

"The first year ... Bob will reorganize city government to focus on assisting and growing our economy. All agencies involved in the permitting and regulatory process, community redevelopment, housing, construction services, the Tampa Convention Center and related iity entities will be consolidated into a single mission under the deputy mayor for economic opportunity."

Create an urban growth master plan for downtown and nearby neighborhoods

"During Bob’s first year, he will begin the formation of a master plan that will engage the downtown, Ybor City, Channelside, Tampa Heights, Riverside Heights and North Hyde Park areas to guide future urban growth. This master plan will include design guidelines, amenities, funding strategies, connectivity between major public projects, zoning and land use, particularly those centered on the Hillsborough River, among other concepts."

Incorporate New Urbanism concepts in land development codes

"The first year ... Bob will modernize land development codes to incorporate New Urbanism concepts and form based zoning in order to encourage the development of our urban neighborhoods."

Create incentives for high-tech industries

"The first year ... his administration will create incentive packages to target high tech industries identified by the Tampa Hillsborough Economic Development Corporation (EDC)."

Public programs in downtown parks

"The first year ... the Buckhorn administration will develop a marketing initiative to provide public programs in our downtown parks on a frequent and ongoing basis."

Create a plan to pay for and finish the Riverwalk

"The first year ... Bob and his team will develop a financing plan to complete the unfinished segments of the Riverwalk."

Create a housing program modeled after the Challenge Fund

"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."

Propose property tax breaks to targeted high-tech industry

"Bob’s administration will propose an economic development package that will offer targeted high-technology industries a reduction in property tax based on the number and types of jobs they create. This incentive is targeted to the industries identified by the EDC as value-added and in which Hillsborough already has a strategic advantage. Bob has proposed that this economic development package be placed on the election ballot in the spring of 2011. Targeted industries will include: Life sciences and medical service; Financial service; Cyber security, defense, and national security; Information technology;Research and engineering."

Appoint a Director of Protocol, International Trade and Commerce with specific responsibilities

"He will appoint a Director of Protocol, International Trade and Commerce who will report directly to the mayor. This person will be charged with the following responsibilities: Serve as the Mayor’s point person for all international commerce activities; To reenergize the partnership of Tampa International Airport, the Port of Tampa, the city of Tampa, Hillsborough County and the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce to develop and expand our regional international trade efforts; Work to attract and identify locations for foreign consulates; Work with the Tampa Port Authority and the Florida Ports Council to expand the Port of Tampa’s infrastructure in order to allow the port to actively pursue significant container business; Work more closely with the Governor’s Office of Tourism, Trade and Economic Development and Enterprise Florida to participate in statewide international trade initiatives; Aggressively target, pursue and schedule trade missions led by the mayor and accompanied by regional partners and local Tampa Bay businesses; Assist the new director of Tampa International Airport (TIA) in pursuing more international flights for TIA."

Establish a "One-Stop Licensing Program" available in person and online

"As mayor, Bob Buckhorn will establish a 'One-Stop Licensing Program,' available in person and on-line. The One-Stop Licensing Program will streamline the licensing process, providing business owners with a complete list of all licenses and permits required by the city and providing assistance in obtaining the licenses and permits applicable to their business. In addition, the One-Stop Licensing Program will streamline the multiple layers of business regulation by acting as a resource for city businesses to identify and interact with the appropriate county and state regulators."

Work to attract the federal New Markets Tax Credit

"As mayor, Bob Buckhorn will work with Tampa’s community development entities and private developers to attract and leverage the federal New Markets Tax Credit program in order to provide financing for business development in the economically underserved areas of Tampa."

Appoint a Chief Technology Officer with specific responsibilities

"As mayor, Bob Buckhorn will appoint a Chief Technology Officer (CTO) for the city of Tampa. The CTO will serve as a member of the mayor’s senior staff and will be the point person for all of the city’s tech-related activities, including: e-Services -- Tampa’s response to our customer and constituents' needs; e-Business -- The use of technology to modernize how government works; e-Management -- Coordinating organizational changes inside city government."

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

"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."

Continue allowing police to take their police cars home

"Since 1995, Bob Buckhorn has consistently voted for, and has been a vocal advocate for allowing officers to take home their police cars. This policy reduces neighborhood crime and increases employee morale at very little cost to the city. As mayor, Bob will continue this policy."

Create position of Deputy Mayor for Economic Opportunity

"The first year ... Bob will create the position of Deputy Mayor for Economic Opportunity. This individual, who will report directly to the mayor, will be responsible for the implementation of programs and initiatives targeted at all three economic development steps and will supervise the agencies and departments involved in business regulation and economic development. This position will come as a result of the consolidation of existing positions and will not come at an additional cost."

Strengthen "one strike and you're out" policy in public housing

"Bob Buckhorn will work with the Tampa Housing Authority to strengthen enforcement of the 'One Strike and You’re Out'” policy in public housing."

Strengthen the Nuisance Abatement Board

"Bob Buckhorn will instruct city attorneys to make referrals to the (Nuisance Abatement) Board on chronic nuisance complaints and will give the board additional enforcement authority to effectively enforce against violators."

Offer an ordinance in his first week to eliminate panhandling on major roadways

"Bob will craft an ordinance in his first week that eliminates panhandling on major arterial and collector streets in Tampa."

Launch a public service campaign for bicycle safety

"The Buckhorn administration will launch a public service campaign to educate and alert motorists to bicycle safety rules."