Buckhorn offers support on enforcement
The "one strike and you're out” policy for public housing dates back to the Clinton administration: It says that people in public housing will be evicted if they engage in crimes involving drugs or violence.
In his campaign for Tampa mayor, Bob Buckhorn said he would work with the Tampa Housing Authority to strengthen enforcement of that policy. We should point out here that the housing authority is an independent agency not subject to the mayor's direction.
Jerome Ryans, the president of the housing authority, said the "one strike and you're out” policy has been in place for years and works well. He said the authority has a good relationship with the Tampa Police Department, and it hasn't been difficult to determine when tenants have violated the policy.
Both Ryans and Buckhorn told us separately that they have had several conversations about keeping the policy in place and making sure it works. But since that seems to be happening, neither could point to anything new being done to "strengthen” the policy.
This seems to be a campaign statement that promised more than the mayor's authority can actually deliver. Still, Buckhorn has offered to help the authority if and when needed. We rate this Compromise.
Interview with Jerome Ryans of the Tampa Housing Authority, March 20, 2012
Interview with Mayor Bob Buckhorn, Feb. 28, 2012
Tampa Housing Authority website, accessed March 20, 2012