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."
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."
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."
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."
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."
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."
Establish a landlord training program
"Bob Buckhorn will establish a Landlord Training Program, which will train the city’s landlords on code requirements, code enforcement procedures, and techniques for maintaining their properties in a manner that will help prevent code violations in our rental communities."
Work to obtain funding for the reclaimed water program for the city's neighborhoods
"Bob Buckhorn will fight in Washington and Tallahassee to obtain funding for the expansion of the STAR program to each of the city’s neighborhoods."
Conduct a city-wide lighting assessment
"Bob Buckhorn will work with TECO to conduct a city-wide lighting assessment to determine where city lights need to be updated, repaired or replaced."
Maintain the size of the police force
"Question (from Tampa Police Benevolent Association): Would you consider the continued reduction of police officers through attrition or layoffs of police officers as a way to cut costs within the department or the overall city budget? Please explain. Answer: (by Buckhorn): No. The city of Tampa has coverage of 3 officers per thousand citizens, which is adequate. I think one of the reasons we have (been) successful at reducing crime is because of the number of officers we have patrolling the streets."
Maintain pension benefits for police
Question (from Tampa Police Benevolent Association): Would you attempt to impose any type of legislation that would reform or reduce the pension benefits that Tampa police officers currently receive? Answer (by Buckhorn): No.
Support the Step Plan for police pay increases
Question (from Tampa Police Benevolent Association): Would you attempt to suspend or eliminate the Step Plan (which, before it was suspended last year, awarded pay increases to officers annually as they work toward becoming master patrol officers in their first 11 years)? Answer (from Buckhorn): "NO. In fact as you recall, I tried unsuccessfully to discourage the (Pam Iorio) administration from doing the same and floated a number of proposals to them that would have avoided that."
Plant 1,000 trees per year
Bob's plan includes: ... plant 1,000 trees per year in our parks, medians and right of ways.
Coordinate waterfront development
"If Tampa intends to make its waterfront a central focus of downtown urban planning, the development of the entire waterfront must be a coordinated, citywide effort. As mayor, Bob Buckhorn will immediately bring together economic development, business, housing and environmental stakeholders to develop a complete Development Master Plan designed to make the best possible use of all of Tampa’s waterfront areas and the surrounding neighborhoods. A financing plan to complete the Riverwalk and an aggressive marketing plan to program the use of our riverfront venues will be included."
Establish Neighborhood University
"Buckhorn wants to further empower existing neighborhood leaders and support the development of new leaders through the establishment of a Neighborhood University. The Neighborhood University will provide a formal leadership-training program for neighborhood leaders modeled on the Tampa Chamber’s successful Leadership Tampa program. In addition, the Neighborhood University will house and build upon the existing City’s Neighborhood Empowerment program offering enhanced technical support services for the City’s neighborhoods."
Balance rights of citizens to protest at Republican National Convention while keeping downtown safe
During a March 8, 2011, televised debate, Bob Buckhorn was asked how he would balance the rights of citizens to protest during the Republican National Convention with his responsibilities to keep downtown Tampa functioning and safe. He responded: “People who want to express themselves need to be given an opportunity. For me, it’s a very fundamental premise: you break the law, you’re going to jail. Absent that, you’re entitled to say whatever you want to say within reason. But we will conduct ourselves accordingly. Our police department will conduct themselves accordingly. I want to make sure that when the entire world is watching Tampa, Fla. that we stand up and we are proud of this city and that we behave accordingly.”
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