WUFT News

Gainesville mayoral race candidates hold forum at Santa Fe College

By on March 14th, 2013

The mayoral candidates for the city of Gainesville had a full agenda on Wednesday at a mayoral candidate forum, as they discussed the local challenges in the city and their solutions to those challenges.

About 20 people attended the forum, which was hosted by Santa Fe College’s Center for Innovation and Economic Development in downtown Gainesville.

Democracy Commitment at SF sponsored the event; the group is part of a national initiative to promote civic engagement and democracy education among community college students.

Marilyn Tubb, co-chair for the Democracy Commitment, served as the forum’s moderator and questioned the candidates on their vision for the city and their leadership styles.

All six candidates were present: Ed Braddy, Scherwin Henry, Pete Johnson, Mayor Craig Lowe, Donald Shepherd Sr. and Mark Venzke.

Candidates discussed issues such as poverty and the decline of areas in the city such as downtown Gainesville, where Henry said he remembered a time when the area was a bustling hub for African American-owned businesses in the 1950s and 1960s. But seeing its decline, he feels the college would be able to restore its previous success.

“We had a number of African American businesses that were blossoming,” Henry said. “I see working with Santa Fe to revitalize that economic engine that used to be here as well.”

Candidates were also allowed to ask each other questions, many of which were directed to Lowe. Braddy asked if he also credited his policies to the loss of businesses and jobs in the city, while Venzke questioned him on his hiring of his former campaign manager as his assistant.

After the forum, Lowe said despite having most of the candidates’ questions directed to him, he was happy to answer them and was certain that voters would be able to create their own vision for the future.

“We had some very insightful questions and I enjoyed the opportunity to answer them,” Lowe said.

Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly identified Mark Venzke as Paul Venzke.

WUFT’s Twitter coverage of the final forum, hosted at Sante Fe College’s downtown campus.

http://storify.com/wuftnews/final-gainesville-2013-mayor-s-race-forum


This entry was posted in Politics and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.
 

More Stories in Politics

Sassyfrass, a male western cougar, yawns as she wakes up from her evening nap. Kept in a tiny backyard cage, his original owner beat him with a shovel, leaving him afraid of humans.

Big Cat Rescue Works To Pass Protection Act

One of the largest accredited wildlife sanctuaries, Big Cat Rescue, want to end private possession and breeding of big cats by November. To reach their goal, the sanctuary and a partnered coalition are pushing to get the “Big Cats and Public Safety Protection Act” passed.


Thousands Sign Initiative To Get Florida Marijuana On 2016 Ballot

United For Care has turned in about 100,000 out of 683,149 validated signatures needed to put the Use of Marijuana for Debilitating Medical Conditions bill on the 2016 ballot. So far, Marion, Levy and Alachua counties have not yet received any signatures, according to the supervisor of elections offices in these counties.


Feds Take Aim at Scott ‘LIP’ Lawsuit

Federal officials filed documents Monday responding to a lawsuit by Gov. Rick Scott. The suit says the federal government “engaged in unconstitutional coercion” to make Florida expand its Medicaid program, while federal officials say this is a baseless claim.


Florida Advances To Online Voting Registration

Gov. Rick Scott signed a bill that would implement an online voter registration system for Florida. The system is planned to be in place by 2017.


Lopez-Cantera ‘Strongly Considering’ Senate Bid

Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera publicly confirmed Saturday that he is considering running for U.S. Senate in 2016. He announced his possible candidacy at the executive board meeting during the Republican Party of Florida’s quarterly meeting at the Rosen Centre Hotel in Orlando.


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Underwriting Payments