Compare three South Florida Mayors: Alvarez, Diaz and Slesnick

Three important mayors in South Florida are due a comparison.

Mayor Alvarez (Miami-Dade County) fought to get a strong mayor form of government and he has used this power to increase salaries of colleagues and employees at the highest levels in the Mayor’s office and heads of the police force; this at a time in which literally hundreds of employees and positions will be dropped.

Mayor Diaz (City of Miami) has taken on the financial crisis to present a strongly, austere budget, he is holding the line on tax increases and he is threatening the police union with reductions unless they go along with contract changes.

Mayor Slesnick (Coral Gables) strongly favors a city spending increase returning to amounts of two years ago when taxes reductions were forced on the city (thanks to Florida legislation); the initial presentation of a large millage increase 20 percent, lowered to 14 percent in the first budget hearing; the imposition of a fire fee, and a new fee on emergency medical services in the city. The Mayor is satisfied with a modicum of positions cuts, a healthy capital projects budget and merit increases to the employees in the middle of a financial crisis.

About Stephen E. McGaughey
International consultant in economic development programs and projects

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