Nancy Miles' campaign
To learn about challenger Nancy Miles' campaign, click here.
More than a month into his campaign and with a challenger kicking off her own campaign, Winter Park Mayor Ken Bradley outlined his platform as he pushes for his second term.
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Winter Park is better off than it was in March 2009 when he started his current term, he said, citing residents’ comments.
“I think if you talk to any citizen they’ll say this city is a much better place,” he said. “It’s a better place civilly. Our general fund has grown. People are paying less money to receive a higher level of service. I’ve had a large group of people say to me that it seems like the city’s a lot better than it was.”
He said that his goals for his next term would be to bring in businesses that would add jobs, and to improve the decision-making process to streamline government.
“I’m going to bring jobs to our community, bring decisions to point,” he said.
That includes the recent controversial vote to swap the city’s Dan T. McCarty State Office Building for property owned by Progress Point LLC, which Bradley’s challenger, Nancy Miles, said wasn’t discussed enough with residents. Bradley said that the process to dispose of the property has lasted more than two years, with plenty of opportunities for citizen input.
“This has been more than a two-year journey,” Bradley said. “There have been multiple opportunities to talk about this. This has had enormous public input. What the public wanted was a decision.”
The end result was a land deal that was criticized by residents and commissioners as inequitable, but has the potential to bring more than 300 jobs to the city. Bradley said he’ll continue to push for more jobs and a more business-friendly atmosphere if he wins a second term.
“We need to make sure that our citizens have jobs and to make sure that our tax base is balanced,” Bradley said. “We need to continue to do better with it.”
Also faced with criticism from his opponent regarding his treatment of residents and fellow commissioners on the dais, Bradley said he respected residents’ opinions during meetings.
“We let citizens speak as long as they want to,” Bradley said. “We’ve all been given the opportunity to talk and talk and talk. In any session if people begin to make the same points, after a careful call to consideration, that’s not silencing, that’s saying let’s move on. Citizens don’t have to be in a Commission meeting until 10:30 at night to be heard. I think citizens as well as commissioners have ample opportunities to make their points.”