If you’re a Miami Beach resident, then you’ve got big elections on Nov. 7 – big because the city is at a crucial moment.
Convincing everyone, from residents to developers, that our little barrier island will not be underwater in a few years is a BFD. Leaders will need to keep finding more money to raise roads, install pumps, and take other resiliency measures while maintaining the character of the city.
Officials will also have to figure out how to balance the needs of residents and the tourism industry, which sometimes clash. You see that in issues like Urban Beach Week, the Ocean Drive last call debate, and Airbnb.
A few things to note:
- The elections are all non-partisan, so we did not identify candidates’ party affiliation unless it was relevant to their previous job experience
- The commission seats are citywide (rather than specific to certain parts of the city)
- While mayoral candidate Dan Gelber does have opponents on the ballot, once former candidate Michael Grieco dropped out, Mr. Gelber had no competitive opponent. We decided to do a more in-depth interview with him, rather than interview all the candidates. UPDATE: Because there is a possibility this race could go to a runoff, we opted after publication to include the other three candidates. You’ll now find information on them below.
- You’ll also be voting on two important issues (a.k.a. referenda). We break those down in plain English for you.
Early voting begins Oct. 23 (times and locations here) and if you registered to vote by mail, you probably already have that ballot in your hand. If you plan on voting in person on Nov. 7, go here to find your nearest location.
Finally, thanks to all our New Tropic readers who submitted questions they wanted candidates to answer! Now, go #votelikeyoulivehere.