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Philip Levine

Why are you running?

I am running for re-election as Mayor because I believe that Miami Beach continues to take on the critical challenges of today with real solutions. We have eased flooding in parts of Miami Beach as a result of immediate action under my leadership and of the Commission. We have balanced our budget responsibly, restored confidence in our police department and enhanced city services for our residents and visitors. We are focused on getting things done in Miami Beach and with the continued support of the voters, I will make sure we continue our track record of success.

What do you see as the biggest challenges facing Miami Beach right now?

  1. Sea-level rise continues to pose a major threat to Miami Beach. I have convened a working group of coastal mayors so together we can implement solutions to sea level rise. Further, I have established a senior level Office of Resilience to ensure Miami Beach is ready to implement serious reforms to address sea level rise.
  2. Transportation and traffic congestion is the next infrastructure demand our city faces. We implemented a free trolley service on an emergency basis to serve Alton Road and West Avenue businesses and residents affected by road construction. We hope to launch several similar trolley services throughout Miami Beach. Moreover, I am aggressively exploring an intermodal system to connect Miami Beach with the mainland in an effort to reduce traffic congestion in and out of our city. We need to work with local, state and federal partners to bring resources to our community to implement meaningful solutions that give residents responsible and accessible transit options.
  3. North Beach revitalization is important to the progress of Miami Beach. Earlier this year, we held two public input meetings at the North Shore Youth Center to have an open dialogue with residents about the future and vision for North Beach, one of Miami Beach’s true gems. We are already in contact with universities to explore an education component to the revitalization, and we’re exploring potential public-private partnerships for 71st Street. Additional entertainment amenities such as a skateboarding park and an off-leash dog beach are also being contemplated.

What are some of the solutions you would propose?

See above.

Imagine we gave you a $100 budget. How would you spend those $100?

Please share a few words about how you would tackle the some of the following challenges:

Poverty and the low median wage: I support raising the minimum wage so hard working residents have the means to get ahead.

The high cost of rent/real estate: There is no doubt that we need to do more to build workforce housing so we can have diverse real estate options for working residents.

Congestion and transit options: We implemented a free trolley service on an emergency basis to serve Alton Road and West Avenue businesses and residents affected by road construction. We hope to launch several similar trolley services throughout Miami Beach. Moreover, I am aggressively exploring an intermodal system to connect Miami Beach with the mainland in an effort to reduce traffic congestion in and out of our city.

Climate change and environmental damage: Sea-level rise continues to pose a major threat to Miami Beach. I have convened a working group of coastal mayors so together we can implement solutions to sea level rise. Further, I have established a senior level office of Resilience to ensure Miami Beach is ready to implement serious reforms to address sea level rise.

Transparency in government and access to open data: We have a well-maintained and updated city website that provides residents with real time information. As with technology, though, we can always do more and use more tools. As Mayor, I am always committed to expanding access to information and giving our residents full transparency into their government operations.