Pensacola City Councilwoman Diane Mack prefiled this morning to run for mayor in the November election.The inside buzz is that she wanted to file prior to vote on the mayor’s salary – to make it clear the salary had no influence on her decision.
he city of Plantation, Florida, is the same size, in square miles, as the City of Pensacola, yet about 30,000 more people live in Plantation. That’s 30,000 additional people who contribute to the economy and the tax base and the vitality of that city. Pensacola would be immeasurably stronger financially and civically if we had 30,000 more people living within the city limits.
For decades the City of Pensacola has been going in circles, steered by what we might call the traditional establishment. Whether the failure to make significant progress has resulted from a lack of will or not knowing how or being content with the status quo, the fact is that the traditional establishment has failed us.
Some have believed that the form of government was to blame and have brought about a change in that government. I believe the right sort of leader can be effective regardless of the form of government, although it is certainly easier to be effective as an executive mayor. Because of the authority granted to this new position of executive mayor, it is more important than ever to look beyond the traditional establishment in choosing the leader of our City. It is time for passionate, principled, no-excuses leadership.
I have given deep thought to this matter for two months and consulted both friends and strangers of diverse backgrounds and concluded that the mission I set out on during the 2008 City Council campaign, to make Pensacola a far better place for all its citizens, would be best accomplished from the mayor’s office. This morning I pre-filed to run for the position of mayor of the potentially great City of Pensacola.
Over the next two months I will be working on the development of a statement of vision for the dynamic and sustainable growth of the City and a platform for the achievement of that vision, in consultation with a group of respected advisors. I am deeply grateful for the experience, sharp minds, and selfless interest which they will bring to this process.
In the meantime, I am ready to set these goals. The new executive mayor of the City of Pensacola will take office in January 2011 for a term that will end November 2014. In these four years, if I am elected mayor, the population of Pensacola must reach at least 60,000 (currently 54,925), the unemployment rate must drop to 7% (currently 10.6%), and the per capita income must increase 5% (currently $21,438). If these goals are not reached, I would not seek a second term.