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The staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Tampa council member wants to move city elections to November

16

December

TAMPA – Moving city elections from March to the general election in November could save taxpayers $700,000 and boost turnout, Tampa City Council member Joseph Caetano said Thursday. The city’s mayor’s race and City Council elections are scheduled for March 1, but Caetano said voters are likely to tune out rather than turn out.“People are tired” after last month’s general election, he said. “They’re not going to vote.”

But Caetano failed to persuade a majority of council members to act on his idea – at least this time. The arguments against looking further into moving the election included the notion that city candidates would get lost on a November ballot cluttered with names in other races and that the city looked into this same thing a couple of years ago and decided to do nothing.

Caetano’s motion failed on a 3-3 tie, with council member Yvonne Yolie Capin out of the room and Chairman Thomas Scott and council members Gwen Miller and Charlie Miranda voting no. When Capin returned, the council didn’t reopen the discussion because Caetano couldn’t get the unanimous consent that is required by council rules. That means he will have to wait for a future meeting to bring the idea up again.

[Last modified: Tuesday, December 28, 2010 10:34am]

    

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