Friday, December 15, 2017
Tampa Bay Times – News Roundup

Kriseman would like to release Rays plan on Thursday, vote next week

ST. PETERSBURG — Mayor Rick Kriseman hopes to release a written version of a tentative deal with the Tampa Bay Rays on Thursday.

A City Council vote could be held as early as Jan. 14, said Kevin King, Kriseman's chief of staff.

In private meetings with council members this week, Kriseman discussed releasing the plan on Thursday, but he said he doesn't intend to bring the matter to a vote then, the first gathering of the new council chaired by Amy Foster.

Council member Charlie Gerdes told the Times on Monday that Kriseman had broached the idea of holding an initial vote on the plan Thursday. On Tuesday, Gerdes said that idea had been discussed, but the timing was "fluid" and dependent on the mayor finding support among five council members.

On Tuesday, Kriseman said he never intended to bring the matter to a vote at the Thursday meeting.

Aides later clarified that the mayor never intended to ask for a vote on that day, but did discuss releasing the plan publicly.

Foster, after reading a Times story, called City Attorney Jackie Kovilaritch late Monday with concerns about holding a vote so quickly.

Foster wants the public and council members to have more time to deliberate.

"My preference is to have public engagement in the process," Foster said.

She said she wouldn't have a problem voting on Jan. 14, the next scheduled meeting, as long as the plan is released this week.

Foster is scheduled to meet with Kriseman today.

King, Kriseman's chief of staff, said holding a vote on Jan. 14 is a possibility.

"It really depends on where things are and agreement between the mayor and chair," King said. "The earliest possible vote would take place on the 14th."

Contact Charlie Frago at [email protected] or (727) 893-8459. [email protected]

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