Editor's note: Candidates for St. Petersburg City Council not recommended by the Times are given an opportunity to respond:
I am not a one-issue candidate; see my issues page on my website, which contains eight separate issue categories. I have been an active, successful advocate for many concerns including public safety, land use, parks and preserves, water and habitat conservation, codes/nuisance abatement, Swiftmud and Florida Wildlife Commission policy. I have presented legislation that was voted into law.
I've asked several knowledgeable people about the costs to refurbish the pyramid. Gary Grooms, CEO of Mesh Architecture (his firm was the local architect on the Wave Team pier design competition) responded with: "A 60-foot-wide approach and a reasonably sized apron could be built for about $12 million. Reimagining the envelope of the pyramid and rebuilding the current interior space would probably be another $12 million."
Refurbishment is an option; I will be your voice.
In reissuing support for Darden Rice for District 4, the editorial board misses the mark and promotes biased politics as usual. In doing so, it fails the people. While public safety is job one, my platform is about creating jobs, serving our residents, educating our future workforce and spending our money wisely. I have been living that platform by starting companies that create high-wage jobs, organizing citywide events for my Rotary club, serving as a neighborhood leader and volunteering in the public schools my four children attend. I have moved well beyond "learning about city operations" to action: delivering a newly paved alleyway in under four weeks, helping a resident deal with a nuisance property and introducing an opportunity for manufacturing jobs to the economic development team. A vote for Fries is a vote for high-wage jobs, education, community and service above self. I look forward to serving you.