TAMPA — Incumbent Luis Viera cruised to an easy win over challenger Quinton F. Robinson in the race for the District 7 seat on the Tampa City Council.
Viera, 41, received more than three-quarters of the vote to win a second term representing a district that runs through just about all of Tampa north of Busch Boulevard. During the campaign, he raised more than 10 times as much money as Robinson, taking in more than $100,000 in campaign contributions. Robinson raised less than $8,000.
LIVE RESULTS: See the results in each race.
Viera attributed his victory to hard work.
“The people who didn’t believe in me, I worked hard to win their trust,” he said. “The people who supported me, I worked hard to make them proud and worked hard to represent all the people in my district.”
Viera first won a seat on City Council in a runoff in 2016. He has long championed autism awareness and said he ran, in part, to continue making Tampa more accessible. Robinson, 42, worked with a trucking company until 2016. He was endorsed by the Hillsborough County Democratic Black Caucus.
During the campaign, Viera, an attorney, said he would continue advocating for “our ignored neighborhoods’’ in his district and throughout the city. That means completing the New Tampa Forest Hills Recreation Center expansion, making all of the parks autism, sensory and disability-friendly, protecting green spaces from development and addressing stormwater needs.
He favors establishing a Community Redevelopment Area to make dramatic improvements in the University of South Florida area. He wants to use money from the newly passed transportation sales tax for a mass transit connector between USF and downtown Tampa and to implement design reform and safe streets for Fowler Avenue and Busch Boulevard.
"I support a framework and dialogue which gives our neighborhoods and ignored areas priority, including neglected areas and areas suffering from long term congestion like New Tampa (which has seen an increase in population from 7,000 in 1990 to 60,000 today), the USF area and other areas throughout our city,'' he said.
Robinson, 42, is a former consultant who said he wanted to establish a Community Redevelopment Agency to improve north Tampa communities such as Sulphur Springs, Terrace Park and areas east of I-275 and west of 52nd Street, excluding the Busch Gardens and University of South Florida area. He said the city has neglected the areas for 15 years.
His resume states he was a partner and principal manager of State-Road Trucking LLC till 2016. He also worked in an investor recruiting and procurement firm and, before that, was with a firm that lobbied for the end of felon disenfranchisement in employment, housing and education.