TAMPA — The race for the West Tampa-based District 6 City Council seat appears headed to a runoff, as Charlie Miranda led the crowded field by a wide margin Tuesday night but not with a majority of the vote.
Miranda, a fixture of the Tampa political scene since the 1970s, faced four challengers in his bid for a ninth term on the City Council. After hitting the term limit for his citywide District 2 seat, he ran in District 6, which includes his home area of West Tampa but also parts of Seminole Heights and South Tampa.
Miranda, 82, had more than 49% of the vote with all precincts, early voting and some mail ballots counted. It wasn’t immediately clear how many mail ballots had yet to be counted. In second among the five candidates in the field was Hoyt Prindle, a 38-year-old lawyer, who had about 22% of the vote.
Should Miranda remain under the 50%-plus-one-vote line, he and Prindle will face off in a runoff on April 25.
The other candidates were Tyler Barrett, a political consultant; Rick Fifer, a Realtor; and Nicole Payne, a mortgage loan officer.
Prindle, Fifer and Payne all ran on their opposition to PURE, the controversial wastewater reuse project championed by Mayor Jane Castor. Miranda, who represents the city on the Tampa Bay Water board and has made securing Tampa’s future water supply a central facet of his latest term, supports the project.
Housing was also a common theme for the candidates. Miranda has supported allowing secondary units on residential lots but said the practice can’t be allowed to overtake the character of neighborhoods consisting mostly of single-family homes. Prindle said he would aim to overhaul land use and planning codes in an effort to bolster affordable housing, but also emphasized maintaining neighborhood character.
Though Miranda is a Castor ally, and though a win for him would bolster PURE’s chances, the District 6 race didn’t have the same political overtones as some of Tuesday’s other races, where outcomes will determine whether the new council is in concert or in conflict with Castor.