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City Council chairman Frank Reddick says he is not interested in being deputy mayor

Reddick said he will run for a Hillsborough County Commission seat in 2020 rather than serving as David Straz's top deputy
City Council chairman Frank Reddick speaks at a groundbreaking ceremony at Williams Park in East Tampa on Wednesday. Reddick led the fight for park improvements at the park located at 4362 E. Osborne Ave.
City Council chairman Frank Reddick speaks at a groundbreaking ceremony at Williams Park in East Tampa on Wednesday. Reddick led the fight for park improvements at the park located at 4362 E. Osborne Ave.
Published Feb. 27, 2019

TAMPA — When City Council Chairman Frank Reddick steps down from the dais on May 1, he won't be sticking around City Hall even if David Straz wins the mayor's race.

Reddick said Wednesday that he plans to run for a Hillsborough County Commission seat being vacated by Les Miller in 2020, not become Straz's deputy mayor, as the retired banker and philanthropist suggested at a mayoral forum last week.

Straz told a crowd at Middleton High School that he would ask the two-term council member who represents the city's majority-black district to become his deputy mayor.

"If he'll take the job, I'll ask Frank Reddick to do it," Straz said at a NAACP-hosted forum.

That was news to Reddick, who was in Miami at the time. Straz hadn't mentioned his idea to him, he said.

"I plan to announce for commission after the mayor and city council races are over," he told the Tampa Bay Times.

The city's ethics code would also prohibit Reddick from working for the city for one year after he leaves office on May 1.

Wednesday represented a victory for Reddick. He attended a groundbreaking with Mayor Bob Buckhorn at Williams Park in East Tampa where the city will spend about $600,000 to expand the activity center, classrooms, restrooms and sidewalks at the park at 4362 E. Osborne Ave.

Buckorn praised Reddick's advocacy for his district, which is the only majority-black district on the seven-seat city council.

"This would not have happened if Chairman Reddick hadn't pushed hard for it," Buckhorn said.

Reddick took the podium to thank City Council members Guido Maniscalco and Harry Cohen, who is running for mayor, for their support. Then he addressed a group of children sitting on the floor in the back.

"We're going to make this a park you can be proud of," he said.

Contact Charlie Frago at cfrago@tampabay.com or (727)893-8459. Follow @CharlieFrago .