MDC Mayor GimenezMiami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez delivered his vision for local government on Wednesday — financial stability, government transparency and key investments for the future.

Some environmental groups have criticized Gimenez for not going far enough to address climate change, an issue that threatens Miami’s future survival. During last year’s budget debate, Gimenez responded to the criticism by adding an additional $300,000 to fund engineering studies that could help combat Miami’s rising seas.

In his address Wednesday, the mayor said he is also challenging local universities such as the University of Miami and Florida International University to use their research expertise to help find solutions to sea-level rise and climate change. FIU officials said they met with Gimenez’s office in recent months, and are in the process of figuring out what specific expertise each university brings to the table to avoid duplicating efforts.

“We know that South Florida is Ground Zero for sea-level rise,” Gimenez said.

FIU President Mark Rosenberg — one of many local power brokers who attended Gimenez’s speech — said it was noteworthy that the climate change portion was discussed relatively early, before the mayor moved on to topics such as traffic, the airport, and urban redevelopment.

“The fact that he put it at the top, I think that’s symbolic,” Rosenberg said. Read More >>

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