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Full story: Gainesville City Commission passes exclusionary zoning ordinances on first reading

Updated on August 6 with full details of the meeting

BY JENNIFER CABRERA

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – The Gainesville City Commission voted 4-3 to pass all three exclusionary zoning ordinances Thursday night on first reading, with Mayor Lauren Poe and Commissioners David Arreola, Adrian Hayes-Santos, and Reina Saco voting for the ordinances. The final vote was taken at 11:52 p.m. after almost 100 people spoke at the meeting; 88% of the comments opposed the ordinances.

The meeting’s format differed from the usual City Commission procedures: the meeting began with Juan Castillo, a Planner in the City’s Department of Sustainable Development, giving a single presentation that covered all three of the ordinances, then the commission heard public comment, then the commissioners gave their comments, then they voted on each of the ordinances and adjourned.

The ordinances

The first ordinance amends the Future Land Use Element and Map of the Comprehensive Plan by changing the name of the single-family land use to Neighborhood Residential, adding neighborhood-scale multi-family units in that land use, and allowing up to 8 units per acre. It also modifies the Future Land Use Map by renaming all current Single-Family land uses to Neighborhood Residential. The City Plan Board recommended adding the Neighborhood Residential land use without modifying the map.

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By statute, this ordinance must be transmitted to the state land planning agency, which may challenge the ordinance. Other ordinances dependent on this one may not be implemented until 31 days after the state notifies the City that they will not challenge the Comprehensive Plan amendment that is described in this ordinance.

The second ordinance rezones all RSF-1 through RSF-4 zoning districts into a Neighborhood Residential zoning district, which would allow a new use called Neighborhood Scale Multi-family. The City Plan Board recommended leaving current zoning in place and adding the Neighborhood Residential zoning as a new zoning district without automatically rezoning current properties.

The ordinance also defines the Neighborhood Scale Multi-family use, which allows more than one family to live in a building while keeping exterior characteristics that fit into single-family neighborhoods. These buildings have a minimum of 2 units and a maximum of 4 units per building. One building is permitted per lot, and the buildings are limited to two stories.

Other changes to elements like density, lot standards, and setbacks in the Neighborhood Residential zoning district are included in the ordinance, along with requirements for Neighborhood-scale multi-family uses. 

This ordinance will take effect if and when the first ordinance takes effect.

The third ordinance modifies the Land Development Code (LDC) in various ways that provide flexibility for building multi-family dwellings, including changing the requirements for lot splits, changing the definition of a minor subdivision, allowing zero-foot setbacks in some cases, removing a requirement for a wall between single-family and multi-family properties, removing occupancy limits throughout the city, and increasing bedroom limits in the University of Florida Context Area.

This ordinance will take effect immediately if it is approved on second reading.

Public comment

Following the presentation, eleven recorded public comments were played, back-to-back. One of them supported the ordinances, and ten did not support the ordinances.

The commission then took live public comment, alternating between callers and people in the room. We counted eleven live comments in favor of the ordinances and 75 live comments opposed to the ordinances, for a total of 85 negative comments out of 97 total comments.

Members of the public who favored the ordinances generally described themselves as young renters; most said they were UF students or recent graduates. Several said that the City Commission should pass the ordinances and then go on to do more, including taking steps to reduce the usage of cars in the city. Many spoke about climate change and increasing rents and home prices as the reasons for their position.

Those who did not favor the ordinance emphasized the benefits of single-family homes and single-family neighborhoods and expressed concerns about noise and parking issues from adding multi-family buildings in current single-family neighborhoods. They spoke about years of saving for and paying off a home and how that home can be used to build generational wealth in families. 

Other people spoke about procedural issues with the meeting, similar to the concerns expressed in this letter.

Several people complained about the City’s decision to hold the meeting in City Hall with limited seating, leaving a number of people, including some elderly, outdoors in the heat. One commenter said that after the chamber had reached the limit set by the City Commission (with chairs spaced well apart) and then the basement reached its limit, only 20 people were allowed to sit in the air-conditioned hall, and about 75 people were left outside in the heat, including some elderly people. 

Members of the public who spoke were from all walks of life, all races, and from neighborhoods across the city. At one point, Mayoral candidate Gary Gordon sarcastically congratulated the City Commission “for getting black and white to come together.”

The commission had set a limit of four hours of public comment, but when they got to that point, there were still a few people waiting on the phones and 45 more cards for people who had signed up to comment, although many of those people had left by that point. At 10:08 p.m., Commissioner Desmon Duncan-Walker made a motion to hear everyone who was signed up at that point but not allow anyone new to sign up. The vote for her motion passed, 6-1, with Commissioner Reina Saco voting against the motion. 

At 10:45 p.m., Chanae Jackson told Mayor Poe she didn’t “care about your three-minute limit” and refused to stop speaking after three minutes. Poe gaveled the meeting into a recess for about five minutes, and the commissioners stepped out of the room while Jackson sat back down and order was restored.

Commissioner comments

The City Commission began their discussion at about 11:00 p.m., starting with Duncan-Walker, who asked whether she could make the motion. Mayor Lauren Poe agreed but said he wanted all the commissioners to have a chance to speak before making any motions. 

“I’ve lived in Gainesville over 40 years, and I’ve never seen anything like this. I’ve never seen this community pull together—black, white, Democrat, Republican, No Party. What you’ve done with this exclusionary zoning is you have emboldened and organized a black community like we have never seen before” – Commissioner Cynthia Chestnut

Commissioner Cynthia Chestnut spoke next: “I’ve lived in Gainesville over 40 years, and I’ve never seen anything like this. I’ve never seen this community pull together—black, white, Democrat, Republican, No Party. What you’ve done with this exclusionary zoning is you have emboldened and organized a black community like we have never seen before, and for that, I am thankful… You’ve got a whole community speaking now… I have never in my life been in a situation where you have white people calling an issue racist and black people saying, ‘No, it’s not racism.’… The only just thing you can do is vote this down, defer it, send it to the next commission… [Black families] don’t have generational wealth. We build generational wealth through our homes. And for you to come here and to take that away is unconscionable…There’s where the racism comes in… I don’t think that you all want this to go down—no matter what you’ve done on the City Commission, no matter what, this is what you’re going to be remembered for, and it’s not pretty.”

“We can make a more informed decision with Gainesville-specific data, and I think that’s what we all want, but we can’t get it until we try. There’s no way to know what results you’ll get until you do the thing.” – Commissioner Reina Saco

Commissioner Reina Saco said she wanted to make a suggestion, which had been added to the agenda backup at the beginning of the meeting, but first she said that an “unquestionable” number of studies show that “slight upzoning, slight, across the board, increases property values. Worst case, they stay the same as they were.” She said people say the studies are not in cities comparable to Gainesville, and Saco said that was probably valid: “There is no city comparable to Gainesville. I don’t think there ever will be… I know this will do good. I know it will give, not the solution to our housing dilemma but be part of the solution… I’d rather do something than nothing, so my suggestion was to pass the staff’s recommended amendments with a sunset provision… It guarantees an automatic end date, that things will revert how they are today in three or five years, and in that time, staff can collect data… We can make a more informed decision with Gainesville-specific data, and I think that’s what we all want, but we can’t get it until we try. There’s no way to know what results you’ll get until you do the thing.”

“Climate change is happening, and we have to move people away from cars, we have to reduce the amount of energy and water that we use… Climate refugees are moving here, and they’re going to keep coming as our coast fills up with water.” – Commissioner Adrian Hayes-Santos

Commissioner Adrian Hayes-Santos was widely expected to offer amendments to the proposed ordinances, but instead he said, “Porter’s Quarters, Pleasant Street, Fifth Avenue, Seminary Lane area, a majority of Duval, are exempt from this ordinance; they are not a part of this and won’t see changes.”

He said that those are the areas are where developers can currently build, and the ordinance would “spread out” that pressure over the whole city. He continued, “Many young people spoke today, those are the ones who are gonna have to deal with climate change, those are the ones who are gonna have to deal with the world that we’re leaving behind us… In Gainesville, we’ve had, like, a 60-year experiment with this type of housing, with the zoning we currently have, and I don’t think it’s worked. We are more car-centric, we have more traffic, we have more expensive housing… Climate change is happening, and we have to move people away from cars, we have to reduce the amount of energy and water that we use… Climate refugees are moving here, and they’re going to keep coming as our coast fills up with water.”

He then addressed Saco’s proposed sunset clause: “Three years is too short, even five. It will make the markets very weird because people really won’t know what to do. I think it will… be designed to fail because of that.” He said it takes 2.5-3 years, in many cases, to get that type of project built, so very few new projects will be completed by the end of the proposed period. “If the commission in the future sees issues with the changes we make, then they can make those changes.”

He said that if the commission favored Saco’s sunset provision, they should ask the City Attorney to draft both that version and the original version, and they can make a decision at second reading on which one to approve; he also wanted to have staff bring back pros and cons of the sunset provision before the second reading of the ordinances.

“If we pass this tonight, I don’t have much faith that it’s going to come back to us for a second reading. I think the state’s going to hold on to it, and that’s not good… I think it’s going into uncharted waters.” – Commissioner Harvey Ward

Commissioner Harvey Ward said the issue has taken up “an enormous amount of everyone’s effort… and while we’ve been doing this, we haven’t been doing much else… The way to progress on things like housing is incremental… It takes a lot of time, but when we look back over 10 or 20 years, we can be proud of where we’ve gone… If we pass this tonight, I don’t have much faith that it’s going to come back to us for a second reading. I think the state’s going to hold on to it, and that’s not good… I think it’s going into uncharted waters.”

“I believe in my heart that housing is a human right… Climate change is a major factor in my decision. The most conservative estimates of sea level rise show Miami Beach under water in 20 years. … This is going to cause more people to move inland; Gainesville has already seen the first climate refugees, I have met them. You have met them.” – Commissioner David Arreola

Commissioner David Arreola said, “It is unfortunate that this takes place during a political campaign because everything that any candidate says will be seen as an attempt to get your vote, but I must share my heart, anyway, because I believe in my heart that housing is a human right… I believe the only equitable way to do this is to have this as the same rule for the city. Climate change is a major factor in my decision. The most conservative estimates of sea level rise show Miami Beach under water in 20 years. … This is going to cause more people to move inland; Gainesville has already seen the first climate refugees, I have met them. You have met them.”

He continued, “There is more work to do than just this policy. We still have to pass inclusionary zoning to mandate affordable housing for new development. The voters have to pass Wild Spaces Public Places [sales tax surtax] with the housing element… Two White Houses, under President Obama and President Joe Biden, have identified exclusionary zoning as a significant impediment to the cost of making affordable housing… I want to work with the Biden administration on affordable housing. It will be difficult to do that if we do not pass this policy… I understand there’s a lot of trepidation and everyone talks about the word ‘fear,’ but the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” At that point, the room erupted with laughter. 

“If you look at a map of Gainesville and which properties or neighborhoods would be affected by this, if this change were to happen, 2/3 of it is in northwest Gainesville… and that was by design. We didn’t become this segregated city by accident; it was by design, over generations” – Mayor Lauren Poe

Poe spoke last, saying he was happy to see “attention and excitement about addressing our housing challenges, and that’s not going away—and that’s a good thing because this is a crisis. The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The second best time to plant a tree is today. The same is true for housing…

He continued, “I believe I share the same goals as many, if not all, of the folks we have heard from… I want people to be able to choose where they live, including staying exactly where they are and not being forced out, but the lack of housing supply, at all levels, accelerates and exacerbates displacement, because money will always find a way… One of the most important ways of stemming that tide is by allowing more housing to be built in more parts of the city… If you look at a map of Gainesville and which properties or neighborhoods would be affected by this, if this change were to happen, 2/3 of it is in northwest Gainesville… and that was by design. We didn’t become this segregated city by accident; it was by design, over generations… One of the ways that we start reversing that trend is by opening up modest changes in what can be built and where it can be built, so people do have that variability of housing options throughout the city, and right now, in northwest Gainesville, almost all of the property, you only have one option, and that’s a single-family home.”

Poe concluded, “I both understand and deeply respect the skepticism that folks have towards this. I do. The way to overcome that skepticism is by showing, over time, the positive impact that this will have, and that’s why I believe it’s important to move forward with this… Right now, this is the best thing for the long-term housing stability of our entire city and to relieve the displacement and gentrification pressures on our most vulnerable and high-opportunity neighborhoods, close to exactly where we’re sitting right now.”

The motions

Duncan-Walker then made her motion for the first ordinance: “I know the critical need for affordable housing… but my concerns with this particular proposal have to do with data and the lack thereof, that is specific to Gainesville… Staff right now is working to bring back an affordable housing plan. I feel like to do this before they even have the opportunity to bring that back is a disservice… There are too many unknowns… My concern has been that we don’t have data; my bigger concern is that it appears that we don’t even have the will of the people… and so I move that we delay this decision tonight… There’s no need to do this tonight. Too much is riding on it, and too little is known.”

Poe asked Duncan-Walker to specify a date to reconsider the ordinances, and Chestnut asked if she could speak. Chestnut suggested deferring all three ordinances until after November 8, but Poe said she could only specify the date for the ordinance they were discussing. Duncan-Walker added the date to her motion to defer the ordinance, and Chestnut seconded the motion. 

“I think a young lady from Azalea Trails the other day said to me, ‘Do something, even if it’s the wrong thing. Do something.’ And I think that’s what we’re trying to do here – try something. And I think we don’t have that data. But we won’t have it until we try.” – Commissioner Reina Saco

Saco said she disagreed with the motion because “we don’t get anything done in November and December. We don’t… We have the authority and the responsibility of taking action. I think a young lady from Azalea Trails the other day said to me, ‘Do something, even if it’s the wrong thing. Do something.’ And I think that’s what we’re trying to do here – try something. And I think we don’t have that data. But we won’t have it until we try.”

Hayes-Santos asked to make the next motion if Duncan-Walker’s motion failed. 

Her motion failed 3-4, with Duncan-Walker, Ward, and Chestnut in the affirmative. 

Hayes-Santos made a motion to move forward on the ordinance that came out of the workshop, and Arreola seconded the motion. Saco said she would like to ask staff to do an analysis of the sunset provision while the ordinance is being reviewed by the state, and Hayes-Santos said he was fine with adding that to the motion. Chestnut said she would also like to ask staff to study the economic impact of the sunset provision, and Hayes-Santos also agreed to add that to the motion. 

The motion passed 4-3, with Chestnut, Duncan-Walker, and Ward in dissent.

The other two ordinances passed by the same 4-3 vote, with Hayes-Santos making the motions to pass the ordinances that came out of the workshop with the same analyses for the sunset provision, and the meeting adjourned.

  • Does anyone in this city and county think that these four jobless failures, with sooo many ignorant decisions behind them, know what is best for city planning and zoning? Probably not but a few friends. Almost everything they’ve done will need to be reversed at great expense as soon as others take over. And no, Ward or Davy boy won’t be Mayor of another ignorant bunch. We’ve had enough of this.

    • Well said, Niki Noor.
      Hopefully this blatant disregard for citizens by these tyrannical commissioners will wake the voters up.

      • Kathy, I completey agree with you, however I grew up in this town and I have always been amazed at the apathy as seen in voter turnout. You and I keep ourselves well informed about what goes on in our leadership, but for those who don’t, they don’t have a clue, thus see no problems, and therefore don’t vote. There is information about this stuff outside of AC and one radio station.

        • They can’t dare have elections in November when there’s a high turnout. The Duckpond Democrats and their minions would be voted out.

  • Is this what the people wanted? 85% of the people who spoke were against it. —I can’t tell from the photo with this article, but were Poe, Areola, Hayes, & Saco wearing masks to hide
    Their faces because they have compromised immune systems or do they wear the mask as a political statement? I see Chesnut has no mask, she’s healthy. I want to
    Know which commissioners wore masks and which didn’t to see if there’s a common denominator with their voting. Me just asking this is going to trigger antifa, Marxists, hypochondriacs, and a few who actually may have compromised immune systems who should be “self quarantining” if that’s the case.

      • That says alot. “A picture paints a thousand words”…Thanks for the answer to my question…most appreciated.

      • And, unless there’s something we don’t know about the masked commissioners, Chestnut is at the highest risk of all the commissioners for a bad outcome from COVID-19, as she is by far the oldest, at age 73.
        Ward is quite a bit younger than her, and the rest of the commissioners are all very young and are at almost zero risk from a bad outcome with COVID.
        I imagine it’s part virtue signaling, part trying to “lead by example,” and part genuine fear of dying from Covid and fear of their “unwashed” constituents that has them still masked up 2.5 years.
        I imagine that they are very inconsistent about their use of masks, and they definitely don’t care what the science actually says about their empty gestures.

  • There were two parts to the changes, land use and zoning. The first one failed but the 2nd one passed on 1st reading? I think the 2nd reading is set for December or when next commission takes over, though?
    Wait til full report and look at the past calendar.

  • That’s not how this works. That’s not how any of this works! You are elected by the people, to listen to people, to enact what the people want. Not go rogue and think you know better than the people. Four people out of hundreds of citizens, numerous citizens/neighborhood groups and the county commission say this is a bad idea but yet four people can make this happen? What is wrong with you four that you actively chose to NOT listen to anyone once you have an idea stuck in your head? There is some back door/shadiness going on. That is not the sign of a good leader. A good leader listens to all sides, is willing to compromise; admit when they are wrong or delay a vote because they are on their way out. I was hoping in the 11th hour things would have been different but I am honestly shocked at this behavior. There are officially zero redeeming qualities these four could ever show me to make up for their behavior. Maybe DeSantis needs to stop by the City Commission on his way home from visiting Warren and clean up our council too.

    • One could speculate that there is a reason behind these arbitrary decisions? A reason that might have benefits to these lousy commissioners?

      • It might be that they are true believers in their extreme leftist ideology.
        They may have higher political aspirations, and actually think this will add to their credentials and help them get elected by our indoctrinated younger generations…

    • We need to clean up the city commission on August 23rd.
      And make sure that Arreola, Poe, Sacco and Hayes-Santos never get elected to anything ever again!

  • The Democrat voters within the city are so gullible and easily duped. Did they really believe the commissioners would listen to their voices, hear their pleas?
    If you think Ward’s “nay” vote is genuine, I’ve got a 3 BR, 2 Bath home near Celebration Pointe I’ll sell you for $125k, built in 2020. He just wants to look like the “good guy” for the upcoming mayoral election. I’d be willing to bet he and Poe had some closed door chats ensuring the commission had the votes in hand.

  • You have to wonder if they are being paid by the developers. They certainly don’t care what the citizens of Gainesville want.

  • Well, after watching such a long meeting, all the residents that were against it, and listening to the residents say that they knew they were not going to be heard. This vote was appalling to say the least. It proved only that the 4 commissioners do not care about their citizens and only care about their own agendas. I’ve watched several meetings and have seen Poe get an attitude because he couldn’t get his way, or he wasn’t heard. Toddler like behavior and not listening to his residents ones that voted for him, the ones that pay him . Sickening!

  • These clowns have no idea what they are doing. They’re turning Gainesville into a massive slum and driving further growth out west outside of city limits. Companies are already leaving the city in droves, the only ones left are leftist-led ones with a limited shelf life.

  • I’m amazed anyone would waste time schlepping down there to speak. They don’t care about public comment.

    • Those people who tried know that they did what they could do. They made a statement, and perhaps by doing so, a few more people had their eyes opened to what is really going on at City Hall, and maybe, just maybe, their time shining the light on these awful commissioners was well spent, and the August 23rd election outcome will be better because of that.

  • This is what happens when you have such low voter turnout–you end up with unqualified tyrants who think their election by 10% voter turnout gives them an overwhelming mandate to destroy your family neighborhood.

    “One of the penalties of refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.” – Plato

  • Over the recent years Gainesville has become a mini California. These commissioners have found a way to pack in more people to pay for their past mistakes like biomass etc. A month ago it became known that the city was out in Haile Plantation attempting to woo them to annex into the city. Mo money, mo money.

  • Unbelievable!!! Over 100 public commenters and less than 10 were in support of this sweeping measure. And yet, OUR public officials vote to go ahead with it???? I have a BA and MA in real estate from UF, have been in the business locally as a Realtor and a landlord for 40+ years. There is no way this is going to have any meaningful impact on affordable housing in Gville (there are many other ways to increase affordable housing). What it will do is give some limited opportunities to mostly out of town investors who will be take advantage of the high density and build a few units here and there… AND they will charge market rents for them. Rents are high these days (as is most everything)… no meaningful “affordable housing” will be created.

    BUT, the poor next door neighbor who has been enjoying their single family home, peace and quiet, lots of trees, etc WILL feel the pain. Noise, loss of trees, views of two story structures, cars parked everywhere, etc. AND can you imagine if some of these investors realize AirBnB may maximize their profits??? Football weekends will be a disaster for the next door neighbors. If several of these get built in otherwise single family neighborhoods, I guarantee you that when Realtors are showing properties to would be buyers, these will get passed by or greatly devalued. What is a buyer going to do…?… pay more for a house with a two story quad towering 5 feet from their property line? Short term renters who care little about the long term future of a neighborhood will live in super close proximity and will likely stay a few years and be gone. AND, is this helping these renters… in short, no… they are still renters paying market rents (which will not be low/affordable as the cost of new construction is super HIGH). Prospective buyers will devalue the houses next to these and/or BUY a house in the COUNTY where they know this is not allowed? Realtors will be obligated to disclouse to buyers that a quad or something similar can be built on adjacent lots shen showing properties in the city. I suspect it will become a standard part of any real estate disclosure made during a transaction (probably should be starting today)…. But, not if customers buy in the county.

    Sprawl has been encouraged by Gville’s policies over the decades… it has been too hard to do build in the city vs county… along with high taxes, and utilities. Zoning laws have existed for years as a way to plan a favorable community. No more than 3 unrelateds was passed years ago to try to help maintain single family neighborhoods that were on the edge of turning into rental neighborhoods. This may not have been a perfect solution, but the intent was good and it certainly did more good than harm in helping neighborhoods from “going rental”. Seems like our elected officials should take an oath as doctors do to “do no harm”. This ordiance will certainly harm unlucky homeowners who have multi family units built in super close proximity to their homes.

    Here’s an idea… Let’s pool $$$ and aquire lots next door to commissioners’ homes who voted for this and Build Build Build!! They will undoubtedly love it, right? Given the density that can be built it may be possible to offer neighbors a high enough purchase price to entice them to sell. Then we just need a builder or two who is willing to get to work with their loud construction crew and equipment. Because … who doesn’t love to wake up to the sounds of construction next door to their home.. No need to hurry the building completion either… the $$$ return will come once completed through HIGH rents, AirBnB weekends, and ultimately a sale to wealthy S FL buyer fleeing the rising ocean.

    Lastly, I believe much of the public had no idea this was happening and if/when informed will be part of the 90% who last night voiced (upon deaf ears after waiting in the heat for 4 hours to speak for 3 minutes) what a terrible idea this is. SHAME ON YOU who voted against the vast and very diverse majority of people who are againist this ill conceived idea (that I’m guessing will get shot down at some level anyway… costing the public lots of $$ and wasted time).

    • I’m not sure…did they just turn my single family home into a 4-plex because of climate change? Is the city considering each bedroom in my house an apartment unit like in a boarding house? Will the city be collecting their landlord fee for each bedroom in my house if I decide it’s a 4plex which would result in the city collecting a fee of almost $500/yr? We have climate change refugees coming here now
      and they did this because of rising tides?

  • Oh well just because 85% of the people who spoke are against these zoning decisions, the City Commission made it REALLY plain they do not represent the people and could care less what we want.

  • Today’s post modernist liberals view themselves as spokespersons for all they consider disenfranchised. Thus, the African-American community can basically be strongly opposed to this measure – but our elite city commissioners know better than they what’s good for them. Who supported this untested zoning move (well, it has been tested in Auckland, New Zealand)? College students and the young soon-to-be elite. How can you be a Democrat with this nonsense going on? We need a third party – one with a liberal and conservative wing.

  • One of the penalties of refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.” – Plato

    So true!!! So this will continue until 50.1% of voters elects those that will govern on behalf of the people. They are following the playbook of Seattle and other $hit holes ideals they idolize. GRU will get worse too!

    Elections do have consequences! Get involved now or bend over and enjoy!

    • There’s a couple commissioners who seem to have mastered that “bend over” part quite well.

      They’ve also mastered the art of creating a differential pressure between two points which exponentially increases the ability to extract a viscous substance from within any tubular type appendage.

      Those are easy to recognize, they conceal their identities by hiding behind masks.

  • Someone needs to look into their bank accounts , They are getting something for voting against the will of the people !

    • They will go to work as a “consultant ” and take more money from the city coffers and speak at fundraisers and get a payed position on one of their favorite nonprofits. Ain’t politics grand.

    • The GNV commission mask wearers are the devils’ minions…they are pushing the globalist agenda for new world order/great reset/global totalitarianism …it’s all about control and taking freedom & liberty away. The devil wants people to cover their faces because we are made in gods image (I.e., the devil can’t stand looking at gods’ image) —“You will not be able to engage in commerce if you don’t take the mark of the beast”…papers pleeze!
      Climate change, save the planet? The devils hiding behind the environment…the devil is so good he makes people think he doesn’t exist.

  • Saco is from Cuba and a complete embarrassment to her people. Hayes-Santos is from Canada. Arreola‘s parents are immigrants, although he always refuses to say from where. I am voting only for dyed-in-the-wool Americans for the city commission from now on – not “training wheel” Americans who are essentially clueless about this country.

  • Wonder if a future increase in Gainesville crime would inspire more single-family homeowners to sell their property to the highest bidder

  • Saw a post from Arreola on the Florida independent Alligator he posted for the win here. Student comments were very enlightening. Stand by… this is just the beginning if Arreola gets elected Mayor. He just might with his student followers. That’s how how got elected in the first place. We better have a serious turn out on this election to stop the madness.

  • They ruined GRU…now they’re destroying our single family neighborhoods along with our tree canopy. Grace Market brought more homelessness, panhandling, crime, & vagrants. Why do their actions have
    Such undesirable consequences?

  • So Poe & Co wants GNV to be a “sanctuary city” for the worlds climate change refugees…got it. It’s “great reset” stuff.

  • My biggest fear is the state will allow this so that Gainesville stays the Blue Magnet island of Florida, and not encourage Dems to settle elsewhere in the state. The state loves how every Antifa manifesto bullet item gets taken up here.

  • Saco: “ do something…do something even if it’s wrong”… this is what this elected official parroted?

  • “Do something, even if it’s the wrong thing. Do something.’ And I think that’s what we’re trying to do here”

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