Mayor Wayne Poston wins his fifth term in office
With more than 19 months to go before Election Day, Bradenton Mayor Wayne Poston has already declared he will seek a sixth term.
Poston is predicting the 2020 cycle will be a busy one, so, “I just wanted to get ahead of the curve.”
Poston will kick off his fund raising campaign Wednesday night at Pier 22.
“We are moving forward and getting things done,” Poston said as to why he wants to serve a sixth term. “We are pretty much on track with a lot of things I said I wanted to get done before I left office and now we have a lot more going on. We are going in the right direction and this is an opportunity to make sure the city keeps going in the right direction.”
Poston said he’s already received so much encouragement to run again that he didn’t see any sense wasting time in filing.
Poston won re-election in 2016 race with 53 percent of the vote in a three-candidate field.
Some have been critical of the mayor’s continued re-election bids, noting that he wasn’t expected to serve more than a couple of terms, but Poston denies he ever made such a promise.
“I have never, ever said that,” Poston said. “I never said I would serve a certain number of terms. People would ask me after an election win if I was going to run again, and I’ve always said I haven’t decided yet, but have never said I wouldn’t.”
Since being first elected in 2000, Poston said the city has experienced unprecedented success, including the renovation of the Riverwalk, redevelopment of the downtown Hampton Inn & Suites, the turnaround of the Village of the Arts, the launching of the Bradenton Area River Regatta and successful negotiations to keep the Pittsburgh Pirates’ spring training in Bradenton.
Currently, the new City Centre parking garage and plaza and Spring Hill Suites are under construction in downtown Bradenton, as well as a major street streetscaping project. Also, an eastward extension of the Riverwalk is set to start soon.
Poston also hired the city’s first female police chief , Melanie Bevans.