Race for Tampa mayor to be decided Tuesday

Hillsborough County

News Channel 8 is Your Local Election Headquarters and today, voters head to the polls to decide who’ll become the city’s next mayor.

Polls open at 7 a.m. and close at 7 p.m.

Former police chief Jane Castor is up against businessman David Straz.

Castor got 48 percent of the vote in March, but it wasn’t enough to allow her to declare victory because she didn’t garner 50 percent of the vote.

Castor has focused on a platform that would push the city forward, jumping off the successes of current mayor Bob Buckhorn.

The campaign has gotten dirty recently, with Straz blasting Castor as her time as police chief and claiming she manipulated crime statistics.

He has used former officers in campaign ads.

“That’s not true,” Castor said recently. “I stand by our crime reduction. I am proud of what the citizens and what the officers were able to accomplish in the last 16 years. I am very proud of it,” she said.

Straz fired back.

“I mean, how can she spin that and tell the people of the city that everything is fine don’t worry about it crime is fine. That’s a load of crap,” he said.

Voters will also decide three Tampa city council seats.

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