Ferlita reaffirms her support for light rail
June 9, 2009
County Commissioner Rose Ferlita wants everyone to know she supports a light rail transportation system, even if one of her supporters in a potential run for Tampa mayor does not share that opinion.
Ferlita, who has not formally announced her candidacy for mayor, reaffirmed her support for a light rail system on her Facebook page Monday afternoon. Bill Dallas, creator of the Rose Ferlita for Mayor Web site, does not favor light rail.
Ferlita could not be reached for comment, but an aide said the first-term commissioner felt she needed to clear up confusion about her position.
Ferlita supports a November 2010 referendum on a sales tax of up to 1 cent for transportation, including rail.
"For the record, I am fully in support of a public transportation system that is multimodal, including light rail," Ferlita said in her Facebook posting.
"Many groups have worked tirelessly towards a successful effort. Now is the time to come together," she said.
After being told about Ferlita's statement, Dallas posted it on his Web site promoting Ferlita's candidacy for mayor. He said Ferlita's position on light rail would not affect his support for her as a mayoral candidate.
"My position is that now is not the time to be spending tax dollars on light rail when we have dwindling tax dollars," Dallas said. "That's something she is in support of, and I think we all need to let our voting public decide what we want to do."
Dallas said he and Ferlita live in the same South Tampa neighborhood and she is his pharmacist.
He started the Ferlita for Mayor Web site about three weeks ago and the site has 391 supporters.
Dallas, a Realtor, said he supports light rail in theory, but not at a time when property tax revenues are dropping.
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