MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Voters in several Miami-Dade cities made their voices heard Tuesday, deciding several key races.
With all precincts reporting in, Dan Gelber pulled in 82.41% of votes cast, making him Miami Beach’s next mayor. He beat out Kenneth R. Bereski II, Daniel Kahn and June E. Savage.
Gelber released a statement Tuesday night, which read:
“Miami Beach is the only home I’ve ever known. So I’m honored that my hometown has trusted me with this office. I intend to work every day to earn that trust and keep our City a special place. To all those who helped in this journey – who knocked on close to 20,000 doors and made 19,000 phone calls – I am grateful. I congratulate my fellow candidates, Mark Samuelian and Michael Gongora on their victories tonight and look forward to getting to work with the entire Commission next week.”
Mark Samuelian and Michael Gongora also pulled away in their battles for city commission seats. Samuelian hauled in nearly 68% of the votes against Rafael A. Velasquez, while Gongora netted almost 65% against Adrian Gonzalez.
Samuelian’s statement read, in part:
“Tonight, we celebrate, and tomorrow the work begins to make you proud as your city commissioner.”
Also on the ballot for Miami Beach residents was the 2 a.m. alcohol ban referendum. Nearly 65% of voters shot down the idea, a blow Mayor Philip Levine responded to Tuesday evening.
“Tonight, the residents have spoken, and while the measure didn’t pass, they were given an opportunity to be active in the decision-making process. I thank my colleagues for giving the voters an opportunity to weigh in as I believe the work to keep Ocean Drive safe continues as the new Commission takes office. My commitment from day one was focused on giving residents a voice and through this referendum, we did just that.”
Francis Suarez surged to a convincing win the city of Miami mayoral race. With 86% of the vote, he easily beating out Christian Canache, Cynthia Jaquith and Williams Alfred Armbrister Sr.
The seven-person race for District 3 commissioner will have to be settled at a later date. Joe Carollo led the pack with slightly over 30% of the vote, but still well short of the 50% threshold required to win. Alfonso “Alfie” Leon was second with 20.30% of the vote while Zoraida A. Barreiro came out third with 20.02% – just 17 votes apart. County law requires an automatic machine recount if there’s less than half a percentage point between top-ranked candidates. Carollo will face off whoever wins the recount in a runoff election on November 21st.
Manolo Reyes beat out Ralph Rosado and Denise Galvez Turros to become the commissioner of District 4.
Carlos Hernandez will remain the mayor of Hialeah, netting just under 79% of the vote.
Hialeah Police Department spokesperson Carl Zogby beat out Ernesto Avila, Angel Omar Fajardo and Juan Carlos Santana for the Group V council seat.
And in the Group VII race, Katharine ‘Katy’ Cue Fuente beat out Rafael L. Gomez.
In the race for vice mayor, Stephen Shelley beat Elvis Maldonado.
Two councilmember races also took place Tuesday. Jenifer Bailey beat Jimmie Lee Williams III for Seat 4, while Elvis Maldonado beat Maycol Enriquez for a consolation prize of Seat 5.
Click here to view all the results.