Carlos Gimenez

Al Diaz / Miami Herald

Growing up in Miami, Luis Gazitúa lived through Hurricane Andrew in 1992 – one of the most destructive storms ever to hit South Florida. That’s why the Coconut Grove attorney recognized the awful danger of Hurricane Irma.

Irma was even bigger and stronger than Andrew. So when early forecast models this month showed it heading straight for Miami, Gazitúa and his family decided to evacuate South Florida.

“We had actually booked rooms in Orlando,” Gazitúa says at his law office in Coral Gables. “My father, my brother, our children and our wives and my mother.”

Eric Gay / AP via Miami Herald

Two days ago – when Hurricane Irma was forecast to hit Miami directly as a Category 5 storm – Miami-Dade County was staring at a potential storm surge of 10 feet. Now that Irma’s path has shifted west to Florida’s Gulf coast, the surge is expected to be half that.

But Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez is warning that’s still enough to cause not just dangerous flooding but drowning – especially since South Florida may well experience the equivalent of Category 1 or 2 hurricane winds when Irma arrives early Sunday.

David Santiago / Miami Herald

Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez and other South Florida government leaders have an emphatic message for residents this afternoon: a hurricane is still visiting you tonight and tomorrow.

Tim Padgett / WLRN.org

Hurricane Irma is still forecast to hit South Florida Sunday morning as a destructive Category 4 storm. Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez has ordered the largest mandatory evacuation for a hurricane in the county's history – some 660,000 people. And that also means South Florida’s largest-ever hurricane shelter response.

Miami-Dade County

South Florida came under a hurricane watch Thursday. That meant Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez got briefed on Hurricane Irma’s storm surge potential - and the data Gimenez heard prompted him to broaden the county’s area of mandatory evacuation.

Irma could hit Miami directly Sunday morning with destructive Category 4-force winds. As a result, Gimenez had already ordered a mandatory (but voluntary) evacuation for residents closest to shore – Zone A.

Pedro Portal / Miami Herald

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions came to Miami-Dade County on Wednesday to thank it for helping the feds deport undocumented immigrants. But experts say his claims about crime in cities that don’t cooperate – so-called “sanctuary cities” – are exaggerated.

This year President Trump ordered local governments to comply with federal requests to detain undocumented immigrants who’ve been arrested. He warned sanctuary cities they would lose federal law enforcement funding if they didn't.

CRRC


Miami Herald file photo

Mayor Carlos Gimenez last year was a big supporter of the Miami-Dade County SMART Plan to build trains along six high-traffic travel corridors. But the mayor recently changed his position.

Emily Michot / MIAMI HERALD FILE PHOTO 2016

Miami-Dade can’t afford to build more rail lines and should invest millions in transit dollars creating modernized express bus systems running north and south, Mayor Carlos Gimenez said Monday.

 

“I look at this as part of my job: Be realistic, bring us down to earth,” Gimenez told members of a county transportation board. “I know there’s going to be push back. I know there’s going to be a lot of people who have different ideas about what we should do. But we’ve been looking at this for some time. And these numbers are real.”

Emilly Michot / Miami Herald

A day after concerns about westward growth sunk a request to extend the 836 expressway into Kendall, Miami-Dade’s mayor stepped in to try to revive the proposal with county commissioners.

Mayor Carlos Gimenez called for the commission to reconsider Tuesday’s 3-2 committee vote against the proposed extension. The plan would take the busy expressway past the county’s Urban Development Boundary, which divides intense development from land with growth restrictions designed to protect the Everglades.

Priscila Serrano / WLRN

It’s spring break and for some kids that means going to the beach or visiting family, but for 40 children and teenagers from South Florida it means delivering an important message to President Donald Trump.

The trip to the White House started outside the office of Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez Monday with a protest against the mayor’s compliance with President Trump's immigration policies.

Roberto Koltun / Miami Herald

Emilly Michot / Miami Herald

Protests continued on Tuesday against Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez’s decision to bow to President Trump’s demands on immigration detentions.

Madeline Fox / WLRN News

Protesters in Miami-Dade took to the streets for the second time in less than a week to protest the county's Mayor's recent decision to effectively abandon the county’s stance as a “sanctuary” for undocumented immigrants. 

Carlos Gimenez's order, issued last Thursday in response to President Donald Trump’s executive order aimed at denying federal funds to “sanctuary cities,” asked county jails to comply with federal immigration requests.

Facebook.com/MayorGimenez

Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez appears to be easily coasting to a second term in a run-off election.

In a new WLRN - Univision 23 survey by Bendixen and Amandi International of Miami-Dade County registered voters Gimenez leads his opponent Raquel Regalado by double digits.

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