We talked with Juan Manuel Sucre, candidate for Councillor,
Seat 2, of the City of Doral, in Miami, Florida
This an unavoidable question. How do you feel, who was a councilor of the Metropolitan Council of Caracas, to have the opportunity to be a councilor in Doral, Fl, also for a community that is mostly Venezuelan?
Sucre: Well, I actually feel very fulfilled because I have trained to be a public servant, and I have the experience to be one. And you know that the vocation of service has no borders. Having left there and have had the opportunity to serve here is fully satisfying for me, and it is also part of retribution that I feel very internally with the responsibility, of giving back to this country for everything it has given me. Because when I moved here with my family, my wife, and my daughters, we arrived as immigrants and this country opened its doors to us. So, with that vocation for service, with my training and my experience, I am ready to do the same thing I did in Venezuela and serve my community.
What is that plan that you have for the city of Doral and what sets it apart from other proposals?
Sucre: We have an action plan summarized in seven points and we call it “A plan to move forward” and I’m going to detail it for you. But what sets us apart is our will. Because in political principles and values are important. Elected officials are responsible for ensuring that this society does not fade away and that wherever we are, from the most humble position – which can be that of Councilors at this time, mayors, or state representatives and beyond – we have the great responsibility of giving back to politics its stature and inflame and make it see towards the population for what it is; an art of serving and not to be served. Now, the action plan is without a doubt what we have collected and heard from the neighbors. We have built it together and we have summarized it in seven points that have to do with the greater viability of the city.
We have a city that we want to see as a greener city, a city where we have more parks, and more recreation spaces, not only for our children and our young people but also for our grandparents who lack recreation services where they spend their golden years, served by the city in the best way.
We also want to see Doral as a city of the arts, a cultural city, where we can have theaters, which we don’t have, museums that we don’t have either, and Doral has all the conditions to receive visitors and artists. To have film festivals of international stature that can be held in Doral, a city that has all the conditions to receive them: hotels, hotels, restaurants, roads, parks, and recreation. So that it is a more humane city, with open-air exhibitions, and museums that exhibit local and international talent and present themselves there, and people are more inseparable between the nature part and the artistic part, and we call that a more humane city.
All of this is interrelated, which is why we want to preserve Doral’s security. My daughters grew up here and I have felt safe when they have gone out when they are away. And really – as one comes from where it comes from is a blessing. But the police here need us to increase their family income, equip them better and constantly staff the police. We have to strengthen communication between the police and the community so that we can strengthen preventive security because that has a lot of weight.
And with security, a comprehensive sports plan is strengthened, which is also contemplated. In the greenest city, a plan of academic excellence is necessary, in the educational part, so that the universities and the young people generate that healthy competitiveness, both in sports and academically, and we have new talents that can go as far as they propose and that Doral lends these benefits and tools to make this happen.
On the other hand, we have a city where when investors come to invest here or open a business, a store, store, they encounter many obstacles. The city places many bureaucratic obstacles that do not need to be. We want to streamline that and open the doors to these entrepreneurs so that their dreams come true in Doral and of course, they can bring prosperity to the city.
A city that we have baptized as a “digital city”, where you can freely connect to the internet in public spaces, in squares, in parks; where you can work, and where you are. And that also allows you to speed up all those bureaucratic procedures that, because it is digital, automated, and intelligent, you can solve in record time. That you don’t have, as has happened, that you spend a year and a half, renting a place, paying rent, and not being able to open it: that happens constantly.
Well, then, as you can see, it is a comprehensive project, which of course we will submit to people’s consideration.
You have just mentioned two important points where the city of Doral has made great progress, for example, they have just inaugurated a spectacular Art Center downtown.
Sucre: Yes that is correct. It is the first step. That park is very well located, and I visualize that part of the downtown project even more with museums, theaters, walkways, open-air exhibitions, and that cultural city that I have told you so much about. Doral has everything, it has an area industrial, commercial zone, and residential zone, and we want it to have its cultural zone.
How do you plan to support small businesses?
Sucre: After the pandemic, the city already has some additional federal, state, and county resources to help small businesses, which when the pandemic could not be attended to for budget reasons. But that possibility is already available and, above all, serving the so-called minorities, women entrepreneurs, single mothers, and Latinos, of course, there are a large number of them in the city and therefore they are not a minority; here, on the contrary, they are the majority. But let them have a plan, a project, an idea, as I told you before, a dream, and in one way or another, we will attend to those requests and promote, through a plan agreed upon with the private sector, the possibility of giving them those incentives and that grow, and bring jobs and prosperity to the city.
Finally, I want to ask you, for those people who do not know well the work or functions of a councilor, what is his mission. And a message to the voters.
Sucre: The job of a Councilor is basically to legislate, control, and also to participate in the preparation of the budget. Invest taxes on the neighbors, and transform them into works and services for the city. The Councilor is the one who solves the problems, he is the closest authority to the population.
Therefore, we strongly invite the neighbors not to stop exercising this important right. Remember that in our countries of origin the cost of losing democracy is enormous, it is very high. Here in the United States, we have the possibility of exercising that right, but since it is a mid-term election, it seems that there is not so much interest. And it is necessary for the population to wake up, they must do so because we are the closest authority to the voter.
In Doral we have a particularity, there is a kind of collegiate government, between the councilors and the Mayor. Decisions are made in the chamber and the Mayor is part of that chamber, therefore five members and three votes are needed for these projects to be carried out. Juan Manuel Sucre invites the population to organize itself, and the neighbors, and to be more active and participate in a more determined way; so that these projects and what we are offering also have the necessary strength to be approved in the city chamber. Let’s go vote!