West Miami-Dade

West Miami

Two candidates running for West Miami mayor

 

Special to the Miami Herald

An incumbent and a newcomer will be vying for the mayor's seat in next month's West Miami election.

Incumbent Mayor Eduardo H. Muhiña, 57, will face off against Michael T. Montero, 43, in the April 8 contest.

Both incumbent Juan Blanes and newcomer Rhonda Rodriguez ran unopposed for city commissioner.

The mayor seat is for a two-year term, while commissioners serve four-year terms.

Voting will take place from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. at West Miami Community Center, 901 SW 62nd Ave.

Muhiña has served as mayor since 2009 and previously was a commissioner from 2003 to 2009.

He is an architect and owner of Red Design Group. He graduated from the University of Houston.

Muhiña, originally from Cuba, hopes to keep the city's tax rate low.

"Eventually as the economy bounces back the idea is to lower the millage," he said. "We also want to continue the pride that we have with the police department and our residents."

Muhiña has lived in the city since 1986 and served on the Planning and Zoning Board when he was 29 years old.

Just recently, the city started its own building department so residents would no longer have to travel to travel to obtain a permit.

"So far, I am getting a good responses because they come to City Hall and they can pull a permit here," he said.

Montero, who was born in Hialeah, has lived in the city for more than 10 years and works as an attorney, running his own law firm. If elected, he plans to increase transparency and implement a landscape-beautification initiative.

"As mayor, I want to tell people what is going on through a weekly video on the Internet," he said. "As a resident I want to know where my tax dollars are going."

He added that he would like to give away awards to those who have the best landscapes in the city.

He also said that he would like to improve the communication between residents and police officers.

"By doing this, it will create a sense of community," he said.

Montero served in the army for five years. He attended law school at the University of Pennsylvania.

Read more West Miami-Dade stories from the Miami Herald

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