3 Miami Area Mayors Arrested for Corruption in 1 Month
One files for re-election 2 days later
By Ruth Brown, Newser Staff
Posted Sep 2, 2013 2:51 PM CDT
Miami-Dade's State Attorney used a billing statement from Steve Bateman, the Mayor of Homestead, as she announced that Bateman had been arrested on corruption charges.   (AP Photo/J Pat Carter)

(Newser) – Miami's suburban mayors are doing little to help shake Florida's image as the corruption capital of America, reports the New York Times. Last week, Steve Bateman, the mayor of Homestead, was arrested for allegedly receiving payments from a health care chain looking to build a clinic in the town. He joins Miami Lakes Mayor Michael Pizzi and Sweetwater Mayor Manuel Marono, who were both arrested in early August for allegedly taking part in separate kickback and bribery schemes connected with federal grants.

It's "embarrassing," the Miami Herald writes in an editorial, which argues that the city needs tougher ethics laws, should ban mayors from doing any outside consulting work, and must pull voters out of their apathy. At least the mayors aren't apathetic: Two days after his arrest, and while still suspended from office, Bateman filed to run for mayor again in the upcoming November election, reports the Herald.

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Sep 5, 2013 7:12 AM CDT
Not every Miami-area mayor is like these. University biology professor Phil Stoddard got fed up enough with political cronyism and corruption in his town of South Miami (pop. 50K) that he decided to run against the longtime incumbent mayor, who was in the pocket of local developers and had been running unopposed. Despite throwing his hat in the ring just weeks before the election, with no preexisting organization and minimal resources, the rookie candidate won a surprise victory on his message of reform and has since been reelected.
Sep 4, 2013 12:05 AM CDT
Thanks again Jimmy Carter for ruining Miami. The fallout will never end.
Sep 3, 2013 6:35 PM CDT
I'd spent time dealing with local government officials both in Southeast Asia and Central America ("La Mordida"- The Bite) and corruption is obvious and just a way of life. The only difference between these politicians and U.S. politicians is that our politcians have pretty well mastered the art of being able to hide their corruption.