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Mayoral Candidate Samuel Ings talks affordable housing, transportation, and more

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Orlando city commissioner Sam Ings on the trail to Eagle's Nest Elementary. Photo: Matthew Peddie, WMFE

Orlando city commissioner and mayoral candidate Samuel Ings says there are parts of the city that aren’t getting enough attention.


Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer

Navy veteran Aretha Simons

Intersection’s Matthew Peddie joins Ings for a tour of the neighborhood in district 6 where he grew up, and a conversation about what he would do differently if elected mayor of Orlando, highlighting public safety, affordable housing and homelessness and sharing some unique ideas for mass transit. 

  • Transportation: Ings talks about the unique situation students at Eagle’s Nest Elementary School face on their way to school. Some students have to walk through secluded wetlands to get to the school, which Ings says could make them targets for potential predators. Ings proposes a train system similar to the one in Fun Spot that would transport the children to and from the drop off location to the school.  “It would be really great for the children and their families because parents will know that their kids are being very well taken care of by the City of Orlando,” he says. For mass transit in Orlando, Ings says SunRail has improved residents’ lives but he wants it to expand across the city so that anyone could take the train to reach their desired destination.


  • Affordable Housing: Ings wants to tackle the issue by identifying areas where homes can be built or restored and working more closely with the federal government. He sent letters to Housing and Urban Development secretary Ben Carson asking for funding and President Donald Trump inviting him to visit public housing projects at Murchison Terrace and Lake Mann Homes. “What we have to do is really work together and I think that’s what’s really important because it is about the people and the president has a responsibility to the care and welfare of the people just as we as local elected officials have,” Ings says.


  • Homelessness: Ings says he wants to be more involved by forming a coalition “operated by Mayor Samuel B. Ings Council on Homelessness.” Additionally, he’d like to bring in healthcare and mental health professionals to facilitate moving people off the streets and into homes. “We need to get into making sure that they understand who they are and to get them back on the right track. We want them to be productive citizens. We want them to contribute to our society and we want them to know that there are people that really do care about them,” he says.


  • Opioid Crisis: Asked how he would lead Orlando’s response to the opioid crisis, Ings talked about the Electric Daisy Carnival and what he says is its negative influence on young adults. He also talks about noise pollution adversely affecting the surrounding communities. “We tore down our historic ballpark, Tinker Field, to provide more green space for this carnival to exist in the city of Orlando. For the life of me I don’t understand why would we support an organization and a function that actually perpetuates drugs and drug use, nudity and all of those things,” Ings says.

While Ings is focused on issues affecting the district he represents as city commissioner, he says he will be a mayor who can represent the diverse interests of the city.

“That’s what’s been my platform: an inclusive mayor for everyone, trying to create and creating a better Orlando for everyone,” Igns says.

“It is a complex situation we’re dealing with, but it’s not [one] that is unconquerable because we can do this. We can make a difference, but we have to come together.”


Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer

Navy veteran Aretha Simons

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