The Times-Union | March 8, 2019
It’s amazing that so few retired police officers have run for City Council.
They generally retire at young enough ages to have plenty of energy for public service.
Their law enforcement backgrounds would seem to give them a political edge, and they usually have a broad and deep knowledge of the community.
That comes to mind because Carson Tranquille is running for the City Council District 2 seat, the only district that crosses the St. Johns River; it touches parts of Arlington as well as Oceanway.
Tranquille lives in Oceanway and patrolled Arlington as zone commander; he also led a community problem-solving task force that helped citizens improve their living conditions.
Al Ferraro, the incumbent council member, declined to participate in the Times-Union Editorial Board’s endorsement process the first time he ran — and declined this time, as well.
Ferraro also declined an interview with a Times-Union news reporter.
If Ferraro were an outstanding, difference-making member of City Council, perhaps we could overlook his disdainful lack of accessibility. But that is hardly the case: Ferraro has at best been an average — and largely anonymous — City Council member during his four years in office.
Tranquille, meanwhile, wrote this powerful piece explaining what led him to run for the District 2 seat:
“As I pulled into my garage one night a few years ago, two masked teens emerged from the dark with weapons drawn. Fearing for my life, I pulled my service revolver and shot one in his leg, and they fled.
“The emotions of that moment were so powerful and personal to me. I had spent years as JSO’s zone commander for this area of the city, working to reduce crime. But despite all my hard work, awards and promotions, I had become a victim of a random violent crime in my own driveway.
“At the same time, I faced the reality of shooting a 16-year-old in the driveway where my own kids had played. At that moment, I knew as a father and as a citizen, I had to do more to help solve this problem.”
Tranquille wants to work on creating economic opportunities and mobilizing neighborhood groups to foster empowerment.
Tranquille is a special individual, and both District 2 and Jacksonville as a whole would benefit from having him on City Council.