Sunrise Mayor Michael Ryan Plays by the Rules and Wins!

In late May, The Florida League of Cities (FLC) honored Sunrise Mayor Michael Ryan with the 2019 Home Rule Hero Award. The Sunrise mayor was recognized for his tireless efforts to protect the Home Rule powers of Florida’s municipalities from sweeping state laws that may fail to consider local needs and advance the League’s legislative agenda during the 2019 legislative session.

In 1922, the FLC was founded on the belief that local self-government is the keystone of American democracy. It is the united voice for Florida’s municipal governments and is formed and governed by a city’s citizens. Home Rule is the ability for a city to establish its own form of government and enact ordinances, codes, plans, and resolutions without a prior state of approval. It addresses local problems with local solutions with minimal state interference.

“Home Rule enables us as elected officials to adopt local laws to meet the unique needs of our communities,” explained Mayor Ryan.

The Home Rule Hero Award was created by the League’s legislative team to recognize and thank those individuals who make an extraordinary effort in their cities. Local government officials, both elected and nonelected, who consistently respond to the League’s request to reach out to members of the legislature and offer their local perspective of an issue can be recipients of the award. The award winners are the municipal officials who stand out for their high level of participation and effectiveness. Since its inception in 2009, hundreds have been awarded for their efforts.

“The dedication and effort of these local officials during the 2019 legislative session was extraordinary,” said FLC Legislative Director Scott Dudley. “These are some of our biggest advocates for municipal issues, and they’re shining examples of local advocacy in action. On behalf of the League and its legislative team, we’re proud to recognize each and every one of them and thank them for their service.”

Home Rule Hero allows those who know their cities best to be involved. City officials who actively participate help the League’s legislative team understand how their decisions impact their communities. Furthermore, they are able to assist, guide, and be the voice for their local government. 

“Recent preemption proposals this year would prevent cities from regulating scooters, short-term rentals and local price competition involving private solid waste companies. In fact, Governor DeSantis vetoed a law that would have preempted the power of local governments to act locally, recognizing there is a political process that must be respected locally. Unfortunately, the corporate strategy of preemption has become the most effective hammer to prevent local communities from acting even when there is a consensus to act locally,” added Mayor Ryan.