Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer has launched his reelection campaign, telling supporters he’s proud of the city’s diversity, growth and innovation. 

Dyer walked on stage at The Abbey in downtown Orlando monday night to the soundtrack of Tom Petty’s I Won’t Back Down. 

Former Senator Bill Nelson and a slew of other supporters stood behind him. Dyer highlighted the development of the creative village downtown and Lake Nona.

Outside Dyer talked about how he plans to address the city’s affordable housing problem.

“We need to be thinking about how to rehabilitate housing not tearing it down,” said Dyer.

Dyer said the city has twelve new affordable housing projects in the works. The majority of those units will be mixed income. But critics say what is considered affordable still isn’t priced low enough for extremely low income families.

When he was first elected in 2003 Dyer secured an $8.50 wage for city workers and contractors. He said union contracts are up for renegotiation this year.

“We would like to get to 15 dollars an hour but we have to work within the confines of the contracts that we are bargaining for,”  said Dyer.

Four other candidates are running against Dyer, including city commissioner Sam Ings.

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