Zephyrhills voters head to the polls

Voters in Zephyrhills will decide the outcome of two city council seats in an election set for April 10.

In District 3, Devin J. Alexander, Cory P. Sommers and Jodi Wilkeson are competing for the seat vacated by Kenneth Compton, who chose not to seek re-election.

In District 4, incumbent Charles E. Proctor will face challenger William D. Seville.

Brian Corley, Pasco County supervisor of elections

Voters can pick up carry-out absentee ballots through April 9, at Zephyrhills City Hall, 5344 Ninth St.

On April 10, voters must cast their ballots between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. at Alice Hall Community Center, 38116 Fifth Ave., in Zephyr Park.

Although voter turnout is historically low for municipal elections, Brian E. Corley, supervisor of elections for Pasco County, thinks there could be an uptick in participation this year.

Voters “appear to be a little more energized than in the past, which certainly makes me a happy camper,” Corley said.

Plus, there’s a sizable number of voters who, for the first time, requested Vote by Mail ballots for the 2016 election cycle, leading up to the presidential and general election, Corley said. They requested ballots through every election for two cycles, he said.

These voters typically don’t vote in city elections, but ballots have been mailed to them.

So, now, “literally, all they have to do is fill in a couple of ovals, and drop it in the mail, or get it back to our office by 7 p.m. on the 10th, and it will obviously count.”

Corley finds it ironic that voter turnout “is through the roof” for elections when voters are choosing the nation’s president, but local elections have low turnouts.

“Your city council members — those are the ones you pass by, going to church, going to Walmart. They make very important decisions that deal with the future of your city. It really kind of baffles me that people don’t get involved in coming out to vote in those elections,” Corley said.

“They need to get off the sidelines. They need to get in the game and have their voices heard,” he added.

Meanwhile, voters won’t need to do a thing in Dade City, San Antonio or St. Leo on election day.

The results of those are already known — since the candidates in those races drew no opposition.

In Dade City, Scott Black and Camille S. Hernandez won seats on the City Commission.

In San Antonio, Elayne Bassinger, Sarah Schrader and Eric C. Stallworth won seats on the City Commission.

And, in St. Leo, Donna H. DeWitt, James E. Hallett and Richard Christmas won seats on the Town Commission.

Published April 4, 2018

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