Democrat files for Mulieri commission seat
A race that was previously dominated by Republicans now has a Democrat in the running.
Erika Remsberg, a Land O’ Lakes social worker with Pasco County Schools, is set to face the winner of a primary for Pasco County Commission that already includes Mike Moore, former State Rep. Ken Littlefield, and Bob Robertson. That is, if she doesn’t draw a Democratic opponent of her own forcing her into a primary.
All are looking to replace Pat Mulieri, who has spent more than two decades on the county commission.
On her official campaign website, Remsberg says she has been the homeless liaison for the school district for the past seven years, helping children in homeless situations receive the resources they need to access schools.
Remsberg has “worn many hats,” according to her website. Among other things, she’s been a clinical therapist, grant writer, substance abuse counselor and a crisis intervention counselor.
Elections bill needs revision
Elections supervisors around the state were ecstatic last year with the Legislature’s passage of the Paper Reduction act, but now it’s in need of a small correction.
When the latest legislative session kicks off March 4, the Florida State Association of Supervisors of Elections will ask lawmakers to revisit its law that did, among other things, allow voters to opt to receive sample ballots electronically.
The goal is to reduce paper use and cost to county elections offices, but the law passed last year omitted four key words that practically changed the very nature of the law itself.
The bill, according to Pasco County elections supervisor Brian Corley, would save the expense of publishing a sample ballot in the local newspapers. However, while the law allowed for electronic distribution, it failed to include the phrase “in lieu of publication.” Because of that, elections supervisors like Corley were still required to publish sample ballots in local newspapers.
Lawmakers quickly realized that voters who provided their email addresses for the distribution would want to have them protected. However, Gov. Rick Scott vetoed that law.
Elections supervisors want to promote more privacy protection for voters, while limiting the full disclosure of birth dates, Corley said. The group is pushing for new legislation that would allow the age of voters to be disclosed, but not specifically with the month, day and year of their birth.
No specific legislation has been introduced as of yet this year.
Local builder puts support behind Moore
Mike Moore, who is seeking the Republican nomination to replace Pat Mulieri on the Pasco County Commission, raised $3,000 in January, with $2,000 of it coming from those involved a company that has been quite active in the county recently.
Ripa & Associates LLC, the builder behind projects like Florida Hospital Wesley Chapel and Ten Broeck Wesley Chapel Psychiatric Hospital, donated $1,000 to Moore’s campaign. Adding to it was $1,000 more from Ripa president Christian LaFace, and a company from his same address, TCM SWFL IX LLC. The latter company is connected with Trax Capital Management, a property investment company out of Orlando.
Ripa also was the builder of projects like the Florida Medical Clinic offices in Land O’ Lakes, The Grove in Wesley Chapel and Medical Center of Trinity. Ripa has worked with the county extensively in the past, including road projects like Collier Parkway extension in 2011.
Moore spent a good portion of those funds in January as well, including $1,875 to Capital Consulting who has been advising his campaign. Moore has paid the company just under $3,400 over a two-month period.
Moore has raised $43,700 since starting his campaign in July, by far outpacing all of his opponents.
Corcoran speaker at Republican Club
State Rep. Richard Corcoran, R-Land O’ Lakes, will be the featured speaker at the Republican Club of Central Pasco’s meeting Feb. 26 at 6 p.m., at Copperstone Executive Suites, 3632 Land O’ Lakes Blvd., in Land O’ Lakes.
Corcoran is the speaker-designate for 2016, and chairs the Health and Human Services Committee, and the Select Committee on Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
For more information, call Steve Graves at (813) 996-3011.
Knight challenges Wilkeson for council seat
Zephyrhills City Councilwoman Jodi Wilkeson is getting a challenger for her seat in City Hall from Alan Knight, the current chair of the city’s Parks & Recreation Board. This is the first time Wilkeson will have a challenger to her seat since she first won election in 2008.
Knight is a retired Pasco County Schools educator, and spent a short time as head coach of the Zephyrhills High School football team in the 1970s.
Wilkeson filed for re-election in the middle of January, opening her campaign account with her own $100. She is the president and founder of WDA Design Group, an interior architecture firm she launched in September 2001.
The only other candidate filed to run for the April city council elections is Ken Burgess for his own seat, and so far has not drawn any opposition. Also, Gene Whitfield is seeking the mayor’s chair currently held by Danny Burgess. With a state House run gearing up, Burgess is not seeking another term in Zephyrhills.
Burgess fundraiser at Abbott Station
A fundraising campaign for Republican state House candidate Danny Burgess is slated for Feb. 26 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., at Abbott Station Restaurant, 5327 Gall Blvd., in Zephyrhills.
Tickets are $100 each, and will include hors d’oeuvres, beer, wine and other drinks.
To RSVP by Feb. 24, contact Jeff Meserve at , or (813) 322-3686.
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