Anna Maria mayoral candidate Sandy Mattick is seeking the office because she believes she has the experience and knowledge to run the city effectively and bring a calming influence to city hall.
Her experience, knowledge and calm nature will help end the divisiveness in the city generated the past year, she said.
“The mayor’s position is an administrator and providing service to the people,” Mattick said. “The mayor sees that the city runs smoothly.
“I have no pre-set agenda. I do value a viable business district for Anna Maria and the rights of all people, but I will always put all the residents of Anna Maria first and protect everyone’s property rights.”
A city resident since 2004, Mattick has two daughters who attend Manatee High School.
She formerly owned two businesses in Anna Maria and worked in government positions for 16 years before moving to Bradenton in 2003.
Mattick currently serves on the planning and zoning board and was a member of the citizen’s recognition committee this year. She also volunteers at the Anna Maria Island Community Center.
Seeking an elected position was not difficult for Mattick. Her parents encouraged community involvement among their seven children and she believes service “makes a difference.”
As mayor, she pledged to ensure the city runs smoothly and the rules and regulations are followed.
“The commission sets policy, not the mayor,” she said.
“The mayor implements commission policy and can bring issues to the commission for discussion, but can’t change the policy or the city ordinances. The mayor’s job is to run the city.”
Interpretation of the comp plan during recent site-plan hearings is an example of how the city became divided over unclear policy.
“My goal would be to ensure commission policies are clear to everyone and put an end to all these lawsuits that are going to bankrupt the city.”
If elected, she would work with commissioners, property owners, residents and developers to halt the proliferation of “unnecessary litigation” against the city. The key is to solve the problem before anyone rushes to file a lawsuit.
She believes she has the background to be a good mayor. During her government service, she prepared major budgets that were audited twice a year by the U.S. General Accounting Office and that experience is helpful for a mayor preparing a budget.
Additionally, she attended most of the ad-hoc comp-plan committee meetings from 2004 to 2007, and many commission meetings since 2004 to observe how the city works and how and why the comp plan was put together in its present form.
She understands that some people will take exception to her mother — Jo Ann Mattick — being a commissioner if she’s elected mayor.
“It’s not been a problem as long as I’ve been on the P&Z board, where I have a vote that goes to the commission. We don’t agree on everything, and I often express a contrary opinion.”
Because the mayor does not vote on the commission, one-on-one meetings with a commissioner and the mayor are permitted under Florida’s Sunshine Law.
If a commissioner or member of the public has a concern, particularly about city staff and city operations, Mattick said she would want to know. But she sees no problems with the present city staff.
“I am very confident in the current city staff and they are all exceptional,” she said.
A full-time resident, Mattick said she would not have an issue attending all meetings and fulfilling all duties of the office.
Her experience as a former business owner in the city can help close the gap between the concerns of business owners and residents about Pine Avenue, she said.
“I believe I’m a good facilitator,” she said, and as mayor would get those with differing views on issues to meet in an informal setting to find some common positions or present new proposals.
“We all want the same thing: To live in a beautiful, peaceful Anna Maria. We just have to figure out how to get there.”
Does all this mean she believes the city is on the right track?
“It’s on the right track,” Mattick said, but parking remains a stumbling block.
Commissioners need to find a workable, compromise solution for Pine Avenue parking.
She is concerned that parking is such a campaign issue that some voters might forget there are other city problems, such as drainage, road resurfacing, preservation of natural resources, shoreline renourishment and preserving the city’s older homes and cottages.
Mattick wants to find residents with expertise who will volunteer their time to help the city in a number of areas.
She said she is committed to listening to differing opinions and seeking compromise on issues.
Everyone, including herself, “can’t be right all the time and we should not be insensitive to our opponents and their thoughts.” Listening and compromising will “make us a better, stronger community,” she said.
“If voters look at my record and commitment to compromise and calmness, they’ll have good reasons to vote for me,” she said.
“I will always put the health, safety and welfare of the residents of Anna Maria first, and protect their rights,” she pledged.
Sandra A. Mattick
RESIDENCY: Anna Maria.
OFFICE SOUGHT: Anna Maria Mayor
FAMILY: Two teenage daughters.
INTERESTS: Stamp collecting, needlepoint, reading.
COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT: Anna Maria Planning and Zoning Board, Citizens Recognition Committee, Anna Maria Island Community Center volunteer, solicited private donations for city holiday banners, helped acquire piece of World Trade Center for WMFR memorial, Manatee County Adopt A Family and Lawton Chiles Family/Sandbar Christmas and Easter celebration volunteer.
CAMPAIGN MONETARY CONTRIBUTIONS (as of Sept. 15): $300.
QUOTE TO LIVE BY: “Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.”
CAMPAIGN MOTTO: “Dedicated to “Community.”