Anna Maria mayor candidates confident

In the days before the Nov. 2 election for Anna Maria mayor, Sandra Mattick and Mike Selby expressed confidence they have the qualifications needed to perform the duties of the office and asked voters to elect them to the job.

Selby said with his 30 years in business, he has the experience needed to run the city.

And he said any concern that he might spend the summer at his North Carolina home is unfounded.

“I will be in the city as needed to run the city, and run it well,” Selby said.

He and his wife have their North Carolina home up for sale in anticipation of spending the next two summers in Anna Maria, he indicated.

Selby also rejected any suggestion that he is “anti-business,” noting it would not be good for the city to have retail shops and offices on Pine Avenue boarded up and closed.

He said he had no “magic bullet” to solve what many consider the city’s major issue: Pine Avenue parking. Selby pledged to work hard to find a compromise parking solution acceptable to all sides of the issue.

Selby asked voters to consider the wealth of experience he gained in the business world operating his own company and dealing with all levels of government.

Mattick highlighted her government experience as a solid qualification to be the city’s next mayor.

She said she’s acquired considerable experience the past seven years in learning how the city operates, having served on the planning and zoning board since 2006 and attending many of the ad hoc comp-plan committee meetings that began in 2004. She’s also been to many commission meetings.

From those many meetings, she’s learned how a city functions under its own charter, state and federal regulations, and what a comprehensive plan means for the city.

She noted her 16 years working for the federal government in preparing budgets and working with auditors was good experience for a mayor. Mattick has been a small-business owner in the city and understands the Pine Avenue parking issue from the standpoint of both a business owner and a resident.

Mattick also pledged to work for a parking compromise agreeable to all sides of the issue. The wishes of the voters who signed the recent parking initiative can’t be ignored, she said.
She addressed the concern of some voters that her mother — Jo Ann Mattick — is a city commissioner.

There is no conflict of interest because the mayor does not vote on the commission and can meet individually with commissioners to discuss issues, Sandy Mattick said. The mayor, however, can’t be a “conduit” to provide one commissioner with another commissioner’s opinion, she acknowledged.

“That’s a point I understand very well,” she said.

Mattick and her mother “don’t always agree on every issue,” she said, pointing to differing views regarding the conservation land-use and preservation land-use comp plan amendments.

Additionally, some P&Z recommendations forwarded to the commission that the younger Mattick favored were rejected by her mother, including a variance request for a dock permit.

Mattick said she is “pro-business,” as every elected official should be, but only as long as a business or a business application does not interfere with the rights of the residents and property owners of the city. She said she was against a suggestion two years ago that the city establish a separate “motel” district for new accommodation projects.

She believes poorly written, unclear land-development regulations that are subject to various interpretations have caused the city some recent problems. It’s time to get those regulations rewritten to match the comprehensive plan, she said.

Mattick said she has no “hidden agenda” as mayor, but pledged to “always put the residents first and maintain the single-family residential character we all came her for.

Voters should have every confidence she will effectively run the city as mayor.

She said it would be an “honor” and “privilege” to be elected mayor. “I will not let you down.”

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