AM ballot to include charter amendment

The 2012 Anna Maria election resulted in a scramble to decide how and who should be appointed mayor in the absence of a candidate.

Anna Maria voters Nov. 5 will be asked to decide on a charter amendment that clarifies procedures and amends definitions of the duties for a mayor pro tem.

The amendment also includes revised procedures for filling mayoral and commission vacancies.

The charter amendment was proposed after no one ran for mayor in the 2012 election.

The charter requires the commission chair, elected annually by a newly sworn commission, to become the mayor in the absence of the mayor. With no mayor, the commission chair serves as mayor until the next general election for mayor.

Last fall, SueLynn was nominated to the chair and thus became mayor. Her seat on the commission was filled by former Commissioner Gene Aubry. SueLynn also served as mayor from 2002-06.

A discussion then ensued at city hall as to how long an appointed commissioner would serve, and the issues were referred to a charter review committee headed by Howard Payne.

The proposed amendment clarifies that the appointed commissioner serves only the remainder of the term vacated by the former commissioner.

The amendment also clarifies how the commission fills vacancies and how a new commission chair and vice chair are elected when the commission chair becomes mayor.

Along with the amendment, four candidates are running for three seats on the city commission.

The candidates are Carol Carter, Doug Copeland, Michael Jaworski and Dale Woodland.

The electorate may vote for up to three candidates.

The deadline to register to vote is Oct. 5.

Registration may be done at the Manatee County Supervisor of Elections Office, 600 301 Blvd. No. 108, Bradenton, or online at Registration forms are available at city halls in Anna Maria, Bradenton Beach and Holmes Beach, and at the Island Library. All completed forms, however, must be hand-delivered to the elections office.

No early voting is conducted unless a state or federal candidate is running for office.

Anna Maria had 1,306 registered voters as of Aug. 1, according to the elections office.

For more information on voting, call the elections office at 941-741-3823.

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