Anna Maria voters approve charter amendments

The Anna Maria electorate overwhelmingly voted Nov. 5 to approve three changes to the city charter.

The mayor appoints a charter review commission of five people every five years to review the charter and propose changes. This year, all three of the review commission’s proposals were approved.

The first amendment, which requires elected officials to resign if the Florida Commission on Ethics finds them to have violated the state’s code of ethics, was approved by 91.32% with 242 votes.

Voters approved the second amendment, requiring the city commission to confirm mayoral appointments to the city treasurer position, by 86.36% with 228 votes.

They also voted 89.02% for the third amendment, making grammatical and typographical corrections, as well as clarifying language to improve readability. The third amendment drew 235 total votes.

While the election lacked a competition between elected officials, a commission chair remains up for grabs.

Commission Chair Carol Carter automatically retained her seat for another two-year term when the qualifying window closed in August, while Jonathan Crane, former chair of the city’s planning and zoning board, qualified for a commission seat without opposition.

Commissioner Dale Woodland also ran for reelection, but failed to qualify because he paid his qualification fees with the Manatee Supervisor of Elections Office with a personal account. Despite his mistake, nobody qualified to fill his seat, so the commission will appoint a new member later this month.

Woodland has previously told The Islander that he plans to apply for reappointment. If he is appointed by his current peers, it will mark his eighth two-year term as commissioner.