Island elections: some contested, some not
Bohnenberger will be new Holmes Beach mayor
Former Holmes Beach mayor and current Commissioner Rich Bohnenberger will be the city’s next mayor. No other candidates qualified for the office by the July 21 deadline for the seat being vacated by Mayor Carol Whitmore, who has announced she will run for the at-large seat on the county commission.
Bohnenberger was a city commissioner for one year from 1993 to 1994, then resigned to run for mayor. He served in that capacity from 1994 to 1996 before regaining a seat on the commission in 1999.
The remainder of his one-year term will be filled by appointment of the new city commission in November.
The race for the two vacant seats on the Holmes Beach city commission (see separate story) includes some old and new names.
Incumbent Sandy Haas-Martens along with former commissioners Don Maloney and Pat Geyer, planning committee member John Monetti and Save Anna Maria president Sheila Hurst will face off in November in the race for the two vacancies. Incumbent Roger Lutz decided not to seek re-election after 10 years on the commission.
Ursula Stemm was the lone candidate qualifying for the city’s charter review committee.
Businesswoman Joann Mattick will join incumbent City Commissioners Linda Cramer and Duke Miller in a race for the two commission seats up for election in November.
Planning and zoning chairperson Fran Barford and former P&Z chairman Tom Turner will face off in the mayor’s race for the post being vacated by incumbent SueLynn, who decided three weeks ago she would not seek a third term.
In Bradenton Beach, Michael Pierce qualified unopposed for the Ward 2 seat being vacated by incumbent Commissioner Lisa Maria Phillips and will be automatically seated.
Incumbent Commissioner Bill Shearon of Ward 4 also gained election as no other candidate sought to run against him. Mayor John Chappie has another year remaining of his final term as mayor. He will not be eligible for re-election due to term limits.
The position of mayor in each Island city pays $9,600 annually, while a commissioner for any of the three cities draws $4,800 per year.
Elections in all three Island cities will take place on Tuesday, Nov. 7.
Voter registration for the upcoming Sept. 5 primary, which includes some county, state and national seats, closes Aug. 7. Registration for the three Island cities elections closes Oct. 10.
Holmes Beach commission quandary
Holmes Beach commission candidates who thought that three seats would be up for grabs this November because of the resignation of Commissioner Rich Bohnenberger to run for mayor better think again.
Only two seats are up for election on Nov. 7, said attorney Ed Conrad of the city’s law firm.
Bohnenberger’s resignation date is 12:01 a.m. Nov. 19, which is prior to the swearing-in date for his new post as mayor. Because it’s effective after the Nov. 7 election and his term had a year, Conrad said it will create an "unexpired term" of slightly less than one year.
Under the city charter, the commission "is charged with appointing qualified individuals to fill vacancies of the commission."
The "qualified person" appointed by the commission to fill the remainder of Bohnenberger’s commission term will serve until the November 2007 election, at which time the seat will be up for a vote in the regular election, Conrad concluded.