Historic City News received confirmation this afternoon that local entertainer Merrill Paul Roland has filed a statement of candidacy with the office of the Supervisor of Elections in his bid for County Commission District 2.
Seat 2, which is currently held by Commissioner Ron Sanchez, includes the area south of S.R. 16 and International Golf Parkway from the St. Johns River east to U.S. 1 and south to S.R. 207 and Flagler Estates including the Town of Hastings.
With the Primary Election to be held on August 24, 2010, and the General Election not until November 2, 2010, Historic City News asked Candidate Roland his reason for beginning his campaign so soon.
Roland says that he had a “wake up call” when he observed Ron Sanchez, who is a former volunteer fireman, support the controversial and unpopular “fire fee” before the Board of County Commissioners. The fire fee would have assessed St. Johns County taxpayers approximately $35 million each year. During a standing-room-only County Commission meeting where there was overwhelming opposition expressed by those in attendance, the fire fee proposal was defeated.
“Due to my disability, it is difficult for me to stand for the long periods of time that are necessary to collect voter signatures on my qualifying petitions”, Roland said. “That is why I’m starting early”.
When asked if there was any message that he wanted to convey to our readers, Roland said “I want to thank the almost 20,000 St. Johns County voters who supported and voted for me in 2008”. Roland also remarked that he has received words of encouragement from numerous people who he says appreciate the positive and “clean” campaign he ran in the last election.