Three incumbents and three challengers face off in the November 8th General Election for seats on the St Augustine City Commission. In today’s issue of The St Augustine Report, former mayor George Gardner published a brief statement from each of the candidates; two each for Seat 1 and Seat 2, as well as two for mayor (Seat 3).
Seat 1: (4-year term)
Incumbent: Roxanne Horvath Challenger: Ronald L. Stafford
Roxanne Horvath roxannehorvath.com
As an Architect, I will strive to balance ALL interests of the City, residents, business, institutions, and tourists, and to implement the critical initiatives required to achieve our united vision with creativity and innovation. With over 30 years of practice, including Historic Preservation and State funded grant applications. I will use my insights, training and experience to contribute meaningfully to the improvement of the community. My unique skills of problem solving with creativity, ability to visualize and communicate will help to ensure livable, healthy, sustainable, and quality designed environments for future generations.
Ronald L Stafford electronstafford.com
There comes a time when citizens deserve to be a part of decision making other than when it’s time to vote. One issue is the three minute time slot to speak at City Commission meetings. St. Augustine has a wealth of knowledge among its citizens that can be utilized rather than paying large sums of our tax dollars to consultants. I’m running to serve Davis Shores, North City and Lincolnville, and to make West St. Augustine part of our city again. Become serious about the drainage and parking problems that affect our citizens. Our visitors come and go, but we remain. This is about the people!
Seat 2: (4-year term)
Incumbent Leanna Freeman Challenger: Susan Rathbone
Leanna Freeman leannafreeman.com
As a long-time resident of the City, I look forward to protecting our City’s authentic past and working for an improved livable future. I have years of experience in public service, both on the Commission and on the Planning and Zoning Board. As a practicing attorney I offer both a unique perspective and valuable input on issues that are often complex. I have worked to make St. Augustine a better place to live, work and raise a family. I envision our families continuing to enjoy our unique city for generations to come. I hope to have your support in November!
Susan Rathbone susanrathbone.com
Rathbone If you want things to change, take action! That is why I am running. Today we are facing the same challenges as eight years ago with no marked improvement. Our infrastructure is failing, yet the current Commission holds to a long-term plan and refuses to make changes or adapt. I want to restore the balance between business and residents and protect our quality of life. We need fair and consistent code enforcement with codes that reflect the times. I wish to put the needs and desires of citizens before my own and do this in a professional and respectful manner.
Seat 3: (2-year term)
Incumbent Nancy Shaver Challenger: Kris Phillips
Nancy Shaver nancyshaver.com
I wake up humbled each morning by the responsibility you gave to me two years ago. You asked me to preserve and protect our hometown, deliver open government, improve livability and repair crumbling infrastructure. As Mayor, I have challenged our city government to be accountable to you — to provide real, thoughtful and long term solutions to mobility, storm water, sewers and roads. Progress is being made. I find myself blessed with the flexibility and energy to offer you my full time attention and commitment to move us forward. With your support, working together we will make this special place even better.
Kris Phillips kris4mayor.com
St. Augustine residents continue to be asked for more and more, while the strain on city services and infrastructure is becoming more and more driven by out of town visitors who pay little to nothing to help keep up the city. It’s time residents get an advocate in City Hall who will stand up for them and start asking those who visit our beautiful city to start pitching in and shouldering some of the burden.