Pasco commission candidate turned away from Chasco parade, cries foul
Chris Gregg just wanted to participate in a parade. One of six candidates in the open District 3 race for the Pasco County Commission, Gregg is trying to meet people and figured the March 24 Chasco Fiesta parade in New Port Richey was just the place. A west Pasco institution, Chasco is the place to see and be seen each year around these parts.
But on Tuesday he was refused. While incumbent officeholders are allowed in the parade, other challengers are not. "Everyone should be allowed, it’s a community event,” Gregg said. Incumbents are “getting all this press, they’re getting all this attention. Meanwhile, their opponent is left on the sidelines.”
West Pasco Chamber of Commerce President Joe Alpine said the no-candidate policy has been in place for at least 15 years. “That’s not what the parade is designed for. It’s for entertainment value, it’s for sponsors.”
He added: “We do allow elected officials to be in the parade, because they have been elected by the people and are representing the people.”
(You might remember that this issue came up a few years, when GOP state committeeman Bill Bunting wanted to run a float for the county Republican Party.)