Wednesday, January 17, 2018
News Roundup

2 Plant City commissioners unopposed, re-elected automatically

Plant City

Commissioners re-elected without a fight

City Commissioners Rick Lott and Billy Keel don't have to worry about running for re-election.

No other candidates stepped forward as of the Feb. 15 filing deadline, which means voters won't go to the polls on April 2.

The two incumbents will likely be sworn in for new three-year terms at the April 8 commission meeting.

Having uncontested elections isn't unusual in Plant City, according to City Clerk Kerri Miller.

Incumbents rarely face challengers and most elections for City Commission occur only when a vacancy occurs.

The last municipal election was in April 2008, when Dean Snyder and Michael Sparkman faced off to replace Commissioner Robert Brown, who decided not to seek re-election for health reasons. Sparkman, who's now the mayor, won that race.

The good news in all this is that skipping the election will save the city about $15,000 in election-related expenses.

Accountant named Citizen of the Year

Joseph Sedita has been named Outstanding Citizen of the Year.

The accountant was lauded Feb. 13 for his charity work, including helping the Boy Scouts and South Florida Baptist Hospital Foundation.

Sedita, 65, was surprised at the honor, which wasn't revealed until a luncheon at the Hillsborough Community College Trinkle Center.

The naming of the Outstanding Citizen is a closely guarded secret. Ten civic groups meet in January to sort through the nominees. The winner isn't announced until the luncheon.

"That man was in total shock," said Anna Reitz of the Kiwanis Club, one of the organizers.

The winner receives a plaque. Last year, Dr. Donald Humphrey won.

Photojournalism entry due March 1

Plant City High students still have time to enter the photo archives and history center's photojournalism contest.

Entries must be accompanied by a story of 300 to 600 words describing the photographs. Prizes from $50 to $100 will be awarded. The winning entries will be displayed at the archives' exhibit gallery at 106 S Evers St. Last year's contest drew 20 entrants.

The deadline for entries is March 1. Winners will be announced March 21. Call (813) 754-1578 for more information.

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