Sunday, May 20, 2018
News Roundup

Plant City news notes

Plant CIty

Commission to discuss change in city charter

A change to the city's charter related to special elections could come down to convenience and budget issues.

Commissioners have scheduled a public hearing July 9 about whether to amend the city's charter in order to appoint a replacement for outgoing Commissioner Dan Raulerson, rather than hold a special election.

Raulerson is running for state House and plans to resign his commission seat in November. His commission term expires next April.

City attorney Kenneth Buchman said holding a special election in January as required by the charter would cost the city $15,000. Then weeks later, the winner would need to start campaigning for a regular three-year term in April.

That's a quick and difficult turnaround, said Commissioner Mary Yvette Thomas Mathis, who ran back-to-back campaigns when first elected in 2000.

Instead, the commission is considering amending the charter so it can appoint a temporary replacement for Raulerson. The July 9 meeting is set for 7:30 p.m. at City Hall. Commissioners will vote after the hearing.

Fire chief retires, is ready to relax

Fire Rescue Chief George Shiley retired this week, saying he wants to be closer to his son and daughter in Raleigh, N.C. Shiley, 62, started in Plant City 13 years ago and has worked in fire fighting for 37 years.

"I think it was time," he said.

During Shiley's tenure, the department grew from 32 to 41 firefighters, all cross-trained in emergency medical services. Training chief and Fire Marshall David Burnett was named as Shiley's replacement.

Red, white, blue party at stadium

The city will hold its July 4 celebration at 6 p.m. at Plant City Stadium.

Parking is $5 and will be available at 5:45 p.m. Admission is free. Games and food vendors will be present. The Plant City Community Choir and the Clemmons Road Band are scheduled to perform. Weather permitting, the fire works will go off at 9:15 p.m.

Rich Shopes, Times staff writer

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