Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Consolidation divides three seeking election to Lealman Fire Commission

LEALMAN — The three candidates for the open seat on the Lealman Fire Commission have widely differing opinions about consolidation of fire and emergency medical services.

One sees consolidation as inevitable. Another wholeheartedly supports it. The third wants Lealman to remain independent as long as possible.

The three — Jay D. Alexander, John Frank and Becky Harriman — made their remarks at a recent forum held by the Lealman Community Association.

Alexander, 53, is a first-time candidate who has said he wants to revive the Civilian Conservation Corps. The CCC was a public works relief program that the federal government ran from 1933 to 1942.

Alexander told the audience that consolidation is an idea that might have to be considered. But he has said in the past that he "would like to hold out as much as possible to be independent."

Records from the Pinellas County Supervisor of Elections Office indicate that Alexander has raised no money for his campaign.

Frank, 55, is a former Lealman fire commissioner who is well-known in the community. Frank believes that consolidation is inevitable and that it would result in better service for less money for Lealman taxpayers. But, Frank said, the way for Lealman to avoid disappearing in a consolidated system is to form friendships with the neighboring cities of Pinellas Park, Seminole, St. Petersburg and Kenneth City.

Frank has been a controversial figure during the past decade or so. Fire commissioners kicked him off the board because they said he does not live in the district. But county investigations have indicated that he does. He had run-ins with the law in 2005 when he was charged with speeding, DUI and leaving the scene of a crash. Adjudication was withheld on all charges. His license was suspended, but it has since been reinstated.

Frank has said that the experience allowed him to get treatment.

County records indicate that Frank had raised $2,380 as of Oct. 8. Most of that has come from individual contributors, including $100 from LCA president Ray Neri. Frank loaned himself $300.

Harriman, 53, is the current chair of the Lealman fire board. She advocates countywide consolidation because it is the best way to save money. She also advocates firefighter transport of patients to hospitals, saying that would cut costs because fire departments already have vehicles to transport patients.

Harriman has raised $3,450 in cash, most of it from her own pocket. She has given or loaned herself at least $2,500. Her contributors include the Flame of Continuous Existence fire union, which donated $250, and Larry Ahern, who donated $50. Ahern is the Republican candidate for state House District 51. He is running against incumbent Democrat Janet Long.

Fire commissioners meet at least twice a month, and they're responsible for setting the tax rate and creating a budget for the district. They earn $500 a month, although they have recently voted to temporarily forgo their pay to help hold down the budget. The 11-square-mile district has a budget of about $6.7 million derived from property taxes, money from emergency medical services and money from a contract to provide fire service to Tierra Verde.

Reach Anne Lindberg at alindberg@tampabay.com or (727) 893-8450.

Consolidation divides three seeking election to Lealman Fire Commission 10/23/10 [Last modified: Saturday, October 23, 2010 4:31am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. In advertising, marketing diversity needs a boost in Tampa Bay, nationally

    Business

    TAMPA — Trimeka Benjamin was focused on a career in broadcast journalism when she entered Bethune-Cookman University.

    From left, Swim Digital marketing owner Trimeka Benjamin discusses the broad lack of diversity in advertising and marketing with 22 Squared copywriter Luke Sokolewicz, University of Tampa advertising/PR professor Jennifer Whelihan, Rumbo creative director George Zwierko and Nancy Vaughn of the White Book Agency. The group recently met at The Bunker in Ybor City.
  2. Kushner to testify before two intelligence committees

    Politics

    WASHINGTON— President Donald Trump's senior adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner is set to make a second appearance on Capitol Hill — he will speak with the House Intelligence Committee on Tuesday, one day after he is scheduled to speak with Senate Intelligence Committee investigators behind closed doors.

    White House senior adviser Jared Kushner is scheduled to testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee and the House Intelligence Committee. [Associated Press]
  3. Rays blow lead in ninth, lose in 10 to Rangers (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Rays manager Kevin Cash liked the way Alex Cobb was competing Friday night. He liked the way the hard contact made by the Rangers batters went away after the second or third inning. So as the game headed toward the ninth, there was no doubt in Cash's mind that sending Cobb back to the mound was …

    Rays starter Alex Cobb can hardly believe what just happened as he leaves the game in the ninth after allowing a leadoff double then a tying two-run homer to the Rangers’ Shin-Soo Choo.
  4. Exhumation of Dalí's remains finds his mustache still intact

    World

    FIGUERES, Spain — Forensic experts in Spain have removed hair, nails and two long bones from Salvador Dalí's embalmed remains to aid a court-ordered paternity test that may enable a woman who says she is the surrealist artist's daughter to claim part of Dalí's vast estate.

    Salvador Dal? died in 1989 leaving vast estate.
  5. Sessions discussed Trump campaign-related matters with Russian ambassador, U.S. intelligence intercepts show

    Politics

    WASHINGTON — Russia's ambassador to Washington told his superiors in Moscow that he discussed campaign-related matters, including policy issues important to Moscow, with Jeff Sessions during the 2016 presidential race, contrary to public assertions by the embattled attorney general, current and former U.S. …

    Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from the Russia investigation after meetings with an ambassador were revealed.