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Altman wins re-election, other seats draw challengers

School Board chairman Allen Altman won his second term the easy way: He didn't draw an opponent.

The qualifying deadline passed at noon Friday with no challengers for Altman's District 1 seat.

"I am humbled beyond words and just so appreciative for the show of support," said Altman, who won the seat in 2006 in a 175-vote squeaker over Cathi Compton.

While Altman sits out this election season, 12 candidates will spar over three open School Board seats, and both county commissioners up for re-election will face challengers.

• County Commission District 2: Former state legislator Ken Littlefield qualified to run against commission Chairwoman Pat Mulieri in the Republican primary in August.

The winner will face Land O'Lakes activist Clay Colson, who had originally filed to run as a Democrat but changed to no party affiliation.

Non-partisan candidate Kathleen Spencer withdrew from the race.

• County Commission District 4: Republican Henry Wilson Jr., director of managed care for SDI Radiology in Tampa, qualified to challenge Commissioner Michael Cox, a Democrat, in the November general election.

The three open School Board seats all drew multiple challengers. Because these are nonpartisan races, they will appear on the August ballot. If no candidate gets a majority of the votes, the top two will face each other in the November general election.

•School Board District 3: Four candidates — Cynthia Armstrong, Mike Ryan, Sallie Skipper and Anthony Terranova —qualified for the race to replace Cathi Martin, who decided not to seek re-election.

• School Board District 4: Normally this seat wouldn't be up in this election cycle, but board member Kathryn Starkey is stepping down to run for state House. Five candidates are vying to replace her: Alison Crumbley, Billie Ann Stamatis Kaleel, Steven Kanakis, Karen King and John Tracy.

• School Board District 5: Incumbent Frank Parker decided not to seek re-election, making this an open seat for three challengers. They are George Brazier, Steve Luikart and Mark Swartsel.

Altman said he was glad to see so much interest in the School Board seats, given the budgetary challenges that lie ahead.

"There will be some extremely difficult and heart-wrenching decisions that, I fear, will have to be made very quickly," Altman said. "We need good, strong, informed candidates, and I'm glad there are some that are running for those seats that are willing to serve."

Now that Altman doesn't have to run a campaign, what will he do with the $20,245 war chest he has amassed? A small portion will pay for his filing fee and a few other campaign expenses. He plans to return the rest of it to the contributors.

"And will do so gladly," he said Friday with a chuckle.

Times staff writers Lisa Buie and Drew Harwell contributed to this report.

Fast facts

Legg probably retains District 46 seat

Though the qualifying period ended at noon Friday, the state elections office had yet to announce whether challengers to the District 46 seat held by state Rep. John Legg, R-Port Richey, had qualified that evening.

Legg said he heard unofficially that candidates Matthew Borsch and Robert Moore, both Democrats, had not submitted their paperwork. That would leave Legg unopposed for his fourth term.

"I enjoy going out there campaigning, but it's a lot of work," Legg said Friday. "It allows me in my senior term to focus on policy ... a little bit more than going out on the campaign trail."

Other races on the ballot this year will include:

Senate District 10

Victoria Brake (write-in)

Ronda Storms (Republican) *

Senate District 12

Kevin Ambler (Republican)

Derek Crabb (write-in)

Jim Norman (Republican)

Kimberly Renspie (write-in)

House District 44

Diane Rowden (Democrat)

Robert Schenck (Republican) *

Jay A. Thompson (Democrat)

House District 45

Fabian Calvo (Republican)

Richard Corcoran (Republican)

Grady Peeler (write-in)

Kathryn Starkey (Republican)

House District 48

Marg Baker (Republican)

Tom McKone (Democrat)

Steven Mueller (Republican)

Peter Nehr (Republican) *

House District 60

Christopher Carlos Cano (Democrat)

Shawn Harrison (Republican)

Russ Patterson (Democrat)

Trey Stroud (Republican)

House District 61

Elena McCullough (Democrat)

Will Weatherford (Republican) *

Kevin Wright (Republican)

Mosquito Control
Seat 2

Matthew Abbot

Lester Cypher

Jessica Jordan Griffin

Michael Moore

Nikolas Tzoumas

Candidates also qualified for Community Development District seats in Pasco communities. For those candidates, visit www.pascovotes.com, select "Candidates" in the left column, and click on "2010 Local Candidates."

* Incumbent

Altman wins re-election, other seats draw challengers 06/18/10 [Last modified: Thursday, August 5, 2010 11:04pm]

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