Saturday, January 20, 2018
Politics

Election results from eight Pinellas cities are in

Voters went to the polls in eight cities Tuesday and delivered some decisive results, though question marks were left hanging in Treasure Island, where one referendum question resulted in a tie and one was very close.

Here's a rundown of the unofficial results:

Belleair Bluffs

Vice Mayor Suzy Sofer and council member Jack Nazario won the two available seats. Sofer took 39.3 percent of the 680 votes cast and Nazario drew 34.1 percent. Challenger George Lawton got 26.6 percent.

Gulfport

Sam Henderson will serve as Gulfport's first new mayor since 1991, when Mike Yakes was first elected. Yakes retired this year. Henderson, the vice mayor, got 64.4 percent of the 2,783 votes cast. He defeated former City Council member Bob Worthington, who got 35.6 percent.

Nearly 67 percent of voters also approved a charter amendment giving the governor the ability to fill vacant seats in certain situations.

Kenneth City

Former council members Wanda Dudley and Joanne DeSimone won seats on the Town Council. Dudley took 31.8 percent of the 1,032 votes cast. Just 21 votes separated DeSimone and incumbent Troy Campbell, who was seeking a second term. DeSimone got 283 votes, or 27.4 percent, to Campbell's 262, or 25.4 percent. Former council member Al Carrier came in fourth with 15.4 percent.

Oldsmar

Gabby McGee handily outpaced Dan Saracki and Suda Yantiss-Colon to win a council seat. McGee took 60.1 percent of the vote, Saracki got 28.9 percent and Yantiss-Colon got 11 percent.

Seminole

Incumbents Thom Barnhorn and Jim Quinn, who ran as a team, won decisive victories over Tom Christy, who was making his fourth run for a council seat, and Matt Nilssen.

Barnhorn collected 39.5 percent of the 3,751 votes cast. Quinn took 36.9 percent. Christy was third with 16.4 percent, while Nilssen got 7.2 percent.

South Pasadena

Dan Calabria won a landslide victory over Larry Crowley, who was appointed to fill the mayor's seat that was vacated last year by Kathleen Peters, who was elected to the state House. Calabria had applied at the time, but the City Council turned him down. He won 66.8 percent of the vote.

Tarpon Springs

David Banther won the open seat on the City Commission that Vice Mayor Chris Alahouzos vacated because of term limits.

Banther took 41 percent of the vote. Tim Keffalas came in second with 28.2 percent. Two others, Jim Bouldin and Tommy Frain, finished with about 15 percent each.

Treasure Island

No offices were up for grabs here but voters passed three of five referendum questions on the ballot. They defeated one and were split on another.

1. Voters approved allowing Treasure Island to increase the maximum building height by 2 feet to allow developers to compensate for flood safety requirements that they build the first floor of buildings 2 feet higher. In all, 75.5 percent said yes.

2. About 53 percent of voters approved increasing density up to 24 residential units per acre as part of a mixed-use development project in the core district of the downtown redevelopment district.

3. Fifty percent of voters — 762 votes — said the city should increase density up to 60 hotel or motel rooms per acre in the core district of the downtown redevelopment district. The other half of those voting on the issue said no.

"That's a strange one," Treasure Island Mayor Robert Minning said of the evenly split vote. "It says it doesn't have wide support. That's what it says."

Minning said he believes the vote will trigger an automatic recount.

4. About 53 percent said the city should increase density up to 15 residential units per acre in the Gulf Boulevard District of the downtown redevelopment district.

5. Voters — 769 of them, or 50.5 percent — said the city should not be allowed to increase density up to 60 hotel or motel rooms per acre in the Gulf Boulevard District of the downtown redevelopment district. There were 755 votes, or 49.5 percent, in favor.

That also will probably require a recount, Minning said.

Anne Lindberg can be reached at [email protected] or (727) 893-8450.

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