BROOKSVILLE — Richard Matassa, an engineer with A Civil Design Group, has become the fifth Republican and the seventh candidate vying for the District 1 Hernando County Commission seat now held by Jeff Stabins.
Matassa, 43, said he is running for Hernando County's future.
"I don't see a lot of people talking about tomorrow,'' he said, and the county needs to offer something for the next generation.
"If you go out and get an education, what is the reason to bring yourself and your family back to Hernando County?'' he asked.
Matassa is also pushing for smaller government and more efficiency, and he said local government should be doing what Gov. Rick Scott has done to downsize state agencies.
In a news release, Matassa said he looked forward to a "lively race.''
"I am proud to provide Hernando County with an alternative candidate that has the education, experience and work ethic I feel this office requires,'' he said.
Born in Chicago, Matassa moved to Hernando Beach in 1979. He graduated from Springstead High School and earned two engineering degrees at the University of Miami. He is a member of several engineering organizations, the Greater Hernando County Chamber of Commerce and the Hernando Builders Association. He also has served on several county committees, including the Hernando Business and Economic Development Committee.
Others who have prequalified for the race are Republicans Stabins, Michael Burmann, Nick Nicholson and Regina Werder-McGuire, as well as Democrat Arlene Glantz and Joseph Swilley, an independent.
Barbara Behrendt can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (352) 848-1434.