Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Tarpon Springs residents vet candidates in March 9 election for City Commission

TARPON SPRINGS – Rita Witeck wanted to know about the candidates' vision for the city.

Edward Zalewski wanted them to address the collection of tax dollars from sources such as Penny for Pinellas, Bright House and Verizon.

Monday, Witeck, 69, and Zalewski, 90, were among more than 100 residents who came to City Hall and listened to candidates for the Tarpon Commission in the March 9 election.

"I'm not familiar with any of the candidates, and I thought this would be a way to become more familiar," said Witeck, a 35-year Tarpon resident. "My ballot came in the mail yesterday, and I need to get to work (on learning the candidates)."

The forum, sponsored by the city and the League of Women Voters, was the first of several that will be held leading up to the election, in which three seats are up for grabs.

David Archie is running against Matt King for the mayor's seat Beverley Billiris will give up due to term limits. Jeff Larsen faces Joe Muzio for the commission's Seat 3, which Peter Dalacos will vacate, also due to term limits.

Current Commissioner Chris Alahouzos is trying to retain Seat 4; his challenger is Beverly Z. Kurpinski.

Monday night, the six candidates answered several questions that ranged from economic development, to the presence of a Super Walmart in the city, to changes to the city's charter to limit how land can be purchased.

There are nearly 16,000 registered voters in Tarpon and a little more than 6,000 ballots have already been mailed.

David Bolton, 41, listened intently to the candidates' answers. He said he hasn't made up his mind about whom to vote for, but he too is looking for candidates who have "a clear vision for the city."

"I'm trying to see if they are going to have any original ideas or if we are going to get the same regular responses that we usually get from those running for office," said Bolton, a 36-year city resident.

John McHugh, 84, said the forum was useful and it helped him decide whom to cast his vote for.

"They covered a lot of general information," he said. "Most have a feeling of what they should do and presented thoughtful responses. I was impressed."

Demorris A. Lee can be reached at or (727) 445-4174.

Tarpon Springs residents vet candidates in March 9 election for City Commission 02/02/10 [Last modified: Tuesday, February 2, 2010 7:36pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rowdies shut out at Pittsburgh


    PITTSBURGH — The Rowdies lost their first USL game in nearly a month, 1-0 to Pittsburgh on Thursday night.

  2. Trump reveals that he didn't record Comey after all


    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump declared Thursday he never made and doesn't have recordings of his private conversations with ousted former FBI director James Comey, ending a monthlong guessing game that he started with a cryptic tweet and that ensnared his administration in yet more controversy.

    President Donald Trump said Thursday that he didn’t record his conversations with James Comey.
  3. Lightning fans, don't get attached to your first-round draft picks

    Lightning Strikes

    CHICAGO — When Lightning GM Steve Yzerman announces his first-round pick tonight in the amateur draft at No. 14, he'll invite the prospect onto the stage for the once-in-a-lifetime photo opportunity.

    Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Jonathan Drouin (27) eludes  Montreal Canadiens left wing Phillip Danault (24) during the second period of Wednesday???‚??„?s (12/28/16) game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Montreal Canadiens at the Amalie Arena in Tampa.
  4. Investigation Discovery TV show profiles 2011 Landy Martinez murder case


    The murder of a St. Petersburg man will be featured this week on a new true crime series Murder Calls on Investigation Discovery.

    Jose Adame sits in a Pinellas County courtroom during his 2016 trial and conviction for first-degree murder. Adame was convicted of first-degree murder last year for torturing and then executing his boyfriend as he pleaded for his life in 2011. Now it will be featured in a new true crime series Murder Calls on Investigation Discovery. The episode will air on June 26 at 9 p.m. [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD   |   Times]
  5. Uhuru mayoral candidate Jesse Nevel protests exclusion from debate


    ST. PETERSBURG — Jesse Nevel, the International People’s Democratic Uhuru Movement candidate for mayor, on Thursday demanded that he be allowed to participate in a July 25 televised debate between incumbent Mayor Rick Kriseman and challenger Rick Baker.

    Mayoral candidate Jesse Nevel holds a news conference outside the headquarters of the Tampa Bay Times on Thursday to protest his exclusion from the mayoral debate. Nevel is a member of the International People’s Democratic Uhuru Movement.