Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Former colleagues battle for District 2 commission seat

A dozen years ago, state Sen. Victor Crist appointed business owner Linda Pearson to review audits for some of the county's biggest budgets.

Now the two will face off in the Republican primary for the Hillsborough County Commission District 2 seat, an area that stretches from Westchase to eastern Hillsborough.

"She did a good job," Crist said about Pearson's work on the county's legislative delegation audit oversight board.

But when it comes to overseeing the governance of county residents, Crist says he's better suited for the position.

"I have a tremendous amount of experience in a broader range of areas," said Crist, 53, R-Tampa, who has been a state legislator since 1990.

Crist, who is president of the advertising agency Metropolitan Communications Inc., has reached the term limit for his state job.

Pearson, a certified planner who worked as a zoning coordinator and later a legislative aide for three county commissioners, said her connection to the area makes up for what some may perceive as a lack of political savvy.

"I'm not trying to be a career politician," said Pearson, 60, who was born and raised in Plant City. "I think the public wants their board to be concerned with the community and not their egos."

Pearson and Crist have similar stances on issues facing the county. Both agree economic development should be a priority for the commission and growth needs to be addressed. Neither supports a sales tax increase to fund a light rail project.

Crist, who served as the president of University of South Florida's Community Area Civic Association, said he would like to see more attention paid to the county's urban corridors.

"There needs to be balance when it comes to growth," said Crist, a USF graduate. "If all we do is sprawl, we're going be creating economically-depressed communities in our urban centers."

Pearson said the commission needs to refine current rules. She points to the Palm River area as an example. Property owners in Palm River prefer larger lots, yet the county lists the section within its urban service area. The designation makes it difficult for property owners to expand.

"Those land owners are stuck between government rules and regulations," Pearson said. "So why do we keep that rule?"

The winner in the GOP primary Aug. 24 will face Steven Morris in November. Morris is running with no party affiliation.

Nicole Hutcheson can be reached at nhutcheson@sptimes.com or (813) 226-3405.

Former colleagues battle for District 2 commission seat 07/15/10 [Last modified: Tuesday, August 3, 2010 7:28pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Pinellas licensing board asks Sen. Jack Latvala for $500,000 loan

    Local Government

    The troubled Pinellas County agency that regulates contractors wants Sen. Jack Latvala to help it get a $500,000 lifeline from the state to stay afloat.

    State Sen . Jack Latvala, R- Clearwater, is being asked to help the Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board get $500,000 from the state so it can stay open beyond February.  [SCOTT KEELER   |   Times]
  2. FHP: 55-year-old pedestrian struck, killed by car in Largo

    Accidents

    LARGO — A 55-year-old St. Petersburg man died late Saturday after he walked into the path of a car on Ulmerton Road, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

  3. Study offers warning for Florida strawberry farmers from global warming

    Agriculture

    LAKELAND — Florida strawberry growers already have experienced a dress rehearsal for the impacts of climate change during the past two seasons.

     Carl Grooms shows off some of his strawberries at Fancy Farms near Plant City Tuesday, Feb. 17, 2015.  Grooms, President of Fancy Farms. [JAMES BORCHUCK  |  Times]
  4. Two Interstate 275 tractor-trailer crashes cause delays in Tampa

    Accidents

    TAMPA — Two tractor-trailers driving in opposite directions on Interstate 275 crashed Sunday within a mile of each other, causing lane closures on both sides for much of the morning.

    Two tractor-trailers going opposite directions on Interstate 275 in Tampa crashed Sunday morning, closing lanes on each side, according to the Florida Highway Patrol. [Florida Highway Patrol]
  5. Read Anthony Scaramucci's old tweets. You'll understand why he deleted them

    National

    New White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci hasn't always shared the political views of the administration he now serves.

    Anthony Scaramucci, incoming White House communications director, takes questions as he speaks in the briefing room at the White House on Friday. [ Washington Post photo by by Jabin Botsford]