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Largo voters pick commissioner today

(ran LA edition)

Voters go to the polls today to choose one member of the City Commission.

In this race for Seat 4, incumbent Commissioner Jean Halvorsen is challenged by newcomer Kim Deguise.

Halvorsen, 63, has served three consecutive three-year terms. Deguise, 29, has never held public office.

Halvorsen is a retired stenographer who moved to Largo 18 years ago from Wisconsin. She is president of the Suncoast League of Municipalities, a board member of Pinellas Trails Inc. and the Largo Area Mobile Home Council and a member of the Greater Largo Chamber of Commerce.

Deguise has been a Largo resident all of her life. She works as a secretary at Blessed Sacrament School in Seminole. Deguise is a member of the Greater Largo Chamber of Commerce, the Greater Largo Republican Club and the Women's Professional Rodeo Association.

Two other races were to have been on the ballot. However, no one filed to run against Mayor Thomas "Thom" Feaster and longtime Commissioner Jim Miles, so the two automatically were re-elected.

City Clerk Jean Scott said she expects today's election to draw only about 8 percent of the city's registered voters to the polls.

"I hope we have more," Scott said. "But there's really not much on the ballot to pique their interest."

Indeed, the candidates have expressed similar views on most issues affecting the city.