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Former Rep. Kim Berfield jumps into race to replace Latvala

Berfield is running in what is now House District 67 in Pinellas County. The current seat holder, Chris Latvala, is term-limited.
Florida House of Representatives members Kim Berfield, (R), Clearwater, and Gustavo A. Barreiro, (R), Miami Beach, confer on the first day of the 2006 Legislative session in Tallahassee. file photo. Times (2006)
Florida House of Representatives members Kim Berfield, (R), Clearwater, and Gustavo A. Barreiro, (R), Miami Beach, confer on the first day of the 2006 Legislative session in Tallahassee. file photo. Times (2006) [ KEELER, SCOTT | St. Petersburg Times ]
Published Jun. 16
Updated Jun. 16

Former Rep. Kim Berfield, R-Clearwater, and two other candidates have opened campaign accounts in recent days to run in 2022 for open seats in the Florida House.

Berfield, who served in the House from 2000 to 2006, opened an account Friday to run in what is now Pinellas County’s District 67, according to the state Division of Elections website.

The seat will be open because Rep. Chris Latvala, R-Clearwater, faces term limits next year. Also running in the district is Republican Jason Holloway, a former chief legislative aide to Democratic state Sen. Darryl Rouson.

Related: Tampa Bay political stories to watch in 2021

Berfield left office after an unsuccessful run for a state Senate seat in 2006 against Democrat Charlie Justice. She is currently vice president of government and community affairs at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital, and is a registered lobbyist for the hospital. Berfield also previously served as a deputy secretary at the Florida Department of Health.

Meanwhile, in Seminole County, Longwood Democrat Luke Dowe has opened an account to run in what is now House District 29. Rep. Scott Plakon, R-Longwood, is term-limited next year, but his wife, Republican Rachel Plakon, is running for the seat.

In South Florida, West Palm Beach Democrat Rick King has opened an account to try to succeed outgoing Rep. Omari Hardy, D-West Palm Beach, in what is now Palm Beach County’s House District 88. Hardy is running for a congressional seat. Also in the state House race are Democrats Paulette Armstead and Jervonte “Tae” Edmonds.

District boundaries — and potentially numbers — will change before the 2022 elections because of the once-a-decade reapportionment process.

Times staff writer Romy Ellenbogen contributed to this report.