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  1. Florida Politics

Oops, error in 2011 means candidate doesn't live in Pasco commission district

Brandi Geoit
Brandi Geoit
Published Jul. 31, 2018

PORT RICHEY — Brandi Geoit bought her home on Cochise Lane nearly five years ago. She is listed as a resident of Pasco Commission District 4. So are her neighbors, according to the Supervisor of Elections Office.

But they aren't.

Geoit, the Democratic candidate for the Commission District 4 seat, learned from Elections Supervisor Brian Corley on July 27 that she resides in Commission District 5.

"My name's on the door. I take full responsibility,'' said Corley.

Geoit and 76 other voters on Cochise Lane, north of Stone Road in the Embassy Hills subdivision in west Pasco, were assigned to the incorrect commission district in 2011. They should have been included in District 5, according to the boundary maps drawn after the 2010 census.

District 5 is represented by Commissioner Jack Mariano, who is not up for re-election until 2020. Geoit is challenging first-term Republican incumbent Commissioner Mike Wells Jr. for the District 4 seat.

Commissioners are elected countywide, but must meet district residency requirements. Geoit has until the Nov. 6 election results are certified, scheduled for Nov. 16, to move into the district, if she is elected.

"It has no impact on her campaign or being on the ballot. There is no issue with vote tabulation. That contest is still full throttle,'' said Corley.

Geoit said she is searching for a new residence.

"I was a little stunned because my voter ID says District 4,'' said Geoit. "I didn't move, the border moved.''

She also said she suspected "somebody's really digging to get me out of the campaign.''

The person who brought the discrepancy to Corley's attention was Mike Keech, a self-described political junkie who lives in the Regency Park neighborhood that abuts Embassy Hills. He said he wondered why he lived in District 5 while Geoit lived in District 4.

Keech, 66, who is blind from retinitis pigmentosa, said he had a friend research the precinct maps and then reported his findings to Corley.

"I'm not happy that we made this error, I made this error,'' said Corley. "But, at the same time, I've never met (Keech), but I'm glad he asked the question when he did.''

Keech said he is not registered with a political party. His most recent Facebook posts have been critical of Gov. Rick Scott, Commissioner Mariano and Geoit who he characterized as being misinformed.

Geoit said she is looking forward to having a new place to live to celebrate her next birthday – Nov. 17, the day after the election results are certified.

Reach C.T. Bowen at ctbowen@tampabay.com or (813) 435-7306. Follow @CTBowen2