SOUTH PASADENA — There is no guessing about who will be the city’s next mayor.
Vice Mayor Arthur Penny, now serving his fourth term on the City Commission, was the sole applicant for the 2019 mayoral election. Once he qualified, he became mayor-elect with a swearing-in ceremony tentatively scheduled for March 12.
No one qualified to run for the seat currently held by Commissioner Ben Thomas, and the city’s residents have been notified that the March 2019 general election has been cancelled.
Two commissioners will be appointed to the seats that will be vacated by Thomas, who is over finance, and Penny, who heads up community improvement and will leave his current seat when he becomes mayor.
One of Penny’s immediate interests as mayor is to “continue working with the economic development task force” led by the Tampa Bay Beaches Chamber of Commerce to revitalize South Pasadena, and during his term he wants “to see the new (South Pasadena) fire station get built,” he said.
Penny is chief executive manager at Sea Towers Owners Associations and recently served as president of the Suncoast League of Cities. He was a park ranger for the Florida Department of Environmental Protection from 1997 to 2001.
Penny, 60, has lived in South Pasadena for 15 years.
“I want to get our residents more involved with the city,” he said. “South Pasadena is my city; I’m part of it and I’m proud of it.”