The Winter Park mayoral election is March 9. This year’s easy – the mayoral race is the only item on the ballot. All you need to do is cast one vote, either for Phil Anderson or for Sarah Sprinkel.
Voter information is available online at ocfelections.com. You can make sure you are registered, request a Vote by Mail ballot, track the status of your Vote by Mail ballot or locate your polling place if you’d rather vote in person on election day. Did I mention election day is March 9?
Here are some other important dates.
Deadline for Voter Registration: February 8.
Last day to mail Vote by Mail Ballots: March 1.
Dates of Early Voting: March 1 – March 5, at the Supervisor of Elections office ONLY.
Important to note, there will be no early voting at the Winter Park Public Library this year. To vote early in person, you must go to the Elections Office at 119 W. Kaley Ave., Orlando FL 32806.
All ballots must be physically present in the Elections Office no later than 7:00 p.m. March 9.
Post marks don’t count.
If you have any questions, it’s easy to find someone with a pulse at 407-836-8683 (Vote by Mail phone line) or at the General number 407-836-2070.
REMEMBER: VOTE MARCH 9!
Anne Mooney has assumed the editorship of the Winter Park Voice from founding editor Tom Childers.
Mooney got her start in New York as a freelance line editor for book publishers, among them Simon & Schuster and the Clarkson Potter division of Crown Books. From New York, she and her husband and their year-old toddler moved to Washington, D.C., where the two ran a newswire service for Harper’s magazine. “We called it Network News,” said Mooney, “because it was a network of the Harper’s writers, whose work we edited into newspaper style and format and sold to papers in the top U.S. and Canadian markets. We were sort of like a tiny UPI.”
The newswire ceased operation with the death of Mooney’s first husband, but Mooney continued to write and edit, doing freelance work for Williams Sonoma cookbooks and for local publications in D.C.
In 2005, Mooney moved to Winter Park, where she worked as a personal chef and wrote a regular food column for a south Florida magazine. She took an active interest in Winter Park politics and was there when the Winter Park Voice was founded. She wrote occasional pieces for the Voice, including the Childers bio that this piece replaces.
The Winter Park Voice is one of a large number of “hyper-local” publications that have sprung up across the U.S. in response to the decline of the major daily newspapers and the resulting deficit of local news coverage. The Voice’sbeat is Winter Park City Hall, and its purpose is to help the residents of our city better understand the political forces that shape our daily lives.
In their new video “10 Reasons Why Henderson Hotel Withdrew Their Application,” the thinly veiled developer front “WP Voter” may have revealed more about the makeup of the current City Commission than they intended.
Targeted in the video were Commissioners Cooper, Sullivan and Weaver. Notably not featured in their video were Mayor Leary and Commissioner DeCiccio.
It should come as no surprise to residents that Leary is in bed with the developers, but WP Voter may have provided a clue that DeCiccio is as well. DeCiccio, recall, is a former partner at the law firm that represents Henderson Hotel and most of the other really big development proposals that come before the City Commission.
It’s up to residents to decide who’s real and who’s not on their City Commission, but WP Voter may have made it easier than ever today. Also take note of the length of time WP devotes to each of the three Commission members.
It’s no secret who WP Voter hates the most – Weaver – who also happens to be the Commissioner residents like the most. In the WP Voter video, Weaver is the “star” of their carefully edited Commission meeting video snippets.
This comment is part of a series, as The Voice transitions from being The Voice of a few to The Voice of the RESIDENTS. The Voice is grateful to its supporters over the years who have helped slow down some of the nonsense that continues to go down at City Hall, but if Winter Park is ever going to halt its rapidly downward trend in quality of life, news outlets like The Voice are going to have to tell residents the WHOLE story, even if it risks passing off some of its supporters.
What I could never figure out is why EVERY candidate for City Commission in recent memory has accepted the invitation to participate in the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce debate.
The Chamber is a special interest group. There are some Chamber members who are residents of Winter Park and some who are not. Many are corporate memberships that by definition are not residents but may be businesses located in or near Winter Park.
The Mayor and City Commissioners – BY LAW – may only be elected by the residents of Winter Park. At least that’s the way it’s supposed to work.
I can understand why candidates attend debates hosted by residents’ groups such as The Mayflower or Winter Park Towers. That makes sense. Because they are supposed to be running for office to serve the residents of Winter Park. Why wouldn’t they answer to the residents.
But the Chamber debate really makes no sense. Not that it’s a total waste of time. Candidates can publicize their campaign through these debates and possibly pick up a campaign contribution or two by doing so. People don’t even have to live in Florida to contribute money to a City Commissioner’s campaign.
The idea of “answering” to the Chamber though is troubling. And that’s the issue.
Debates are questions – by a moderator – and answers by the candidates. Candidates are not free to say whatever they want except in opening and closing statements. Instead they have to talk about what the Chamber asks them to talk about.
That’s the problem. When City Commissioners ANSWER to the Chamber they are not answering to the residents.
The Chamber in more recent years has become ever more aggressively “anti-resident” in its economic development agenda. Yet it demands that the residents of Winter Park give them prime downtown Winter Park Class A office space for only $1 per year. That’s what the Chamber pays for it’s office building owned by City of Winter Park. One dollar per year!
I’d have a lot of respect for a candidate who REFUSED to participate in the Chamber debate.
Another year in our incredible little city. So much has changed.
But Leary’s harmful rhetoric has not changed.
The attached is one of the most commented upon guest letters I have ever read at the Voice. Timely, very timely. Thank you, Sally Flynn.