WCOM NEWS

6-19-05

 

Miramar sets special election Aug. 30

Suspended commissioner's seat up for grabs

 

MIRAMAR--A special election to replace suspended Miramar commissioner Fitzroy Salesman is set for Aug. 30, and once again, the seat could be up for a heated race.

Under the guidelines set, candidates would have to qualify between noon July 11 and noon July 15. So far, at least five candidates who ran for office in March said they are seriously contemplating running.

 

Salesman was suspended by Gov. Jeb Bush on June 3 after he was charged with driving under the influence and eluding a police officer. Under Miramar's charter, the city must conduct a special election within 90 days to fill a vacant seat.

If Salesman is found not guilty and the governor reinstates him, the person elected to fill his seat would have to vacate the position.

At Wednesday's meeting, city commissioners voted 4-0 for the August date, but Commissioner Marjorie Conlan raised questions about the process.

"I don't understand the temporary aspect of the seat. It seems awkward," she said, adding that if Salesman is quickly found not guilty, the city would have gone through an election unnecessarily.

But Commissioner Troy Samuels said he sees no problem "as long as we're clear it's a temporary seat."

Miramar must hold an election under its charter, said City Attorney Jamie Cole, adding that if Salesman is reinstated, he will receive back wages.

So far, those contemplating a run include former Commissioner George Pedlar, former Commissioner Sallie Stephens, teacher and 3-D animator John Moore, sales representative Alex Casas and airline crew chief Wendy Murray.

Miramar police arrested Salesman, 48, on April 30 not far from his house and charged him with DUI, speeding and running two stop signs. Salesman has said he is confident he will be exonerated.

(source) Sun Sentinel (Georgia East) 6-19-05