Posted July 8, 2016
Port Canaveral Issues, cont'd.
About the Canaveral Port Commission and the Election
By Mary Hillberg
The Canaveral Port Commission and the Brevard County Commission are often confused. Although both have 5 seats and are noted by districts, there are important differences. Our County Commissioners are elected by the residents of their own districts and they must live in those districts, as well. For our County Commission District 2 seat that covers Merritt Island, Cocoa Beach and some of Cocoa, there is no election this cycle. Currently the county commissioner that represents our interests and lives in our district is Mr. Jim Barfield.
The Port Commission however, is quite different. The commissioners are “designated by districts,” but were able to get themselves elected county-wide many years ago. In addition, it appears they do not have to live in the district they “represent.” I understand Mr. Deardoff, who currently holds the District 4 seat (all north of SR 528), may not even reside in Brevard County, but have yet to verify that. This all makes it difficult to hold the Port Commissioners accountable, as they can do something negative to one area (even the district they are “representing”), and the majority of the county may still vote for them.
Currently, our district 4 port commission seat is held by Mr. Deardoff. He and Mr. Bob Harvey are competing for the District 4 Port seat this November. No others are running, so everyone in Brevard may vote for either Mr. Harvey or Mr. Deardoff for this part time, four-year position on the port commission.
Also Mr. Loyd and Mr. Willis are competing for Port District 2 (southern Titusville and parts of Cocoa).
We are all voting for the better of the two in both races and it is important to vote for the person you feel would do the best job. On a 5-person board, every vote is important.
For information on who is overtly financially supporting any candidate, go on the Brevard County Supervisor of Elections website where you may find the maps of the port districts and the candidates’ names and contact information. You can see a lot in the candidate financial reports, where you will find who is donating money for this person to succeed.
We are all responsible to vote. Many times it comes down to two relative unknowns or a situation where neither candidate is our preferred choice. Then, it is our duty as citizens to vote for the one that we think may cause the least damage to our home, lives and future generations. Please consider all circumstances and vote.
I hope this will help voters reason and think about the choices and possible results.
It is also empowering for people to discover they can obtain relevant info themselves. So, here's a link to Brevard County Supervisor of Elections 2016 Candidates, where you can find additional information about port commission (and other) candidates:
Mary Hillberg is a keenly interested citizen-voter in Brevard County.