In order for a candidate to win, their vote percentage must reach the 50% mark. And, as of 10 p.m., the closest candidate(s) were Shandale Terrell (a special-needs educator with 39.74%) + Mike Musick (owner of Musick Construction and Roofing with 33.65%). The two will square off in 4 weeks to declare an official winner during a run-off election.
The run-off will see who will replace former Commissioner Scott Franklin (who was recently elected to the U.S. House of Representatives), and is set to take place on May 4.
Why does this matter?
The city commission is a local governing body usually headed by a city’s mayor. Lakeland’s mayor, Bill Mutz currently has six commissioners who run different districts.
These commissioners are in charge of overseeing the running of the local government by discussing and voting on things like:
• Setting policies and ordinances
• Tax rates
• Addressing local issues
• Balancing the budget
• Setting pay rates for city employees
By the end of the year, (November to be exact), an election for the full, four-year term will open up for the seat filled this May.