MANATEE -- It was a jovial group today at the official swearing-in ceremony of two new Manatee County commissioners and two newly re-elected ones.
Friends and relatives joined two new commissioners, Vanessa Baugh and Betsy Benac, and two re-elected ones, Commission Chair John Chappie and Commissioner Larry Bustle, for the swearing-in.
Benac said she was "ready to work," and Baugh said, "This is wonderful, we're going to get a lot done."
Among the audience was Bustle's wife, Edie; Chappie's brother, Joe; Manatee School District board member Julie Aranibar, a few county managers and employees.
The board plans to elect officers during its next meeting on Nov. 27, but specified that its decision would not take effect until Jan. 1.
The swearing-in ceremony today, supervised by County Attorney Mickey Palmer, was required by law, he said.
The law requires commissioners to be sworn in on the second Tuesday following the general election, but since no commission meeting was scheduled for that day, Palmer oversaw an official swearing-in that will be followed by a ceremonial one during the commission meeting Nov. 27.