Elections

Dave Miner files for re-election to Manatee School Board

MANATEE -- Manatee County School Board member Dave Miner has filed for re-election for the District 3 seat in the 2016 election.

The Bradenton attorney and U.S. Marine Corps veteran was first elected to the seat in 2012.

"The community has been good to me and I want to continue serving this community, particularly the children and teachers," Miner said. "Critics would prefer for me to be a lapdog but that's not what I was elected to be."

Miner said top issues for school board members include restoring credibility and financial stability.

Miner has two challengers for the seat, which covers west Manatee and Anna Maria Island.

Misty Servia, a Planning Department manager at King Engineering Associates, filed in July. Sadie Montanus, a second-year teacher at Palmetto High School, filed earlier this month.

"I'm not surprised to have two challengers," Miner said. "You never can tell with elections. If someone wants to run, that's a wonderful thing about this country. You can put yourself out there, and the voters will once again make a comparison as to who is most qualified."

In 2012, Miner received 63 percent of the votes to defeat Robert Moates, a Lakewood Ranch High teacher.

Voters will also pick a candidate for the District 1 seat, which covers the northern part of the county, excluding downtown Palmetto, extending to the eastern border. Board Chairman Bob Gause, who holds the seat, has not filed for re-election.

Challengers Xtavia Bailey, a Palmetto resident, and Edward Viltz, who works at Team Success, have filed for the seat.

Voters will likely also pick a permanent representative for the District 5 seat, which opened after board member Mary Cantrell died in July. Gov. Rick Scott appointed John Colon to fill the seat, which covers the eastern part of the county south of State Road 64, until the 2016 election.

School board elections are nonpartisan and all voters in the county can cast ballots for each seat. Candidates must reside in the district they want to represent.

Claire Aronson, Manatee County reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7024. Follow her on Twitter@Claire_Aronson.

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