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Pinellas Park Mayor faces challenger, two City Council members re-elected unopposed

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Two Pinellas Park City Council members won re-election last week unopposed. Seat 3 incumbent Rick Butler and Seat 4 incumbent Jerry Mullins celebrated victory as the qualifying deadline came and went last Tuesday with no challengers filing to run against the incumbents.

Current Mayor Sandra Bradbury will face an opponent. Former assistant public works administrator Keith Sabiel is running to replace her.

Sabiel ran unsuccessfully for City Council last year. According to his Facebook page, Sabiel was notified last Monday that his petition signatures required as part of the filing procedures were certified.

Pinellas Park voters will also decide whether or not to authorize City Council to grant ad valorem tax exemptions to qualifying new businesses or those who are undergoing a qualifying expansion.

The referendum is aimed at increasing economic development in the city as well as promoting new businesses and growing existing business in order to create jobs.

Voters will be asked yes or no whether to grant council that authority.

The mayoral election and referendum appear on the March 15 Presidential Preference Primary ballot.

City Council members in Pinellas Park earn about $18,000 a year for the part time work while Mayor’s earn about $21,000.

Janelle Irwin has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in the Tampa Bay area since 2003. She also hosts a weekly political talk show on WMNF Community radio. Janelle formerly served as the sole staff reporter for WMNF News and previously covered news for Patch.com and various local neighborhood newsletters. Her work has been featured in the New York Daily News, Free Speech Radio News and Florida Public Radio and she's been interviewed by radio stations across the nation for her coverage of the 2012 Republican National Convention. Janelle is a diehard news junkie who isn't afraid to take on big names in local politics including Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn, the dirty business of trash and recycling in St. Pete and the ongoing Pier debacle. Her work as a reporter and radio host has earned her two WMNF awards including News Volunteer of the Year and Public Affairs Volunteer of the Year. Janelle is also the devoted mother to three brilliant and beautiful daughters who are a constant source of inspiration and occasional blogging fodder. To contact, email janelle@floridapolitics.com.

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