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Round up of Pinellas County municipal races

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

All eyes were on Florida Tuesday night in the winner-take-all Presidential Preference Primary, but several municipal elections were also on the ballot.

Here is a roundup of Pinellas County races:


Clearwater City Council member Jay Polglaze lost his seat to Bob Cundiff. Cundiff brought in 55 percent of the vote.

Cundiff is a 70-year-old St. Petersburg College teacher. He teaches speech communication and public speaking. This is his first bid for elected office.

Polgaze sought his second term after being elected in 2012. He’s now vice mayor. Polgaze worked for the U.S. Postal Service 29 years and is a U.S. Army veteran.

Polgaze is also an executive board member for the American Cancer Society of Pinellas and on the Citizens Advisory Council of the Pinellas County Metropolitan Planning Organization.

Clearwater Mayor George Cretekos and council member Doreen Hock Di-Polito both ran unopposed for re-election this year. In addition to the Polgaze/Cundiff matchup, there wer seven charter amendments on the Clearwater municipal ballot.


In the town of Belleair it was a tale of two Toms. Tom Kurey and Tom Shelley were elected to the town commission with 47 percent and 45 percent of the vote respectively. Spencer Connerat came in with just 8 percent of the vote.

Kurey has been on the town’s finance committee as well as the Police Pension Board since 2012. Shelley has been a commissioner since 2005.

Indian Rocks Beach

Indian Rocks Beach Mayor and Commissioner R.B. Johnson won re-election against Bert Balery with 72 percent of the vote.


In Oldsmar, Jerry Beverland defeated Becky Afonso for City Council Seat 4 61 percent to 39 percent. Beverland has been mayor 10 years and a councilman 15. Those figures account for just early voting and partial mail ballots counted.

Pinellas Park

In Pinellas Park, incumbent Mayor Sandra Lee Bradbury defeated longtime city staffer Keith Sabiel. Bradbury was elected to city council in 2002, re-elected in 2006 and 2010, and then elected mayor in 2014. She’s the daughter of former Mayor Cecil Bradbury.

South Pasadena

South Pasadena Commissioner Max Elson bested Mayor Dan Calabria for the seat after contention on the City Commission led to calls among members to fire Calabria. Elson won with 70 percent of the vote.

St. Pete Beach

Educator Terri Finnerty defeated incumbent St. Pete Beach Commissioner Lorraine Hugn. And Ward Friszolowski defeated Deborah Schenechner for the open District 3 seat.

Tarpon Springs

In Tarpon Springs, Chris Alahouzos defeated Frank DiDonato for that city’s top spot after Alahouzos far out-spent DiDonato in the race.

The city also re-elected Susan Miccio Slattery for the Commission’s Seat 3.

Treasure Island

Treasure Island will have a new City Commissioner covering the area in and around Sunset Beach. Ken Keys defeated incumbent Alan Bildz with 58 percent of the vote.

Contests in many of those races were called based on early voting.

Several referendum questions also appeared on municipal ballots in Clearwater, Madeira Beach, Tarpon Springs and Pinellas Park. St. Pete Beach and Tarpon Springs also had charter amendments on the ballot.

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 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

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