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(164) stories found containing 'election'

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  • Commissioner Carol Gillespie Joins Lake Wales City Board

    Robert Connors|Updated May 8, 2024

    A brief swearing-in ceremony at the start of Tuesday's city commission meeting saw newly-elected Commissioner Carol Gillespie join the board. Gillespie, joined by her husband Gary Robillard, stood before the audience and repeated the oath as read by City Clerk Jennifer Nanek. Gillespie won seat 4 on the five-person commission by a wide margin over incumbent Danny Krueger. The swearing-in event was met with applause from an enthusiastic group of supporters. Speaking during...

  • Voters May Consider Run-Off Elections if Lake Wales Commission Approves Charter Referendum

    News Staff Reports|Updated May 3, 2024

    After perhaps the closest election in Lake Wales City Commission history, the city's governing board seems poised to propose a change to the Lake Wales Municipal Charter that will provide for run-off elections beginning in 2026. If approved by the commission, the charter change requires voter approval and will appear on the April 1, 2025, ballot along with the election for mayor. The change is under consideration after two three-way races in the most recent cycles left both a...

  • GUEST EDITORIAL: Florida Lawmakers Want to Weaken State's Ethics Laws, Only Ron DeSantis Can Stop Them

    Jason Garcia, Seeking Rents|Updated Apr 28, 2024

    Last fall, the state agency that investigates potentially corrupt Florida politicians urged lawmakers in Tallahassee to strengthen the state's ethics laws. The Florida Commission on Ethics wanted to tighten conflict-of-interest rules. It proposed legal protections for whistleblowers who reveal wrongdoing. It suggested garnishing the salaries of guilty public officials who refuse to pay their fines. Florida lawmakers ignored all three of those ideas. They decided to weaken the...

  • City Commission Votes Down Lake Alta High-Density Residential Project

    Robert Connors|Updated Apr 17, 2024

    A proposal that some city commissioners and staff saw as the best opportunity so far to implement the Lake Wales Envisioned plan died Tuesday night on a 3-2 vote. The concept of a 24-unit single-family community on a 1.46 acre parcel generated intense opposition from residents of the neighborhood, located around the 3.566 acre Lake Alta Park. Commissioners received a letter signed by two dozen of them asking that the proposal be denied, and multiple speakers had criticized the...

  • One-Vote Margin as Alvarado-Williams Race Heads to Likely Recount, Possible Coin-Toss

    News Staff Reports|Updated Apr 5, 2024

    The startling result of the District 2 City Commission election as tabulated by the Supervisor of Elections is expected to result in a careful examination of a handful of rejected and provisional ballots that could tip the election, according to sources reached Tuesday night by Lake Wales News. The unofficial results left incumbent Daniel Williams leading challenger Brandon Alvarado by one vote, 939 to 938. A second challenger, Crystal Higbee, ran a distant third, gathering...

  • Williams Defeats Alvarado by Four Votes After Recount

    Robert Connors, Managing Editor|Updated Apr 5, 2024

    City Commissioner Daniel Williams has won a new three-year term after escaping a strong challenge by political newcomer Brandon Alvarado by a four vote margin, leaving Williams reelected with 42.3 percent of the votes cast. A third candidate, Crystal Higbee, took 347 votes. Following a machine recount and a manual recount of "outstacked" ballots, the final margin of William's win was 943 to 939. Alvarado conceded defeat immediately after the conclusion of the recount, and...

  • Complex Ballot Review Involved in Determining City Election Results After One-Vote Difference

    Robert Connors, Managing Editor|Updated Apr 5, 2024

    A one-vote margin in a Lake Wales election between incumbent Commissioner Daniel Williams and challenger Brandon Alvarado has cast a bright light upon the processes required in the situation by city ordinance and Florida statutes that Deputy Mayor Robin Gibson called "unbelievably complicated." The three-way race for a new three-year term on the District 2 seat of the city commission ended Tuesday with Williams and Alvarado as the top two vote-getters collecting 939 and 938...

  • Recount to Happen Today in City Commission Election

    Robert Connors|Updated Apr 5, 2024

    Four voters who had provided incomplete information when voting on election day were able to "cure" their ballots through contact with the Supervisor of Elections ahead of Thursday's canvassing board meeting. Their effort has moved the needle in the District 2 city commission election between incumbent commissioner Daniel Williams and challenger Brandon Alvarado, but not enough to avoid a machine recount, which will take place today (Friday, April 5). The canvassing board,...

  • Gillespie Defeats Krueger After Hard Fought City Election

    News Staff Reports|Updated Apr 3, 2024

    Carol Gillespie has defeated incumbent City Commissioner Danny Krueger in the race for Seat 4. In an unofficial tally of all votes, Gillespie collected 1,325 votes to Kruegers' 983, or a winning total of 57.41 percent., In the second race for Seat 2, Daniel Williams collected an unofficial total of 939 votes, to Alvarado's 938 votes. The results are certain to trigger an automatic recount. A third candidate in the race, Crystal Higbee, won 347 votes, of 15.6%. There is no...

  • Foreign PACs Send Wave of Personal Attacks in Tuesday's Lake Wales City Commission Race

    Tom Paulson, City Editor|Updated Apr 2, 2024

    A last-minute wave of text messages paid for by a "dark money" political action committee in Venice have targeted at least one challenger in a city commission race on the eve of the April 2 election. Carol Gillespie, who is challenging incumbent City Commissioner Danny Krueger, has been the target of what a campaign spokesperson called "an ugly and false smear campaign" by an out-of-town political action committee. The text messages from "Keep Florida Winning" highlight...

  • Only Two of Five Candidates Show for Final Election Forum

    News Staff Report|Updated Mar 30, 2024

    With an election only three days away, three of five candidates seeking to occupy seats on the Lake Wales City Commission skipped a last chance to meet and hear from voters. Both incumbents skipped the chance to interact with voters, just as they had a March 4 forum hosted at the Lake Wales Woman's Club theatre. At an outdoor forum hosted in perfect weather at the B Street Center in the city's Northwest Neighborhood, only Carol Gillespie, seeking Seat 4. and Brandon Alvarado,...

  • Misleading Election Mail Blankets City, Implies Sheriff's Endorsement

    Suzie Schottelkotte, News Staff Writer|Updated Mar 29, 2024

    Lake Wales voters have been receiving postcards from an out-of-town Political Action Committee that appear to falsely imply that Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd has endorsed a candidate in the city commission District 4 race. Judd said that's not the case. The mailers feature a photo of Judd standing next to a grinning Danny Krueger, suggesting that Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd is endorsing City Commissioner Danny Krueger's bid for re-election in Tuesday's vote. "I'm not...

  • Reinstatement of Police Chief Velasquez Brings Angry Response from Commissioner Williams

    News Staff Report|Updated Mar 27, 2024

    The surprise reinstatement of suspended Lake Wales Police Chief Chris Velasquez by City Manager James Slaton at the start of Tuesday's city commission meeting brought a fiery response from City Commissioner Daniel Williams, who held his thoughts through the entire meeting but launched into his angry comments hours later during a commissioner comment period. Slaton had announced the suspension of Velasquez only days earlier after a complaint filed by a local civil rights advoca...

  • The News Recommends: Carol Gillespie for Seat 4 on Lake Wales City Commission

    News Editorial Board|Updated Mar 26, 2024

    Lake Wales voters will have significant choices to make in two races for the Lake Wales City Commission on April 2, choosing from among candidates who offer sharp differences in their approaches to governing and attitudes toward the challenges confronting the city. All city voters are eligible to cast ballots in the non-partisan district 2 and 4 races. The district 4 race presents voters with the starkest choice in many years as incumbent Danny Krueger faces a challenge from...

  • Final Chance to "Meet the Candidates" Offered Saturday

    Special to the News|Updated Mar 25, 2024

    With only days remaining before the election, an "old-fashioned picnic-style candidates forum" this Saturday will give Lake Wales voters a final opportunity to meet and ask questions of candidates for the two city commission seats which will be filled in the Tuesday vote. The event, to be held at the city's "B Street Center," will feature "food and drink alongside a lively candidate debate," according to event co-organizer and moderator B L Francis. All five candidates running...

  • More Than 15,660 New Homes Approved By Lake Wales City Commissioners, Expected to Host 42,000 New Residents

    Robert Connors, Managing Editor|Updated Mar 12, 2024

    A population boom is expected in Lake Wales in coming months and years as design work or construction is advancing for at least 40 projects within the city limits, in addition to others outside the city. A calculation shows a total of more than 15,660 new residential units have already met some level of approval by the city commission, with many having already received final plat approval for construction, even as other projects are nearing completion. If the...

  • Incumbents Are No-Shows at Commission Election Forum

    Robert Connors, managing Editor|Updated Mar 6, 2024

    Three challengers seeking two seat on the Lake Wales City Commission held the stage at a Monday evening candidates forum after both incumbents failed to show up for the 90-minute event. The election is four weeks away, slated for Tuesday, April 2. Carol Gillespie, seeking seat 4 on the five-person commission, along with Brandon Alvarado and Crystal Higbee, both seeking seat 2, shared their ideas and responded to questions from the audience at the forum sponsored by the...

  • Voters May Call Now to Receive Vote-By-Mail Ballot

    Rachel Harris, Community Service Director, Polk Elections|Updated Mar 5, 2024

    Mail ballots are now available for registered voters who reside in the City of Lake Wales, as well as voters in Davenport, Dundee, and Haines City who would like to vote by mail in the April 2 Municipal Elections. Lake Wales voters will have an opportunity to choose two commissioners from five candidates seeking seats on the city commission. "No stamp is necessary to return the ballot as the return postage is pre-paid," said Supervisor of Elections Lori Edwards. Voters can...

  • Two Forums Offer Voters Insight into City Election Choices

    News Staff Reports|Updated Feb 29, 2024

    Voters will have two chances next week to see and hear incumbents and candidates for seats on the Lake Wales City Commission air their views and positions on a wide variety of topics during two candidate forums. Events are planned for both Monday and Wednesday evenings, March 4 and March 6, giving registered voters within city limits extra opportunity to become informed. Five candidates will vie for two seats on the commission in the April 2 vote. Although candidates must...

  • Five Candidates Will Vie for Two Commission Seats

    News Staff Reports|Updated Feb 28, 2024

    The final ballot is set for the April 2 City Commission election is set, and all registered voters within the city limits of Lake Wales will have an opportunity to choose two two guide the city through the current wave of growth. Area residents outside the city limits are ineligible. Incumbent commissioner Daniel Williams will face two challengers in Brandon Alvarado and Crystal Higbee in the race for Seat 2 on the commission. Williams was elected in 2001, representing...

  • Carol Gillespie First to Qualify for One of Two Lake Wales City Commission Seats Up For Election

    News Staff Reports|Updated Feb 22, 2024

    Carol Gillespie was a prompt qualifier for the April 2 Lake Wales City Commission Seat 4 on Monday as qualifying opened for a pair of three-year terms on the board representing seats 2 and 4.. Gillespie is challenging incumbent Commissioner Danny Krueger in the non-partisan city-wide vote. Krueger had not yet turned in his qualifying packet as of late afternoon on Monday, the first day of qualifying. Both Gillespie and Krueger are residents of Lake Ashton. Seat 4 candidates...

  • February 4, 1924 Highlander Offers Glimpse Into City's History

    News Research Staff|Updated Feb 6, 2024

    Controversies including the sudden cancellation of a road bond election by the county commission and a charge that someone illegally added a letter to a bill of deed highlighted local news in early February, 1924. The Lake Wales Highlander faithfully reported on those issues and others affecting the fast-growing community of Lake Wales. Meanwhile, the Lake Wales Woman's Club was conducting their second "Plant a Palm Day" tag sale to help beautify the city....

  • There's Still Time to Update Your Voter Record

    Rachel Harris, Polk Elections|Updated Jan 31, 2024

    Polk County voters who have moved or changed their name are encouraged to update their record with the Elections Office before the March 19th Presidential Preference Primary Election. It’s also important to notify the Elections Office if your signature has changed. The City of Lake Wales municipal elections will follow on April 2, so making certain your voter record is correct will avoid any problems in voting. Many changes can be made by calling the Elections Office at (...

  • Carol Gillespie Announces Run For City Commission Seat 4

    News Staff Reports|Updated Jan 19, 2024

    A second candidate has announced her intention to seek a seat on the Lake Wales City Commission in the Tuesday, April 2 election, which will see two candidates elected to new three-year terms. Carol Gillespie, a resident of Lake Ashton, will seek the north-side seat 4 currently held by Danny Krueger. Candidates must live within their district but are chosen in non-partisan, city-wide votes. If elected, she would be the only woman on the five-person commission. Gillespie's...

  • December 19, 1923 Highlander

    News Research Staff|Updated Dec 20, 2023

    December of 1923 saw plenty of changes happening in the growing town of Lake Wales, then with a population of perhaps 2,000. A bit of a land-rush had been initiated weeks before when the "Knee Deep" club laid claim to an island in Crooked Lake. The group hoped to build a clubhouse on the land. New claims were filed that month on two other islands located in Lake Easy. The state "School Land Selecting Agent" responded by ordering the islands surveyed, thus removing them from...

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