Volusia County Council candidates discuss the local development boom – Daytona Beach News-Journal

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DAYTONA BEACH — Drive someplace in Volusia County you have not been shortly, and odds are that alongside your journey you will see a brand new condo constructing or small cluster of business growth that wasn’t there final time you motored that method. 
New development is springing up all over the county, and the 4 candidates vying to turn into the following at-large County Council consultant all have opinions on the expansion that is been going down the previous a number of years.
It is a key matter that Sherrise Boyd, Jake Johansson, Andy Kelly and Doug Pettit are listening to about rather a lot on the marketing campaign path as they head towards the Aug. 23 main election that may decide if one among them wins a four-year time period outright with over 50% of votes, or if two of them wind up in a runoff election Nov. 8.
This is a more in-depth have a look at the 4 rivals hoping to characterize all 407,200 voters countywide beginning in January, and what they should say about growth and different points.
Boyd owns a consulting and advertising enterprise. She has additionally labored in authorities, together with a stint with the eleventh Circuit U.S. Courtroom of Appeals in Atlanta and as a help companies supervisor within the Volusia County Division of Emergency Medical Companies.
The 50-year-old ran for Daytona Seaside mayor in 2020 however completed final within the three-way competitors.
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Boyd mentioned her perspective on growth in Volusia County is that “we’re under-developed in some areas and over-developed in others.”
She mentioned she’s needed to clarify to some voters she’s met whereas campaigning that the county authorities would not management the cities inside it. However she wish to see the cities and county work collectively.
“We will be taught from one another’s errors,” she mentioned.
She mentioned if she’s elected she’ll do her greatest to decelerate progress, and she or he would help a growth moratorium that would not have an effect on already accepted tasks if it got here earlier than the County Council. 
“I believe we’re not creating proper relationships to do growth higher,” she mentioned. 
She mentioned timber and waterways have been broken by all the brand new development, and now the county is operating out of area for brand spanking new growth.
“There’s so many ranges to the issues in growth,” Boyd mentioned.
Creating extra reasonably priced housing is one other excessive precedence for Boyd. She mentioned she has a perspective formed by rising up very poor in New York and residing by an eviction as a baby.
Boyd mentioned Volusia County wants extra housing primarily based on revenue, and extra housing developments with residents who’ve a mixture of monetary talents. 
“What sort of county are we if we construct for out-of-towners, however folks born and raised right here cannot afford to dwell right here?” she requested. “We have now people who find themselves simply not blissful the place they’re residing. Some are barely surviving.”
Boyd mentioned she’s discovering disillusioned residents.
“So many individuals are disillusioned and do not know the place the county goes,” she mentioned. “So many do not vote. They do not really feel their vote counts. They do not belief the federal government.”
Johansson was the town supervisor of Port Orange for 5 and a half years, a place that he determined to step down from on the finish of 2020 to take care of some household issues. 
Johansson spent 35 years within the Navy. He commanded a fight squadron in Iraq and a Naval base in Norfolk, Virginia, the place there is among the largest concentrations of army personnel on this planet.
The 59-year-old additionally labored on the Pentagon and carried the nuclear soccer within the White Home for 3 years. He is at present working as a management marketing consultant and principally doing govt teaching.
He mentioned it is vital to stability the county’s trade with its residents, however added that not all progress is unhealthy.
“When you do not develop, you die,” he mentioned.
And Florida is rising. 
“Our state has seen an inflow of individuals, about 1,000 per day,” he mentioned. “These folks want a spot to dwell.”
He mentioned property rights have to be protected, however he thinks “growth ought to occur.”
“It is vital for the financial progress and upkeep of the county,” he mentioned.
Johansson mentioned he prefers to see infill growth in cities versus new growth in rural areas, however he would not need to pressure any native governments to do something. He mentioned he desires “to deliver a collaborative tradition to the County Council.”
“All of us must march forward strategically if that is going to work,” he mentioned. “We generally is a pressure to be reckoned with on the state and federal degree.”
Johansson mentioned present street issues have to be mounted, and street capability must be restricted to keep away from gridlock.
Johansson has the backing of the present at-large councilman, former Volusia County Sheriff Ben Johnson, who determined to not search re-election to the Council. He additionally has donations from a few of the energy gamers in Volusia County: Hyatt and Cici Brown; Charlie Lydecker and his Basis Danger Companions insurance coverage agency; two NASCAR-affiliated companies; and the political committee managed by state Rep. Tom Leek.
Johansson has amassed the biggest marketing campaign contribution tally of the 4 candidates, with $103,799 raised to this point. Kelly has collected $48,575, Pettit has drawn $28,010 in donations and Boyd has $7,759.
Kelly has labored as an expert accountant for greater than 45 years. He runs and owns Betty W. Kelly Accounting, the tax, accounting and enterprise consulting agency in DeLand that his mom began in 1967.
Kelly’s late brother, Invoice, was an authorized public accountant who did a number of authorities audits, and Kelly helped him with a few of these audits within the Nineteen Eighties and Nineteen Nineties.
Kelly served on the Volusia County Council from 2007 to 2012. In 2012 he ran for the Volusia County supervisor of elections publish, however misplaced to Ann McFall. He then misplaced a 2014 County Council race to Pat Patterson by 140 votes, lower than one-half of 1%. 
Kelly has since been elected to the Volusia County Soil & Water Conservation District Board.
The 64-year-old mentioned he took a step again from public life over the previous a number of years due to severe well being points amongst his relations. During the last 4 years, he mentioned his mom, father, brother and sister-in-law all died.
Kelly mentioned some folks urged him to attempt as soon as extra now to return to the County Council.
Kelly famous that he is the one one of many 4 candidates who has lived his complete life in Volusia County.
“I’ve watched our pure sources get constructed over,” he mentioned. 
Kelly mentioned if progress is not managed Volusia County will turn into a metropolitan space with out ample roads. 
“It is not simply overdevelopment, it is the sprawl,” he mentioned.
When one thing new is in-built an outlying space and cities annex that property, sprawl occurs, he mentioned.
“It is the creeping out into the pure useful resource areas,” Kelly mentioned. “It is runaway sprawl whenever you put a growth in a pure useful resource space. You perpetually alter the flows of springs, watersheds, the wildlife, their foraging, their mating. We simply hold taking increasingly more from the character we’d like.”
Pettit is a coach and retired trainer. He coached the Taylor Excessive Faculty soccer crew from 2007 to 2010, and he is at present a coach at Spruce Creek Excessive Faculty.
Pettit can also be a retired U.S. Marine with 26 years of army service that included serving in Operation Desert Defend and Operation Desert Storm in 1990 and 1991. When he was within the Marine Corps, he mentioned he was a heavy tools officer with a $1.7 million price range.
Pettit has lived in Florida for 30 years, and Volusia County for 15 years. He lived in Seminole County for 14 years. 
The 68-year-old has owned a number of small companies. Pettit mentioned he had a small enterprise in San Diego for 10 years that he began from scratch. He mentioned he additionally ran a enterprise in Lake Mary for 3 years.
Pettit mentioned he is specializing in three points on his journey towards the Aug. 23 main election. He mentioned he will not “advocate for a tax improve,” he desires to “management overdevelopment,” and he desires to guard the county’s water and setting.
“I am not making an attempt to be a worry monger, however the folks of this county are afraid of what is taking place with growth,” he mentioned. “Folks really feel like for a very long time they’ve had no say in it.”
He mentioned the county’s residents, not builders, ought to determine what’s constructed. And he mentioned governments ought to cease approving zoning modifications to permit new developments.
Pettit mentioned low-impact growth rules must be put into use extra continuously. He mentioned governments may even attempt to renegotiate with builders on tasks that have not been constructed but to attempt to cut back environmental impacts.
He additionally thinks affect charges must be raised.
“We have now 2008 affect charges in a 2022 economic system with a progress spurt,” Pettit mentioned. “Development isn’t paying for itself.”
He mentioned builders can construct and pay for brand spanking new roads once they’re wanted.
“We have to do issues to get progress underneath management,” Pettit mentioned.
You possibly can attain Eileen at Eileen.Zaffiro@news-jrnl.com


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