Tuesday, June 25, 2024
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Rose, McCurdy Make Runoff to Replace Suspended Orlando Commissioner

Shan Rose and Travaris McCurdy will advance to a runoff election on June 18th, campaigning to replace disgraced and suspended Orlando Commissioner Regina Hill.

Shan Rose was the big winner of the District 5 special election with 527 votes, almost 25% of the total vote, according to early results. Travaris McCurdy was close behind with 495 votes. Overall voter turnout for the special election was around 10%, just over 2,100 total votes, which is actually on par for District 5. In 2021, Rose garnered 586 votes against Regina Hill, who won the general election with 1,612 votes.

Shan Rose, Travaris McCurdyRose and McCurdy made the runoff by edging out former Miss America Ericka Dunlap, who got 459 votes, and longtime community activist Lawanna Gelzer, who got 403 votes. Miles Mulrain had 121 votes, Cameron Hope had 87 votes, and TiaKeysha Ellison had 33 votes, based on unofficial results posted by the Orange County Supervisor of Elections.

“Thank you for voting,” candidate Shan Rose posted. “Let’s finish the job together. Let your voice be heard in the runoff election.” She is urging Orlando voters in District 5 to make sure to vote again on June 18th.

Rose is positioning herself as a “champion of the people,” and on campaign materials noted priorities could include ensuring safe and better neighborhoods, housing affordability, more senior and youth programming, and business assistance. Rose has previously worked in community planning and development for the City of Orlando, and currently works for Eatonville’s community development district.

McCurdy, a former one-term State Representative, is campaigning on creating more affordable housing, investing more in infrastructure, working for safer neighborhoods, and supporting firefighters and EMTs by fully funding their budget and providing new equipment.

“I’ve got the experience to get things done on Day 1 in City Council,” McCurdy said. “We need affordable housing, safer neighborhoods, better jobs and practical solutions to homelessness.”

McCurdy actually worked for Commissioner Regina Hill very briefly as a temporary contractor for the City of Orlando making $25/hour. McCurdy was hired by Commissioner Hill on January 19, 2023 and his termination date was listed as March 1, 2023, according to city records.

While both platforms sound similar, the eventual winner will have their hands full to accomplish those objectives while the City Council moves forward major redevelopment projects that will continue the ongoing gentrification under Democratic Mayor Buddy Dyer. Stakes are also high for voters, as this decision will make a major difference in the next few years for District 5.

The majority of votes in the local race came from absentee ballots, and will likely be the same for the runoff. More voters turned out on special election day compared to all the early vote days combined. Over 1,800 votes were cast by Democrats, with only 116 Republicans voting in District 5. About 179 voters were No Party Affiliation or NPA.

Early voting for the runoff election will be Monday, June 10th – Sunday, June 16th ahead of the June 18th runoff election day.

The Orlando Mayor called for a special election for Interim City Commissioner to fill the District 5 City Commission seat after Republican Governor Ron DeSantis suspended Regina Hill after her most recent arrest. The person elected as Interim Commissioner will begin serving when elected until the criminal case involving Regina I. Hill is resolved or the current term ends.

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