When it comes to government, there are lots of armchair quarterbacks and second-guessers. In the end, there are only seven elected representatives in Mount Dora serving their community--one mayor and six council members that have the final say on decisions. Four of those seats will have open elections this year and the qualifying period is just around the corner. In recent elections the mayor seat was unopposed, as were some council races.
Here’s some timely information for residents interested in serving in their community:
1. What are the requirements? A candidate must be an eligible voter in Mount Dora for no less than 12 consecutive months prior to filing for candidacy. Paperwork must be filed by the end of qualifying period (August 16 at noon).
2. What experience is required to run for mayor or city council? None.
3. What and when is the qualifying period? The qualifying period is the timeframe to turn in paperwork to start the process of your candidacy. The qualifying period for the November 5, 2019 city election begins at noon on August 12 and ends at noon on August 16. View and download the packet with complete instructions and forms here.
4. What are the four seats open this election? Mayor, city council seats for District 1 and District 4, plus an at-large council seat. View district map below.
5. What is the difference between the responsibilities of mayor and council members? In Mount Dora’s form of government, the mayor has the same amount of influence as council members. The only difference is that the mayor chairs the council meetings and may serve as one of the City’s spokespersons.
6. What is the difference between district council members and at-large council members? District candidates are elected by voters residing in that defined district. At-large council seat and the mayor are elected by all the voters throughout the City.
Additionally, at-large city council seats and the mayor seat allow candidates to live anywhere within the city limits. District council members are required to live in their specific district. (See district below)
7. How long are the terms? All city council and mayoral terms are two years.
8. How much money to candidates typically raise? Historically, that can vary greatly depending on the district, the number of candidates vying for the same seat and the effectiveness of a candidate's campaign strategy. The ballpark range for the specific district seats this year may be $2,000 to $5,000. The mayor seat and at-large council seat requires additional money to reach more voters in a larger geographic area, so the ballpark amount is likely $8,000 for a 2-person race.
9. How much are the council members and mayor compensated? Approximately $6,000 and $10,000 respectively.
10. Where do I turn in my paperwork? City Clerk’s office located on the second floor of CIty Hall at 510 N. Baker Street.
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