Murphy and Hosafros Win Council Seats

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In the Tuesday, March 5 Town Council election for two seats on the five-seat Fort Myers Beach Town Council, Ray Murphy and Rexann Hosafros were elected with 1143 (Murphy) and 927 (Hosafros) votes in a turnout that saw many voters surprised to find that their Vote-by-Mail ballot request had expired. Shortly after the polls closed Tuesday night, unofficial results were released by the Lee County Supervisor of Elections Office. Dan Allers received 813 votes and incumbent Dennis Boback 431 votes.

Fort Myers Beach Town Council seats are elected by plurality, rather than by seat, meaning that if two seats are on the ballot, the candidates with the top two vote totals are elected. The 2019 Town Council election had four candidates qualify by the end of the qualifying period on January 18: Dan Allers, Dennis Boback, Rexann Hosafros and Ray Murphy.

Dan Allers is a member of the Bay Oaks Recreation Center Advisory Board (BORCAB) but had never run for council before. Dennis Boback was an incumbent Town Council member and had also served a council term beginning in 2005. Rexann Hosafros and Ray Murphy had both served on Town Council previously. Allers, Hosafros and Murphy qualified by petition, which required collecting 50 voter signatures and having them verified by the Lee County Elections Supervisor.

Two public candidate forums were held in February, one by the Estero Island Taxpayers Association and one by the Fort Myers Beach Chamber of Commerce.

Over $45,000 was donated to the candidates in this election, possibly qualifying as a record for a Fort Myers Beach elected office. Preliminary data shows Allers with $21,020 in donations; Boback with $6,625, including $1,300 he loaned his campaign; Hosafros $5,575, including $1,500 she loaned her campaign and Murphy $12,600, including a $100 loan. The last day to make a candidate donation was February 28. In addition, for the first time, a Political Action Committee weighed in on a Town Council election, sending several postcards to Island voters.

 

Missy Layfield
editor@fortmyersbeach.news