Everything was clicking along. The first forum session between Seat #3 Candidates Sam Ruth, Pastor Doug Bankson and Alice Nolan ended. There was only time to get to six questions due to the length of the candidate’s answers. There were potentially nine questions in total depending on how many they could get to during the limited time.
After a brief pause, Commissioner Bill Arrowsmith, Kyle Becker and Young Kim took the stage. After five questions were asked, there was suddenly a new question.
“Several department heads have left the city over the past 18 months. Have city services to the public improved in that time? How about internal city functions such as finance and IT?”
The audience began to murmur as the candidates answered, then the next question was asked…
“Should Apopka add more red-light cameras, take them all down, or leave them as is?
So why did the Seat #4 candidates end up with different questions than Seat #3 candidates?
“It was my decision,” said Bryan Nelson, County Commissioner and Vice Mayor of Orange County who was the Forum’s MC. “The question about live-streaming the meetings wasn’t a great question in my opinion. So I removed it from the list.”
The question Nelson is referring to is question #6 on the Forum’s list:
“Should the city begin live video streaming of City Council and other meetings?”
Because Nelson chose to remove it from the list, the 6th question became question #7 – which was the question about department heads leaving the city. And because the length of answers by the candidates in the second session was shorter than the candidates in the first session, there was time for the red-light camera question before final remarks.
After listening to concerns shared by audience members and on social media, The Apopka Voice has decided to ask the question in their Friday Q&A segment to be answered by the candidates on Monday. The question again is:
"Several department heads have left the city over the past 18 months. Have city services to the public improved in that time? How about internal city functions such as finance and IT?"
The Apopka Voice expects to publish the candidate's answers to this important question on Monday afternoon.