Commissioner Kyle Becker surprised the Apopka City Council at its June 21st meeting with his announcement that he would not run for re-election to Seat #3. In a brief statement, Becker gave his reasons for not seeking another term.
"Today I announce my intentions not to seek re-election in the upcoming 2024 Apopka municipal election, as such please treat this letter as my confirmation my term will end at the installment of the next duly elected Commissioner of Seat 3.
The timing of this letter is my attempt to ensure my actions and assertive nature of rhetoric over the remainder of my term is not misconstrued as politically motivated, a personal vendetta or otherwise misguided intent going into critical meetings regarding our budget and other important business impacting the great men and women out in the field who make this city run daily.
I’ve served in this position knowing my opinions, my approach and my votes would not be viewed favorably by all people, all the time. I welcome constructive criticism; I can tolerate unconstructive criticism and even disrespect of my name as it relates to the position in which I serve. However, I have simply asked the public and my colleagues to afford me the opportunity to provide my side of the issue or question at hand based on my interpretation of fact in the best interest of our residents and employees.
It is with humbling honor that I again thank the people of Apopka for the opportunity and privilege to serve.
With this eventual outcome, the honor of serving as Vice Mayor will go to our most senior Commissioner, Commissioner Diane Velazquez. I have full confidence she will continue to serve and fight for the people and the front-line employees of Apopka with dignity, and the respect they deserve."
Becker shocked Apopka in 2016 with an upset victory over 40-year incumbent Commissioner Bill Arrowsmith. Becker received 2,689 votes (54.93%) in the Seat #4 runoff.
In 2020, Becker defended Seat #4 against his challenger Lorena Potter in a pandemic-marred election cycle. Becker received 4,590 votes (61.65%).
In 2022, Becker narrowly lost his mayoral bid to Mayor Bryan Nelson. Becker received 3,119 votes (46.13%), falling just 524 votes short.
Becker returned to the City Council in a special election victory in August 2022 over Lynetta Johnson to fill Doug Bankson's vacated Seat #3. Becker received 5,008 votes (58.25%).
Becker's term ends in April 2024, after the Seat #3 election concludes in March 2024.
Commissioner Diane Velazquez, who is the Seat #2 commissioner, will become vice mayor after Becker's departure in April 2024.
This is a developing story and will be updated in future editions of The Apopka Voice.