ELECTION 2010: Lakewood Ranch CDD 4 Seat 1

 

ELECTION 2010: Lakewood Ranch CDD 4 Seat 1

 

Date: October 6, 2010
by: The Observer Staff

 
 

In Lakewood Ranch’s Community Development Districts, all three of CDD 4’s supervisor seats are contested. Meet CDD 4 Seat 1 candidates Michael Spring and Stacy White.

CDD 4 SEAT 1

Michael Spring

Age: 71
Family: Married. No children.
Hometown: Lakewood Ranch (Late 2005-present).
Education: Bachelor’s degree in physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technolgy; master’s degree from Ohio State University; doctoral degree from Polytechnic Institute of New York.
Career: IT consulting; teaching (university level)

Why are you running for a CDD seat?
Through its control of the common areas in Greenbrook, CDD 4 supervisors play a significant role in maintaining the quality of life in our community.

During my current term on the CDD 4, I believe I have demonstrated the judgment and commitment that the residents of Greenbrook have the right to expect in a supervisor. I am running for re-election because I believe I can make an even more significant contribution to the future of Greenbrook during the next four years.

What is your prior experience as a community leader?
In addition to being a CDD supervisor, I am also a member of the Greenbrook Village Association Modifications Committee (2006 to present) and the GBVA Restriction Revision Committee (2006 to present). Since 2006, I have been the sole member of the Run Neighborhood Committee. I am a board member and treasurer of the Civic Action Forum. I am a member of the executive committee of the Friends of Lakewood Ranch.

In New York, I was an organizer, board member and president of the Tenant Association in our building (2001-2004). I am a board member since 1996 and treasurer since 1998 of AMAC, a full-service organization in New York serving autistic children and adults.

What changes would you make in the CDD leadership in Lakewood Ranch?
I believe any perceived CDD leadership issues are related to individual supervisors and are not structural in nature. With the adoption of the proposed amendments to the IDA agreement, I believe that the same is true for the IDA at this time.

What is your opinion on the transparency of the CDDs and Lakewood Ranch Town Hall?
There is currently no truly effective way for residents to easily obtain information about what is happening in the CDDs and Town Hall or to provide feedback. The Digital Village Internet portal is poorly designed and implemented. It does not provide Lakewood Ranch residents with the user-friendly Internet portal we need and deserve.

What do you feel currently are the biggest challenges facing Lakewood Ranch residents and the CDD board?
Lakewood Ranch effectively consists of the five CDDs, which have most of the current population, and the much larger area Stewardship District. Because the CDDs are fully built out, all future population growth in Lakewood Ranch will occur in the Stewardship District, e.g. Country Club East and Central Park. The challenges for CDD residents are different from those facing Stewardship District residents. The biggest challenge facing Greenbrook residents and the CDD 4 board is how to maintain the quality of life of our residents in a financially prudent manner.

As a board member, what would you do to increase resident involvement in the affairs of the CDD or the community overall?
We need to provide better two-way communication between residents and Lakewood Ranch governmental entities. A better Internet portal and an e-mail registry would be a good start.

The CDD board should hold at least semi-annual evening town hall meetings so that residents could directly interact with supervisors.


Stacy White
Age: 38
Family: Married to David with two children, Ansley, 6, and Aidan, 3
Hometown: Dayton, Ohio. Has been a Lakewood Ranch resident for more than eight years.
Education: Otterbein College and Wright State University
Career: Worked in the construction industry with five years in Caterpillar dealerships in Tampa and Dayton, Ohio.

Why are you running for a CDD seat?
I feel it is important that all of the families in Greenbrook be represented. As a parent of young children, I bring a perspective to the board that currently is lacking. I believe it is important that these families be represented to ensure that their unique needs and requests are considered.

What is your prior experience as a community leader?
I have been a member and actively involved in the Lakewood Ranch Moms Group for more than six years. I have served as vice president and as president for two years. During that time, I have helped with many projects, including securing the grant that contributed to the new playground equipment in Summerfield and Greenbrook parks, and representing the Moms Group in working with the Greenbrook Village Board on the latest improvements to Adventure Park as part of the Open Space Plan.

What changes would you make in the CDD leadership in Lakewood Ranch?
I would like to see more effort put into solving the irrigation system pressure issues and the maintenance and appearance of the common areas. The landscaping today does not compare with the look of the landscaping and common areas that were present in the past.

What is your opinion on the transparency of the CDDs and Lakewood Ranch Town Hall?
Digital Village is a great asset to Lakewood Ranch residents. Currently, the minutes are posted, but I would like to see the site used for more information that affects homeowners such as proposed topics of discussion for upcoming meetings and any other information that impacts the residents. Electronic records are easy to access and reduce the cost and waste involved with paper copies.

What do you feel currently are the biggest challenges facing Lakewood Ranch residents and the CDD board?
Two main issues that need to be addressed are irrigation pressure and the maintenance of the common areas. The challenge will be addressing the issues of the community and using the funds in the most effective way. Another challenge is to get residents more involved and finding an accurate way to receive feedback from the community.

As a board member, what would you do to increase resident involvement in the affairs of the CDD or the community overall?
I would really encourage the CDD board to take more time trying to get input from the residents. All matters of the CDD affect the residents, and therefore I feel it is essential the CDD know the thoughts of the residents in regard to large decisions that impact their community.
 

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