City Commissioner Maddox Drops Out Of Superintendent Race To Run For Re-election; Pugh And Minor Out

Jun 21, 2016

City Commissioner Scott Maddox will run for re-election in his current seat. He's out of the school superintendent race.
Credit LHatter / Scott Maddox

City Commissioner Scott Maddox will run for re-election in his current seat. That means he’s out of the school superintendent contest. The decision is leading other candidates to drop out of the commission race.

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Update: Maddox claims an internal poll done for his campaign showed him winning the superintendent’s race but wouldn’t make the poll available. he says a group of former local chamber presidents wrote to him last week, urging him to stay in his commission seat. By staying, Maddox says he can do more to address issues such as recruiting airline carriers to fly into Tallahassee, and lowering the city’s crime rate.

"We don’t have a singular focus toward addressing the crime problem," he said. "We’ve basically thrown some resources at it without a well thought out approach to what can we do to eradicate this problem.”

Maddox would like to see a community school, early childhood intervention and increased police presence in areas of the city. Maddox’s moves mean they’ll be no Democratic primary for Superintendent in August unless someone else challenges incumbent superintendent Jackie Pons.

Former Leon High School Principal Rocky Hanna is running for school superintendent with no party affiliation and former school board chairman Forrest Van Camp is running as a Republican. Private investigator Michael Wynn and Patricia Sunday are also NPA’s, and all candidates have until Friday to qualify for the race.

Maddox’s choice to run for re-election also reshuffles the deck for the City Commission Seat 1 Race. Two candidates, Luther Lee and Bruce Strouble, have qualified. Three others have filed. But Tuesday, Gloria Pugh announced she’s dropping out to make room for Maddox.

“He did share with me that he’d been urged by his supporters to come back to the city of Tallahassee and he had unfinished business that he wanted to finish and that’s where his heart is," she says, recounting an earlier conversation with Maddox, "and I said ‘that’s good with me because I don’t intend to run against you, I intend to support you’.”

Pugh runs the AMWAT moving and storage company.  And she says she was pleased when Maddox became the lone city commissioner to oppose a proposed 13 percent property tax hike last year. Also leaving the race is Rick Minor, who had been the front-runner for the seat and campaigned for more than a year.  

“I’ve got a lot invested in this community. I think there will be other opportunities to come up in the future. This is not the right time," Minor said. "For a good part of the last year, it seemed like it would be. But this is not the right time and I think in the future soon, there will be something else that comes up and voters willing, God willing, I’ll have a chance to do that.”

Minor had raised more than $70,000 for his campaign. Qualifying ends Friday at noon. That’s the last chance for more candidates to jump in and out before the ballot becomes set.

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Original Story: Tallahassee City Commissioner Scott Maddox is out of the race for county school superintendent and will run for re-election.

He can do more to address issues such as crime and recruiting company’s to the county airport by staying on the commission.

“I think that was in the minds of the past chairs of the chamber of commerce that wrote a letter asking me to stay and others who have reached out," he said. " And I’m honored by their support and I’m going to ask the voters to return me to four more years on the city commission.”

Maddox says he entered the superintendents race when it was an open seat, and that an internal poll showed him winning the race. But after his initial announcement former Leon High School Principal Rocky Hanna and incumbent superintendent Jackie Pons, jumped in. They’re now joined by former school board chairman Forrest Van Camp who is running as a Republican. Private investigator Michael Wynn and former candidate Patricia Sunday are also running as no party affilates. Hopefuls have until Friday at noon to qualify for the ballot.