STATE HOUSE | DISTRICT 60, REPUBLICANS
The Republican primary for state House District 60 pits first-time candidate Rebecca Smith against Jackie Toledo, who ran for a Tampa City Council seat last year. The winner will face Democrat David Singer in the November general election, which will name a successor to Dana Young, who is running for state Senate District 18.
About the job: State representatives serve two-year terms and are limited to four terms. They must be at least 21, a Florida resident for two years prior to the election and must live in the district that elects them. Representatives pass bills, help develop the state budget and participate in legislative investigations. They are paid $29,697 annually. House District 60 covers the South Tampa peninsula, plus Dana Shores, Pelican Island, Baycrest Park, Bay Port Colony, Tampa Shores, Davis Islands, Harbour Island, Palmetto Beach, Palm River-Clair Mel, Apollo Beach and parts of Ruskin west of U.S. 41.
Profession: Business owner
About the candidate: Rebecca Smith, 56, owns the A.D. Morgan construction management company and WoofGang Solutions, a software company. She has chaired the board of the Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority, the city of Tampa's Variance Review Board and the Governor's Council for Small and Minority Business, and was a governor's appointee to the board of Prison Rehabilitation Industries & Diversified Enterprises. She has served on the board of Associated Industries of Florida, the national board of the Better Business Bureau and the board of trustees for The Spring domestic violence shelter.
Education: University of Florida bachelor's degree (architecture) and master's degree (building construction)
Are you in favor of legalizing medical marijuana for those with debilitating conditions? Why or why not? "I haven't heard a plan that regulates distribution of marijuana like we regulate every other pain relief medication. … If the process is not developed in a way that does not encourage the prolific use of marijuana in the general population or for reasons that don't warrant the use of marijuana, then I'm basically supporting an expansion of what I consider to be a gateway drug, and the answer to that is absolutely not."
Are you in favor of stricter gun control measures and if so, why? "The problem is gun control legislation oftentimes impacts lawful gun owners and doesn't really address the fact that there is an abounding amount of weaponry on the street held by the 'bad guys.' ... Mental health plays a very large role in (mass shootings). We also have a geopolitical component ... where people may not be mentally ill but their ambition is to do harm and kill for the sake of their beliefs."
As a toxic algae bloom chokes several state waterways, how should the state respond and who do you believe is to blame? "I'm not going to look for somebody to blame right now. ... What I know is that from this point forward we need a heightened community focus on the essence and the quality of our water supply. And that is not a person, that is all persons. That is not one agency, it is all agencies."
Assets/liabilities/ income: Assets: Businesses, home, furniture, jewelry, household equipment Liabilities: None Income: A.D. Morgan Corp.
Campaign fundraising: Contributions: $345,411 (includes a $165,528 loan from Smith to her campaign) Expenditures: $136,533
On the web: www.voterebeccasmith.com. firstname.lastname@example.org. @votersmith
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