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LTE: Facts support single-member districts

Letter to the Herald Tribune 2.18.22

The Herald-Tribune published opposing op-eds penned by John Wesley White and Mike Hutchinson.

White advocates countywide voting for all seats on the Sarasota County Commission, whereas Hutchinson supports single member districts (“Sarasota County should end single-member districts,” Feb. 9, and “Conservatives must protect single-member districts,” Feb. 2).

Without evidence, White asserts that “… the claim that single member districts significantly reduce the costs of commissioner campaigns … (is) preposterous and misleading.”

Hutchinson’s op-ed about his 2020 grassroots campaign clearly illustrates that single-member districts may, in fact, significantly reduce the cost of campaigning for the commission.

White also asserts that single-member districts would eventually transform county governance “into a fragmented system that is overly politicized.”

After many years of homogenized county governance, more responsive to developers than voters, I for one would welcome a “fragmented” system of five commissioners who are each more responsive to his or her constituents.

I voted for single-member districts in 2018 because I believe it is the more democratic system, not because I was “confused” about its meaning, and I will vote “No” to countywide voting March 8.

Stephen Lexow, Siesta Key

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