Voters meet with Collier County candidates

Reporter: Taylor Wirtz Writer: Elyssa Morataya
Published: Updated:

It was a packed house at Seed to Table on Tuesday night as Collier County voters met with the candidates running to represent them.

“You can read about the candidates. You can hear candidates on the news, but I think it’s important to hear them live and listen to exactly what they’re trying to accomplish.” said Naples voter Andy Wright.

Voters got the chance to meet candidates running for county commissioner, school board, city council, and countless other offices in a casual setting fueled by music and drinks.

“I think the one-on-one that goes on here is important. I’ve met already this evening a dozen people that live in greater Naples,” said Wayne Martin, a candidate for Greater Naples Fire Commisioner.

When WINK News asked voters what issues they’re most concerned about in Collier County, two things regularly came up.

“Infrastructure is a big thing for me. 75 is a nightmare,” said Collier voter Dan Lopez.

“There’s a lot of growth going down here,” said Wright, “And the infrastructure is just not here.”

“The school board’s independence is very important to me,” said voter Bob Garms.

And while Alfie Oakes’ seed to table provided the venue for the evening, there were no campaign signs bearing his name.

The Collier County Republican Party Committeeman was told he couldn’t run for re-election after the county’s supervisor of elections said he filed improper paperwork.

“All of us were very disappointed. Again, I’m not sure exactly what happened there but Alfie is a great representative for Naples, Florida,” said Wright.

But in a time when trust in politicians can waiver, voters WINK News spoke with were optimistic that those in the room Tuesday night were there for the right reasons.

“I don’t trust nationwide,” said voter Jorgie Arndt “But I’m pretty trusting up here.”

For more information about voting in Collier County, click here.

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