Three candidates will stand for two available seats on the Melbourne Beach Town Commission in the November 8 election.

They are incumbents Joyce Barton and Corey Runte, as well as former city commissioner and police chief Steve Walters. The first two voters will win three-year terms.

Another outgoing commissioner, Marivi Walker, is unopposed for her seat, who still has two years left on her term, following her appointment to the seat.

The other two members of the City Commission – Mayor Wyatt Hoover and Commissioner Sherri Quarrie – are not eligible for re-election this year.

Municipal commissioners are paid $3,100 per year.

Walters chose not to submit responses to a candidate questionnaire. Here are details on the other two contestants in the disputed election:

Joyce Barton

Joyce Barton

Age: 66

Occupation: ​I am currently Deputy Mayor of the City of Melbourne Beach, but that is not my “profession”, although sometimes I feel like it is.

The salary is very minimal, so my income comes from being an independent contractor. I own/own real estate for single family homes in Brevard County; an Airbnb host in my home; and a Certified Holistic Health Coach and Women’s Retreat Leader.

Education: Although I don’t have a formal college degree, my more than 25 years of experience working in various family businesses, including catering and construction, has provided me with a hands-on, hands-on education.

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I consider myself a lifelong learner and don’t believe that education only comes from a university.

However, I received certification from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York as a health coach.

I am also a recent Level I graduate of the Institute of Municipal Elected Officials.

Political/Governmental/Civic Experience: He currently sits on the Melbourne Beach City Commission as Vice Mayor, elected in 2020.

I also sit on the Space Coast League of Cities Board of Directors as a voting delegate; the Space Coast Transportation Planning Organization Board of Directors as a voting delegate; and the Florida League of Cities Legislative Policy Committee.

I’m the president of the South Beaches Coalition for Transportation Planning.

I received the Home Rule Hero Recognition Certificate in 2022 from the Florida League of Cities.

I am also president of the South Brevard Garden Club Association, which serves six garden clubs in the Greater Melbourne area, including the Beach Gardeners of Melbourne Beach, where I am also president.

I actively participate in the efforts of the Marine Resources and Low Impact Development Council.

I was an ambassador for the Melbourne Chamber of Commerce.

Campaign Email: The official email address for my city is: [email protected] My personal email is: [email protected]

Campaign phone number: 321-914-4311

Website, Facebook, other social media pages/links:

http://www.JDBMelBeach.com

http://www.facebook.com/jdbmelbeach

https://www.linkedin.com/in/joycedbarton/

What are the top two or three issues at Melbourne Beach and what specific steps will you take to address them if elected?

If re-elected to the commission, I will continue to proudly serve our beachfront community to ensure that we maintain our peaceful charm and quality of life.

My vision for the city is to raise the level of professionalism, not the height of buildings; be proactive in infrastructure planning, park maintenance, resident safety and accessibility to our streets and businesses.

I will continue to support environmental concerns that affect our lagoon and beaches through awareness programs.

I will be working on a comprehensive updated plan and reviewing the Ordinance Code to be accurate, fair and effective.

Corey Runte

Corey Runte

Age: 31

Occupation: Vice President, Certified General Contractors Inc.

Education: Bachelor of Science in Construction Management, University of Florida, Minor in Sustainability

Political/Governmental/Civic Experience:

Policy:

Traveling Commissioner (City of Melbourne Beach): two terms since 2018

Chairman, Historic & Architectural Review Board (City of Melbourne, 2015-2018), appointed position

Civic:

Chairman of the Board, Melbourne Main Street (non-profit)

Chairman, Economic Restructuring/Vitality Committee (Downtown Melbourne Mainstreet)

Board Member, Economic Development Commission of Florida’s Space Coast

Board Member, Melbourne Regional Chamber of Commerce

Board Member, Melbourne Central Catholic High School

Board Member, Junior Achievement of the Space Coast

Board Member, Space Coast Gator Club

Board Member, Home Builders & Contractors Association of Brevard

Member/volunteer, non-profit group 321 Millennials

Member/Volunteer, Eau Gallie Arts District Mainstreet Program

Member/Volunteer, Marine Resources Council/Save Our Indian River Lagoon

Member/Volunteer, Big Brothers & Big Sisters Central Florida

Campaign Email: [email protected]

Website, Facebook, other social media pages/links

Website: http://corey4commissioner.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Corey4Commissioner/

What are the top two or three issues at Melbourne Beach and what specific steps will you take to address them if elected?

Having spent my childhood surfing and fishing in Melbourne Beach, I am fortunate to raise my growing family here and finish strong with my third/final term.

Protecting the charm of our city: Launch of our “SEA Project Initiative”

Champion of sustainability and improvement of infrastructure: creation of a proactive CIP, allowing residents to save considerable taxes.

Support Local Business: Serve as a voice for successful Ocean Avenue business owners.

Lagoons, Parks and Beaches Advocate: Received numerous awards/recognition for our new stormwater projects.

Promote a family and safe environment: beautified parks, legalized golf carts, police/fire supported.

Maintaining a Balanced Budget with Fiscal Responsibility: Maintaining the lowest beachfront mileage rate.

Christina LaFortune is entertainment and TgIF editor at FLORIDA TODAY. Follow her on Facebook at facebook.com/christinalafortuneon Twitter at @lafortunecor email him at [email protected].

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