Apopka Mayor Joe Kilsheimer is running for re-election as mayor of one of the county’s fastest growing cities. He faces stiff competition with Orange County Commissioner Bryan Nelson, District 2, gunning for the mayor’s seat as well.
Both men have raised about $53,000 each and are spending money as fast as they can get it. It’s two tough politicians fighting for the right to lead the city over the next four years.
Kilsheimer wants to continue to move the city forward and told the Apopka Voice that “Apopka residents don’t want to go back to the days of handshake deals behind closed doors and complacency at City Hall.” Under his watch, Apopka has grown by leaps and bounds and is preparing to break ground on a new city center that will include a hotel and various shops for residents to take advantage of.
It’s a lot of exciting news for Apopka and shows how much Kilsheimer’s vision for the city is coming to fruition.
But it hasn’t been without criticism and fault. Nelson has served as Apopka’s representative on the board of county commissioners since 2014. Before that, he served as a state representative in the Florida Legislature for nearly 10 years.
While Kilsheimer has a broad view of where he wants to take the city, Nelson’s vision is more closed in. He believes that the city’s finances are a mess and he wants to rebuild the city’s reserves.
He isn’t far away from Kilsheimer’s thought of the city, though. He wants to attract higher paying jobs and seems to be supportive of the city center because according to Nelson’s website, he wants more dining and retail options for the city.
The election is a little over two months away, and the first debate is scheduled for the 31st of January. It’s the first time both men will face each other in an open setting to give their vision for the city’s voters to pick from.
Whether it’s Kilsheimer or Nelson that Apopka chooses on March 13th, one person will be selected to manage the city’s growth over the next four years.