March 28 forum to feature candidates for Sarasota City Commission district seats

CityPAC to host event at Selby Public Library

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On Thursday, March 28, CityPAC of Sarasota will host what it is calling a “job interview” with candidates who have filed to run for a seat on the Sarasota City Commission this year.

The candidates forum will be held from 5 to 6:30 p.m. at the

Selby Public library, which stands at 1331 First St. in downtown Sarasota.

The forum “is free and open to the public,” a news release emphasizes. Attendees are encouraged to bring questions to submit to the candidates.

The 2024 City Commission election involves the seats for the three city districts. All of the candidates who have filed to run for those seats have been invited to attend the forum, the release points out.

Incumbents Kyle Battie (District 1), Liz Alpert (District 2), and Erik Arroyo (District 3) are seeking to retain their seats, as shown on the election webpages maintained by the Office of the City Auditor and Clerk.

Ron Kashden, a Laurel Park resident, is challenging Alpert, while Katherine Kelley Ohlrich, who lives in Glen Oaks, has filed to run against Arroyo. Kashden’s campaign page is available at this link. To learn more about Ohlrich, click here.

For more details about the candidates, visit the CityPAC website and the city website,

The City Commission district elections are staggered with the elections for the at-large seats. Vice Mayor Jen Ahearn-Koch and Commissioner Debbie Trice were elected to the latter seats in November 2022.

CityPAC explains on its website that it is “a non-partisan municipal political committee that operates in the open and accepts no dark money.  We are not big business nor out-of-town developers. We are ordinary citizens who care about the city of Sarasota’s residents & quality of life.”

Its mission, the website adds, is as follows:

  • “Identify and support candidates for the public office of Sarasota City Commissioner who will seek to implement resident-friendly positions on issues relevant to a livable city.
  • “Advocate for issues of importance to residents.
  • “Inform voters about the issues and candidates who are resident-friendly.”

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