Cohen makes bid for re-election to council

Jul. 13, 2013 @ 05:01 AM

Pending any withdrawals, a primary election will be held for seats on the Sanford City Council this September.

Friday morning, L.I. “Poly” Cohen filed for re-election to the at-large seat he has held for the past four years. He will be going up against at least one challenger, local attorney Norman “Chas” Post III, in the Sept. 10 primary, with the winner advancing to the Nov. 5 general election.

Cohen is owner and retired CEO of Lee Iron and Metal Co. and has also been involved with the Stevens Center, Lee County Group Home, the State Employees’ Credit Union Family House and Capital Bank. He said he’s a proponent of the various bond measures that will also be up for a vote in either September or November, and that if he’s re-elected, working on whichever bonds pass will be a priority of his.

“I want to get the people to vote for all these bond issues,” Cohen said. “I want to get that started... It’s going to take two or three years, so we need to get that going.”

Both Cohen and Post are registered Democrats. In the past, they would’ve met in the general election because the council wasn’t elected based on party affiliation. But a bill proposed by local Rep. Mike Stone to make the city elections partisan recently became law despite strong objections from the city council and Lee County Board of Education, the two groups it affected.

One of the city council’s main stated reasons for opposing the bill was the possibility that it would force the addition of primary elections, which will reportedly cost the city about $35,000.