I thank the voters of Clermont for placing their trust in me as Mayor for the past two years. There were some challenges and difficult decisions to be made. It was still an honor and pleasure for me to answer the challenges and make those decisions for Clermont, a city I love and the city that helped mold me into the person I am. With my family’s approval, I am starting a re-election campaign for Mayor of Clermont. I need your support so we can continue to build upon the positive sensible growth that we started in the past two years. We need to maintain consistent leadership, management and growth that will addresses the diverse current and future needs for the benefit of all of Clermont’s residents.

Born and raised here in Clermont, I am the fifth child of twelve children born to Lacie and Goldean Murry. I continue to reside in the community I grew up in with my wife Kassier and 17-year-old stepdaughter Karissa. I am also the father of two, daughter Tiffany and son Timothy II and one grandson Timothy III.

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Clermont Challenges & Opportunities: Upon being sworn in as Mayor of Clermont in November 2020, I was faced with two immediate challenges. First, there was the dual challenge of protecting the residents and city staff of Clermont while continuing to provide residents quality service during a pandemic called COVID – 19. With a few minor adjustments in operating procedures and implementation of safety measures for the protection of residents and staff, the challenge was met. The residents of Clermont continued to receive the quality services they have come to enjoy. COVID – 19 Pandemic was contributing to business closures throughout the country. However, Clermont continued to strive forward as several new businesses opened their doors amid the pandemic. The second challenge was how to proceed with no Clermont City Manager, while having to operate with an Interim City Manager with no City Manager experience and only a couple of months experience as Deputy City Manager. Adding to the challenge was replacing the Interim City Manager with another Interim City Manager with no experience as the city council’s search for a City Manager continued. The challenges were met, the city continued to move forward and after eleven months we hired a new City Manager.

Quality Leadership & Diverse Community Activities: Under my leadership as Mayor of Clermont over the last twenty plus months, the Clermont Historical Village saw improvements and growth as a non-denominational replica chapel was constructed to preserve Clermont’s spiritual history. With the rebranding of Downtown Clermont, the Historical Village plays a vital role in preserving Clermont’s rich history. Therefore, the city must ensure the Historical Village remains viable. With more than sixty percent of the city being vaccinated and COVID – 19 under control, signature events such as First Friday, Pig on the Pond, Sips and Salsa, National Night Out, Red, White and Boom (4th of July), Honoring 911, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Taste of South Lake, Memorial Day, Light Up Clermont, and Caribbean Jerk Festival returned to the city with greater attendance and citizens enthusiasm. Juneteenth Celebration was inaugurated as a new Ameri everyone’s freedoms here in Clermont.

With increasing use of Waterfront Park and Clermont’s Boat Ramp there was an increase in use as well as some water safety violations. To reduce and provide safety for residents using Waterfront Park, a Code Enforcement Officer was added, and a Marine Patrol Unit was implemented and outfitted with a boat and necessary equipment to increase water safety. With the additional Code Enforcement Officer and implementation of the Marine Patrol Unit there has been a significant reduction in complaints and water safety incidents at Waterfront Park.

To address Clermont’s City Staff personnel shortages and low retention throughout the city, pay scales were adjusted to attract and retain employees. With the pay scales adjustments, the city is seeing an increase in employment applications. Workforce/affordable housing is a nationwide concern and Clermont must find solutions as the lack of workforce/affordable housing is contributing to homelessness while reducing the quality of life for all residents. As new businesses continue to open and strive throughout Clermont, especially in downtown, Clermont’s Downtown is seeing a significant increase in foot traffic of all ages. Receiving Main Street America recognition earlier this year, revitalization of Downtown Clermont should continue well into the future.

With rising code violations, Clermont’s Code Enforcement Board was reinstated, and an additional officer was authorized for quicker response and resolution to complaints. The opening of sixty-eight new affordable housing units for seniors was a start to addressing workforce/affordable housing in Clermont however, the sixty-eight units do not come close to solving the problem. Talks were initiated on a skate park and community center to address some of the needs of Clermont’s youth. The dialog must continue, and decisions must be made to meet the needs of Clermont’s ever-changing demographics. A skate park and community center will be a start to meeting some of our youth needs but there is much more work to be done to address the needs of Clermont’s youth population.

Clermont & Lake County: With a goal of improving the city’s working relationship with Lake County Board of Commissioners, I allocated time for the county commissioner to address Clermont’s City Council each month. Maintaining a good working relationship with Lake County Board of Commissioners is necessary to provide an avenue for feedback to the county during the county’s consideration of economic development of unincorporated areas of Clermont.

Open Communications: I initiated monthly Mayor’s Lunches to provide residents another direct access to voice openly their concerns to the mayor. These lunches have been well attended and the direct input from residents helped me be a better voice for the residents

As Clermont’s Wellness Way moves from a vision to reality, the development of Wellness Way and Olympus will pose a great opportunity and challenge for Clermont’s infrastructure. With Wellness Way having numerous stakeholders, we will need to carefully and strategically manage all the codes and ordinances approved for Wellness Way.

Future Plans & Growth: As Mayor of Clermont, quality of life, fiscal responsibility, and public safety will continue to be three important strategic objectives at the forefront of my decision making. As Clermont continues to grow, there will be an increase in traffic, opportunity for more crime, and a greater demand on natural resources that can quickly diminish residents’ quality of life while imposing greater burdens on fiscal resources and public safety. I will continue my complete support for Clermont Police Department and Fire Department by working together to ensure they receive the training, equipment, funding, and resources needed to keep Clermont safe.

I will continue to be the voice for sensible growth that focus on the needs of all residents. My vision for Clermont continues to be one of continuous growth that enhances quality of life, public safety, protect natural resources, and promote fiscal responsibility. Sensible growth includes a mixture of homes, apartments, senior living, workforce/affordable housing, and commercial entities that will serve the needs of all residents. It is time to take a serious look at expanding city/public transportation to help reduce traffic congestion and increase residents’ quality of life. With the rising cost of fuel, cost of maintaining transportation, and increasing numbers of seniors in Clermont, personal transportation is diminishing thereby reducing the quality of life for growing number of residents. Improving upon our city/public transportation will contribute to Clermont’s economy by providing residents without personal transportation and residents that no longer drive, a means of transportation that will improve their quality of life by allowing them to maintain their independence to travel and patronize entities throughout Clermont.

Education & Military Background: Upon graduating from Clermont High School in 1972, I attended Florida A and M University in Tallahassee Florida for two years prior to moving to Bridgeport Connecticut. In 1975, I joined the United States Air Force and proudly served in the United States Air Force until January 1998. During an outstanding twenty-two plus years of military service I received numerous awards, honors and decorations to include: Meritorious Service Medal, Good Conduct Medal with six devices, Professional Military Educational Ribbon with one device, Air Force Training Ribbon, Southwest Asia Service Medal with two devices, Air Force Overseas Short Tour Ribbon, National Defense Service Medal, Humanitarian Service Medal, Kuwait Liberation Medal (Saudi Arabia), Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with valor with four devices, Air Force Achievement Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal with two devices, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Air Force Overseas Long Tour Ribbon, Air Force Longevity Service Award with four devices, Quarter, Senior NCO of the Quarter, Senior NCO of Year, and Athletic Director of the Year for Tactical Air Command.

Fifteen months after retiring from the United States Air Force I began a second career with the United States Postal Service in 1999. My twenty-one plus years of service in the United States Postal Service was in Clermont performing the duties of Address Management Specialist and Growth Management Technician for twenty of those years.

Processing three Associate in Arts Degrees with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Management & Human Resources as well as having a Master of Business Administration Degree. I have coupled my advanced educational achievements with my hands-on experiences and skills that I gained managing various facilities and activities during my twenty-two plus years in the United States Air Force, which were all instrumental in my success. My hands-on experience of preparing operating budgets, continuative plans, capital expense budgets, overseeing renovation/new construction projects, and daily operation of facilities proved to very valuable assets as Mayor. The experience and skills I acquired working with others throughout the United States, Europe, and Saudi Arabia proved to be very valuable assets when working with entities, clubs, organizations, developments, and people of various walks of life to accomplish a desired goal.

Valuable Experiences: The valuable knowledge and insight I gained from having served on Clermont’s Code Enforcement Board, Clermont’s Planning and Zoning Board, South Lake Boys Girls Club Advisory Board, Lincoln Park South Lake Alliance, INC Board, New Jacob’s Chapel MBC Family Matters Food Program, East Ridge Middle School Student Advisory Committee, Citizen Advisory Task Force for Community Development Block Grant, and continues to serve on New Jacob’s Chapel MBC Board of Trustees, Lake Apopka Natural Gas District Board of Directors, Fellowship of Christian Athletics Board of Directors, Christian Men in Action Board of Directors, member of Veterans of Foreign Wars, South Lake Non-Profit Think Tank, Give A Day Foundation, and South Lake Black Achievers Committee are of great benefit in decisions to meet the needs of Clermont’s residents.

I love Clermont! I remain proud and honored to serve our residents and businesses while working as a team with the City Manager, City Council, and staff.

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