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Thursday, Apr 17, 2014
Pasco Tribune

Littlefield joins race for Mulieri’s commission seat


WESLEY CHAPEL — This year’s Republican primary battle to replace retiring Commissioner Pat Mulieri got a bit more crowded with the addition of former state Rep. Ken Littlefield.

Littlefield became the third candidate in the race when he filed papers last week, joining fellow Wesley Chapel Republican Mike Moore and Bob Robertson, a Republican from Zephyrhills.

District 2 includes much of central Pasco north of State Road 54/56.

When Commissioner Ann Hildebrand retired in 2012, six Republicans and one Democrat battled for the open District 3 seat ultimately claimed by Kathryn Starkey.

Littlefield nearly unseated Mulieri four years ago, getting 48 percent of the primary vote. The Republican spent eight years representing House District 61, which used to cover southeast Pasco County and northeast Hillsborough County.

He opted not to run for re-election in 2006 after former Gov. Jeb Bush appointed him to the Public Service Commission, which regulates the state’s utilities.

Months later, though, Gov. Charlie Crist announced he would replace the Wesley Chapel resident, saying he was not consumer-friendly enough.

Mulieri is retiring after 20 years on the board. Robertson, chairman of the Lake Bernadette Community Development District, was the first to file to run for the commission seat last July, but he has raised about $7,000 from outside donors.

Moore has been campaigning since last August. He has landed endorsements from Sheriff Chris Nocco and Congressman Gus Bilirakis and so far has raised more than $40,000.

No Democrat has filed to run for the open seat.

District 4 Commissioner Henry Wilson so far is unopposed in his re-election bid.

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Twitter: @LKinslerTBO