New commissioner elected in Panama City

Panama City

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — Panama City voters elected a new city commissioner and voted down a tax waiver for businesses.

Ward 4 Commissioner Michael Nichols was defeated by Josh Street.

Street got 752 votes and 53.95 percent of the vote. Nichols got 46.05 percent of the vote and 642 votes.

Street was born and raised in Bay County and said he has spent most of his life living in St. Andrews. 

He has experience working with large building projects as well as FEMA grants so he feels that helped prepare him for the job.

Street said he has worked alongside the city for a lot of their recovery and he is excited to do that again in a bigger way. 

He says some of the projects he plans to focus on the most are bringing the marina back to full operation and of course improving the infrastructure. 

“Well the number one issue is infrastructure we have got to get our infrastructure repairs,” Street said. “So I am going to be very hands-on and I’m going to be very involved in what the staff is doing.”

As for Nichols, he said he ran a good clean campaign and he is proud of the nine years he spent on the Panama City Commission.

He helped lead the way for many projects in St. Andrews and he says one of his favorite parts was getting to know all the wonderful people and staff.

“The best part is learning about our city and the employees that we have,” Nichols said. “We have some great staff. And when I say some great staff I mean the guys and ladies in the trenches. They are phenomenal.”

Nichols said he still plans to stay involved in St. Andrews because it is the place he calls home. 

Both candidates say they just want to see the community improve and come out better than it was before.

Also on the ballot was a Tax Waiver for New Business Referendum in Panama City. Voters barely defeated that with 2,445 voting against it and 2,294 voting for it.

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