Update: House Member Runs For Broward Commission




A 2014 race for Broward County Commission is already getting interesting.

Yup, 2014!

State Rep. Joe Gibbons, D-Hallandale Beach, is running for the South Broward District 6.

He opened a campaign account Friday.

He joins former Hollywood Commissioner Beam Furr, who has an account open.

Gibbons, who can tap Tallahassee, probably has a head start in raising money.  He already has the endorsement of State Democratic House Leader Perry Thurston of Plantation and state Rep. Jim Waldman of Coconut Creek.


State Rep. Joe Gibbons at Florida House Appropriations Committee meeting. 


The seat is now occupied by Commissioner Sue Gunzburger, who must leave the commission in 2014 because of term limits leaving open the position with its lucrative salary of over $100,000 annually in pay and benefits.

Gibbons was elected to the House in 2006 and is serving his last term allowed under the term limits law. A leading House member,  he is the ranking Democrat on the House Appropriations committee.

District 6 is over two-to-one Democratic – 70,030 to 28,151.  It has roughly 68,000 whites and 20,000 blacks, with over 33,000 Hispanics.

A former Hallandale Beach commissioner from 2003-2006, Gibbons has had a great deal of success appealing to both white and black voters.

His current House District 100 district stretches encompasses his familiar South Broward, but had largely white areas of northeast Miami-Dade County like Aventura included in it for the first time last year.  It contains roughly 6 percent black voters and 33 percent Hispanic voters, a demographic breakdown that caused skeptics to question whether Gibbons could hold on to his seat.

Yet he easily overwhelmed his white Jewish opponent from Miami-Dade.

A major accusation against Gibbons is that he doesn’t really live in the district.  Gibbons, 64, job other than the state House is as a public policy advisor to the Tallahassee office of the Akerman Senterfitt law/lobbying firm.

One other candidate said to be considering the race for the seat: Hallandale Mayor Joy Cooper.

22 Responses to “Update: House Member Runs For Broward Commission”

  1. Correction says:

    Don’t forget his wife is employed in as well as his two young children live in Jacksonville. That is the problem.

    Here we go again, Gibbons lining up to be the next Joe Eggelletion, you know a candidate run by Judy Stern so she can lobby later.

    If true, Stern will be running Gibbons and Lamar Fisher for Kristin’s seat. Running LaMarca’s campaign again and already has Ryan and galpal Lois Wexler on the dais. All goes well that is 5 County Commission votes consisting of a majority of the Commission.

    Is this what we need again Judy Stern controlling the County Commission?

    I have a feeling supporters of Sheriff Israel are not going make it easy for Stern to get majority control of the Commission hence the BSO budget.

    Of course at end of the day Stern has not won a major race since 2006, so maybe such concern is for naught.

  2. Reform in 2013 says:

    Joe Gibbons is a good man! I hope he wins this race

  3. I wait to be like Judy! says:

    Judy just did Cooper’s last race. Will she be double dipping if they both run?

  4. deadpols says:

    Another termed out legislator on the county commission. I think not!

    If we want to restore integrity to the commission, we need to vote in more people like Barbara Shareif-

    She’s real and doesnt need the title to make money

  5. Bad Deal for South Florida says:

    The law firm Akerman Senterfitt just successfully lobbied to approve a bad water deal for South Floridians in a 30-year no-bid access to Everglades land. This deal ensures Florida Sugar growers can continue to pollute waters essential for South Florida.

    What is Gibbons position on this?


  6. deadpol says:

    Another termed out legislator

    can’t these guys get real jobs

    why can’t we get real people like barbara shareif who have the ability to actually earn a good living and serve for the right reasons

  7. Ghost of McLovin says:


    District 4 is over two-to-one Democratic – 70,030 to 28,151. It has roughly 68,000 whites and 20,000 blacks, with over 33,000 Hispanics.

    FROM BUDDY: No, District 6 has those statistics, according to the Supervisor of Elections.

  8. Correction to "Correction" says:

    Judith Stern did not have anything to do with Chip LaMarca’s commission campaign. No role whatsoever, volunteer or paid.
    I worked on the campaign as a volunteer from Fort Lauderdale and would never work for a candidate who associated themselves with her.

  9. Gibbons Is A Lobbyist says:

    Doesn’t anybody think that working for a lobbyist while a House member is an ethical problem?

  10. Not corrected says:


    LaMarca acknlowledged he’s had conversations with Stern about the race… Stern would have her influence — she always does. And if her plan comes together, it’ll be Judy’s world again. We’ll just live in it.

    Now run along, Chip needs his 5pm changing, remember Aloe wipes only, followed by gold bond. Then at 527 be in front of the County building to drive him home.

    90k a year a valet and driver those Commissioners have it good.

  11. robbed again says:

    @not corrected
    you nailed it on the 90K plus perks gig for the 9 bcc, which is precisely why gibbons wants to run.
    what job private or public pays that, plus hundreds of thousands (~$300k for staff, etc) and they meet at best 40 times a year, take 1 month or so off in summer, and its a 4 year contract? three terms is 12 years of “Service”. sure they can’t take free meals and bottles of water and other tokens of appreciation, but the power apears to be enough. guess gibbons needs to buck up those years towards pension.
    kudos to the electeds that are declining the pension.

  12. hahahaha says:

    Gibbons is not only a lobbyist, testified on behalf of Joe Eggelletion at his sentencing seeking leniency. Claims he is a Broward resident while his wife lives and works in Jacksonville with their 2 young children.

    I know I wrote a lot, I am figuring you could assume Gibbons ethical views pretty quick.

    When in doubt if you hear the word Eggelletion automatically assume unethical or a teacher who had sex with his student, that Joe is so wacky..

  13. just one vote says:

    See http://www.browardsoe.org/ersummary.aspx?eid=113
    for the summary of voters in August 2010 Gunzburger v Geller District 6 BCC.

    Geller gets 43.75% for 4,358 votes
    Gunzburger gets 56.25% for 5,604 votes
    How does a district (BEFORE Redistricting) get so few to turn out?
    9,962 is all it takes? some voted early, in person and absentee as this link shows

    There has to be at least 75,000 voters living in District 6. I think more. Cannot find current roster total on browardsoe.org now but will look into further, unless Buddy knows the registered voter count.


    There are 131,766 voters registered in District 6 as of January 2. As I wrote, 70,030 are Democrats, 28,151 are Republicans and the rest are independents or members of a minor party. This race probably will be decided in the Democratic primary with only the 70.030 Ds eligible to vote.

  14. Correcting Correction says:

    “If true, Stern will be running Gibbons and Lamar Fisher for Kristin’s seat.”

    Check your facts. Fisher does not live in Kristin Jacob’s district. If he wants to be elected in District 2, he will have to move.

  15. Gavin Alford says:

    From what I have read above and from what I know about Beam Furr. I guess I will be voting for “None of the Above”.

  16. Oh my says:

    Gibbons doesnt even live in this county. Lois wexler kept apartment in her actual district while living in her mansion elsewhere until the recent redistricting. Sterns crew doesn’t care about ethics and rules. At least Lamar only has to fake living a few blocks away from home.

  17. THE EX says:

    WT….Lamar Fisher?!? District 2 Commissioner??? The only person I would like to see run for the seat is Nora Rupert. She’s keeping it honest on the School Board. Something we need at County Commission level. Run, Nora, Run!!!

    BTW, looks like Marilyn picked a REAL LOSER to endorse for her seat. Bruce Augello can’t even fill out his campaign treasurer report correctly. Not even on the second try.

    Check it out: http://www.coconutcreek.net/clerk/open-government

    Even the City Clerk can’t keep up with his incompetence. She even has one of his Oct-Dec 2011 posted as Oct-Dec 2012.

  18. sidelines says:

    The primary is August 2014. Much can happen for better or worse in the next 17 months. Many will contemplate a run and open campaign accounts. The window to file papers is months away. No names mentioned so far are a shoe in, and better and better supported potential candidates will be stepping forward.

    Thanks Buddy for always starting a stimulating and engaged discourse.

  19. voter says:

    according to bcpa.net Mr. Fisher also has a homesteaded property on Hllsboro Mile. Per haps that district location will work for a run for BCC in 2014.

  20. come again? says:

    $92K (I just looked it up) after taxes, if you live in South Florida, is far from lucrative. It’s just ok. And it certainly isn’t enough to put up with the garbage that goes on during some of these campaigns, nor having ridiculous false stories written about them on line once they’re elected.


    Before we cry tears for their “just OK” salary, remember it is far above the average in Broward.

    These gutless wonders have the salaries pegged to population so they never have to vote themselves a raise. It just goes up as the population grows. (They will tell you that the Legislature did that, but they have never made a move to change it. In fact, calls to cut their salary to make it more commensurate with their work load has been greeted with horror by the commissioners.)

    They also get a benefits package that is almost unheard of in the private sector.

    All this for a part-time job. Remember the commission meets roughly 30 times a year and maybe a few times more for workshops.

  21. For the record says:

    2 things-
    1- I am a teacher in a private school. My salary correlates directly with enrollment. Why wouldn’t being responsible for a larger population in one’s district mean a higher salary? More people, more problems.

    2- I would think that those commissioners put in more actual time working on the various issues within their district- which involves a lot more than just attending meetings and workshops. I watch the meetings on TV when I can, I believe you are over simplifying things by minimizing their responsibilities. If this is not the case, please let me know as living on a teachers salary in Broward is no easy feat, I’d throw my hat into the ring myself.

  22. you forgot says:

    Please LaMarca has a driver and a valet on the County payroll. Chip gets driven around by his aide all the time. I hear the Aide cuts the crusts off his sandwiches at lunch and serves high tea promptly at 345 every other Tuesday.