Three political newcomers are seeking to replace term-limited Michael Mullaugh in Boca Raton City Council Seat B.
Andrea Levine O’Rourke, Andy Thompson and Emily Gentile are competing for the at-large seat in the March 14 election open to all city voters.
O’Rourke filed to run for the seat last year and has presented herself as a voice of the people intent on cracking down on over development.
“I will hold development accountable,” O’Rourke said at a recent candidate forum. “I understand the needs of the residents. I think I have the pulse of the community better than anyone I’m running against.”
The FAU graduate previously edited BocaWatch.org, a blog started by mayoral candidate Al Zucaro that has been vocally critical of new construction projects and city administration. O’Rourke has published articles in the past advocating for more green space and bolstering public art.
Andy Thomson, a lawyer with civil engineering experience who grew up in Coral Springs and now lives in Boca, said he wants to tackle the city’s stressed infrastructure needs such as parking and traffic.
“Put in place the person who has the skill set with resolving disputes and with traffic problems,” Thomson said at a candidate forum. “I can solve those things.”
He also advocated for providing for incentives for companies in order to keep business within the city.
Gentile, a retired business and marketing consultant, says she has corporate experience that can help with collaboration between the city and business partners. As a consultant to Fortune 500 companies, she says she can negotiate with businesses.
“I have national and international experience,” said Gentile in an interview. “I’ve been responsible for pensions and large budgets.”
Gentile said she would prioritize collaboration with the local universities to keep graduates in town. Additionally, she wants to focus on adding art in public spaces and preserving historic areas throughout the city.