Palm Beach County municipal elections: What you need to know before you vote

Published: Mar. 13, 2023 at 2:45 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

Elections are being held Tuesday in 17 municipalities in Palm Beach County.

Residents in the following municipalities are being asked to vote on issues impacting their communities: Atlantis, Belle Glade, Boca Raton, Boynton Beach, Delray Beach, Highland Beach, Hypoluxo, Juno Beach, Lake Clarke Shores, Lake Park, Lantana, Mangonia Park, Ocean Ridge, Palm Beach Shores, Palm Springs, South Bay and Tequesta.

Voters are being asked to elect municipal leaders to serve on council or commission seats in all but Boca Raton and Tequesta, where ballot questions are being asked.

Sample Ballots by Municipality

Some of the more contentious races are on the south end of the county, where Delray Beach voters are being asked to elect a new city commissioner and decide whether another commissioner should keep her job.

Current Commissioner Juli Casale is running for reelection against Rob Long, a former member of the city's Planning and Zoning Board. The two have engaged in a barrage of finger pointing throughout the campaign, frequently calling into question the character of the candidates.

Angela Burns and Angie Gray are battling to fill the seat that will be vacated by Commissioner Shirley Johnson, who can't seek reelection because of term limits.

Casale often sides with Mayor Shelly Petrolia on city issues and has been adamant about maintaining Delray Beach's "Village by the Sea" charm. Her hesitancy to approve development projects that she considers to be out-of-control growth is a stark contrast to Long, who has faced ethics complaints for failure to disclose potential conflicts while a voting member of the Planning and Zoning Board.

Long and his supporters have criticized Casale for voting to terminate the city's lease with the board that operated Old School Square. The controversial decision was met with plenty of public outcry from residents.

Burns and Gray, meanwhile, have traded barbs in campaign mailers. Burns is a former teacher whom opponents fear would side with Long on development issues if elected. Gray previously served as a city commissioner from 2009-14.

Both have been criticized for their past dealings with the city.

Burns was co-owner of a Delray Beach bar that was evicted in 2022 after the landlord claimed it failed to pay rent for three months. According to a lawsuit, the business received $340,000 from the sale of its liquor license after receiving taxpayer funding from the city's Community Redevelopment Agency to help finance renovations.

Gray was charged with a misdemeanor ethics violation in 2014, but she was later acquitted by a Palm Beach County jury.

Delray Beach voters are also being asked to approve two bond referendums — $100 million for public safety and $20 million for improvements to parks and certain recreational amenities.

In Boca Raton, voters are being asked to amend the city charter that would change the term length for mayor and City Council members from three years to four years.

Mayor Scott Singer, who was unopposed for another term, is a proponent of the change.

Residents in Tequesta will have six ballot questions to decide – the most of any municipality. Among the questions being asked of voters is whether they want to increase term lengths for council members from two years to three and set term limits of three consecutive terms.

What do I need on Election Day?

Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Election Day. Any voters waiting in line at 7 p.m. will have the opportunity to cast a ballot.

If you're unsure of where to go on Election Day, click here to find your voting precinct.

In order to vote, you must provide a Florida driver's license, identification card, U.S. passport or some other form of photo identification with signature.

Only registered voters living within the boundaries of each respective municipality will be eligible to participate.

The municipal clerk is the supervisor of each municipal election, with close guidance from the Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections.

Scripps Only Content 2023