Count Bill McDaniel in.
McDaniel, 50, announced Friday he planned to run for the Collier County District 3 commission seat currently held by Commissioner Tom Henning.
“I can’t idly sit on the sidelines and watch the things that are occurring,” he said. “Systemically there are some huge issues, and I feel it’s past time.”
McDaniel said Collier County residents understand the county is going through difficult times, but they also want change. His focus, he said in an email, would be to create a place where “people can work, provide for their families and enjoy one of the most beautiful places to live in the country.”
Henning — who was first elected in 2000 — has not filed the necessary paperwork, but said Collier County residents shouldn’t count him out in 2012.
“In my opinion it’s way too early to file for the election,” Henning said. “I’m going to run, but it’s just way to early.”
This may be McDaniel’s first run for Collier County commission, but he’s no stranger to the political process.
McDaniel served as chairman of the county’s East of 951 Horizon Study committee — which looked at growth issues in Golden Gate Estates — from 2006 to 2008.
He also served on the Rural Land Stewardship committee — which made recommendations about changes to the county’s Rural Lands Stewardship Area growth plan in eastern Collier County — from 2007 to 2009.
McDaniel, owner of Big Island Excavating, is no stranger to controversy either. McDaniel in 2010 worked out a settlement with the South Florida Water Management District board after he was cited in 2007 for working without a permit.
McDaniel told the Daily News in 2010 the issue arose after a contractor working for him failed to renew a permit for McDaniel’s mine south of Immokalee Road.
District 3 covers Golden Gate and the Golden Gate Estates area.
McDaniel has two children, and said Friday he and his family is looking forward to the upcoming election.
“We’re excited about it,” he said.
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