By LEGION TAYLOR
An emergency meeting in St. Marks last week saw the appointment of John Gunter to the city commission by a 4-0 vote.
The opening on the city commission was prompted by the resignation of Dan Albers, who submitted his resignation last week following the recent loss of his wife.
At the emergency meeting on Wedesday, Jan. 3, Mayor Steve Remke asked citizens at the meeting who was interested in filling the seat and Gunter and Corey Ingram raised their hands. Both were asked about their general views by city commissioners – Paula Bell, Sharon Rudd and Paul Sheddan.
Gunter was introduced as a marine biologist and ecologist who has lived in St. Marks for years, and has owned several small businesses throughout the course of his life. He made it clear that he loves Wakulla County, and chose to stay here after his home was damaged during Hurricane Michael, and wants to see its spirit preserved as it continues to grow and develop. Gunter was also asked about his views on whether government should be small or large, and he expressed his views that a delicate balance had to be struck between the two, as both have their merits.
Gunter will hold the seat on the county commission until the next city election – qualifying to run for city commission is set for June.
Ingram is a property developer who has lived in Wakulla since 2021, and in St. Marks since 2022. His primary concern is ensuring that development in St. Marks is done responsibly, as he comes from an area in Georgia that suffers from overdevelopment. When asked) what he meant by responsible, Ingram said “Development that doesn’t outpace infrastructure.” He added that includes things like water, sewer, and roads, which developments can often overuse.
Ingram has a lot of experience in zoning and construction, which he felt might be useful. He also stated that he plans on running for a seat on the city commission regardless of whether or not he is appointed.