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Candidate Runs For Lee County Commission

Updated: Jul 9

My name is Amanda Cochran, and I am running for Lee County Commission, District 5. I’d like to share a bit about my family history to help you understand my motivation for running for the Lee County Commission.

Six generations of my family have called this place home. My great, great-uncle moved to Florida in 1910 and developed large tracts of land, laying the foundation for what is now East Fort Myers. In the 1940’s, my great-grandfather and his brothers shipped cattle on barges across the Caloosahatchee River before there were bridges. My grandmother and grandfather met at Buckingham Army Airfield during the war.

My mother was Miss Lee County in a year she would appreciate that I do not mention. In the 1970s, my father-in-law was a builder who developed residential communities, Briarcliff and Colonial Acres, to name a few. His legacy in the building industry is one of building homes for families, not just units for mass development.

All of that is to say that Lee County is my home. The blood, sweat, and tears of generations of my family are, literally, in its soil. I am deeply rooted in the fabric of Lee County, and my candidacy is not just about seeking public office; it’s about leveraging my experience and dedication to make a tangible difference in the lives of our residents.

What started out as a grassroots effort to promote government integrity and transparency in Lee County has grown into a broader awareness of the significant challenges facing our local government. Our current population is reported to be over 835,000 people, and Lee County is dealing with unprecedented growth.

Our infrastructure is stretched to its limits, our water systems are at risk, and our school and healthcare systems are perpetually struggling to keep pace with the growing population.

This is in no way a criticism of those systems but rather of the local government’s responsibility for planning and managing them. Where is the balance? What will our quality of life be without decision-makers who recognize and prioritize the urgent need for balance?

Now, more than ever, we need leaders who are committed to ensuring that our community thrives both now and in the future.

With a focus on sensible and strategically planned growth, I aim to ensure that Lee County’s development aligns with its residents’ current and long-term interests.

I plan to prioritize crucial initiatives for infrastructure and public safety resources that anticipate and meet the

needs of a growing population.

I pledge to champion the needs of our first responders, law enforcement officers, educators, and health care providers. By focusing on real solutions, I aim to actively work toward securing every available resource to ensure attainable workforce housing for these essential professions.

I will advocate for public awareness, prevention, and treatment programs for much-needed mental and behavioral health services in Lee County.

I understand the critical role that environmental conservation plays in sustaining our local economy and quality of life. I am committed to protecting our environment and safeguarding Lee County’s endangered waterways.

I am running because I care about Lee County — ALL of Lee County. This isn’t about personal gain or vested interests; it’s about securing a brighter future for our community. I am not here to dictate solutions but to Listen, Learn, and Lead with accountability and transparency. I firmly believe that the commission’s role is to act ON BEHALF OF the public, not IN PLACE OF the public. Your voices, your concerns, and your aspirations should shape the agenda, ensuring that the actions of the Commission reflect the will and well-being of our communities.

I pledge to ensure that every decision is measured by its impact on the residents and to work toward enhancing the quality of life during this critical time that will help define the future of our county.

Every vote I cast on the Commission will stand on responsible and ethical principles. Many Lee County residents may not be aware that each district seat of the Commission is decided by a countywide vote.

History tells us that the August primary election will likely decide who will be the next county commissioner in

District 5, and only registered Republicans can vote in the Republican primary.

Register to vote or change your party affiliation by Monday, July 22.

Request a vote-by-mail ballot by Thursday, August 8.

Early voting: Saturday, August 10–Saturday, August 17.

Thank you for your consideration.

Please visit for more information on my candidacy.

Amanda Guest Editorial News-Press June 23 2024
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