Florida Votes 2016: Dixie County Commission District 5


Four candidates – Benita Corbin, Brandon Ross, David Osteen and James Valentine – are vying for the position of Dixie County Commission for District 5.

Benita Corbin
Benita Corbin

Benita Corbin (REP)

For Benita Corbin, addressing poverty in her district will be her first priority if elected. Dixie county has Florida’s sixth-highest poverty rate at 27 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. As a pastor for almost 30 years, Corbin estimates that her church, Wind of the Spirit, donates around 50,000 pounds of food a year to Dixie county residents. Many residents are in regular need of food and drinking water.

“I think we need to get more involved in the water issue, because water is the number one commodity that people [need] to have,” Corbin said.

If elected, Corbin, the Republican candidate, would be the first woman to be on county commission in Dixie county’s 95-year history.

David Osteen.
David Osteen.

Corbin has lived in Dixie County for 44 years, and has raised her children there. Emphasizing education and encouraging businesses to grow and stay in Dixie county will be legislative priorities for Corbin.

Corbin, 62, says she hasn’t failed to vote in an election since she was 18.

“I think that should be a priority – we need to get involved in our country, our nation, our county with voting,” said Corbin. “I believe that you need to get the right people in there that are going to be for you and not themselves.”

Corbin plans on holding monthly meetings with residents in her district to understand their concerns and priorities and said she would advocate strongly for Dixie County at the state level.

“I think legislature needs to get involved at a local level. We’re the ones [who] put them there in legislature,” Corbin said.

On why Dixie County residents should vote for her, “I will be their voice in Tallahassee,” said Corbin. “I’m a Christian. I’m righteous. I hold integrity. My word is my bond – and people don’t do that anymore.”

David Osteen (NPA)

After multiple attempts to contact Osteen, he did not return our requests for an interview.

Brandon Ross.
Brandon Ross.

Brandon Ross (NPA)

Brandon Ross declined our interview request.

James Valentine (NPA)

After multiple attempts to contact Valentine, he did not return our requests for an interview.

This story is part of our guide, Florida Votes 2016, leading up to the Nov. 8 election. Check your voter registration status here.

About Antara Sinha

Antara is a reporter for WUFT News and can be contacted by email at antarasinha@ufl.edu and on Twitter @antarasinha.

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