Candidate Questionnaire: Debbie Halama Office: County Commissioner, Dist. 2

Q.  In 20 words or less, let our readers know the reasons in general that you believe you would make the very best person to fulfill the position for which you are running.

A. I have a vast work experience from Retail management, banking operations to Real Estate Agent. Currently I work with banks facilitating the sale of foreclosed or abandon homes.

Q.  What specifically are the top four factors you believe qualify you over the assets of any other potential


A. 1. Good listening to constituents. 2. Raising my 2 sons in this community from kindergartener thru high school gives me better insight into the diverse needs for families.3. Follow through- In my business I do not get paid without it. 4. Approachable-I live, work and shop alongside my neighbors in the lower keys.

Q. What is your personal view on the state of the nation in this year’s particularly interesting political season?

A. In the nation I see us going through many changes, which I find is reflective in our local community. I think our County needs a new voice and stronger leadership.

Q.  Given your personal awareness of governance in Southeast Florida, are you optimistic about relations between the public and the powers that be?

A. Everglades Preservation will require good communication and positive relations amongst South Florida Governments.

Q. Do you feel that the general tenor of political discourse is becoming less polite in Monroe County or staying about the same?

A. I feel it is about the same- running negative, scorched earth campaigns are not my style, so there will be little discourse on my end.

Q. Tell us more about your personal history –- your work and family life –- and how they relate to your political ambitions.

A. As previously stated I have 2 sons Trent 19 and Trey 17 both graduated from Keys Collegiate Academy Because I chose to have smaller class size for them. I took it upon myself to do the long commute from Big Pine Key to Key West twice a day, but during the last couple of years the conversation during these commutes became all about the days politics and my sons are a large part as to why I am running. I am also a Realtor that deals with bank assets and the first calls I make after getting a new listing is to the building department and I fell the communities’ frustration with the inconsistency with the building department. Lastly, I also own a small business in Big Pine Key and know the hardship of trying to find workers in this area.

Q. From your personal experience, would a generally peaceable outlook in the Keys depend upon a measure of control over the number of our visitors and residents?

A. While I believe people have the right to visit and reside in our County. Even so, the congestions in some parts of the keys has on occasion made me avoid traveling to and enjoying myself because the numbers can be overwhelming.

Q. What do you personally love most about Monroe County and the Florida Keys?

A. The weather above all, small communities are a bonus When I return from a trip to Miami, when I hit Key Largo I breath a sign of relief.

Q. What troubles you the most about today’s Monroe County and the Florida Keys?

A. Lack of transparency in local government and their process. There have been many good ideas our county has had presented with in the past that have been abandoned without proper research.

Q. What planning or political mistakes do you personally believe were the worst to be inflicted on the Keys over the past decade?

A. Building Department perceived (Ethical charges) Transparency-conflicts of interest in our building department. High turnover rates lead to mass confusion and incorrect info to citizens about what is required. Post Irma-disaster in building department response

Q. Who is your favorite character in the history of the keys?

A. Henry Flagler

Q.  Who is your least favorite character?

a. Randy and Monique Acevedo take the top of the list. There is nothing worse than stealing from children, and as we move forward with securing our schools, there are some powerful lessons in their corruption.

Q. What is your favorite book?

a. Tom Clancy- Hunt For Red October

Q. What is your favorite movie?

A. Planes Trains and automobiles

Q. What is your favorite quote?

A. Charles Darwin- It is not the strongest species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the most responsive to change.

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