Sara Baxter fights for small business against big money corporate Dems

Sara Baxter is sick of bureaucratic red tape in Palm Beach County that stifles the formation and growth of small businesses. That’s just one reason this resourceful professional is running for District 6 County Commissioner.

“As an entrepreneur trying to build a family business, we found applying for licenses complicated. Securing a good industrial location for the business in unincorporated Palm Beach County was practically impossible. But, I’m a very persistent and strong person; I don’t give up easily. If I wasn’t persistent, our business might never have opened,” she said. 

Baxter is the only Republican facing three Democratic challengers in the primary election this August. Two of her Democratic opponents are well-financed and backed by corporate donors and special interests. In addition to fighting for small businesses and ensuring the straightforward interpretation of state and county ordinances, her candidacy aims to give voters a broader perspective on county issues. “There is a lot of one-sidedness within our county commission, and I feel we need another option to represent the constituents of District 6 accurately,” she said. “There are seven county commissioners for a reason. We shouldn’t have seven people who all think alike. The population of Palm Beach County is diverse. We need to have commissioners who reflect that and think differently to formulate varied opinions, ultimately leading to the best solutions.”

Related: PBC Commissioner McKinlay proves government is arrogant and out of control

Streamlining business and personal property zoning within Palm Beach County is another of Baxter’s goals. “We had to overcome a lot of red tape with the zoning and permitting regulations when our business moved into a larger space. We encountered the same hindrances when adding structure to our personal property,” she said. “The county hadn’t changed any rules; they just started interpreting them differently.”

Sara Baxter for County Commission District 6Baxter observed that the Board of County Commissioners was unduly harsh on small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. “The Board insisted on keeping small businesses in Palm Beach County locked down even when the governor declared companies free to open. This callous treatment disregarded the hard work necessary to keep a business running, and many establishments didn’t survive.”

She also noted that the Board did not give small businesses clear guidelines on COVID-19 protocols.  “The Commissioners passed ‘one size fits all’ directives for small businesses, and many companies were not aware that they could file for medical exemptions to the mandates. Small business owners feared being shut down by county compliance officers if they did not follow the mandates.”

Baxter’s work experience as a real estate agent and former teacher adds to her understanding of what voters want in a commissioner. A native of Palm Beach County, she is president of her neighborhood’s property owners’ association and is involved in a coalition to fight human trafficking. Baxter contends that her professional background makes her the best candidate for District 6 Commissioner. “While other candidates have been sitting on community boards, I have been actively growing a small business and giving back to our county.”

Baxter said that district 6 voters with no political party affiliation could be vital in flipping the historically Democratic district red. “There are over 140,000 registered voters in District 6, and roughly 42,000 are non-party affiliates. So, anyone who wants to say this race is guaranteed to one party or the other is not looking at the accurate numbers.”

“Our county commissioners put out a lot of information on social media, but I think our residents deserve a more involved representative,” Baxter said.  “I can bring authenticity and common sense to the Board of commissioners. I want to be the commissioner who listens to her constituents, gives them a voice, and helps them resolve their concerns.

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Be sure to read: BizPac of PBC’s early candidate endorsements

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