Local fire fighters union endorse Flescher, Lowther for county seats

INDIAN RIVER COUNTY — The Indian River County firefighters and paramedics union has endorsed Republican candidates Joe Flescher and Tom Lowther in their respective runs for County Commission.The two candidates received the nod from the International Association of Fire Fighters executive committee and then won a majority vote from the rank and file in earning the endorsement of the over 200-strong county-wide union. “We based our decision on how we thought the candidates would deal with public safety issues and what was in the best of the community,” said John O’Connor, the IAFF local’s vice president for public affairs.Flescher is running as the incumbent for the District 2 seat. He is facing a Republican primary challenge from Dale Simchick and Charlie Wilson. He has also received endorsements from Teamsters local 769, the Treasure Coast Builders Association and the Coastal Florida Police Benevolent Association.”They had questions about the fire and EMS service, also questions in general about the operations of county,” Flescher said of his interview with IAFF members. “It impressed me that their interview was not based on the organization they represent, but also on a concern for welfare of citizens of Indian River County.”Lowther is running against incumbent Peter O’Bryan, to whom he lost the District 4 seat in 2006. He says his track record in helping push the unification of the firefighters and EMS units — as contentious a battle as it was at the time — was likely what led to his endorsement.”I think it made it a sleeker department and saved the taxpayers money, they know I lead by example,” he said.

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