Scott Hopes becomes permanent Manatee Administrator, will quit School Board
Scott Hopes knew the importance of masking up for more than two decades. Image via AP.

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Gov. Ron DeSantis will appoint his replacement on the School Board.

After accepting a contract as long-term Manatee County Administrator, Scott Hopes will resign his seat on the School Board. The new top executive at the county government must resign his elected post by June 2 as part of the deal.

Hopes signed on as acting county administrator on April 1, months after the county parted ways with former County Administrator Cheri Coryea. The Commission voted 5-2 in favor of awarding a permanent contract; Commissioners George Kruse and Reggie Bellamy dissented.

Notably, Hopes ended up taking the job hours before a potential breach was reported at the Piney Point industrial site, and quickly ended up testifying on behalf of the county to the Florida Legislature about the incident. Commissioners during a Tuesday meeting raised Hopes’ handling of the crisis as a reason for upgrading him to permanent administrator less than two months after he took on the job in an acting capacity.

Before working with the county or school district, Hopes worked for former Gov. Jeb Bush and oversaw a $15 billion budget for the Agency for Health Care Administration. He also has served as CEO of Healthcare Management Decisions, where he has worked 31 years.

Former Gov. Rick Scott later appointed Hopes to a vacancy on the Manatee School Board in 2017 after the resignation of Karen Carpenter. He won a full term on the board in 2018.

Manatee County Supervisor of Elections Mike Bennett said Gov. Ron DeSantis will appoint a replacement for Hopes. A Special Election would be held if Scott had more than 28 months remaining in his term.

For a period, Hopes has continued to serve on the School Board while leading county government.

Hopes’ new contract sets base pay at $199,000 a year, about $12,000 more than his acting administrator contract called for.

Jacob Ogles

Jacob Ogles has covered politics in Florida since 2000 for regional outlets including SRQ Magazine in Sarasota, The News-Press in Fort Myers and The Daily Commercial in Leesburg. His work has appeared nationally in The Advocate, Wired and other publications. Events like SRQ’s Where The Votes Are workshops made Ogles one of Southwest Florida’s most respected political analysts, and outlets like WWSB ABC 7 and WSRQ Sarasota have featured his insights. He can be reached at [email protected]


One comment

  • Scott H Woodworth

    May 26, 2021 at 12:36 am

    I called Scott “the Ghost of Scott Hopes” because I thought he had left mid-meeting tonight. I treated him like one of my students when he arrived late. “Oh, Hopes is here. Hi” Nice example of professionalism.

    So sad. It was obvious he did not care one iota about what I came to say. It was about an already troubled Team Success public charter school expanding onto SRQ property. A first in the nation.

    Until I take my seat on that Board, our kids are … uh… doomed.

    Bye Scott Hopes (Never a less fitting name for school board member. Almost cruel.)

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