By Rich Pollack

    Three seats on the Highland Beach Town Commission will be filled following the March 10 municipal election.
    The ballot will include a referendum seeking voter approval for two major water infrastructure improvement projects, with a maximum cost of $5 million.
    Seats to be decided by the election include the three-year term vice mayor seat, held by incumbent Ron Brown; a three-year term for the commission seat currently held by Lou Stern; and a two-year term for the commission seat that became open following the death of Commissioner Dennis Sheridan.
    In January, commissioners appointed Rhoda Zelniker to fill the empty seat until the March election.
    Stern, Brown and Zelniker have filed papers to run for the seats they currently hold. Bill Weitz has filed to run for the vice mayor seat. Filing closes Feb. 10.
    Voters will also see a ballot issue that, if approved, enable the town to move forward with the replacement of 6,700 linear feet of water mains serving the town’s side streets.
    The mains that would be replaced were installed in the late 1940s and are about at the end of their life expectancy, according to town officials.
    “This is a health and safety issue,” Commissioner Carl Feldman said. “We can’t do without it.”
    If passed, the ballot measure would also allow the town to go ahead with the installation of a lime slurry/carbon dioxide system at Highland Beach’s water treatment plant, which would improve the water’s aesthetic quality. While the exact cost of the two projects has still not been determined, town officials estimate the bill will not exceed $5 million.

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