The Ocala City Council has a new member.
It took a runoff election to fill the District 2 council seat, but in the end, Tyrone Oliver emerged Tuesday night as the winner. He edged Ire Bethea Sr. by just 124 votes to fill the spot that opened up when longtime councilmember Mary Sue Rich opted not to run for re-election.
Voter turnout for the District 2 seat – the election was citywide – was just 9.34 percent. Oliver captured 51.82 percent of the vote – 1,769 – to Bethea’s 48.18 percent, or 1,645 votes. Oliver will be sworn in at the next City Council meeting on Dec. 3.
Oliver is a chaplain and co-founder of Deliverance Outreach Ministries, which helps those at or below the poverty level get free healthcare. He graduated from the University of Florida’s Orthopedic Technology Program and spent many years working at the Ocala Orthopedic Group.