DeSantis Finally Fills Long-Vacant Polk Swiftmud Governing Board Seat

The typical Friday afternoon new releases from Tallahassee included an announcement that Gov. Ron DeSantis has appointed Ashley Bell Barnett to the long-standing vacancy on the board.

According to the release, Bell is a former educator and analyst for the Polk County School District and lives in Winter Haven.

Her appointment is for four years and is subject to Florida Senate confirmation. She fills a seat vacated more than a year ago by retired Haines City businessman Paul Senft, who left the board in August 2019..

Bell Barnett is the daughter of former County Commissioner and current State Rep. Melony Bell.

The Polk Regional Water Cooperative had proposed appointing former County Commissioner John Hall to the post.