By Attiyya Atkins
The race for Pompano Beach’s District 5 is spitting hot.
On Friday, August 19, at a city-sponsored health fair at the Herb Skolnick Community Center located at 800 SW 36th Ave., candidates for Pompano Beach’s District 5 had an up-close-and-personal encounter. Incumbent commissioner Cyndy Floyd and her predecessor and sole competitor for the seat, Barry Moss, had an interaction that witnesses say represented the city in a bad light. Moss was eventually asked to leave.
Floyd and an event organizer say that at around 11:30 a.m. Moss entered the facility and accosted Floyd for attending the event, claiming she was campaigning and that it was against city rules. Witnesses say that Moss was yelling frantically at Floyd, so close that his spit was flying in her face.
“With COVID still going around, it’s ridiculous that he was so close to me,” Floyd said. “He was yelling at me and telling me to get out of the center. I felt very unsafe.”
Moss did not respond to a request for comment via email and phone.
Floyd says she was welcoming people to the event when Moss approached her. The health fair had over 20 vendors and more than 40 people in attendance. An event organizer, who requested to remain unnamed, said that Moss entered the facility and began “acting crazy…[Moss] asked who was in charge and was shaking like a madman and waiving his fists… a customer wondered if he was there for psychiatric help.”
Moss proceeded to get in Floyd’s face, yelling at her to leave. Due to his conduct, the event organizer said she had no choice but to ask Moss to leave. Moss left without incident.
Floyd wrote an apology to the attendees on Facebook, which stated, “I apologize to all of the healthcare vendors who were first-time visitors to the City of Pompano Beach; I also apologize to those who serve our city, and the residents who felt threatened by his actions.”
Moss wrote in a post that Floyd was using taxpayer dollars to finance a campaign event. He states that Floyd sponsored a campaign event at a city location while wearing a commission shirt to skirt the rules of traditional campaigning.
He wrote: “I am left with no choice but to file a complaint with the Florida Elections Commission and the Broward County Inspector General…unfortunately it will involve the staff of the City of Pompano Beach who I think was bamboozled into doing this.”
He added: “Ethics in certain areas of this city are badly lacking and a “pay to play” mentality predominates. Sadly, the Everglades is not the only swamp in South Florida.”
The event organizer said that she coordinated with city staff at the Herb Skolnick Center to host the event, and that it was not political in any way. According to the event organizer, Moss’ conduct was very unbecoming of a past, present, or future city commissioner. The event organizer said that Floyd appeared to break no rules.
“[Moss’] behavior was not professional,” the event organizer said. “He was going crazy demanding the event be shut down.”
Although the organizer regrets that politics seeped into her event, she says she will be back in Pompano. “The event wasn’t about politics, it was about community health and getting the community the health resources that they need…[Moss’] behavior was so offensive that it would affect me if I was a voter of Pompano Beach, but it will not stop me from bringing the health fair back to the city.”
The event organizer said that a representative of the city did call and apologize. City staff at Herb Skolnick could not offer a comment.
District 5 covers west of I-95 to the turnpike from McNab Road to Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. The election is Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022. Floyd has raised nearly $14,000 in contributions and Moss nearly $16,000 in contributions.