NewsPalm Beach CountyRegion C Palm Beach CountyRiviera Beach


Riviera Beach Councilwoman Julia Botel not seeking third term

Controversial councilwoman cites 'recent personal issues' as reason for stepping aside
Riviera Beach City Council member Julia Botel
Posted at 11:37 AM, Nov 15, 2023
and last updated 2023-11-15 11:38:02-05

RIVIERA BEACH, Fla. — A popular and controversial elected official in Riviera Beach will be stepping aside.

Riviera Beach Councilwoman Julia Botel has sent an email to supporters that she will not seek a third term during next year's municipal election.

Botel represents Singer Island and has been one of the top vote-getters in the city's elections, but she's also been the subject of controversy.

A petition was filed last year to recall Botel after she was accused of spreading misinformation about a beach party dubbed "Wet Dreams." Critics claimed her remarks were racist, which she denied.

Botel was also questioned by the FBI about the Friends of the Riviera Beach Schools charity that she co-founded in 2018. A state ethics commission reprimanded Botel for using her address at City Hall and her official email to solicit donations for the charity.

She was censured by Gov. Ron DeSantis in 2021.

In her message, Botel cited "recent personal issues" as the reason she isn't seeking reelection.