Operator Brian Scott is running for a seat on the Pinellas County Commission. In many ways, his decades of advocacy for the motorcoach industry led to this decision.
“I’ve been probably really just sort of building up to this. The next logical step has sort of brought me to this point,” said Scott, President of Escot Bus Lines in Largo, Florida.
He has been more than generous volunteering his time over the years as a member of the United Motorcoach Association’s board of directors, Chair of the UMA Legislative & Regulatory Committee, UMA Chair, President of the Florida Motorcoach Association and Chair of the International Motorcoach Group (IMG).
In his community, Scott has served on four boards, most notably six years on the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority board of directors. He was the only member on the 15-member transit board with transportation experience, he said.
Transit board experience
All that experience convinced him that as the owner of a successful transportation company he has a lot to bring to the table in the local government arena.
“I’ve educated myself on the areas where there are challenges and opportunities,” said Scott. “Our county commission has increased our taxes every year since 2008. On the transit board, I’ve seen the inefficiencies that go on there. I feel like this is the time to jump in and try to make a difference.”
He believes his business experience gives him practical experience and perspective on how to get more done in local government, efficiently and less expensively.
“I think there is a balance between fiscal responsibility and social responsibility,” Scott said.
Motorcoach industry support
With roughly a million people, Pinellas county – part of the Tampa–St. Petersburg–Clearwater region – is one of the most densely populated in Florida. That’s why Scott is launching his campaign more than a year before the November 2022 election.
“This is a countywide race that I’m running, so it requires that much time to get your name out there,” Scott said. “It requires that much lead-up time to build momentum, raise funds, and get your message out there.”
In his first month of campaigning, he’s off to a strong start, thanks to the backing of members of the motorcoach industry. Operators have been among the first to donate to his campaign.
“The industry has really given me a lot of support,” said Scott. “And I hope that will continue because I need it. I’m gaining traction, and it’s been a very rewarding experience so far. But I’ve got a long way to go.”