Petitions were out for the mayoral election earlier today, and seven candidates picked up 1,000 petitions each to get themselves on the ballot for the May 2014 election.
The following candidates picked up petitions: Andre Sayegh, 6th Ward councilman and council president; David Gilmore, an activist, who has been clamoring over the mismanagement of the city for more than a year; Donna Nelson-Ivy, director of the city’s health department, who was appointed by the current mayor; Maria Teresa Feliciano, an advocate for Hispanic political unity; Lydia Robles, an activist, who has been cleaning up parks and scraping off graffiti from buildings around the city; Jose Torres, former two-time mayor, who wants a 3rd term; and Aslon Goow, former 2nd Ward councilman.
All seven of the candidates had said they would run for election come next year long before the petitions were out with the exception of Sayegh who did not come out or declare that he was running until today. Picking up petitions certainly means a candidate is serious about running, and there is no stronger declaration than this.
Each candidate must obtain signatures from 801 registered voters in order to procure a spot on the ballot. Candidates have until March 10, 2014, to snatch as many signatures as they can. There have been many others who have stated they would run for mayor; however, during the first day of the petition’s opening they have yet to come forward to grab petitions.
Jeffrey Jones, the city’s incumbent mayor, did not pick-up petitions — Jones stated in previous interviews that he will indeed run to hold his office; Rigo Rodriguez, councilman at-large, said he would pick-up tomorrow. Linton Gaines, a realtor, a former aide to Jones, who had indicated he was up for the challenge, has yet to pick up petitions.
Candidates have more than three months to pick-up petitions.