Six Vie In 17th Council District Race
Today, the special election for the 17th City Council district. Polls will be open for voters to cast their ballots from 6:00 AM to 9:00 PM. Voters can find out where to vote using the Board of Elections poll site locator by clicking here.
The special election was called by Mayor Bill de Blasio to fill the vacancy of former Bronx Council Member Maria del Carmen Arroyo who resigned last December for personal reasons and to take a position with a Bronx housing nonprofit.
City Council special elections are nonpartisan and there are no run-offs, meaning or no party primaries. Anyone who can make the ballot is in, and the candidate who earns the most votes wins. Running for public office should not be arrived at lightly. It requires commitment, time, energy and sacrifice.
There is a lot of cynicism in the minds of the public about the effectiveness of local elected officials, government and those who run for public office. The six people on the ballot in the 17th Council District deserve commendation for stepping forward in a shared desire to represent their community and to bring about change for their neighbors.
The winner of today’s nonpartisan special election will have to run again in the fall party primary. (That needs to change.) The newly elected City Council Member will earn the recently approved salary of $148,500. But more importantly, the winner will thrown into a debate about Mayor de Blasio’s controversial zoning and affordable housing plan. Gentrification, community-police relations, homeless housing, substance abuse, noncitizen voting, tax breaks for developers, and government subsidies for businesses locating in distressed neighborhoods are just some of the tough issues awaiting the next council member.
No matter how you feel about those issues, you must cast an informed vote TODAY. After casting your vote, you can not walk away. Being an informed voter is one step. The next step is being an involved constituent. Keep your council member informed of the issues and where you and your neighbors stand. And most importantly, keep your representative grounded, responsive and honest. Don’t be afraid to challenge and inform.
Be Informed. Vote. Stay Active. Keep your Council Member grounded.
We have included the sample ballot, the names of the candidates, their nonpartisan party name and campaign websites for your information.
Rafael Salamanca, Jr. — Community First
Julio Pabon — Bronx Not For Sale
- On Twitter: @JulioPabonBX
- Campaign website: Julio Pabon For City Council
- Facebook: Vote 4 Julio Pabon
George A. Alvarez — Bronx For All
Joann Otero — Stronger Together
- On Twitter: JoannOteroForc1
- Campaign website: Joann Otero For Council
Marlon M. Molina — Bronx Renewal
J. Loren Russell — Rebuilding Our BX
- On Twitter: @JLorenR
- Campaign website: J. Loren Russell — Rebuilding Our Community
- Facebook: Friends of J. Loren Russell — Rebuilding Our Community
Council District 17 includes: Bronx River, West Farms, Morrisania, Crotona Park East, Melrose, Longwood, Hunts Point, East Tremont, Mott Haven, and Soundview.