Salamanca Scores Arroyo Endorsement In 17 CO Special Election

In an only in the Bronx happening, Bronx City Council candidate Rafael Salamanca scored the endorsement of the mother of the former City Council Member he is running to replace. On Wednesday, Assemblywoman Carmen Arroyo endorsed Salamanca’s bid to replace her daughter Maria del Carmen Arroyo in the New York City Council.

“I’m incredibly grateful to have the support of Assemblywoman Arroyo and so many other prominent women,” said Salamanca.  “The Bronx is served well by a number of leaders who, like Assemblywoman Arroyo, not only are women but are more importantly some of the strongest voices we have in government.”
The Arroyo endorsement must come as a blow to Council Member Arroyo’s former chief of staff Joann Otero who recently filed nominating petitions to run in the special election to replace her boss. Otero’s campaign has suffered from an anemic fundraising effort.
Joining Assemblywoman Arroyo in supporting Salamanca are a group of close to 50 prominent women leaders from the Bronx. These leaders come from many fields: non-profits, healthcare, law, business, government, community activists, and politics. Additionally, the newly formed group, Women for Salamanca, plan to canvass other women voters, door-to-door, throughout the district to encourage other women to support Democrat Rafael Salamanca. Jr. for City Council.
“The challenges this community faces are great, but fortunately the leadership that Salamanca has already demonstrated as a community leader makes me confident that he is the best choice to represent us on the City Council.  I will be voting for Democrat Rafael Salamanca, Jr. on February 23rd,” said Assemblywoman Carmen Arroyo.
On Tuesday, eleven Bronx hopefuls, including Mr. Salamanca, filed independent nominating petitions to run in the February 23rd special election. A Board of Elections source confirmed that two candidates, Carlton Curry and former 1199SEIU political projects director Helen Hines-Foreman failed to file certificates of acceptance. It is expected that at next Tuesday’s Election Commissioners Meeting Curry and Hines-Foreman will be ruled off the ballot due to the fatal prima facie defect. Reached for comment, Mr. Curry vehemently denied that he failed to file his certificate of acceptance.
Another source claimed that the independent nominating petitions of Amanda Septimo, an aide to Rep. Jose Serrano, will face a fraud challenge because she circulated petitions under the banner of the ‘Democratic Values’ independent body. State election law prohibits the use of a name that creates confusion with the name of an existing political party. The BOE’s Independent Nominating Rules for the 2016 Elections states that the use of such a name is a prima facie fatal defect.
After being notified by the BOE of her defect, the Septimo campaign changed its name to ‘Bronx Values’. Petition challenges will be heard by the BOE on February 8. Septimo’s candidacy isn’t expected to survive given the controlling Appellate Division case, DiResto v. Cornell.

On Wednesday, businessman George Alvarez was given three days to correct petition cover sheet issues. Alvarez filed two cover sheets with three different volumes at two separate times. The BOE Cover Sheet Review Committee told him correct his error by filing one cover sheet with all three petition volumes listed. Bronx BOE Commissioners Bianka Perez and Michael Rendino formed the bipartisan review team.

 The eleven 17th Council District candidates and their independent body designations are listed below:
17 CO Candidates List
Under the New York City Charter, the city council special elections are non-partisan elections. The special election will be held on February 23, 2016.
The 17th Council district includes the neighborhoods of Longwood, Hunts Point, Concourse, Concourse Village, Crotona Park, Melrose, Morrisania, Mott Haven, North Brother Island, Parkchester, Port Morris, and Soundview.


This post was updated to include Carlton Curry’s response and George Alvarez’s cover sheet problem.

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