Last Tuesday, Victor Mendolia gave an hour of air time on his show @Issue on WGXC to Stephen Dunn, one of the two people vying to be the Democratic candidate for Common Council president. That interview has been archived and can be heard here. In the interview, Dunn talks at some length about his plans for improving the effectiveness of city government. One of his ideas, to appoint private citizens to work with the aldermen on Common Council committees, has a familiar ring to it. His opponent for the Democratic nomination, Tom DePietro suggested the same thing when he ran for Common Council president in 2015.
Gossips asked Mendolia if he would be giving equal time to DePietro, Dunn's opponent in the primary. Mendolia explained that there would not be time for him to interview DePietro, because WGXC's rules prohibit programmers (which is what WGXC calls its on-air talent) from doing their shows while they are running for public office, and he was planning to run. Over the weekend, Mendolia announced on Facebook that he and Tiffany Garriga would be running together for the two alderman seats in the Second Ward. (In early May, Garriga announced she was running for Common Council president but a month later changed her mind.)
Meanwhile, Gossips has learned that WGXC will give DePietro equal time to discuss his platform on air before the primary on September 12. DePietro, who will be seeking the Democratic nomination in the primary, has already been endorsed by the Republicans and the Working Families Party.
And for another change of heart--after failing to get the endorsement of the Democratic Committee as a candidate for Fourth Ward alderman, Rich Volo, a.k.a. Trixie Starr, made it known that he was withdrawing from the race. Yesterday, however, Volo announced on Facebook that he was tossing his hat back into the ring and would be collecting, in the next two weeks, the petition signatures needed to get on the ballot for the primary on September 12. He will be challenging John Rosenthal, the only candidate endorsed by the Democratic Committee, and the two incumbents, Lauren Scalera and Alexis Keith, who it is assumed will be seeking reelection. (Since posting this, Gossips has learned that Alexis Keith does not intend to seek re-election, so that leaves three Democrats vying for two slots on the ballot in the Fourth Ward.)
It appears the local election this year will be Democrats challenging Democrats. The Republicans seem to be putting up no candidates of their own, choosing instead to endorse Democratic candidates. So far it's been confirmed that the Republicans have endorsed Rick Rector for mayor and Tom DePietro for Common Council president.
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