Cities Coast to Coast Gear Up for Mayoral, Council Elections
Arndt, Randy, Nation's Cities Weekly
From the City of Brotherly Love, to the Windy City, to the Mile High City, to the City by the Sea, 1995 is an election year for thousands of municipal officials from coast to coast. Just more than half of the nation's 30 largest cities will have mayoral elections this year. Because of staggered council terms, even more will have council elections.
Chicago, Houston, Philadelphia and Dallas head the list of mayoral contests this year. Phoenix, host city for the 1995 NLC Congress of Cities, will hold its second mayoral election in two years, and for the first time since 1979, the name of Chuck Hazama win not be on the ballot in Rochester, Minn.
NLC First Vice President Greg Lashutka will be seeking a second term as mayor of Columbus, Ohio, and two NLC past presidents, Mayor Ferd L. Harrison of Scotland Neck, N.C., and Councilwoman-at-large Cathy Reynolds of Denver, will also be seeking reelection this year.
Many local elections, including some of the biggest, will be decided long before the traditional November election day rolls around. Voters in Chicago will go to the polls in April, Dallas, San Antonio and other Texas cities, except Houston, will vote in May, and Denver is among the elections being held in June. Houston's election is in November.
A search of the NLC city officials database identified 1,227 cities and towns with mayoral elections scheduled in 1995. Chicago's 2.78 million residents may outnumber the population of Bolton, N.C., (531) by better than 5,000-to-1, but Mayor Richard M. Daley and Mayor Frank A. Wilson face the same task of persuading a majority of their citizens that they are the ones to do the job.
Chuck Hazama's name has been synonomous with the word "mayor" for 16 years in Rochester, and his popularity has permeated both NLC and the League of Minnesota Cities, as well. The former NLC board member, past president of the Asian Pacific American Municipal Officials constituency group, and past president of LMC announced his decision not to seek reelection in January.
Hazama will be leaving office in December just as the ribbon is cut to open Rochester's new city hall. The existing art deco city hall, built 63 years ago, will be turned over to a local philanthropic foundation to be used as its headquarters and a to provide offices for other non-profit organizations in the city.
In San Francisco, Mayor Frank Jordan also is leaving office in a sense, even though he is also running for reelection. …