The City Election season is in its beginning stages, and already, at least two races are standing out as being potentially very tight.
Nomination papers for potential candidates became available on May 1st. Candidates have until Aug. 6th to collect signatures and return their papers, and failing to do so will mean they cannot run with their name on the ballot.
Early on, it looks as if there might be a pretty spirited race for the three at-large Council seats.
Throwing her hat back into the political ring – and making things interesting – is former City Councillor Deborah Washington. Washington, who was once a District 7 councillor, comes from an old and well-known Chelsea family.
She will do battle with three very established councillors-at-large, including Brian Hatleberg, Calvin Brown and Leo Robinson.
Only three seats are available, and all four names are legitimate contenders.
Another race is shaping up in District 5, where incumbent Joe Perlatonda could potentially have two challengers.
Henry Wilson has made his intentions to run known for quite some time and has run unsuccessfully in the past. However, this time he indicated that he is poised to run a winning campaign.
The other potential candidate is John Cadiz, a real estate agent for Cobblestone Realty and a relative newcomer to the political scene.
Perlatonda over the last two years has positioned himself as an anti-establishment candidate – often siding with controversial Councillor Giovanni Recupero on measures that tend to go against the grain of traditional Chelsea politics.
It will be interesting to see how that one plays out.
So far, the other district councillors have no competition, including District 1 Councillor Paul Murphy, District 2 Councillor Chris Cataldo, District 3 Councillor Matt Frank, District 6 Councillor Giovanni Recupero, District 7 Councillor Clifford Cunningham and District 8 Councillor Dan Cortell.
Only District 4 Councillor Paula Barton has yet to pull her papers.
In the School Committee, there appears to be some possible races, but the typical dearth of candidate interest persists – perhaps fueling the fire once again for talk of an appointed Committee.
For the one at-large seat, it appears that Shawn O’Regan of Garfield Avenue will challenge incumbent Angel Meza of Clyde Street.
The District 2 seat could likely see incumbent Jeanette Velez face off against Patrick McCarthy of Summit Avenue.
So far, District 1 Member Rosemarie Carlisle, District 4 Member Lucia Colon, District 5 Member Lisa Lineweaver, and District 7 Member Charles Klauder have taken out papers.
District 8 Member, and chairman, Ed Ells has not taken out papers, and neither has District 6 Member Ana Hernandez or District 3 Member Carlos Rodriguez.