ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — But 13 candidates will vie for six City Council seats
City Councilor Ken Sanchez won’t face any opposition on the fall ballot.
But every other incumbent had better be prepared for a fight.
City Clerk Amy Bailey is double-checking the results, but it looks like 13 candidates will qualify for the ballot in six council districts. The deadline to turn in petition signatures was last week.
Election Day is Oct. 8. The races are nonpartisan, meaning there’s no primary election or party affiliation listed on the ballot. If no candidate gets 50 percent in the first round of voting, a runoff election in the district will be held in November.
Here’s a look at how the races are shaping up:
• District 2, the older core of the city, will feature two incumbents campaigning against each other because of redistricting. Isaac Benton, an architect and Democrat, will compete against Roxanna Meyers, a Republican who owns a sign business.
Meyers was appointed to the District 2 seat by Mayor Richard Berry when Debbie O’Malley left the council to join the County Commission. Benton also lives in the district, however, because of the way boundaries were redrawn after the census.
• Three candidates are running in District 3, an open seat on the West Side. They are Ron O. Garcia, a member of the city’s planning commission; Klarissa Peña, a neighborhood leader; and Tania Silva, an attorney. Garcia and Peña are Democrats. Silva is a Republican.
The district has no incumbent, because it was created to accommodate the population growth in the southwest part of town.
A fourth hopeful, Ricardo Carlos Caballero, doesn’t appear to have enough signatures, but the clerk is auditing his petitions to be sure.
• District 5, the northern West Side, will feature incumbent Dan Lewis, a Republican, and Eloise Gift, a Democrat. Lewis is a pastor and works for a fuel-supply company. Gift is a real-estate broker.
• In District 7, newly appointed Councilor Janice Arnold-Jones, a Republican, faces a challenge from two Democrats – Matt Biggs and Diane Gibson. The district covers the Uptown area and part of the Northeast Heights.
Arnold-Jones, a former contractor to Sandia National Laboratories, was appointed by the mayor after the previous councilor, Michael Cook, resigned following a DWI arrest. Biggs owns a fitness business, and Gibson is a former machinist from Sandia.
• In District 9, incumbent Republican Don Harris will compete against Lovie McGee, a Democrat. Harris is an attorney, McGee a real estate broker.
District 9 covers much of far southeast Albuquerque, including the Four Hills area.
• Sanchez is unopposed in District 1, the middle section of the West Side.