Councilman Eugene Weeks announced this week that he will run for a third term on the Raleigh City Council, meaning that the entire slate of eight incumbents has committed to the Oct. 6 election.
Weeks represents District C in Southeast Raleigh, where gentrifying development is colliding with historically poor neighborhoods. He once again faces against challenger Corey Branch; both men are registered Democrats.
“We have made great progress on affordable housing and better bus service during my time on the city council, but I see myself as a foot soldier for Southeast Raleigh and am running for another term because my mission isn’t complete,” Weeks said in a written release.
In the release, Weeks pointed to new bus shelters, expansions of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Gardens and a summer youth program, and partnerships with nonprofits as signs of his effectiveness.
The release also said he had lobbied to bring new stores to a vacant Kroger site and pushed for proceeds from the city’s Stone’s Warehouse property sale to fund affordable housing.
Weeks has faced criticism from fellow community leader Danny Coleman in recent months. Coleman argues Weeks should have done more earlier to protect the Rex Senior Health Center from the Stone’s Warehouse development. Negotiations to relocate the center are underway.
Parham to run for mayor
James Parham, Wendell’s mayor pro tem, said Tuesday that he’s planning to run for mayor this year.
The seat figures to be up for grabs since Mayor Tim Hinnant has said publicly he does not plan to seek re-election.
Parham is in the final year of his first term as a town commissioner. He has spent the past two years serving as the town’s mayor pro tem, leading the town’s board meetings in the mayor’s absence.
Parham says he has been busy developing a platform he hopes will resonate with voters. On Tuesday, he endorsed the town’s financing plans to address a series of large projects around town, from street and park improvements to police car purchases and a new building at the town’s public works center to house equipment.
“This has to be our number one priority right now because of the interest rates,” Parham said. “We’ve got very little debt, and we haven’t seen interest rates this low in a long time.”
Lyons wants to be mayor
A political newcomer is Durham’s first announced candidate in this year’s city elections. James Lyons, who works for Time Warner Cable and founded the nonprofit Keys for Life community service organization, announced last week he is running for mayor.
“I firmly believe our city is in need of a breath of fresh air, new ideas, innovation, and a spark of energy to carry us forward,” Lyons wrote in his announcement. “I have ‘people skills’ that can be used to bring people together toward common goals and unity.”
▪ Patsy Keever, chair of the N.C. Democratic Party, will speak on the challenges facing state Democrats at the Wake Democratic Men’s Club meeting on Monday, May 11, at the Holiday Inn Downtown, 320 Hillsborough St. in Raleigh. Doors open at 6 p.m. followed by dinner at 6:30 p.m. and the program at 7 p.m. Make dinner reservations by Thursday, May 7, to WakeDMC@mail.com. Dinner is $20 for club members, $23 for non-members.
Compiled by Andrew Kenney, Johnny Whitfield and Jim Wise.
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