Rochester City Council president Lovely Warren officially announced her candidacy for Rochester mayor Friday, and will campaign against incumbent Thomas Richards in the Democratic primary.
Warren, a graduate of Albany Law School, represents the city’s Northeast District. She also is lead counsel and chief of staff to state Assemblyman David Gantt, D-Rochester.
She has been a council member since 2007, and its president since January 2010.
In a statement released after her announcement, Warren said she believes there should be tangible benefits to taxpayers if they are asked to support private development.
With that in mind, Warren has helped oversee implementation of the city’s project labor agreement for redevelopment of the Midtown Plaza site to save taxpayer dollars and ensure employment opportunities for city residents, she said.
She also has worked closely with developers of the College Town project to make sure some of the new housing will be affordable for city residents, she said.
Richards announced his re-election bid Feb. 6, with Monroe County Democratic Committee chairman Joseph Morelle announcing his support later that day.
“I have always made it clear that I do not have a political agenda,” Richards said in a statement from county Democrats following Warren’s announcement. “Instead, I have a city agenda, one that puts Rochester’s 210,000 residents before any other consideration.
“Part of the agenda is to focus and finish the initiatives and development that are underway to transform our city. This is why I am seeking a second term as mayor. I want to see our city transformed into a place that has better school performance, improved housing and job opportunities and safer, lively neighborhoods.”
Richards, former chairman and CEO of RGS Energy Group Inc., was elected mayor in a March 29, 2011, special election after coming to City Hall in 2006 as the top lawyer in the administration of former Mayor Robert Duffy.
Monroe Avenue business owner Alexander White announced Feb. 11 he will seek the Green Party nomination for mayor. He finished third to Richards and former Mayor William Johnson Jr. in the 2011 special election.
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