HYATTSVILLE – With the city’s biennial election approaching this May, four councilmembers have disclosed their plans to run in the election. Ward Two Councilwoman Shani Warner said she will be running for re-election along with Ward Four Councilwoman and Council Vice President Paula Perry and Ward Five Councilman Joseph Solomon. On Monday Ward One Councilwoman […]
HYATTSVILLE – With the city’s biennial election approaching this May, four councilmembers have disclosed their plans to run in the election.
Ward Two Councilwoman Shani Warner said she will be running for re-election along with Ward Four Councilwoman and Council Vice President Paula Perry and Ward Five Councilman Joseph Solomon. On Monday Ward One Councilwoman and Council President Candace Hollingsworth filed to run for mayor.
The election, which will be held May 5, will also include two early voting days on April 25 and May 2. Candidacy filing opened on Feb. 23 and potential candidates have until March 27 to file.
“Election season in Hyattsville is always exciting,” Hollingsworth said. “For one, you see more people who become more interested and engage in local politics, which is a good thing.”
In January, the Hyattsville City Council approved the right to vote in city elections for Hyattsville residents who are 16 years of age and older, allowing both 16- and 17-year-olds to register to vote and participate in the coming election.
On Feb. 19, the city council also voted to approve lowering the age for eligible candidates to 18.
Hollingsworth said she’s looking forward to seeing more people running in the election and getting involved with the government.
Warner said the change to allow younger people to vote could allow for residents to pay greater attention to the elections, along with various issues that have been popping up throughout the past year. She said she hopes to see more people start to file for candidacy, volunteering for the city.
“I plan to be here for a long time and contribute in a lot of different ways,” Warner said. “But if we can get more people willing to volunteer their time and get involved, I would be very excited about that.”
Perry said she plans to seek re-election to see the implementation of street lighting in the city and amenities like the creation of a community center in West Hyattsville.
“There are a few projects that I’m committed to see happen, and I’d like to be on the council to see them happen,” Perry said.
Solomon filed on Monday for re-election and said he is slightly concerned with the short time between filing and election day. In addition to the two early voting days, Solomon said the shortened length of time between filing and the election provides even less time for new candidates who are not incumbents to get their name out in the city and run a successful campaign.
“While I’m for the idea of early voting, for an election cycle this short it just gives an advantage for the incumbent,” Solomon said. “I don’t think that’s something we as councilmembers should be encouraging.”
Solomon said whatever the filing outcome, he plans to increase voter turnout in fifth ward as the last election turned out less than 100 ward residents.
“There has been increased interest from the community,” he said. “I want to make sure we get a number of new voters to show up to vote.”
Hollingsworth said implementing a change like allowing younger people to vote makes a difference.
Ward Three Councilman Timothy Hunt announced at a Feb. 19 city council meeting he will not be running for re-election in May.
As of Friday, Carl R. Nielsen reportedly filed for candidacy for councilmember in Ward One.
Among the other elected officials whose terms end this year is Mayor Marc Tartaro, who has not yet filed or publicly disclosed whether he will be running for re-election.