Today I began to realize that the election for a new Utica Mayor is actually little more than a month away! The campaign season seemed to heat up a bit before the September primary but has now fizzled away like the summer.
Where is Bob Cardillo?
Steamrolling across the city throughout late spring and early summer, after his Republican primary loss to Mike Cerminaro, Cardillo seems to have retreated into anonimity. Is he still in the race? One would doubt his commitment to the election judging from his actions the past few weeks.
That seems to leave Democrat Palmieri and Republican Cerminaro as the only real contenders.
Both men are alumni of the Common Council of the 1990's. Palmieri is the only member of this group who has not yet run for Mayor. Remember, Barbara Klien, Roger Palek, Roger Amodio, Mike Cerminaro and yours truly all attempted to capture the top spot in city hall. And, we all failed!
Rob Palmieri has been a man with a mission as long as I have known him. As "Weed and Seed" liason, he was on the frontlines in Utica's worst neighborhoods, trying to bring some peace and stability to the pockets of remaining residents victimized by a system that contributed to the decline of their streets.
Mike Cerminaro was DPW Commissioner for many years and now has been Comptroller for the last five. He also has street smarts and obviously cares for the city he represents.
The question is, which man will be a better mayor?
I realize we have three other candidates-the afore mentioned Cardillo running on the Independence and Conservative lines and two other lesser known candidates, Sanita and Clemente, running under their own party affilations.
The reality is, Utica will most likely pick their next Mayor from one of the major party lines. That makes the choice obvious-Palmieri or Cerminaro?
We have the month of October to listen to both candidates and pick the one who most realistically charts the course that he will take our city in for the next four years.
Let the campaign begin!