Frank Seddio has joined a growing list of potential City Council candidates backing away from an ’09 run now that it’s almost assured that local Council members will be given at least one more run for City Hall.
“I will be supporting Lew Fidler,” Seddio said Friday, the day after Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced that he was planning to run for a third term and called upon the City Council to extend the current term limit law by an additional four years. If the measure is passed, then City Council incumbents, including Fidler, will be allowed to run for another term.
“He is a friend and has done a great job for his community,” Seddio said.
For months, Seddio had been considering running for the 46th Councilmanic District if term limits prevented Fidler from running again.
According to one political insider, once Bloomberg made his intentions clear about running for a third term, Seddio called Fidler and said that he wanted to give one of the first donations to his re-election campaign.
Since the term limits extension idea was made public just last week, Fidler has yet to register his re-election committee with the city’s Campaign Finance Board.
“If it in fact happens, I do intend to run for re-election,” Fidler said. “I’ve always said that this is the best job in the world and I wasn’t running for a different job while I had it, so I would be delighted to run for another full term if it was allowed.”
Although New Yorkers voted to have a city official’s term in office end in eight years, the City Council can amend the law.
Fidler called the eight-year term limits law a “red herring.”
“Twelve years ago, the voters never voted on two terms versus three terms,” he said. “They were asked to vote on two terms or no limit.”
If term limits is extended, Fidler said that he would like to take the term limit question back to the voters in 2010.
“We should make it a [City Council] charter question and the voters will have all the possible choices to make, be it eight years, 12 years, 16 years or longer,” he said. “Once they choose, we will make it permanent. That would be a fitting result.”
Bloomberg’s announcement that he wanted to run for another term to tackle the current economic crisis has caused a shake-up in the city’s political world, with incumbents who were facing unemployment cheering and new candidates cursing under their breath.
Yet there are those who are still willing to take on the incumbent, at least this week.
Mercedes Narcisse, a longtime Canarsie activist and president of the Avenue L Merchant’s Association, said that she still intends to run for the 46th Councilmanic District.
“Until further notice, I am still actively campaigning,” she said. “In fact, I have a fundraiser this weekend. We the people still have our say.”
If she continues with her run, then the ’09 campaign could be lively. Fidler and Narcisse have known each other for some time. She’s also currently president of Fidler’s 41st AD Democratic Club.
“We’ll figure this out as a team,” she said.
Although he is not going to be running for City Council, Seddio said that he will continue to be “active in the community.”
“I never needed a title to do what I believe is right,” he said.
The 46th Councilmanic District covers Bergen Beach, Canarsie, Georgetowne, Starrett City, Flatlands, Futurama, Marine Park, Mill Basin, Mill Island, Gerritsen Beach, Madison and parts of Sheepshead Bay.