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Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Ferlo: still "weighing the mechanics" of a mayoral campaign

Posted By on Wed, Mar 13, 2013 at 1:21 PM

As we noted yesterday, the field of candidates seeking the Democratic nomination for mayor has grown to seven, which includes state Sen. Jim Ferlo.

But while he's filed his petitions, Ferlo says he's taking the time between the March 27 deadline to withdraw to fully consider a campaign.

"I don't know yet and I'm being very sincere," he tells City Paper. "My heart is in community activism and generating enthusiasm at the grass-roots level. To get involved not only in politics, but take back communities."

He touted his ability to drive economic development and capacity, in part by serving on the board of the Urban Redevelopment Authority.

Ferlo says he filed nominating petitions to "safeguard the process by at least doing this as a transition to give some consideration to the issue."

Ferlo says he wanted to see how the field fleshed out, while considering the two years he has left on his Senate seat. He's "torn" about leaving Harrisburg, he says, where he's been an outspoken critic of liquor store privatization, Marcellus Shale natural gas drilling and the "corporate administration of Medicaid expansion."

"My intention to file was because ... of the surprising departure of the mayor...which left a lot of people scrambling," he says. Ferlo says he believes Ravenstahl could have won re-election until questions of alleged misappropriation of funds engulfed the police bureau. Such questions, he says, left "everybody still looking to say 'what is the essence of the issue? Clearly there is appearance of impropriety that left everyone conjecturing"

Ferlo says he also is "weighing the mechanics" of a campaign, including fundraising.

"All of my campaigns have been grass roots fundraising and organizing. I never bought a TV or radio ad in my life," he says. "The point is I've had to re-evaluate what I'm trying to do right now, plus I wanted to see who was going to file and what the dynamics of the race would be."

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