Today was the deadline for filing petitions for the 2015 primary election in May. While many candidates had already announced their campaigns, there were some surprises at the Allegheny County Election Division.
Among them was veteran school board member Mark Brentley who filed petitions to run for Pittsburgh City Council District 1. Brentley previously ran for city council in 2009 and lost. This election, he will face incumbent Darlene Harris, along with Randy Zotter, Bobby Wilson and David Schuilenberg. Earlier this year, Brentley announced he would not be running to retain his seat on the Pittsburgh Public Schools board of directors.
"I'll be leaving the board in November," says Brentley. "In city council, I would continue my work to change the landscape of the city by advocating for jobs and resources for African Americans in Pittsburgh."
Another highly contested race in city council will be for District 9 where incumbent Rev. Ricky Burgess faces Judith Ginyard, Andre Young and former District 9 Councilor Twanda Carlisle.
"We have a nice message, and I think our chances are very good," Young said after filing. "The field's a little crowded, but even though it's crowded, I think voters will still be able to hear my voice."
In 2007 Carlisle resigned from council after pleading no contest to charges of corruption and ethics violations. She was convicted of public corruption in 2008 and sentenced to one to two years in prison. As a result some have questioned whether she can legally hold public office.
"I'm going to let the attorneys do the work they need to do and hopefully it will work out in my favor," she said today after filing her petitions.
Unofficial Candidate List for the Municipal Primary:
Allegheny County Controller
Mark Patrick Flaherty
City of Pittsburgh Controller
City of Pittsburgh Council - District 5
City of Pittsburgh Council - District 7