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Queen City rematch? Joyce Craig runs again

March 19. 2017 11:19PM

Alderman Joyce Craig came within 64 votes of knocking off Manchester Mayor Ted Gatsas two years ago.

So it’s no surprise that she’s decided to make another run at City Hall this year.

“For eight years, we’ve seen our city stumble from crisis to crisis,” Craig argues in a column published today.

She neglects to mention that she was one of the elected officials doing the stumbling. As a school board member and then an alderman, Craig consistently opposed Gatsas as the mayor fought to keep city spending within the tax and spending cap approved by Manchester voters.

Craig was a reliable vote for budget-busting contracts, such as the pact with city teachers that has put such a squeeze on the city budget this year.

Craig voted for the contract, while Gatsas warned it would crowd out limited resources for other educational priorities. Gatsas was right, but Craig and board overrode his veto.

Gatsas has not yet said if he will seek a fifth term in the fall. He is guiding Manchester through difficult times.

New Hampshire’s largest city has been hit hardest by the deadly opioid crisis. The Safe Station program is showing positive early results, and is being adopted by other Northeastern communities.

The city’s commercial tax base and residential home values have increased, though not as fast as aldermen’s ability to spend.

The next mayor will have a tough job ahead, be it Gatsas, Craig or another candidate.

Local and County Government Editorial Manchester