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Former alderman Craig files to run for mayor in Manchester

Staff report
July 13. 2017 1:11AM

MANCHESTER — Former alderman Joyce Craig filed as a candidate for mayor Wednesday at City Hall, setting the stage for a sequel of the 2015 mayor race, which was decided by a mere 64 votes.

Family members joined Craig as she submitted papers declaring herself a candidate. Incumbent Mayor Ted Gatsas filed on Tuesday for a fifth 2-year term.

“We need a proactive mayor to address our challenges, support our schools, combat the opioid crisis, and move Manchester forward. Manchester has endless potential and I’m running for mayor to make sure we achieve all that is possible,” said Craig, a Manchester native and mother of three, in prepared remarks.

She filed after completing her “12 Wards in 12 Days” listening tour. Craig said she heard from residents about the opioid crisis, job prospects, the quality of schools and street cleanups.

In a statement, Gatsas said Craig favors tax increases and panders to an “extreme liberal base.”

“Craig presents a deeply dark vision of Manchester that does not reflect the reality of the good things that are happening here,” Gatsas said.

Two years ago, Craig passed up reelection to her Ward 1 alderman seat and challenged Gatsas. The initial count on election night had Gatsas defeating Craig by 85 votes out of some 20,100 cast. A recount narrowed the margin to 64.

Also on Wednesday, Londonderry Chamber of Commerce president Will Stewart filed for the Ward 2 alderman seat; state Rep. Armand Forest filed for Ward 11 alderman; current Ward 11 school board member Katie Desrochers filed for reelection.

At least two others have said they will run for mayor — perennial candidate Glenn Ouellette and tax-cap advocate Jeff Kassel. If they do file, that means a mayoral primary. The city’s non-partisan primary election is slated for Sept. 19. The general election is Nov. 7.

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