Home>Campaigns>Schaer seeking 8th term on Passaic City Council on ticket backed by Lora

Assemblyman Gary S. Schaer at Gov. Phil Murphy's fiscal year 2023 budget address delivered on March 8, 2022. (Photo: Kevin Sanders for New Jersey Globe).

Schaer seeking 8th term on Passaic City Council on ticket backed by Lora

Maritza Colon-Montanez seeking comeback 12 years after losing re-election to city council

By David Wildstein, March 06 2023 11:28 pm

Nine candidates filed for four seats on the Passaic City Council, where a slate that includes popular veteran City Council President Gary Schaer – and has the backing of Mayor Hector Lora – is favored to win.

Incumbents Thania Melo, Chaim Munk, and former Councilwoman Maritza Colon-Montanez are running with Schaer.

The seat of Salim Patel, who was appointed in 2018 following the death of Zaida Polanco and elected in 2019, has been vacant since last summer when he was removed for poor attendance.

The opposing slate is headed by perennial candidate  Diomedes Minaya, who is making his eleventh bid for local office in the City of Passaic.  He is joined by Lisa Abrue Wozniak, who lost a 2021 run for city council, and first-time candidate Marko Kopic, a former high school wrestler with a history of financial problems.

Also running is Jeffrey Dye.

Schaer and Munk have been city councilmen since 1995; Schaer was elected to the State Assembly in 1993.  He is one of four lawmakers grandfathered under an old law that allowed legislators to hold another public office.   Melo won an unexpired term in 2013 and was elected again in 2015 and 2019.

Colon-Montanez lost her bid for re-election to a second term in 2011 when she was outpolled by two newcomers, Lora and Polanco.

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