West New York mayor Felix Roque has announced that he will seek re-election to a third term in the May non-partisan election.
The incumbent says he’ll base his campaign on the stabilization of property taxes, reduction in crime, enhancement of public schools, and the repaving of more than 90% of local roads.
“Together we will continue the progress that I started eight years ago to make our community an even better place to live and raise our families,” Roque said.
Roque’s slate will face “New Beginnings West New York” ticket includes three incumbents – Gabriel Rodriguez, Cosmo Cirillo and Margarita Guzman. They will be joined by former school trustee Victor Barrera and Yoleisy Yanez, a local middle school teacher.
Four years ago, Roque ran on a slate with Rodriguez and Cirillo.
Incumbent Sue Colacurcio will run with Roque for a third term.
“As a dedicated school teacher and commissioner, she has been an essential part of our great progress over the last eight years,” Roque said. “She has been responsible for holding the line in taxes consistently during the past 4 years.”
Joining the Roque slate are: Maite Fernandez, a school board member and little league president; Ana Luna, a secretary in the town’s rent control department; and Richie Acosta, a member of the West New York recreation commission.
“In deciding who to vote for in this election you only have to ask one question. Are things better in West New York than they were 8 years ago?” Roque said in his announcement. “Prior to the great people of West New York electing me Mayor this City was in shambles. The former administration had raised taxes over 50%. The City was broke, police officers were being laid off, the streets were filled with potholes, crime was on the rise and we had an understaffed police force. Our parks were in extremely poor condition. We have built a state of the art water spray park for our children. We have plans to continue renovating and improving our parks without increasing our taxes.”
West New York mayors are elected by the five commissioners after the election. The top vote-getter traditionally gets that post, although that is not an ironclad rule. Rodriguez and Cirillo are both interested in becoming mayor.
Roque was part of the Hudson County Democratic Warette of 2018, backing an unsuccessful move to withdraw party support for the 2019 re-election of Hudson County Executive Thomas DeGise.
In retaliation, Rodriguez, Cirillo and Guzman – all DeGise supporters – dumped Roque ally Susan Colarcurcio from her post as director of Revenue and Finance and moved to the less influential post as director of Public Works.
The Cuban-born Roque, a local physician and retired U.S. Army colonel, defeated incumbent Sal Vega in 2011.