What's next for Utica's Mayor Race following Roefaro withdrawal?

By JOLEEN FERRIS

UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) - Anyone considering running for the office of Utica Mayor as a democrat this fall just learned that they would not have to run in a primary against the incumbent.

Just two weeks after formerly announcing his candidacy, Mayor David Roefaro held a press conference at city hall on Wednesday to announce that he would not seek re-election.

Common Council President Bill Morehouse and former Codes Commissioner Robert Palmieri, whom the mayor hired, then fired five months later, say they are ready to battle for the soon-to-be-vacant mayoral seat, come September.

"Primaries in Rob Palmieri's life is something that I did from day one when I ran as a council person and I ran several times in a primary," Palmieri said. "If that's what it's going to take, I believe that we can make a huge difference in this city and that's what I'm going to do."

"Primaries are beautiful because, the people decide; not the politicians, not the committee, the people," says Morehouse.

Republican City Comptroller Michael Cerminaro plans to run for mayor and will likely face off in a primary against former County Legislator Robert Cardillo. Former Mayor Tim Julian, a republican, will not run.

Democrats are screening candidates for the office of Utica Mayor through early May and if they decide to endorse a candidate, Chairman Mitch Ford says they'd probably do so in mid-May. Republicans are screening candidates Wednesday night.

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