NEWS

Picozzi nets $30k for seemingly no-contest re-election

Posted 5/4/22

By ALEX MALM

Although no one has come forward with intentions to run against Mayor Frank Picozzi, it isn’t stopping the independent mayor from raising funds.

During a $125 a ticket …

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NEWS

Picozzi nets $30k for seemingly no-contest re-election

Posted

By ALEX MALM

Although no one has come forward with intentions to run against Mayor Frank Picozzi, it isn’t stopping the independent mayor from raising funds.

During a $125 a ticket fundraiser last Wednesday at Chelo’s, Picozzi netted close to $30,000 in donations he reported on Facebook.

“Last week I held a fundraiser to get ready for campaign season. I was extremely pleased by the turnout, especially at having elected officials both past and present from both parties,” said Picozzi.

Picozzi said that eight of the nine members of the all Democrat City Council attended.

Ward 2 Councilman Jeremy Rix was the one Council member who wasn’t in attendance. Rix said in a Facebook comment that he told Picozzi that he couldn’t attend because he was representing a client who had a case before the West Warwick Zoning Board.

Other notable Democrats in attendance included House Speaker K. Joseph  Shekarchi, Lieutenant Governor Sabina Matos, and Senate Majority Leader Mike McCaffrey.

A number of Cranston Republicans were in attendance for the fundraiser including Mayor Ken Hopkins, Cranston Council President Chris Paplauskas and Councilwoman Nicole Renzulli. Congressional candidate Allan Fung attended Picozzi’s fundraiser. Picozzi last week attended Fung’s kickoff event but Picozzi said he isn’t supporting anyone in the race.

North Providence Mayor Charlie Lombardi, Johnston Mayor Joseph Polisena, Pawtucket Mayor Don Grebien, and Lincoln Town Administrator Phil Gould attended as well. Former Warwick Mayor Lincoln Chafee also attended.

Other notables included Michael Carreiro the President of  Local 2748 which represents the Warwick Fire Union, Warwick Supt. Lynn Dambruch, and Assistant Supt. Bill McCaffrey.

Asked if the firefighters would be endorsing Picozzi, Carreiro  said in a text message Tuesday afternoon “Our executive board still has to meet to discuss any endorsements of candidates running for office.”

In October Carreiro donated $125 to Picozzi’s campaign.

Last filing period Picozzi raised no money and spent $200 for the downpayment at Chelos. He ended the quarter with $26,127.80.

Will the Council endorse Picozzi?

In 2020 when Picozzi faced off against former Mayor Joseph Solomon only one Democrat from the Council Ed Ladouceur broke the ranks and publicly endorsed Picozzi.

Ladouceur said that he thinks that Picozzi has done a good job since being elected although they haven’t agreed on all the issues.

“When we do disagree it is always respectfully and it’s never because of politics,” said Ladouceur.

As of now Ladouceur said he plans on supporting Picozzi in his re-election bid.

“Unless things change going forward I plan on supporting Mayor Picozzi again,” said Ladouceur.

Council President Steve McAllister said on Tuesday “The Mayor is not looking for endorsements. I am extremely proud of the work this City Council and administration have done this past year and a half.”

“My focus will be continuing to work hard for the residents of Ward 7 and the entire City.  Big things are happening in Warwick with more to come,” said McAllister.

Rix in a statement said “Despite many requests over the last 1.5 years, Mayor Picozzi has not formally met with me to discuss any of 5+ different topics important to residents of Ward 2 anytime since taking office.”

“ Mayor Picozzi also told me in an email this week that he has ‘not decided when Aldrich will go out to bid but it will be the last of all of the surplus properties’ after I expressed to him in writing that the sale of Aldrich for a use that’s suitable for the neighborhood is my #1 priority for Ward 2 in 2021-2022,” said Rix. “There was no explanation given for the delay and his decision to make Aldrich the lowest priority.  I want to stay positive; I want to be able to support Mayor Picozzi for reelection; but, I can’t pretend that this is an acceptable way to govern.  He must be willing to have these discussions and address each issue on its own merits to receive my vote on the 2022 ballot.”

Ward 1 Councilman Bill Foley who was elected in 2020 said he attended Picozzi’s fundraiser but didn’t donate to the campaign.

“At this time there are not any Democrats who have announced their running.  Therefore I went to his reception as a show of congeniality and as a thank you for the way this Mayor has been forthright with the Council and because he has reached out to us many times as we work together to move Warwick forward,” said Foley. “As to whether or not I support him in his re-election I will withhold any decision until the filing deadline.

Ward 3 Councilman Tim Howe said on Monday night “I have no statement on this at this time.  I am still focused on doing my job for Ward 3 and the city.”

Ward 4 Councilman Jim McElroy in a text message Wednesday morning said “I think the mayor has been doing a very good job and I do plan on supporting him for Mayor.”

Ward 9 Councilman Vincent Gebhart in a statement Wednesday afternoon said “I’ve really enjoyed my first term on the council and have found working with the Council and Mayor Picozzi to be a positive experience.”

“I appreciate the hard work the Mayor has done to fix issues like sanitation, infrastructure, and morale within the City,” said Gebhart. “I wish Mayor Picozzi all the best in the upcoming election season and look forward to working with him in the future.”

Who else will run?

State Rep. and Chairman of the Democratic State Party Joe MacNamara previously told the Beacon that the party would have a candidate for Warwick Mayor it would not be him and that he would consider an independent that both Republicans and Democrats could support.

Asked Tuesday if the party has a candidate yet McNamara said, “unfortunately we don’t. We still are looking.”

Former party chair Ed Pacheco who was a candidate for the 2nd Congressional district was previously rumored to run for the seat but shortly after Picozzi announced his intentions to run for re-election said that he wouldn’t be running for either seat.

Reached by phone Monday, Rick Cascella, Chair of the Warwick Republicans City Committee said “We’re still talking to a couple of people.”

Cascella said rather than actively recruiting someone to run for the seat the City Committee is hopeful that someone will come forward.

“We want to make sure that whoever comes forward is someone that has really thought about it and is coming into it knowing that it’s something that they want to do for themselves and for the city, not something that someone is willing to do for us,” said Cascella.

Picozzi, fundraiser

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  • mikkgollff

    Amazing the magnet incompetence can be...shows the vile intentions and stupidity of our current greedy pols

    Tuesday, May 10 Report this