January 6, 2007
By DANIEL E. GOREN, Courant Staff Writer
State Rep. Art Feltman has made his candidacy for mayor of Hartford official, filing registration papers with the city clerk and delivering invitations to his formal announcement later this month.
Feltman, who has represented Hartford's 6th District in the legislature for a decade, previously had said he was seriously thinking about a run against Mayor Eddie A. Perez.
On Friday he declined to comment until his official announcement on Jan. 17. But in the past he has said the people of Hartford are demanding new leadership that "is more humble, more inclusive and is tolerant of different opinions and dissent."
By registering as a candidate Thursday and forming a campaign finance committee, Feltman became the second candidate to commit to run in November.
Former State Sen. Frank D. Barrows announced his candidacy in December. Perez has not yet committed to running for re-election, though he is widely expected to do so.
Political insiders and a number of Perez's critics said they expect other candidates to add their names to the list of challengers who perceive Perez as vulnerable. Perez, they said, will face stiffer competition because of the way he has consolidated and used the power under the city's new strong-mayor system. He is seen as having shut himself off from those who disagree with him, they said.
Among those still expected to announce candidacies are former Deputy Mayor I. Charles Mathews and state Rep. Minnie Gonzalez, both of whom have said they are seriously considering a challenge to Perez.
Feltman, 48, has lived in Connecticut for more than two decades. He attended Wesleyan University and earned a law degree from the University of Connecticut in 1987. In 1995, Feltman was elected to the Hartford City Council and served one term before joining the legislature. He also spent three years as commissioner of the city's redevelopment agency and 11 years on the Democratic town committee.
He has been in the legislature since 1997.
The official announcement is scheduled for Jan. 17 at 7 p.m. at Joe Black's, 31 Pratt St.
Reprinted with permission of the Hartford Courant.
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