Dallas City Councilman Scott Griggs Thursday announced he will run for mayor in the May 4 election. He is the 7th candidate to declare a 2019 mayoral campaign to replace term-limited Mayor Mike Rawlings.
Griggs received support from fellow City Councilman Philip Kingston and former Councilwoman Angela Hunt.
“Dallas needs a new kind of mayor and I’m going to be the mayor Dallas needs. We’re going to continue to focus on transparency and accountability and we’re going to focus on what matters to the citizens of Dallas,” Griggs said. “We have a fantastic base, huge support.”
Griggs announcement came at a Design District venue.
Among his policy issues, Griggs Wednesday called for a house cleaning at the tourism agency Visit Dallas in the wake of a critical audit. Griggs has been complaining about the shortage of Dallas police officers and high response times.
The next Dallas mayor will face those issues along with an extremely high poverty rate in the city.
The number of people who have trouble putting food on the table in the city is ironic compared to how much money is likely to be spent on this election with so many candidates in the race.
“We're talking about what may be the most expensive mayoral race in the history of Dallas,” said Dallas Morning News Political Writer Gromer Jeffers. “The general public has no idea who most of these people are. So you have to build name recognition in a short amount of time and the way to do that is raise money.”
Dallas Independent School Board Member Miguel Solis announced his mayoral campaign earlier this week in the modest Dolphin Heights neighborhood.
Solis said his time as a school trustee and his work in neighborhoods has told him that voters want different people at City Hall.
“They want proven leadership, but what they want is new leadership and new ideas as well. I’ve been on the school board. I’ve been a school teacher. I’m a nonprofit leader. I know the challenges holding Dallas back and I’ve lived the promise,” Solis said.
Competing with Solis to be the first Dallas Hispanic mayor is attorney and community leader Regina Montoya.
Former Dallas City Attorney Larry Casto has mayoral support from at least one other member of the city council.
Developer Mike Ablon is competing for business community support with philanthropist Lynn McBee who has served in big nonprofit positions.
Businessman Albert Black, a former Dallas Regional Chamber of Commerce Chairman, was the first to announce a campaign for mayor back in July.
Former State Rep. Jason Villalba has scheduled an announcement for next week.
City Councilman Adam McGough said Thursday he is still deciding whether to run and will make up his mind by next week.
“With so many people, how do you break through? How do you distinguish yourself? How to you become the front runner? You can do that by throwing money at it, but sometimes you need more than that,” Jeffers said. “None of the candidates really are big on personality. At least we don’t know that they are yet.”
Election day is Saturday May 4. To win outright that day, a candidate must have one vote more than 50 percent of the total. It is much more likely that a run-off, scheduled for June 8, will be needed.