By Joel Goldenberg, The Suburban Oct. 28, 2015
Now that Anthony Housefather is making the transition from Côte St. Luc mayor to Mount Royal MP, thoughts are now turning to who will be Housefather’s replacement.
The immediate answer is Councillor Glenn Nashen. He was recently appointed pro-mayor and he will be handling that function for the next few months. A pro-mayor takes on the powers of the mayor when the actual mayor is not available.
Housefather was asked by The Suburban and council regular Bernard Tonchin when the mayoral election could take place. The mayor said an election would normally take place within four months.
“But because of the winter period with the snowbirds, city council can petition or ask the Minister of Municipal Affairs to wait until the snowbirds return so they are not deprived of the right to vote, or we’d have to find some solution for people to vote from Florida,” Housefather told Tonchin at the October council meeting. “Council will have to discuss and work that out. The goal is that everybody will be able to vote.”
In the meantime, two councillors have made declarations as to their intentions for the mayoral election.
District 2 Councillor Mike Cohen said on his blog that he expects someone from the current council to become mayor, but that it will not be himself.
“I am quite content as the councillor for District 2, overseeing the library, sponsorship and animal protection portfolios,” Cohen wrote.
On Facebook, Councillor Allan Levine wrote: “My son Brad Levine, daughter Charisse and my family are openly supporting me on Facebook to run for the position of the mayor of Côte St. Luc and to take Anthony’s vacated position. I invite friends to show their support for my bid for the mayoralty.”
We asked the rest of council if they have any intention of running for the mayoralty.
“No public declaration just yet,” said Nashen.
Councillor Ruth Kovac said she would not run for next year’s mayoral election, but is not ruling anything out for the general 2017 election.
Right now, “we need stability on council and I’d rather be on council,” she added. “I’d rather have a good transition and solidarity.”
“It’s too early to announce,” said Councillor Dida Berku.
“Some of the members of council and the public have asked me to consider running, and I’m considering it,” Councillor Mitchell Brownstein. “It’s a little early at this time to make a final decision. Right now, we need to continue the great council that we’ve had. We’ve really been united for the last 10 years, and as a council, we’re going to continue to discuss how to run, when we’re going to have the election. There’s still a lot of decisions to be made.”
Councillor Steven Erdelyi said he will not be running for mayor next year.
Cohen said late Thursday that he and Goldbloom are encouraging Brownstein to run for the mayoralty, and will support him if he does so. Goldbloom confirmed this to The Suburban.
“This is not to infer any disrespect for other members of council who may want to run,” Cohen said in an e-mail. “I personally believe [Brownstein] is best qualified for the job, having overseen so many complex dossiers over the years and having been a close confidante of Anthony’s.”