PITTSFIELD — It’s official: At-large City Councilor Earl Persip III is running for reelection.
Persip, who previously expressed reservations about stepping away from the council, confirmed to The Eagle on Wednesday that he is throwing his hat in the ring for a third term.
Persip, first elected in 2017, said the city has made strides during his tenure as one of four at-large councilors, and said he wants to be part of the team that keeps pushing Pittsfield forward when it begins to emerge from the coronavirus pandemic.
“I believe in Pittsfield, and I believe in the progress we’ve accomplished in the last few years,” he said. “I want to make sure I’m a part of continuing to move the city forward in a positive direction.”
He noted that the council is gearing up for budget season, after months during which officials from municipalities across the state have worried about finances in an economy seized by the pandemic. While disbursements aren't finalized yet, Persip said the city finance director’s outlook for state education aid and federal reimbursements is optimistic.
Persip’s announcement means all four at-large councilors have declared their intention to try for another term, after Peter Marchetti, Pete White and Yuki Cohen did so last month. Councilors Patrick Kavey (Ward 5), Dina Guiel Lampiasi (Ward 6) and Anthony Maffuccio (Ward 7) also are seeking reelection.
Councilors Chris Connell (Ward 4), Kevin Morandi (Ward 2) and Nicholas Caccamo (Ward 3), said they will not be running for another term. Former council President Kevin Sherman is vying to succeed Caccamo, and engineer Nicholas Russo of Downtown Pittsfield Inc. and the city’s Traffic Commission is exploring a bid in Ward 2.
In other election news, Michael Merriam, who in 2019 lost his bid to unseat longtime incumbent Connell, has reversed course and announced that he won't be running for the Ward 4 seat this year, "due to some unforeseen personal issues.”