Wiltshire Gathering Signatures To Trigger Democratic Primary For Mayor Of Troy

Mar 14, 2019

A Democratic mayoral primary will likely happen in Troy, as a former candidate for mayor intends to challenge incumbent Patrick Madden.

Former Troy City Council President Rodney Wiltshire is collecting signatures to place himself on the June 25th primary ballot for mayor. He lost a three-way Democratic primary bid for mayor in 2015 to Patrick Madden and then stepped away from politics. But Wiltshire says this year will be different.   "We kinda looked at how things are being run, the condition of our streets, the pools that were closed, the garbage fee, tax increase and really, what do you get as a citizen and a taxpayer in the city of Troy? We're not going in the right direction."

Wiltshire notes that in his past role as City Council president he worked well with several current councilors and is confident he can defeat Madden. Challenging Madden’s Democratic connections, Wiltshire says in 2015 fellow-Democrat Earnest Everett helped tip the primary vote.   "That allowed Madden to win the primary and ultimately win the election because we're both Democrats. He [Madden] actually wasn't a Democrat at the time. He [Madden] was given the line through the Wilson Pakula process and he was able to secure the entire election."

Everett was convicted of falsifying documents when he signed the oath on petitions to run for office - he was sentenced to spend 15 days in an alternative to incarceration program, and handed a $250 fine.

Gary Galuski, the city Democratic chairman, did not respond to requests for comment about Wiltshire’s entry into the race. City Democrats are backing Mayor Madden for reelection.

Republican mayoral candidate Tom Reale says he too is running to offer a departure from the current politics in City Hall.  "As mayor it's my intention to ensure that every part of our city from South Try to Sycaway and the Burgh has access to the resources and support from city hall that they need to thrive. We've also seen troubling allegations emanating from city hall that has spanned the last two administrations. Government really should not be a mechanism for enriching your family or friends, insiders, even the appearance of impropriety is really enough to erode the public trust even if everything is actually above board. If there's any whiff of corruption it's enough to raise doubt in the efficacy of the city.  The mayor really needs to be the one taking the lead on routing out corruption wherever it's found, and that's a challenge that I look forward to tackling head on."

Madden is running for a second term and touts what he calls "successes" in response to Reale's candidacy.   "The fiscal stability that we've restored to the city. Our renewed focus on infrastructure and our recreational facilities. And as well the private investment that has occurred over the past three years. I think those are all pretty significant."

Madden's campaign did not respond to a call for comment on Wiltshire's entry into the race.