It’s official: New Haven Mayor Steve McMichael is seeking a second term.
More than 30 people gathered Monday on the factory floor of Continental Diamond Tool in New Haven to hear about McMichael’s political intentions. Before making his announcement, McMichael shared the progress New Haven has made since he was first elected mayor in 2019.
McMichael, a former a real estate agent and city councilman, said he knows “how government functions and more importantly – how it doesn’t.”
“I was mocked talking about how experience, relationships and judgement can be effective,” McMichael said. “I stand here today on the first day of Month 32 of this administration, and I show you what experience, relationships and judgement bring to a community.”
New Haven has seen growth through increases in building permits and housing options for renters and homeowners, McMichael said. He added that the government “needs to help or get the heck out of the way.”
“So many times, government interferes with commerce and business,” McMichael said. “Government should never be the reason that development does not happen. We cannot stop capitalism.”
McMichael also recognized some of the struggles New Haven faced early in his term. Do It Best’s announcement that its headquarters would relocate from New Haven to Electric Works in Fort Wayne was made about a month before the COVID-19 pandemic started.
The crowd cheered when McMichael, a Republican, said city government didn’t shut down because he trusted citizens to make decisions for themselves during the pandemic.
McMichael’s second-term run was one of several campaign announcements made during the news conference.
Six of New Haven City Council’s seven members also announced their campaigns for reelection: Councilmen Matt Newbauer, R-1st; Jeff Turner, R-2nd; Craig Dellinger, R-3rd; Mike Mowery, R-4th; Terry Werling, R-at large; and Dave Cheviron, R-at large. Werling, the longest-serving elected official in Allen County history, is seeking his 11th term.
Libertarian Councilman Matthew Kennedy is not running for reelection in the 5th District, McMichael said before he introduced Amelia Gascoigne, who is vying for the seat.
The council members each shared their support for McMichael. Turner said his opposition to McMichael’s primary campaign in 2019 was well known, but McMichael won him over during their first meeting after the election.
“He is Team New Haven – not Team McMichael, not Team Anything,” Turner said. “He’s Team New Haven, and he’s shown that again and again.”
The candidates will be on primary ballots in May. The mayoral and council seats will be determined in the November 2023 election.