Prince George’s Municipalities Hold Elections

City of Greenbelt candidates Colin Byrd (right) and Brandon R. Gordon stand in the rain outside a polling center waiting to chat with prospective voters on Election Day, Nov. 7. (William J. Ford/The Washington Informer)
City of Greenbelt candidates Colin Byrd (right) and Brandon R. Gordon stand in the rain outside a polling center waiting to chat with prospective voters on Election Day, Nov. 7. (William J. Ford/The Washington Informer)

On the same day voters in Virginia elected a Black lieutenant governor and Charlotte, North Carolina, chose a Black woman as mayor, local municipalities also held elections in Prince George’s County, Maryland.

Voters in the cities of College Park, Greenbelt and Laurel elected most of the incumbents on their respective city councils on Nov. 7. Voters in Greenbelt also voted on referendum questions to decrease the voting age in local elections and whether to borrow money for environmental work.

Here’s a breakdown of each municipality:

College Park

The city recently debated a controversial topic this year that caused an amendment to fail for undocumented residents to vote in local elections.

Four candidates ran for mayor and another 21 for city council, the most in the city’s history.

College Park Mayor Patrick Wojahn received more than twice the votes of the second-place candidate with nearly 1,556 votes to retain his seat as the city’s lead official.

Three new people elected — Catherine Hope Kennedy, John B. Rigg and Denise C. Mitchell — will serve on city council after three council members chose not to seek re-election, according to the results.

The incumbents re-elected from Districts 1-4 include S.M. Kabir, P.J. Brennan, Monroe S. Dennis, Robert W. Day and Dustyn B. Kujawa. Each council member serves a two-year term.

The city will host an inauguration event for the newly elected officials on Dec. 12.

Greenbelt

In Greenbelt, Mayor Emmett V. Jordan received the most votes with 1,779 and will serve along five other incumbent council members.

Colin Byrd received the third-most votes with 1,392 and will be the only new member on city council. Byrd led an effort two years ago while a student at the University of Maryland to push the school’s Board of Regents remove the name of segregationist Harry C. “Curley” Byrd from the football stadium.

Councilman Konrad Herling didn’t seek re-election, according to the tally.

The 42nd City Council was officially sworn in Monday, Nov. 13.

Greenbelt residents also decided on two referendum questions. Voters overwhelmingly approved to borrow $2.5 million to repair the Greenbelt Lake Dam; however, the measure to lower the voting age from 18 to 16 narrowly passed, 1,215-1,070.

Laurel

Voters in Laurel chose at least one new person to represent the city’s Ward 1.

Councilman H. Edward Ricks needed to earn one of the top two spots, but fell short with 451 votes, 16 fewer than second-place finisher Carl DeWalt. Councilwoman Valerie Nicholas garnered the most votes with 480.

Councilwoman Donna L. Crary of Ward 2 didn’t seek re-election. Keith Sydnor and Councilman Frederick Smalls represented the top two vote-getters in that ward with 454 and 382 votes, respectively.

At-Large Councilman Mike Leszcz was re-elected with 806 votes against Jeffrey Mills, who garnered 627 votes.

A swearing-in ceremony also took place Monday for the five-member council. Each member serves a two-year term.

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