Mayoral candidates in Long Beach are headed into a crowded field for the April primary, with 10 officially declared candidates qualified for the ballot, according to the city clerk’s office.
The nominating period for citywide and council district races ended Friday night, with most candidates waiting until this week to complete their filings.
The list is heavy with city insiders and political heavyweights, including Assemblywoman Bonnie Lowenthal (D-Long Beach), Councilwoman Gerrie Schipske, Councilman Robert Garcia, and Long Beach City College Trustee Doug Otto.
Councilwoman Suja Lowenthal abandoned her campaign for mayor in October to run for state Assembly in the 70th District, the seat occupied by Bonnie Lowenthal, her former mother-in-law.
Also running are Damon Dunn, a former NFL player and real estate investor; Jana Shields, a local nonprofit executive; Erick Rock; Richard Camp; Mineo L. Gonzalez; and onetime Los Angeles mayoral candidate Steven Mozena.
The top two vote-getters in the primary, scheduled for April 8, will meet in a June runoff.
The race for city attorney could also get interesting, with incumbent Charles Parkin up against Councilman James Johnson and Matthew Pappas, an attorney who has represented medical marijuana users fighting against citywide bans on dispensaries in Costa Mesa and Lake Forest.
Long Beach has had a contentious and complicated history attempting to regulate dispensaries, and the issue was revived last year when the City Council voted to craft an ordinance that would again allow the pot shops within city limits.