Astoria City Councilor Cindy Price, citing family reasons, said Wednesday that she will withdraw as a candidate for mayor in November.
Price’s decision reshapes the mayoral election two weeks before the filing deadline. Dulcye Taylor, the president of the Astoria Downtown Historic District Association, and Michael “Sasha” Miller, an activist, have filed to run.
“Family matters have arisen in the past couple weeks that have caused me to re-evaluate where I should be spending most of my time for the next few years,” Price said in a statement. “Accordingly, I am withdrawing as a candidate for mayor of Astoria.
“I’ve been moved by the broad support I’ve received throughout the community. I will complete my term as city councilor in the same thorough manner I have for the past 3 1/2 years, and I expect to continue to be engaged in civic matters in the years to come.
“This was a very difficult decision for me because I was enthusiastic for the position, thought I could win, and thought I could be a great mayor for a great city. But family must come first. My deep gratitude to all.”
Price’s four-year term on the City Council ends this year. After she announced she would run for mayor, two candidates stepped forward to replace her in downtown’s Ward 3. Joan Herman, a radio programmer who serves on the Planning Commission, and Ron Zilli, a state forester, will vie for the seat in November.
Price’s withdrawal potentially clears a path for Taylor, the owner of Old Town Framing Co. The two women had been allies on several issues, including the revival of the old Tourist No. 2 ferry, and their competition was already forcing many downtown advocates and business leaders into a difficult choice.
“I’m kind of stunned,” Taylor said. “I know Michael Miller is running for mayor. But I was excited to have three people in the race, and particularly to have Cindy in the race. And I know her family, so I know that she is very close to them.”
Miller has said he does not believe he has much of a chance of winning, but wants to use his campaign to call attention to issues such as mental health treatment and child welfare.
Price, who is married to District Attorney Josh Marquis, was unopposed when she was elected to the City Council in 2014. Her election, along with Zetty Nemlowill in Ward 1 and Arline LaMear as mayor, gave women a majority on the council for the first time in city history.
LaMear decided not to run for another term as mayor. Nemlowill has not publicly said whether she will seek another term on the council.
The filing deadline is Aug. 28.