Local Politics

Two try to unseat McFarlane as Raleigh mayor

Posted October 7, 2013

— Mayor Nancy McFarlane faces two opponents Tuesday as she seeks re-election to a second two-year term leading Raleigh.

McFarlane said the next few years must be about quality growth for Raleigh, which is among the fastest-growing cities in North Carolina.

"It's really all those things that come with growth – water supply, transportation issues," she said.

She has spent recent weeks pushing a $75 million city transportation bond referendum that's also on Tuesday's ballot.

Her opponents, however, say City Hall leaders need to do more.

Venita Peyton, who is making a third attempt at the mayor's seat, said she is concerned about what she calls the city's continued neglect of east Raleigh.

"Some people look at (ZIP code) 27610, and they see food stamps, older people, things that can't possibly happen here," Peyton said. "We have almost nothing over here. We may have to go the route of North Hills and get private people to come in and invest in this area because the city of Raleigh doesn't seem to be interested."

Venita Peyton, Robert Weltzin Perennial candidate, newcomer seek Raleigh mayor's seat

McFarlane said that, while most developers want to be downtown, she recently asked city staff to look into adding indoor park facilities to struggling shopping centers in east Raleigh.

"If that's something we can do to drive more traffic, get more eyes there, then that may help return the retail, and that can help," she said.

Political newcomer Robert Weltzin calls city leaders out of touch. Raleigh is a thriving city, but he said more money should be spent on improving emergency services and aging infrastructure.

"I think Raleigh deserves visible, effective leadership," Weltzin said. "We need to go back to the basics. The water and sewer lines downtown need to be replaced, and no one's talking about it."

McFarlane said the city is working on a plan to replace and expand Raleigh's sewer system.


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  • dwntwnboy2 Oct 8, 2013

    "How about doing something about parking downtown?"- we have a glut of parking downtown. I NEVER - except for rare events- 4th of July and All Star Weekend- see a deck downtown full. From my office window now, can see 4 with multiple levels of empty spaces. Anyone complaining about parking in downtown Raleigh is just too lazy to pay attention or to walk a couple of blocks- which in the end is a shorter distance than one end of the local malls to the other. Love the fact Raleigh is growing, but not too fast. Grow smarter, not faster.

  • HANS FOR PRESIDENT!!!!! JK Oct 8, 2013

    Looks like a landslide for McFarlane. It's sad but true. East Raleigh is exactly as Peyton described it. She did leave out the drugs and crime part though. If she thinks anyone in their right mind would invest private funds there she doesn't need to be mayor. I wonder if she considered that more was invested in North and West Raleigh in order to get away from that plight. Some things and some people sometimes really can't be helped.

  • Bartmeister Oct 8, 2013

    "Some people look at (ZIP code) 27610, and they see food stamps, older people, things that can't possibly happen here,"


    I never go to that section of town anymore. But honestly I think that statement is fairly correct.

  • Inside The Beltline Oct 7, 2013

    That being said.... the Mayor term should be at least 4 years, same with City Council. 2 year terms are ridiculous, and a waste of taxpayer money. You're just getting going on the 2nd year to have it done by the rules? No sense in a 2 year term.

  • Inside The Beltline Oct 7, 2013

    "I parked late in front of a business whose lot was full, but didn't think anything would happen because it was late. Got a $30 ticket (increased to $50 because I missed payment date) that was sent to collections and it was only a few days late!" -Obamayoulie

    Really? The signs are very clear, most garages are free in the evening, and there are plenty of them if you're not too lazy to walk 3 or 4 blocks. And you're complaining cause you parked illegally and then didn't pay your ticket?

    We need to get used to it, Downtown Raleigh is going to continue to grow rapidly and we need people in leadership roles who embrace that; otherwise, we're going to be left like Atlanta, struggling to get caught up with unplanned growth.

  • Frank Downtown Oct 7, 2013

    Obamayoulie- there are atleast 5 parking decks that are 6 or more stories. There is plenty of parking. This isn't the country. You cannot park right in front of every business.

  • justafella Oct 7, 2013

    If only Avery where still with us......

  • Lovey Oct 7, 2013

    I agree that City infrastructure needs to be updated.

  • areyououtofyourmind Oct 7, 2013

    "I have no dog in this fight, but a two year term surely seems short to herd cats. Maybe they should go to a three year term. and I am a term limit believer."

    That's true. You barely get a change made to the city's master plan in that time period. You could never even implement changes you pushed through.

  • stymieindurham Oct 7, 2013

    "Some people look at (ZIP code) 27610, and they see food stamps, older people,. . . . . "

    Better keep an eye on this Venita Peyton. She's already doing like the government wants to do, classsify people by their zip codes. Of course, those votes are already in her pocket whether she solicit's them or not.