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Elicker takes third term, New Haven approves ballot question to extend terms for elected officials

New Haven Mayor Justin Elicker giving his celebratory re-election speech at Da Lenga at Nolo in New Haven, Connecticut on Nov. 07, 2023.
Ayannah Brown
Connecticut Public
New Haven Mayor Justin Elicker giving his celebratory re-election speech at Da Lenga at Nolo in New Haven, Connecticut on Nov. 07, 2023.

Incumbent Mayor Justin Elicker easily won a third term as mayor of New Haven Tuesday night.

Elicker defeated Republican Tom Goldenberg and petitioning candidate Wendy Hamilton. The Associated Press called the race for Elicker less than an hour after polls closed Tuesday night.

Elicker celebrated his win alongside his supporters as they enjoyed New Haven pizza and he outlined some of his priorities for the next two years.

“We will work together to lead the state, and continue to lead the state, on the creation of affordable housing units," Elicker said.

He said other priorities include landlord accountability, education and more.

Residents also voted to accept a revision to the city charter to increase the term length from two to four years for the mayor, alders and city clerk starting in 2027 and increase the annual stipend for alders from $2,000 to $5,000. New Haven will join Hartford and Stamford where all elected positions also serve for a four year period.

Elicker said he was glad to see voters support the charter revision. He said it was a sign that voters were satisfied with the city.

“So congratulations to all of you for getting the charter revision across the finish line, a huge, huge task,” Elicker said.

Supporters of four-year terms believed it would allow local elected officials to focus on governing rather than campaigning every other year. But some voters said all the changes to the charter should not fall under one single question.

"I have mixed feelings. I think I probably would support four-year-terms for mayor. I’m not sure about four-year terms for alders," said Joel Tolman, a New Haven educator who turned out early Tuesday to vote.

"It just seems like a more transient position and we’re voting on them as a package so you need to make your choice about the whole thing,” Tolman said.

This story has been updated. Connecticut Public’s Sujata Sujata Srinivasan and Patrick Skahill contributed to this report.

Camila Vallejo is a corps member with Report for America, a national service program that places journalists in local newsrooms. She is a bilingual reporter based out of Fairfield County and welcomes all story ideas at cvallejo@ctpublic.org.

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