CENTRAL FALLS — The city’s Board of Canvassers has certified five candidates for next month's special primary to replace ex-Mayor Charles Moreau.
Moreau officially resigned last month and subsequently agreed to plead guilty to a federal fraud charge. Mayor since 2003, Moreau had been re-elected in 2009 to a four-year term that ended in 2013, but was stripped of his duties in 2010 by the state-appointed receiver following the city's bankruptcy.
The mayoral primary will be part of the Nov. 6 general election that will also include presidential and legislative races. The top two vote-getters in the non-partisan mayoral primary will then square off in a special election on Dec. 11. Whoever wins this will be sworn in on Jan. 1 and serve as mayor for the one-year remaining of Moreau's term.
The five candidates are Thomas Lazieh, a former mayor in the 1990s; James Diossa, a current city councilor; Joseph P. Moran III, the city's former police chief; Bruce Corrigan, a retired, disabled city firefighter; and Tia Ristaino-Siegel, a property manager and community activist. All five individuals turned in nomination papers with at least 200 signatures from registered voters—the requirement for being placed on the ballot.
Another city resident, Kenneth Hazard, a mixed martial arts fighter with a lengthy criminal record, had also declared his intent to run for mayor. However, he failed to return the signed nomination papers that are required to be listed on the ballot.
According to Assistant City Clerk Sean Murphy, residents wishing to vote in the Dec. 11 special mayoral election have until Sunday, Nov. 11 to register with the Board of Canvassers. He said that in addition to its regular schedule, the Board of Canvassers will hold special hours at City Hall that Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m.