BY PAUL LEIGHTON
---- — BEVERLY — Add Wes Slate to the growing list of people who are contemplating a run for mayor.
The Ward 2 city councilor said yesterday that he is “seriously considering” a bid for the corner office now that Mayor Bill Scanlon has announced he won’t seek re-election.
“It’s an open seat, and we haven’t had that for 18 years,” Slate said. “I’ve had some people who I really respect say that I should at least think about it.”
Slate is at least the fourth current or former elected official who has said they are considering a run for mayor. They include former City Council President and state Rep. Mike Cahill, School Committee President Maria Decker, and Ward 4 City Councilor Scott Houseman.
Slate, 63, is in his third two-year term on the City Council. He works as a sales associate at Crane Electronics in Beverly.
Slate said he will make his decision within the next week to 10 days.
“It’s obviously a big decision,” he said. “It would mean giving up what I’ve been doing for the last six years (on the council) and putting everything into what would certainly be a difficult battle. I believe that it’s possible. I don’t think it’s tilting at windmills.”
Candidates have until Aug. 2 to take out nomination papers at City Hall. The preliminary election is Sept. 24, and the final election is Nov. 5.
U.S. Army veteran Euplio Marciano is the only person to have taken out papers for mayor so far.
Scanlon announced last week that he will not seek re-election. He has been in office for 18 years, the longest mayoral tenure in the city’s history.
Staff writer Paul Leighton can be reached at 978-338-2675 or firstname.lastname@example.org.