Cunha announces East Providence City Council re-election run

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EAST PROVIDENCE — Ward 2 Councilman Helder Cunha has signaled his intention to seek re-election in November 2014, doing so in a press release Wednesday, March 5.

“I am proud to announce my candidacy for re-election to the East Providence City Council. I want to thank all of those for placing their trust in me and allowing me to serve the residents of Ward 2,” Mr. Cunha stated.

A political novice when he threw his hat in the ring back in 2012, Mr. Cunha unseated veteran pol and then Council President/ceremonial mayor Bruce Rogers by a considerable sum in the general election that fall.

“I first ran for office because I was concerned with the direction our city was taking. Someone had to speak up for the residents of Ward 2, and I was willing. Today, I am confident in saying that East Providence has bounced back since then and the future looks bright,” Mr. Cunha added.

Mr. Cunha cited the city’s improved fiscal outlook, bolstered by moves the former Budget Commission completed and subsequently followed mostly by the council, as one of the achievements made during his first term. He also noted the Council’s decisions on taxes of as two other examples of accomplishments over the last two years.

“Working alongside (Ward 1 Councilman) Mayor (Jim) Briden and the council, we’ve overcome our most pressing fiscal challenges. We’ve kept taxes down, froze homestead exemption phase-out, passed a balanced budget, and made sure our pensions got back on a sustainable path. As a result of getting our finances back in order, East Providence regained the confidence of both credit rating agencies and incoming businesses,” Mr. Cunha said.

If elected a second time, which would be the first for the council since voters approved four-year terms, Mr. Cunha said his aims would be continuing to improve the city’s financial picture and its infrastructure.

“We still face many challenges that must be addressed,” he concluded. “Revitalizing our city as place that’s easier to do business, fixing our schools, and ensuring residents get the most out of their tax dollars has been and will remain my focus for East Providence. I respectfully ask the voters of Ward 2 to stand with me in continuing to move our city toward a more prosperous and positive future.”

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