New York City Councilman Mattey was successfully re-elected to represent the 1st District of Lower Manhattan on the City Council. (Provided by Su Qunjuan)
[The Epoch Times, November 10, 2023](Epoch Times reporter Lin Yijun reported in New York) Democratic New York City Councilman Christopher Marte won this year’s local election and was successfully re-elected until the end of 2025. He told this newspaper that the housing issue is his next biggest concern, and he is currently discussing with the New York City Department of Urban Planning to advance the Chinatown Working Group’s land redevelopment project.
Mattei’s jurisdiction includes Tribeca, SoHo and Battery Park in lower Manhattan. His re-election has consolidated the power of the Democratic Party for the deep blue vote base.
City Councilor Mattei said in an interview with The Epoch Times after the Thanksgiving meal distribution press conference on November 9, “In the past two years, we have really integrated into the community and worked hard to listen to the many issues that are happening.” He said he was “rooted in the community” and understood the community’s concerns about housing, quality of life and small businesses, which led to his overwhelming victory in City Council District 1.
According to the latest announcement from the New York City Bureau of Elections (NYC BOE), Mattei received 8,555 votes, with a vote rate of 67.86%, which was twice as likely as Republican opponent Helen Qiu to win. Mattei performed best in Soho, South Street Seaport and Tribeca, with more than 90% of the votes in the first two districts and more than 70% in Tribeca.
Looking back on the achievements of the past two years, Mattei pointed out that he blocked the construction of waterfront luxury high-rise buildings in the Two Bridges neighborhood, revitalized small businesses, introduced unions in restaurants at Excelsior Mall, helped victims of the Chinatown fire find apartments, and Roosevelt $50 million in park construction grants and investment in the Allen Street Malls. During his second term, he hopes to complete the reopening of Park Row and secure a traffic congestion toll exemption for the local area.
However, Mattei’s first priority in the city council is to solve the local economic housing problem, especially to promote the “Chinatown Working Group Plan” on the area reform of Chinatown, Soho and North Howe. He said: “I think the most urgent thing is affordable housing, but that part mainly belongs to the administration, so if you want to make sure that New York City launches the Chinatown Task Force Plan on land use, I think that will be the first priority. Task.”
“We’ve started conversations with the city’s Metropolitan Planning Department and we want to start public engagement processes and meetings. That’s the part we’re focusing on because housing is the biggest issue (locally),” Mattei said. “Everyone is saying leave. Chinatown is too expensive and the new buildings being built are not suitable for the local community. This is why I want to invest a lot of energy in this matter, to ensure that people can stay here and that new immigrants can afford to buy here. Real affordable housing.”
Although there are still mail-in ballots to be counted, the 35-year-old Mattei has already secured his seat as a city council member. According to New York City election regulations, city councilors can serve up to three terms, so if Mattei continues to be re-elected, his term will be up to 2029. On the other hand, his opponent this year, Chinese-American female pastor Helen Qiu, also revealed to The Epoch Times that she would still consider running for office in the future.
“I still want to run, New York needs a new direction.” Helen Qiu criticized the progressive Democratic Party’s policies on security, illegal marijuana shops and the legalization of prostitution. “I hope that by running for election, the voters can wake up, and I also hope that Chinatown can wake up. Don’t rely on the mayor for everything. In fact, many decisions are made by the city council and the state assembly.”
As a face of Chinese descent, Helen Qiu’s chances of winning in the Chinese community are still solid. She received 145 votes (66% vote rate) at the Confucius Plaza polling station, twice as many as Ma Tai’s 72 votes. “So I feel like I won, even though it didn’t turn out that way,” she said.
In addition, Helen Qiu received more than half of the votes at the two polling stations on Monroe St. and Henry St., respectively, with 55% and 53%. When Helen Qiu ran for state representative last year, she only received more than half of the votes in one small electoral district, but this year she received more than half of the votes in six districts.
It is worth noting that Helen Qiu received 49% of the vote in Battery Park, losing only 4 votes to Mattai; she also received about 40% of the vote in the two dark blue voting areas of the East River Jewish Community and Government Building Smith Housing. 40% of the votes.
Editor in charge: Chen Minqi