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What you need to know ahead of the St. Petersburg elections

Ken Welch, left, and Robert Blackmon
KenWelch.com; Blackmon4StPete.com
Ken Welch, left, and Robert Blackmon will meet in a runoff Nov. 2 in the race for St. Petersburg mayor.

On Nov. 2, St. Petersburg will be electing its first mayor since 2014. Here's who's running, and how to cast your vote.

St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman only has a few days left in office before the city elects its first new mayor since 2014.

Under his two terms in office, Kriseman helped oversee the transformation of the St. Pete Pier and construction of a new police station, along with implementing the city's bike share program and Bus Rapid Transit.

The new mayor — either Ken Welch or Robert Blackmon — will lead an organization of 3,500 employees and approximately 270,000 residents.

On Nov. 2, residents will also get to vote on district council members and charter amendments.

Here’s how you can vote and information on the candidates running for election.

Where to vote?

Polling places open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. To find your designated polling place to vote in person, click here. You will need to enter your home address.

If you requested a mail-in ballot, you can drop it off at the Supervisor of Elections office at 501 1st. Ave. N. in St. Petersburg by Nov. 2 at 7 p.m.

Candidates For Mayor:

Ken Welch: Welch served on the Pinellas County Commission for 20 years and graduated from both USF St. Petersburg and Florida A&M. Welch has support from current Mayor Rick Kriseman. If elected, he will become St. Petersburg’s first Black mayor.

Robert Blackmon: Blackmon serves on the city council and works in real estate. He is a registered Republican.

Listen to these previous episodes of Florida Matters, leading up to the election, to learn more about each candidate:

RELATED: Candidates share their plans for the city's future

RELATED: Listen to interviews with the candidates

Council Races:

District 1:

Copley Gerdes
Bobbie Shay Lee

District 2:

Brandi Gabbard
Kyle Hall*

*-Candidate withdrew from this contest but will still appear on the ballot. A vote cast for this candidate will not be counted.

District 4:

Lisset Hanewicz
Tom Mullins

District 6:

Gina Driscoll
Mhariel A. Summers

District 8:

Jeff Danner
Richie Floyd

Charter Amendments:

Voters will decide on seven charter amendments, and Amendments 2 and 4 will be of particular interest.

Charter Amendment 2 gives residents the option of establishing City Council district boundaries for drawing equitable district boundaries and has requirements and restrictions for appointment, service, communication, and accepting public comment.

Charter Amendment 4 asks if there should be an analysis of demographic and economic data for Pinellas County indicating that the region’s economy would benefit from eliminating equity gaps based on race, ethnicity, or other characteristics.

You can read more about the charter amendments here.

Leonardo Santos is the WUSF Rush Family Social Media Intern for the fall of 2021, his second straight semester with WUSF.
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