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Second North Side resident to challenge Darlene Harris for Pittsburgh City Council seat

Bob Bauder
| Thursday, Jan. 10, 2019, 1:09 p.m.
Bobby Wilson of Spring Hill plans to challenge Pittsburgh Councilwoman Darlene Harris in the Democratic primary on May 21.
Bobby Wilson of Spring Hill plans to challenge Pittsburgh Councilwoman Darlene Harris in the Democratic primary on May 21.

A second North Side resident announced plans Thursday to challenge Pittsburgh City Councilwoman Darlene Harris in the Democratic primary on May 21.

It would be Bobby Wilson’s third attempt to unseat Harris, 66, of Spring Hill, who has said she would seek a fourth term. Wilson, 36, also of Spring Hill, joins Spring Garden resident Chris Rosselot in opposing Harris for the District 1 seat she has held since 2006. The three candidates are Democrats.

Wilson said if elected he would advocate for such things as affordable housing and equitable development.

“We have a very great history in the North Side and we need to keep that, but our neighborhoods are changing, and we need someone who can bridge that gap,” Wilson said. “I’m a fifth generation North Side resident and I’m invested in the North Side.”

Harris declined comment.

Rosselot, 38, invited the public to attend his first campaign event at 7 p.m. Thursday at Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1902 in Troy Hill. He was not fazed by Wilson’s announcement.

“What I’m worried about is what I can control, and that is getting people registered to vote and getting support from folks that I meet in all of the neighborhoods,” he said.

Wilson, chief technologist and project quality manager at the University of Pittsburgh’s Emphysema and COPD Research Center, staged unsuccessful primary campaigns against Harris in 2011 and 2015.

He is president of the Spring Hill Civic League and a board member of the Northside Leadership Conference.

Harris has represented the district since winning a special election in 2006. She is a former Pittsburgh Public School director and community activist, who prides herself in providing constituent services.

Over the past six years she has been one of Mayor Bill Peduto’s biggest critics on council, opposing annual budgets and other initiatives proposed by the administration.

District 1 includes 13 North Side neighborhoods and parts of three others.

Pittsburgh City Council members serve four year terms and are paid $68,066.

Bob Bauder is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Bob at 412-765-2312, or via Twitter @bobbauder.

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