Mayor Ravenstahl will seek re-election

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While he's planning a formal announcement at some point in the future, Mayor Luke Ravenstahl said Friday that he'll definitely seek re-election next year.

Mr. Ravenstahl, 32, made the announcement during a taping of the KD/PG Sunday edition, which airs at 8:30 a.m. Sunday on KDKA-TV. He spoke about his plans again Friday after helping to light the holiday tree on the portico of the City-County Building.

"I will be running for re-election, and I'm really excited about it," Mr. Ravenstahl said.

He didn't set a date for his formal announcement.

On Thursday, Steelers president Art Rooney II was among those who hosted a $1,000-per-person fundraiser for Mr. Ravenstahl at Heinz Field.

City Contoller Michael Lamb, city Councilman Bill Peduto and outgoing state Auditor General Jack Wagner have expressed interest in challenging Mr. Ravenstahl but have stopped short of declaring their candidacies.

Mr. Peduto has opened a mayoral campaign committee and is opening an office in the Strip District.

His first contribution came from Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald, a tireless campaigner who did not explicitly endorse Mr. Peduto but noted that the two work well together.

Another sign of Mr. Fitzgerald's support came Thursday, when he sent out an invitation to a $2,000-per-person fundraiser he's holding for Mr. Peduto at the Rivers Club, Downtown, Dec. 13.

Mr. Peduto said he will announce his intentions before the end of the year. Neither Mr. Lamb nor Mr. Wagner could be reached Friday.

Mr. Fitzgerald's support of Mr. Peduto would be a setback for Mr. Ravenstahl, who took office with the death of Mayor Bob O'Connor in 2006. At the time, Mr. Ravenstahl was 26 and the city council president.

Mr. Ravenstahl on Friday said he's looking forward to talking to voters about his record, saying "Pittsburgh's momentum is clear and it's evident."

He cited what he calls the city's Third Renaissance, which consists of Downtown development and neighborhood improvements. He'll also highlight the city's financial improvements, which have led to the possibility of partial release from about eight years of state oversight.

Mr. Peduto and Mr. Lamb have argued that the city's financial situation remains precarious and that Mr. Ravenstahl's day-to-day management leaves much to be desired. Mr. Ravenstahl's controversies -- such as his handling of the 2010 blizzard -- also will provide grist for opponents' campaigns.

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Joe Smydo: jsmydo@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1548.


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