2021 | Politics

Field for County Council at-large grows as Goldberg enters race

Democratic Central Committee member filed on Thursday

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Scott Goldberg, who serves on the county's Democratic Central Committee, has filed to run for an at-large seat on the County Council in 2022.

Courtesy Scott Goldberg

Scott Goldberg of Silver Spring has entered the race for an at-large seat on the County Council next year.

Including Goldberg, the field has now grown to at least nine candidates — including three incumbents — for the four at-large seats.

Goldberg, 39, previously ran an unsuccessful campaign for the House of Delegates in District 16 in 2010 and was elected to the county’s Democratic Central Committee in 2018.

He told Bethesda Beat on Friday that he is excited to be running for an opportunity to make Montgomery County a better place to live.

He identified economic advancement, the environment, housing and what he calls the “shecession” — a spinoff of “recession” — as major issues this election cycle. 

His explanation of “shecession” is: “Basically, how when COVID hit, and a lot of times when the economy becomes much more fragile, women bear the brunt of that financially, taking on increased child care responsibilities. And as a society, we need to solve those issues.” 

He said he chose to run for a countywide seat instead of a district seat because of the chance to meet more voters across Montgomery County. Goldberg added that he looks forward to telling residents about his experience as a lawyer and small-business owner, and his overall vision for the county.

“Being able to travel around the entire county seemed very appealing as part of the job description,” Goldberg said.

Goldberg joins six other Democrats who have filed for an at-large seat:

• Council Member Gabe Albornoz
• Council Member Evan Glass
• Kim Kellerman of Poolesville, a mother of four
• Laurie-Anne Sayles, a Gaithersburg City Council member and Food and Drug Administration employee
• Brandy Brooks of Wheaton, an education and nonprofit leader
• Christa Tichy of Rockville, who works in construction

Council Member Will Jawando and Kristin Mink of Silver Spring, both Democrats, have also said they are running, but had not filed as of Saturday morning. Mink, a former Montgomery County Public Schools teacher, works at the Center for Popular Democracy.

According to the county’s latest public financing report, Neil Harris, a Gaithersburg City Council member, has filed his intent to use the county’s Public Election Fund in an at-large race. Harris, a Democrat, works in the software and IT industry. He had not filed to run as of Saturday morning.

The next County Council will consist of 11 members: seven from districts and four at-large seats serving the entire county. Voters approved that change in the 2020 general election. 

A commission on redistricting is working on drafting new maps that the County Council will consider. The commission is scheduled to pick two maps to publicize for public comment at a meeting on Oct. 13.

A public hearing on those maps is scheduled for Oct. 20, with approval of a map for the final report expected by Oct. 27. By Nov. 3, the commission must approve its final report to the County Council.

The candidates for district races so far are:

District 1: Bethesda, Poolesville, Potomac

• Council Member Andrew Friedson, a Democrat, recently announced he’s seeking re-election.

District 2: Germantown, Montgomery Village, Clarksburg, Damascus 

• Marliyn Balcombe, a Democrat and the president and CEO of the Gaithersburg-Germantown Chamber of Commerce, has filed for the seat. Incumbent Craig Rice, a Democrat, is term-limited and cannot run again. Rice has not yet announced his future plans.

William Roberts, who sits on the board of the Montgomery County Renters Alliance and works for the Center for American Progress, has appeared to show interest, filing his intent to use the county’s public financing system. Roberts, a Democrat who lives in Clarksburg, had not filed for the seat as of Saturday morning.

District 3: Gaithersburg, Rockville

• Incumbent Sidney Katz, a Democrat, has said he is running again. No one had filed as of Saturday morning. 

District 4: Wheaton, Aspen Hill, Olney, Laytonsville

• Four people have filed for this seat, currently held by Nancy Navarro. Navarro, a Democrat who is term-limited, said Friday she would be announcing her future plans “soon.”

Four Democrats have filed to succeed her: 

• Natali Fani-González, a former member of the county’s Planning Board and a business/PR consultant
• Omar Lazo, co-owner of Los Chorros Restaurant in Wheaton
• Maricé Morales, an attorney and former state delegate
• Paul Schwartz, a former columnist for the Sentinel newspapers and currently a lobbyist in Annapolis, focusing on representing current and retired federal employees

District 5: Silver Spring, White Oak, Takoma Park, Burtonsville

• As of Saturday, no one has filed for this seat, currently held by County Council President Tom Hucker. Hucker, a Democrat, has said he is exploring a run for county executive, but has not ruled out running for re-election.

Democrat Fatmata Barrie, a White Oak resident and attorney, announced she is running for a district seat, which currently would be this one. 

Brian Anleu, a Democrat who is chief of staff to the county’s Planning Board, has said he is interested, but wants to see what Hucker decides to do. 

County executive 

Incumbent Marc Elrich is seeking a second term. He is currently being challenged by at-large Council Member Hans Riemer, who is term-limited. Businessman David Blair, who lost to Elrich in the primary in 2018 by fewer than 100 votes, is also seeking the seat.

Devin Battley, a former motorcycle shop owner in Gaithersburg, has said he’s interested, but had not filed as of Friday.

All are Democrats.

The filing deadline for next year’s elections is Feb. 22, 2022. The primary election is scheduled for June 28, and the general election is set for Nov. 8.

Steve Bohnel can be reached at steve.bohnel@bethesdamagazine.com