Feb. 24 Special Elections

Michael Bloomberg announced that Feb. 24 will be the date for special elections for the City Council seats being vacated by Hiram Monserrate, Joseph Addabbo and Mike McMahon.

Monserrate and Addabbo, both of Queens, were elected to the State Senate. McMahon, of Staten Island, was elected to Congress.

The races will be nonpartisan and the winners will serve until Dec. 31, 2009. Later this year, there will be a primary and general election for full four-year terms in each of those seats.

In each race, there’s at least one candidate who has worked for the outgoing councilman. Running for McMahon’s seat is his former chief of staff Ken Mitchell. Running for Addabbo’s seat is his former aide Frank Gulluscio. And Monserrate’s former chief of staff Julissa Ferreras is running to succeed him.

On Staten Island, Mitchell faces a crowded field; there are at least seven declared candidates.

For Addabbo’s seat in Far Rockaway, Gulluscio will have at least three challengers, two of whom are Republicans: Mike Ricatto (who has a full-page ad in the Dec. 24-30 issue of The Queens Courier) and Eric Ulrich, whose campaign Web site is up and running. Also running is Democratic District Leader Lew Simon.

For Monserrate’s seat, Ferreras faces Francisco Moya, a Democratic district leader who used to work for David Paterson. That race may also be impacted by the recent negative press the outgoing councilman has received for questionable finances at a nonprofit he supported – and where Ferreras worked – and the accusation that he assaulted his girlfriend.