Incumbent city Councilman Eric Dinowitz has been reelected to a second term, unofficial results show.
“I am incredibly honored to continue serving the North Bronx in the City Council,” Councilman Dinowitz said in a statement late on Election Day. “I was born and raised in this community. To be able to advocate for my neighbors, friends, and family in City Hall is the greatest job in the world.
With 96 percent of the vote in as of Tuesday, Council Dinowitz received 8,755 votes compared to Republican Robert Caemmerer’s 1,518 votes, according to unofficial election night results posted on the city Board of Elections website.
Caemmerer ran under Republican and Conservative/Medical Freedom lines.
In the leadup to the general election, Councilman Dinowitz’s challenger, Caemmerer, told The Press that his vision as a council member was to take the city back on all levels, including on crime like unlicensed e-bikes and illegally parked cars. The candidate did not identify as a “politician,” saying they all needed to go beyond politics and the party system.
“I’d like to thank all of those who voted for me. Remember, a vote for truth and liberty is never a wasted vote,” Caemmerer stated regarding his loss.
Caemmerer told The Riverdale Press he would not rule out the possibility of running again. One challenge he experienced was not fully understanding how campaign matching funds worked. Caemmerer did not receive any public matching funds for the 2023 election cycle and said with funds a candidate could run a much more meaningful campaign.
“It feels great,” Councilman Dinowitz said to The Press of his re-election. “I’m very grateful to my friends and families who continue to support me and of course voters who showed up in droves.”
Councilman Dinowitz thanked voters for voting in the election and putting their trust into him.
“Together, we have secured resources for our seniors and students, improved our parks, strengthened our schools and senior centers, made our streets safer, stood against hate crimes, empowered tenants, and made our city more accessible for everyone,” he said in a statement. “I’m excited to continue this important work and remain focused on preparing our neighborhoods for climate change, addressing food insecurity, supporting our small businesses, increasing access to health care, and standing up for my values.”
Dinowitz, a former special education teacher and Community Board 8 Aging Committee chair, assumed office in 2021 in a special election, following the resignation of then Councilman Andrew Cohen who became a justice of the Supreme Court in the Bronx.
The councilman is the chair of the New York City Council Jewish Caucus and has served on a number of council committees including the Committee on Veterans, Committee on Mental Health, Disabilities, and Addictions, and Committee on Education.
In the weeks before the general election, Councilman Dinowitz told The Press one of the biggest challenges moving forward is Mayor Eric Adams’ proposed 15 percent cuts to city services. He said then that he would fight to ensure schools, senior centers, nonprofits and agencies get the funding and support necessary to keep residents safe.
On the ballot was also incumbent Darcel Clark, who won her primary against criminal defense and civil rights attorney Tess Cohen in June. The general election was uncontested and Clark received about 41,600 votes at about 98 percent.
“Thank you, people of Bronx County,” Clark stated. “I am pleased, honored and humbled that I will continue to serve as your District Attorney. This election preserves my commitment to pursue justice with integrity where I prioritize public safety, justice for victims, and fairness for defendants. It has been my greatest privilege to serve you, and I look forward to carrying on the work that needs to be done so the Bronx may flourish.”
Some of the DA’s goals for her new term, she tells The Press, is continuing to work on driving violence down in the Bronx through prevention and getting resources to the community.
“As I always say, the safest communities don’t necessarily have the most police, they have the most resources,” Clark said. “I want to make sure as district attorney, we get those resources. At the same time I’m gonna make sure we hold accountable those doing serious crimes in our community.”
With car thefts on the rise, Clark says she will continue to work with the NYPD in prosecuting criminals, but also seeing causes to crimes and ways to eliminate them in the first place. She says with mental health issues also on the rise, it is important to make sure they get the treatment they need and at therapeutic and secure facilities.
The other uncontested races were for Judge of the Civil Court and Justice of the Supreme Court 12th Judicial District. Joaquin Orellana received about 41,600 votes at about 98 percent for civil court.
For Supreme Court, there were three openings and three Democratic candidates. Michael Frishman received about 32,000 votes (30.72 percent), Sharon Aarons received about 40,600 votes (38.94 percent), and John Howard-Algarin received about 29,400 votes (28.15 percent).
Voters also voted on two statewide ballot measure questions. The first proposal, an amendment for a removal of small city school districts from special constitutional debt limitation, received about 35,900 votes in support at about 73 percent. The second proposal, an amendment for extending sewage project debt exclusion from debt limit received 372,700 votes, or 76 percent.