Two years after launching an unsuccessful bid for Mayor of Fall River, former City Council President Cliff Ponte says he is considering a run for the council once more.

Ponte served six years on the city council, four as the body's president, and nearly three months as acting mayor when Jasiel Correia took a leave of absence from October 15, 2019, until his term expired on January 6. 2020.

Correia was convicted of federal corruption charges and sentenced to prison.

Cliff Ponte Considering A Fall River City Council Comeback
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Cliff Ponte Considering A Fall River City Council Comeback
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Former Fall River School Committee member Paul Coogan was elected to replace Correia as mayor in November 2019 and assumed office in January 2020.

In July 2021, Ponte launched a bid to unseat Coogan, but Coogan won re-election in November 2021. It's expected Coogan will seek re-election in November.

Jim Phillips/Townsquare Media
Jim Phillips/Townsquare Media

So far, the only candidate to announce a challenge to Coogan this fall is former mayor and Bristol County District Attorney Sam Sutter.

Ponte, now 34 years old, is a broker and operating principal for Keller Williams South Watuppa. He also operates Al Mac's Diner and Al Mac's On-The-Go.

"Since leaving office, I have remained committed to Fall River in more ways than one by establishing a charitable foundation called S.H.I.N.E. Together = With Strength, Hope, and Integrity," he said. "We work together to create neighborhood enrichment."

Cliff Ponte Considering A Fall River City Council Comeback
Fall River Community Media/Facebook

Ponte said he remains "fully engaged in the issues that impact taxpayers, business owners, and residents because local issues and a better city are passions of mine."

"At times, I get really frustrated on behalf of the taxpayers and ratepayers for lack of accountability, planning, and good government," he said.

Rising tax rates, the use of one-time monies to balance municipal budgets, and the lack of a plan to fund the construction of a new Diman Vocational High School are just some of Ponte's concerns while considering a return to the council.

Election day in Fall River is Tuesday, November 7, 2023.

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