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Election voter guide: Lackawanna


1st Ward Council seat (4 year term)

Abdulsalam K. Noman (i) D, C, WF

John E. Ingram PP

Andrea Z. Haxton SU

What to know: Noman, the first Yemeni-American to hold a Lackawanna Council seat, faces off against two residents who attend Council meetings as regularly as the elected members. Haxton, who was the first woman to serve on the Council from 2006 to 2009, lost the seat to Noman. Since then, she and Ingram have been two of the most vocal advocates for more open government in Lackawanna. They are running on their own minor party lines – in Haxton’s case the Sunshine Party and in Ingram’s, the people’s Party. Ingram is making his first run for elective office. Noman, a longtime Lackawanna city schools employee and coach of the high school soccer team, handily won the Democratic primary in this heavily Democratic city.

2nd Ward Council seat (4 year term)

Annette Iafallo (i) D, WF

Louis S. Croce R,C,I

What to know: Political newcomer Croce, an independent insurance broker, is attempting to become the first Republican to serve on the Council in more than a decade in taking on Iafallo, a veteran of Lackawanna politics with deep connections in the Democratic party. Croce has campaigned on a platform of ending political favoritism in City Hall and ridding the city of drug activity and blighted housing. Iafallo served on the School Board from 2001 to 2007, including a stint as the board’s president, and was appointed in 2008 as school district clerk. She lost that appointment this past May, when a turnover of the school board led to her ouster. Iafallo won last November’s special election to fill the 2nd Ward seat vacated when Mayor Geoffrey M. Szymanski, the former councilman, took his new office in January 2012. Croce’s campaign got a boost in the primary, when his write-in effort led to a surprising victory over Iafallo, the only listed candidate on the Conservative Party line.

3rd Ward Council seat (4 year term)

Joseph L. Jerge D, C

What to know: Jerge, co-owner of the popular Mulberry Ristorante in the city’s Bethlehem Park neighborhood, was appointed in 2012 to complete the term of Councilman Francis J. Kulczyk, who died in July of that year. Jerge is running unopposed on the Democratic and Conservative lines, although former City Council secretary Marlene Kita, a member of the Lackawanna Democratic party committee, launched a write-in campaign in October.