York Mayor Bracey faces challenge from City Council president in primary

Written by Ben Allen, General Assignment Reporter | May 9, 2017 11:46 AM

(Harrisburg) -- The York mayoral race is following many patterns seen in other campaigns across the midstate.

Attention to neighborhoods outside downtown, and customer service seem to be getting the most focus.


(Photo: York Daily Record, File)

York Mayor Kim Bracey is running for a third term - she would be the first woman in York history to serve for 12 years.

She points to the revitilization in downtown York, and says she wants to bring that kind of progress to other neighborhoods.

She says downtown has seen a renaissance under her leadership, but the focus should shift to other areas now.

"We want to put our arms more around those outer rings and really go hard at it into those neighborhoods," she says.


But Bracey's opponent Michael Helfrich says the city hasn't taken advantage of grants to work with churches.

"If we got them to open up as community centers, we could get the non-profits and volunteers to do programs within those spaces. And I believe the government role there is to help fund coordinators," he says.

He adds state legislators and congressmen offer better customer service to constituents.

"We don't have that kind of service in York City. It's a very simple organized way of doing business. And I believe that would greatly increase the attractiveness and the competitiveness of York," says Helfrich. 

Helfrich, York City Council President, also was convicted in 1991 of felony drug charges, and says he's learned from his mistakes.

On the customer service issue, Bracey says she's always available, and has the experience in government that Helfrich lacks.

"I make it my business to make sure folks know their mayor, our administration is here for people, and the city of York is open for business," she says. 

There are no Republican candidates.

The primary is next Tuesday.

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