Baltimore Sun

City Council President Nick Mosby will seek reelection

Spokespers­on says his plans to be revealed ‘at a later time’

- By Emily Opilo

In the midst of his first term as Baltimore City Council president — which has seen him pitted against Mayor Brandon Scott, the Baltimore Board of Ethics and federal investigat­ors — Nick Mosby said Wednesday he will seek reelection next year.

The Democrat, who has been at the helm of the City Council since December 2020, addressed his bid for another four years in office with little fanfare. Mosby’s spokeswoma­n, Monica Lewis, said Wednesday in a statement that Mosby will talk more about his reelection plans “at a later time.”

“For now, his focus remains on leading City Council, working with the Scott administra­tion, and showing up each and every day to support and serve the people of Baltimore,” she said.

Mosby’s campaign decision comes just ahead of a planned announceme­nt Sunday by Councilman Zeke Cohen. The Democrat formed an explorator­y committee in January to seek input about a possible run for council president. Cohen also has not ruled out a run for mayor. He had no comment Wednesday in response to Mosby’s announceme­nt.

Speculatio­n had grown about whether Mosby would run for office again, as his campaign coffers almost ran dry last year and because his wife, Democrat Marilyn Mosby, lost her 2022 reelection campaign as Baltimore state’s attorney.

Nick Mosby’s most recent campaign finance report, filed in January, shows $14,539 in his campaign account.

As council president, Mosby is paid an annual salary of $135,093.

Cohen, by contrast, reported a $372,351 balance in his campaign account in January.

The council president, who previously served as a state delegate and a member of the City Council, has had a tumultuous first two years in office.

Mosby and his wife faced a federal criminal investigat­ion into their financial dealings. Nick Mosby has not been charged with anything, but Marilyn Mosby is charged with perjury and making false statements related to early withdrawal­s from her city retirement account and the purchase of two Florida houses. Her trial has been delayed until at least the fall.

During the federal investigat­ion a legal-defense fund was set up on behalf of the political power couple. The fund itself resulted in an investigat­ion by the Baltimore Board of Ethics, which found in May that Nick Mosby violated city ethics law by indirectly soliciting donations to the fund and failing to disclose its existence on his annual ethics filing.

The council president challenged the ruling, kicking off a prolonged fight in court. Last month a Baltimore Circuit Court judge upheld the majority of that decision, confirming Mosby violated the law. He had until Wednesday to decide whether to appeal the decision to a higher court.

Absent an appeal, Mosby must comply with the order, which calls for him to provide a list of all donors and donations to the fund to the ethics board or face a fine of $1,000 a day.

Mosby also has squared off several times so far in 2023 with the Democratic mayor.

He led a charge against a multimilli­on-dollar deal pushed by Scott to have Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. take over maintenanc­e of the city’s conduit system. A vocal critic of the contract, Mosby convened an investigat­ive committee to look into it. But ultimately he was defeated when Scott forced an unconventi­onal vote of the Board of Estimates without Mosby present.

Last week members of the Mosby-led council struck down Scott’s nomination of Faith Leach for city administra­tor. After Scott and his staff spent the weekend lobbying the council, the council committee reversed course Monday and the council as a whole unanimousl­y approved Leach.

Mosby insisted afterward that the council was not trying to send a message to the Scott administra­tion, while also saying the vote was never about Leach’s qualificat­ions.

“It was about ensuring the second floor and the administra­tion took the appropriat­e process of working with the council and engaging the council,” he said, referring to the mayor’s office, which is on the second floor of City Hall.

 ?? AMY DAVIS/BALTIMORE SUN ?? Baltimore City Council President Nick Mosby is shown at City Hall on June 23, 2022.
AMY DAVIS/BALTIMORE SUN Baltimore City Council President Nick Mosby is shown at City Hall on June 23, 2022.

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