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Borough Prez says he’ll run again

Ruben Diaz Jr. at an event at Father Gigante Square in Hunts Point in September.

Announcement ends rumors Diaz would vie for Public Advocate

Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. has announced he will seek re-election in 2013, ending speculation he would run for Public Advocate.

Citing the economy, job creation, schools and policing as top priorities, Diaz Jr. said in a Nov. 20 press release that he plans to meet with candidates for mayor, comptroller and public advocate in the coming months to “outline my vision for the future of the Bronx and the entire City.”

Diaz Jr., 39, was first elected to the position in 2009 in a special election to replace Adolfo Carrion, who was tabbed by President Barack Obama to run the White House Office of Urban Affairs Policy. Previously, he had served in the state Assembly for 12 years.

Some political analysts anticipated that Diaz would enter the race for Public Advocate as an early favorite. But in his statement, Diaz said “the needs of the people of the Bronx are foremost on my mind and in my heart,” adding that some initiatives remain unfinished, and that “I wish to see these projects and others to completion.”

In his announcement, Diaz boasts that his administration has helped strengthen the local economy by having “encouraged companies to move to the Bronx, not only from other boroughs but from other states and countries,” a policy that had enraged critics of the deal to bring the on-line grocer FreshdDirect to Port Morris.

He cited his support of schools and housing among his other achievements, saying he allocated tens of millions of dollars to Bronx schools for equipment upgrades and new technology, and $60 million “in capital funding for “thousands of new housing units.”

He also hailed a joint plan with the MTA that could bring a new Metro-North station to Hunts Point in the future. Residents and community advocates at an informational meeting in October in Hunts Point praised the plan, saying it would create an important transportation link for Hunts Point residents who work in Connecticut.

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