JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — One of the tightly contested City Council races was for the District 7 seat. The boundaries of that district were redrawn as part of the redistricting lawsuit from last year.
Republican Joseph Hogan and Democrat Jimmy Peluso received the most votes and advanced to the May runoff.
Hundreds of thousands of dollars in total were poured into this race by the five candidates and a bitter campaign between two of the Democrats initially became the focal point of the election. In the end, voters will decide between Hogan and Peluso for the District 7 seat in City Council.
Peluso held a watch party at Alewife Bottle Shop and Tasting Room in 5 Points. Shortly after the polls closed, and the race was called for him and Hogan, he said that he's willing to work with his previous Democrat opponents for the sake of party unity.
Peluso also added that District 7 needs a council member who is willing to go into the neighborhoods they represent and be the voice for their constituents on City Council.
"Folks don't go to some of those neighborhoods, we need to talk with our residents, talk with our voters, get them civically engaged," said Peluso. "And then in turn they'll become more engaged in the political process. And once we get more folks engaged we'll really start to see the city evolve, and that's really important to me. We can not ignore neighborhoods anymore, and I think we've done that way too much."
First Coast News spoke with Hogan before he advanced to the runoff to determine where his election night watch party would be. However, when First Coast News went to where Hogan said the watch party would be, he was not there.
Kim Pryor also ran for the District 7 seat but did not advance to the runoff. After the polls closed Pryor said that she hopes the winner in this race listens to the people who live in District 7.