By Gina Martinez
Melinda Katz will serve her second term as Queens borough president following an impressive win with 78 percent of the 201,877 votes cast, or 78 percent, according to unofficial results from the WNYC website.
Katz faced Republican candidate William Kregler, who got 21 percent, or 55,077votes, and Homeowners NYCHA candidate Everly Brown, who got 0.8 percent with a total of 1,957 votes.
Heavily favored in the race, Katz was endorsed by Mayor Bill de Blasio, who called her a staunch advocate for her community.
“She is the kind of ally we need in Queens, and I’m excited to support her campaign for re-election,” he said.
Katz spoke out in support of immigrant services, boosting public transportation options and reducing overcrowding in schools. One of her recent projects has been establishing an immigration task force, a network of non-profits that can aid the diverse population of Queens after the Trump administration announced plans for stricter immigration policies.
Her Republican competitor, Kregler, a former firefighter, fire marshal and current president of the N.Y.C. Fire Marshals Benevolent Association, spent 23 years as a city Housing Authority police officer and field training officer.
Kregler ran to reform the unchecked overdevelopment happening in Queens and to bring back control of neighborhoods to local school and community boards. He criticized Katz for not stepping up to fight for communities where the homeless have been moved into hotels.
Brown ran against Katz in 2013 on the Jobs & Education Party. This time around Brown said that as borough president he planned on creating jobs opportunities, affordable housing and quality health care facilities in the borough.
Reach Gina Martinez by e-mail at gmart