Brother John Muhammad, the consultant on St. Petersburg Metropolis Council District 7 who was appointed in late 2022, won’t search election to the seat.

Muhammad, in a put up on Fb and on a website he makes use of to offer updates to constituents, stated the “resolution didn’t come frivolously.”

“I wish to categorical my gratitude for the assist and encouragement I’ve acquired from so a lot of you,” he wrote.

Muhammad was appointed in October of 2022 after former Metropolis Council member Lisa Wheeler-Bowman resigned amid questions pertaining to her residency. A personal citizen uncovered that Wheeler-Bowman had moved from her District 7 dwelling and was residing in one other district. 

The Metropolis Council vote to nominate Muhammad as her substitute was shut, at simply 4-3. He had assist from Mayor Ken Welch and County Commissioner Rene Flowers. 

However his appointment got here with controversy. Muhammad confronted backlash from some Metropolis Council member, the Florida Holocaust Museum and different Jewish teams for his assist for Louis Farrakhan, a Nation of Islam adherent who the Southern Poverty Legislation Heart has labeled an anti-Semite. 

Muhammad didn’t point out any of that controversy in his letter notifying constituents of his resolution. As a substitute, he stated his resolution “will not be a mirrored image of an absence of dedication or dedication.”

“Quite the opposite, it stems from a honest perception that my abilities and efforts might be extra impactful exterior the realm of elected workplace,” Muhammad wrote. “I stay steadfast in my dedication to being an asset and a useful resource for whomever the voters select because the District 7 consultant.”

Certainly, Muhammad has an intensive resume of community-based advocacy. He has labored in main roles with the Service Workers Worldwide Union (SEIU) within the Tampa Bay space, and labored to assist move town of St. Pete’s wage theft ordinance, a “onerous to rent” metropolis coverage and town’s $15 minimal wage for workers. He additionally works with Florida Rising, a gaggle that builds political energy amongst marginalized communities, and was an energetic member of the group pushing for a lease stabilization measure within the metropolis.

Muhammad stated he initially had “each intention” of looking for election to the seat for which he was appointed, however has “come to the conclusion that stepping again from the race will permit me to provide my undivided consideration to finishing the work I began throughout my time period.”

He stated he plans to work with constituents “to develop a community-led agenda that’s in the very best curiosity of the neighborhood.” 

“I’m grateful for the assist and encouragement I’ve acquired all through this course of,” Muhammad continued. “Relaxation assured, I’ll proceed to be actively concerned in our neighborhood, advocating for the problems that matter most to all of us.”

Muhammad’s time period ends Jan. 2. Two candidates are at the moment vying for the seat — North Carolina State soccer star Donald Bowens Jr. and Wengay Newton, a former state Consultant who served on St. Pete Metropolis Council in District 7 for 2 phrases from 2008 till 2012. Newton is ready to run for the seat once more as a result of time period limits reset after a consultant has been out of workplace for not less than two phrases, a provision Newton satisfies. 

This would be the first metropolis election held on an even-numbered yr. Beforehand, Metropolis Council and mayoral contests have been held in off-years. 

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