EVERETT — Gary Watts, an Everett business owner known for his critiques of the city’s response to homelessness and substance abuse, has launched a write-in campaign for mayor.
He cited his concerns about crime.
“We are at a breaking point right now at how many drug addicts the city of Everett can afford,” he said. “Drug addicts seek out the benefits.”
Watts, 75, said he is a serious candidate with an “exceptional campaign team.”
He plans to continue to use his business reader board — the one that called Everett “Tweakerville” in July — to get out his messages. Thousands of people see the sign every day, he said.
Watts owns two locations of his Z Sports automotive shops. One is on Broadway and the other is on Smith Avenue. After the publicity over the Tweakerville sign, he also launched a live-streaming camera focused on the homeless who hang out on Smith, near the Everett Gospel Mission. He lives nearby.
Cassie Franklin and Judy Tuohy, both current City Council members, are the declared candidates in the race for mayor. Franklin and Tuohy advanced over two other contenders in the August primary.
Write-in candidates who register with the county elections office pay a filing fee. Their votes are counted, though their names do not appear on the ballot or in the voters pamphlet.
Elections officials say votes for Watts will be tallied only if the total number of write-in votes in the race is more than either declared candidate receives.
Rikki King: 425-339-3449; firstname.lastname@example.org.