Councilmember Barbara Halliday

HAYWARD CITY COUNCIL | The wide-open mayoral race in Hayward already has two sitting council members formally announcing their intention to replace Mayor Michael Sweeney next year. Now, a third may be poised to enter the intramural campaign for mayor and potentially become an instant frontrunner.

Three-term Councilmember Barbara Halliday said Tuesday she is interested in the job, but still mulling her options.

“I will be making an announcement by the end of the month,” Halliday said following a short special council meeting Tuesday evening. Halliday added she is “strongly considering” a run for the seat next year vacated by Mayor Sweeney, who decided last month against running for a third term.

Halliday wants to take time before committing to another campaign, she said. She won re-election last year nabbing one of four open seats in Hayward’s at-large election model. As one of only two women in a nine-person field, Halliday was also the election’s top vote-getter. It is also constitutes a trend for Halliday in previous elections.

In 2008, Halliday was again the top voter-getter in a seven-person field. Her first campaign for City Council in 2004 also yielded impressive results. A former planning commissioner, Halliday won one of four seats in a large 12-person race. She finished second to former Councilmember Bill Ward.

This time around, only Councilmembers Francisco Zermeno and Mark Salinas have officially launched campaigns for the June 2014 election. Similar to the 2012 council election, there appears to be no other woman in the race.

Councilmembers Marvin Peixoto says he intends to run for re-election next year and Al Mendall has reportedly nixed any interest in running for mayor. Former Councilmember Olden Henson continues to be another possible City Council alum running for mayor, sources say.

Halliday like others on the council considering campaigns for mayor indicated she would not have challenged Sweeney if he had chosen to run for re-election and added she was surprised by Sweeney’s decision. Zermeno first announced his run in May and Salinas waited just one day after Sweeney’s chose not to seek re-election to enter the fray.