New Bedford’s Abreu Could Be Eyeing a Bid for Higher Office in 2023
New Bedford City Councilor at Large Ian Abreu will not seek a second term as council president in January.
He will remain in his position of Councilor at Large and will be first vice president on the council.
Abreu decided to surrender the gavel after only one term several months ago but didn't want to go public with the news until the council's work for the current year was complete.
He recently confirmed the decision in separate on-air discussions with WBSM's Tim Weisberg and Marcus Ferro.
Abreu, who will complete his eighth year (fourth term) on the council in 2023, may have his sights set higher than the council chambers.
Abreu tells me he plans to seek public office again next year.
"I love the job, and I want to continue to serve in some type of elected capacity as long as the good people of our city will have me," he said.
Does that mean Abreu will seek re-election to the council, or does he have other plans?
"I will absolutely be on the ballot next fall in some way, shape, or form," he said.
Abreu said his goal was to serve at least one year as council president.
"I believe in others having opportunities to hold the gavel for a year as it's a great experience," he said. "Seeking a second consecutive term, in my opinion, pushes that experience away for someone else."
Abreu said under his term as president, the council got "almost $65 million worth of ARPA money approved to help rebound our local economy and community," and secured public safety equipment, including tasers and guns for the police, as well as upgrades to the fire department.
Among other accomplishments cited by Abreu was "being the president of a council that cut $3.4 million from the FY '24 budget, which is the most it's done in recent memory," he said.
Abreu's plans for 2023 will play out soon enough.
Longtime Councilor Linda Morad, who has held the position of council president in the past, confirmed she is in pursuit of the gavel once more. Ward One Councilor Brad Markey was also believed to be interested in serving as council president, but he said not at this time.
“I had considered earlier but with my current job situation, I don’t think I would be able to give the time warranted to the position,” Markey said.
Abreu did say he has no plans to endorse a replacement for council president.