Greg Stanton today turned in petitions with more than 3,000 signatures nominating him as a candidate in the upcoming mayor's race.
While the signatures will go through a vetting process to make sure they are all valid and come from registered voters, Stanton essentially is the first horse officially in the race.
Signatures will no doubt be coming soon from Councilman Claude Mattox, former Councilwoman Peggy Neely, Phoenix lobbyist Wes Gullett and Thane Eichenauer -- who have all announced their intention to serve as Phoenix's next mayor.
Mayoral candidates need at least 1,500 valid signatures to get their names on the ballot.
Stanton, a former councilman and deputy Arizona Attorney General, used an "all-volunteer army" to gather the signatures, says his campaign manager Ruben Alonzo (no relation to the New Times writer).
He says Stanton had more than enough signatures on March 6, just four days after they started collecting them. And they turned them in today, the first day that candidates are legally allowed to start filing those signatures with the City Clerk's Office.
Alonzo says in a press release that Stanton's camp gathered signatures "from every neighborhood" and "didn't use a single paid circulator" -- a message that helps punctuate Stanton's grassroots campaign.
Learn more about the candidates and their stance on city issues at a debate hosted by Citizens for Phoenix (a coalition of neighborhood leaders) at 7 p.m on Tuesday (May 3) at Phoenix Theatre, 100 E. McDowell Road.