GREEN BAY, Wis. (WLUK) -- The field is set for Green Bay's mayoral race, and it includes a deadline-day entry from former Ald. Guy Zima.
The deadline to turn in the necessary paperwork to run was 5 p.m. Wednesday.
Green Bay's clerk tells FOX 11 she has verified the necessary signatures for eight candidates.
Zima, a longtime former alderman and county supervisor became the eighth candidate when he turned in his paperwork Wednesday afternoon.
Zima's candidacy comes as he is suing the city, current Mayor Jim Schmitt, and other city officials. The basis of that lawsuit are allegations of slander and defamation.
Asking to wait until next week to answer questions about his lawsuit against the city, Zima says he is running for mayor to cut special interests out of local politics.
“I don't claim to have a pipeline to God, but I do have the courage of my convictions and I'm going to at least tell it like I think it is,” said Zima. “I think real leaders have to say what their true thoughts are.”
It's Zima's fifth time running for mayor.
His former longtime peer on the Brown County Board, Patrick Evans, is running for mayor for a second time.
“The more the merrier,” said Evans, who has been on the Brown County Board for 16 years. “That is great for the city of Green Bay. I'm going to concentrate on Pat Evans and getting it out there as to why I'm the most qualified candidate.”
Also from the Brown County Board, you'll see Patrick Buckley on the ballot. The mayor's position is nonpartisan, but Buckley has already received support from the Brown County Republican Party.
“I will take multiple parties if they'd like to back me in a nonpartisan race,” said Buckley. “It is a nonpartisan race and people are free to be backed by whoever is available.”
Former Green Bay Alde. Joe Moore says concerns about partisanship played a role in why he changed his mind and decided to run for mayor.
“It's a purple city, it's a purple state and I just can't see someone that is beholden to a political party leading the city,” said Moore.
Outgoing State Rep. Eric Genrich served the past six years as a Democrat in the State Assembly.
“I feel like I have a good background and have demonstrated the ability to work with people of all different perspectives, all parties and no parties,” said Genrich. “So I plan to bring that spirit of bipartisanship and nonpartisanship to city hall.”
Nick Mortensen, an employee at Jones Sign Company, is running on making Green Bay a smarter city.
“A municipality is like essentially a data-gathering organization,” said Mortensen. “If you can use that data to make better decisions about where to put your resources, you're kind of ahead of the game.”
Paul Boucher says he's ready to be mayor after being unemployed for most of the last 15 years.
“There is just not enough opportunities for me, so I've been studying the city and trying to find ways to make the world a better place,” said Boucher.
The race's final candidate, City Council President Mark Steuer, says the large field of candidates might have hurt his chances.
“Pat Evans lives four doors down from me, Eric Genrich is also in my district," he said. "So we were kind of competing against each other at least for signatures and the hearts of the people in the neighborhood."
The hearts of people city-wide will be heard Feb. 19 in a crowded primary race. The top two vote getters will advance to ballots on April 2.
The League of Women Voters will be hosting a mayoral forum next Wednesday at the Brown County Central Library at 6 p.m.