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At least one union cares enough about the low-profile special election for Larry Seabrook's former City Council seat in the Bronx to weigh in with its own cash.

1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East has spent over $4,500 in the race, with most of the money going to pay for a full-color mailer backing candidate Andrew King, a former community organizer for the union.

King "knows that working families and the elderly face real obstacles, especially right now, and we need strong leadership," reads the flier.

The expenditure was the first disclosed under a city Campaign Finance Board rule that went into effect in May requiring any group that spends money on behalf of an unaffiliated candidate to disclose its support.

Under the rule, expenditures over $1,000 must be disclosed; expenditures over $5,000 require groups to disclose contributors.

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Mayor Bloomberg yesterday announced his plans to spend between $10 million and $15 million through a "super PAC" he will spearhead. It's named Independence USA PAC and has a goal of supporting candidates across party lines who pledge to work in a bipartisan fashion. It will spend money on highly competitive state, local and Congressional races this year and back candidates who support legalizing same-sex marriage, enacting tougher gun laws, and education reform.

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A number of New York state GOP lawmakers have been promoting their ties to Gov. Cuomo as election day draws near, including the second-highest-ranking Republican in Albany, Sen. Thomas Libous. The governor is popular with voters from both parties. Many mailings featuring Cuomo's image don't mention the party affiliations of the candidate or the governor. The City Council is holding an oversight hearing today to make sure the city's Board of Elections is ready for the November voting. Meanwhile, candidates for city office are left struggling to plan for the 2013 primaries as the state decides whether to move primary day up to June from September for New York races. Congressional and presidential primaries were already moved to June.

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The deadline to register to vote for next month's general election is tomorrow.

It's also the last day to declare a party affiliation to be eligible to vote in the 2013 primaries that will be crucial for the city as it picks a new mayor, City Council, comptroller, public advocate and more.

The city's Board of Elections website has basic information on how to register.

For those who have a state driver's license or identification card, one new way to go about registering is through the the state Department of Motor Vehicles website — though the process isn't immediately clear.

Perhaps sensing this, the Minkwon Center for Community Development, a civic organization with a mission of  increasing participation in the election process by Korean Americans, has put together a handy step-by-step guide to using the DMV site.

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Republican Councilman Daniel Halloran criticized his competitor in the race for the 6th Congressional District after raising money during an event hosted by Assemblyman Sheldon Silver on the 11th anniversary of Sept. 11.

Standing outside City Hall earlier today, Halloran said he "can't imagine" what Democratic opponent Grace Meng was thinking.

"Yesterday she was out trying to get money from New Yorkers on the 9/11 holiday," he told the Gazette. "I'm absolutely disgusted as someone who lost a cousin on that day."

A spokesman for Meng's campaign said that the candidate "spent the day commemorating the tragic events of September 11th with various organizations throughout the city."

"Indeed, one of those events was a lunch with Speaker Silver where Grace had the opportunity to share her remembrances with community leaders," spokesman Austin Finan said in a statement emailed to the Gazette. "To be clear, it was not a fundraiser. It was a meet and greet lunch. If individuals in attendance chose to contribute to Grace Meng's campaign, that was their prerogative."

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42nd State Assembly District: Rodneyse Bichotte's campaign builds momentum [The Haitian Times]

NEW YORK — Rodneyse Bichotte, an electrical engineer who has also worked as a math teacher and an investment banker, has been emphasizing her professional background and her humble East Flatbush roots during speeches as she vies to represent Brooklyn's 42nd State Assembly District, the Haitian Times reports this week.

“As a public school math teacher, I witnessed and experienced [the] lack of resources, the pressure on teachers to pass students and all the challenges of children of low-income and working families… that don’t allow them to excel and compete,” Bichotte told the Hatian Times. “I’ve lived that experience.”

However, many Haitians in the district she is trying to represent tell the Times that they are doubtful Bichotte can win against incument Rhoda Jacobs:

Though Bichotte has made significant inroads with immigrants across the district from her previous run, many Haitians still doubt her chances to unseat Jacobs. Some tell her “Ou paka bat Rhoda non!” (You can’t beat Rhoda).

16th State Senate District: Incumbent state Sen. Stavisky and challenger Messer on the issues [Queens Times-Ledger]

NEW YORK — The two candidates in the Democratic primary for the 16th State Senate District seat in Queens, incumbent Toby Ann Stavisky and challenger John Messer, sat down with the Queens Times-Ledger recently to talk about their campaign issues.

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