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Fielkow: I need more time 

  In July, City Councilman At-Large Arnie Fielkow announced he was considering whether to join the 2010 mayor's race, and would make an announcement by Labor Day. Late on the afternoon of Sept. 4, the announcement came down, and it was: He needs more time to decide.

  "Over the past couple of months, it has become increasingly clear that people see the next round of elections as the most critical in New Orleans history," Fielkow said in a statement released to the press. "While I had hoped that a final decision regarding my pursuit of future elected office could be reached by this weekend, some additional time is needed to fully and intelligently explore and evaluate the best opportunity for me to continue to serve the people of New Orleans."

  Elsewhere in the statement, Fielkow seemed to signal he would not be leaving government altogether and rejoining the private sector: "As we transition to the next phase in our recovery and renaissance, it is my strong desire and intent to continue in public service and help move our great city forward," he wrote, which would seem to leave the door open not only for a mayoral bid, but for another term on the city council.

  Qualifying for the 2010 mayor's race must be done by early December. At this point, only three candidates have announced their intentions to run: state Rep. Austin Badon, state Sen. Ed Murray and housing advocate James Perry. ­— Kevin Allman

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