Dan Alves returns to politics in quest for mayor's seat

Dan Alves returns to politics in quest for mayor's seat

CUMBERLAND - Daniel Alves, a former nine-term Town Council member from Valley Falls, will be a candidate for mayor, he announced this week.

Alves, 66, who says he began considering the seat in October, has already begun knocking on doors and setting up appearances at the town's senior centers, he said.

He's in the race, he told The Breeze, because his business is operating without his daily oversight and he wants to offer Cumberland the benefit of the experience he gained during 18 years on the Town Council where he was once president and chairman of the Board of License Commissioners.

Alves, who lives on Curran Road, has owned Galinda's Automotive Service on Broad Street for about the past 40 years. He's a graduate of Cumberland High School and spent four years in the U.S. Navy.

His announcement opens a rare face-off between two prominent men from Valley Falls - Alves and Town Council freshman Manual DaCosta.

Already announced for mayor, too, is Cumberland Hill's Bill Murray, also a council freshman.

Candidates for elected posts will be filing their intentions and picking up nomination papers later this month.

All three are running as Democrats, suggesting that once again - barring any more entries - the town will choose its next mayor in the September primary.

This is the second time Alves has sought the town's highest post. Alves stepped up the last time the seat was open, in 1996 when Mayor Rick Alger was running for Senate. But that attempt was derailed when the Board of Canvassers found he hadn't properly signed nomination papers. Despite Alves' appeals, Alves was out of the race and out of politics until this year's announcement.

Alves begins his list of goals for Cumberland with the note that "I feel Dan McKee has always done a good job."

Since McKee is leaving the post to run for lieutenant government, Alves said, "I feel I can contribute on a positive note to Cumberland citizens."

Alves lists schools and making Cumberland one of the state's top five in education as a first priority.

He says he is also concentrating on expanding senior citizens' programs, assisting veterans, seeking state and federal grants, and expanding the town's open space program.

He's also eyeing the town's industrial centers with the hope of strengthening them.

Alves is a member of Our Lady of Fatima Church and the Knights of Columbus St. Thomas Council where he is a 3rd-degree knight. He's an honorary member of the Club Juventude Lusitana and American Legion Post No. 14.