Rich Blalock

Candidate Bio


Hello Portsmouth!
I’m Rich Blalock. I grew up here. My family has a long tradition of giving back and serving our community. My education started at Children’s Garden; continued at Dondero Elementary, Portsmouth Middle School, Portsmouth High School, and led me to study economics and math at Bates College. Currently I co-own the Old Ferry Landing Restaurant with my family. I started working there when I was 12 years old. This is my 8th year coaching football for Portsmouth, 6th year coaching for Portsmouth High School and am currently a volunteer Head Coach for our Freshman Football team. I am also a coach for Portsmouth Little League. I am in my second year on the City Council, Historic District Commission, Safe Water Advisory Group, Skatepark Committee, Land Use Committee as well as 6 years on Portsmouth’s Recreation Board.
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Why I'm Running

For the last two years I have had the good fortune of representing Portsmouth on the city Council and also serving on the HDC, Land Use board, Water Safety and 6 years on the Recreation board.  As a third generation Blalock on the Council, I feel my purpose and commitment is just beginning.  I am running as a candidate because there is more to do and I am not done with making a difference. 

 There are still many issues we still need to address.  I am a servant leader who listens and likes to hear all sides before I speak on an opinion or decision.  I believe it is very important that we engage our citizens in the process of planning and making the right decisions for all in Portsmouth. 

 I have deep roots here and I am passionate about protecting what we have but also being fiscally responsible and finding the balance.  It would be a privilege and honor to continue my dedication to this great city.


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Position On Issues

Did not respond.

The questions we asked:

A comprehensive housing market study for the Portsmouth Housing Authority identified unmet demand for more than 3,000 additional housing units in our city, mostly for rental units. The study also pointed out that almost 50% of Portsmouth residents live in rented homes. Renters effectively pay a share of the owner’s property taxes. But while property owners, especially those in desirable parts of the city, have benefitted from astonishing rises in their home equity, renters — through no fault of their own — have not shared in the wealth creation. Just the opposite: as rents and the cost of living rise steadily, renters are more cost-burdened every year. You aspire to represent this huge constituency. 
Question #1: How should the city address the specific needs of renters?

The next generations will either benefit or suffer from the policies we enact today regarding climate change, sustainability, and the move from fossil fuels to clean energy. 
Question #2: Do you accept that urgent measures are required and, if so, how aggressive should the city be in addressing the crisis?

Records show that the top complaint from Portsmouth neighborhoods for decades has been drivers speeding on their streets. The city has begun implementing traffic calming measures. Changes to infrastructure are the single most effective way to address the issue. Drivers often object at first, but the measures have proven effective. At the same time, the city is doing more to accommodate residents who would rather walk or bike. 
Question #3: What kinds of initiatives would you support that further calm traffic and make more of Portsmouth safer for residents on foot or bike?