Gary Holder-Winfield officially set up an “exploratory” committee on Thursday, a growing sign that the Connecticut state representative is considering a serious run for New Haven mayor, according to the New Haven Independent.

With the formation of this committee, Holder-Winfield can now accept campaign contributions. Holder-Winfield told the Independent that he will continue to solicit people’s opinions and make a final decision about whether to run by the end of January next year. Both he and Ward 10 Alderman Justin Elicker expressed interest in entering next year’s mayoral race about a month ago.

As of now, the two people officially in the race – those who have filed their papers with the city clerk – are current Mayor John DeStefano Jr. and Newhallville resident Sundiata Keitazulu.

Holder-Winfield told the News last month that he promises to use the public campaign finance option if he elects to run. He called the current mayor “out of touch” and promises more grass-roots interaction and increased responsiveness to constituents.