EC Leg Reconvenes With Plenty of Changes

January 2, 2014 Updated Jan 2, 2014 at 9:23 AM EDT

By James Fink, Buffalo Business First

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EC Leg Reconvenes With Plenty of Changes

January 2, 2014 Updated Jan 2, 2014 at 9:23 AM EDT

When the Erie County Legislature convenes Thursday afternoon, it will see something that hasn’t occurred since 1977 — a Republican majority.

For the first time in 37 years, the GOP will be the ruling majority political party in Erie County Hall. As part of the new Republican majority, it is expected that veteran county lawmaker and Orchard Park business leader John Mills will be named Legislature Chairman replacing Betty Jean Grant.

Other Republican legislators include: Kevin Hardwick, Edward Rath, Lynne Dixon, Joseph Lorigo and newcomer Ted Morton, who represents a large portion of Cheektowaga.

Democrat county lawmakers include: Grant, Lynn Marinelli, Thomas Loughran, Barbara Miller-Williams and freshman legislator Patrick Burke from South Buffalo.

Besides having political control of the legislature, the Republican Party has such top-ranking elected leaders as Sheriff Tim Howard and Comptroller Stefan Mychajliw Jr.

Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz, who is half-way through his term, is an enrolled Democrat.