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Marinelli Takes Seat on ECIDA Board

By Joyce Kryszak

Buffalo, NY – The Chairwoman for the Erie County Legislature takes her seat for the first time this morning as a board member for the Erie County Industrial Development Agency. WBFO's Joyce Kryszak has more on what the appointment could mean, strategically, for Lynn Marinelli.

Historically, the make-up of the ECIDA board includes the chair of the legislature, as well as the chair of its economic development committee. But the appointment for Marinelli could be timely, propelling her to a larger political platform.

Marinelli is one one many top local Democrats who is already seen as a contender for the future County Executive's race.

The legislature's first woman chair wouldn't commit to future plans. But Marinelli acknowledged the ECIDA post underscores her credentials.

Marinelli said she supports the merger of the ECIDA and the Amherst IDA - and will work to make that happen.

But Marinelli also recognizes that people will be watching how she deals with the county's newly imposed hard control board. The first real test will be reaching agreement on the 2007 budget.

Marinelli said she is ready to work with the fiscal stability authority. But she is also prepared to defend the need for extra jobs for social services, the jail and probation.

Erie County Democratic Party Chairman Len Lenihan is likely to be the one most closely watching how Marinelli succeeds at the art of compromise. After a successful mid-term election, the party is primed to make a strong bid for county executive.

But Lenihan said Marinelli isn't the only one they're watching.

Other possible candidates include County Clerk David Swarts, Amherst Councilman Dan Ward, and Assemblyman Sam Hoyt, to name a few.

Click the "listen" icon above to hear Joyce Kryszak's story now or use your podcasting software to download it to your computer or iPod.