A proposal to reduce the size of the area’s remaining seven-member town board to five will be introduced tonight at a regularly scheduled work session of the Cheektowaga Town Board, according to freshman Republican Councilwoman Angela M. Wozniak.
Wozniak announced her intention to present a motion calling for the downsizing of the Cheektowaga Town Board to four councilmembers and the supervisor’s position at tonight’s 6 p.m. work session in the council office conference room of Cheektowaga Town Hall, 3301 Broadway.
“I believe that downsizing our bloated town board to five members will be a step in the right direction,” Wozniak said in her statement, adding: “Downsizing the town board will empower residents to hold their elected officials accountable.”
“If the board is reduced to five members, it will be far more difficult for board members to hide with the crowd on such poor decision-making as one of many.”
It remained unclear whether there was any will among the other board members, who are all Democrats, to consider downsizing.
Wozniak, since her November 2011 election, has been a thorn in the side of the Democratic juggernaut that previously had been wholly under single-party control for nearly 20 years.
Although many of her proposals have died before reaching a vote for failure to garner a “second” when introduced, Wozniak insists voters elected her on her promises to reform town government.
Since taking office just more than a year ago, Wozniak:
• Called for amending the town’s Code of Ethics to prohibit party officials from working as paid town employees.
•Proposed to limit elected town officials to a pair of four-year terms.
• Proposed appropriating about $129,000 from a town fund balance kitty of nearly $20 million to balance the town’s $86.8 million 2013 budget without a tax increase.
All three motions failed to win any approval from fellow board members.
On her latest motion, downsizing, Wozniak pointed out that town, by eliminating the salaries and benefits of the two town board members, could save “no less than $52,134 and potentially as high as $88.275 per year” – or, more than $800,000 over a decade’s time.
Wozniak pointed out the board has already been operating successfully with six members, adding that Councilmember Patricia A. Jaworowicz, who has been ill and absent from town board meetings since August, shows that “the board has proven its ability to operate successfully less one member.”
“Cheektowaga has the largest town board out of its three neighboring towns – Lancaster, Amherst and West Seneca. It’s time for the Cheektowaga Town Board to become more efficient, save tax dollars and become more effective in their work,” she said in her statement.