|Kevin's Proposed Solution
GAUGHAN CHALLENGES EVERY LOCAL GOVERNMENT
TO ELIMINATE TWO PUBLIC OFFICES
Will Appear Before 45 Town, Village, & City Governments to Propose Change
Buffalo, NY - Kevin Gaughan's effort to reduce the size and cost of local government is coming soon to a town, village, or city near you. Beginning this Monday night before the Village of Lancaster board of trustees, Gaughan will ask 45 local governments to consider reducing the size of their legislature by two members.
Gaughan recently published a study that revealed that Erie County has more elected officials than any other like-sized community in America. With 439 politicians presiding over 45 local governments, the Buffalo region has twice as many politicians as Indianapolis, Indiana, five times more than Charlotte, North Carolina, and eight times more than the Baltimore, Maryland region.
"We've lost over 40,000 residents in recent years," Gaughan asserted, "and endured the painful closing of hospitals, churches, public libraries, beaches, and pools. All because our economy lacks the strength to support them. And yet our political community remains unchanged."
In the wake of Gaughan's study, reform momentum has emerged as the Town of Tonawanda and the Village of Depew recently joined Buffalo and Erie County in reducing the size of their legislative bodies. In addition, Orchard Park, Hamburg, and Cheektowaga residents have urged their town boards to consider Gaughan's proposal of eliminating 2 legislative seats through attrition. Gaughan hopes to build on that momentum by challenging the remaining jurisdictions to cut back as well.
"Our study found that we have a first-rate local government system that's creating a 10th rate local economy," Gaughan," said. "And I'm proposing a reasoned and reasonable solution to the problem."
Gaughan's study (available at www.thecost.org) was conducted in collaboration with students from the SUNY at Buffalo School of Law, and was supported by the John R. Oishei Foundation, the Margaret L. Wendt Foundation, and the Paul W. Koessler Foundation.
The presentations will run through February of next year. In each locality, Gaughan will present his findings to local officials and make his recommendation for reform. All of the presentations are open to the public and will take place during regularly scheduled town or village board meetings in each locality's municipal building.
Following are the dates and times of upcoming presentations:
Village of Lancaster, Monday, November 26, 8:00 pm; Town of Amherst, Monday, December 3, 7:00 pm; Town of Orchard Park, Wednesday, December 5, 7:00 pm; Village of East Aurora, Monday, December 10, 6:30 pm; Town of Cheektowaga, Monday December 17, 7:00 pm; Town of Lancaster, Monday, January 7, 8:00 pm.