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Jankowiak hopes to stay in top spot

Cheektowaga Deputy Supervisor James J. Jankowiak ran the Town Board meeting Tuesday night, and he hopes to keep directing them for the rest of the year. As deputy supervisor, he filled the seat left open when Dennis H. Gabryszak became an assemblyman Monday.

The Town Board is expected to appoint a new supervisor at its Jan. 16 meeting. But first, the Cheektowaga Democratic Committee meets Monday night to recommend a candidate for the position.

Democratic Chairman Frank Max said he still has more people to confer with, but "everything has shaken out" on what he called a comprehensive selection process. He said he has received encouraging words from committee members on the process.

"They've complimented me on opening up the process," he said.

Max has met with sitting board members to gauge their interest in the top job. It's the first part of a busy election year; the person appointed supervisor will serve until the end of this year and would have to run in November for a new four-year term.

"Since 1973, the Town Board has accepted the recommendation of the Democratic Committee," Jankowiak said following Tuesday's meeting. "I hope to be the appointed town supervisor."

Through the years he has garnered the support of many committee members, and he hopes to receive the support of four board members as well. Should the person selected for supervisor be a sitting board member, he would have to resign his seat and get four votes from the remaining five board members.

Jankowiak jumped into the job Tuesday morning, meeting with the highway superintendent over department issues, and expects more meetings throughout the week.

"I like doing the day-to-day things," he said. "You need someone there. The little mountains you solve on a day-to-day basis."

Council Member Patricia A. Jaworowicz threw out a challenge to her fellow board members Tuesday night to make an "honest, open and forthright effort" to conduct town business in an open manner and include residents in the process.


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