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FORMER GRIFFIN CONFIDANT QUITS AFTER A DAY IN WATER AGENCY JOB

John "Scanoots" Scanlon showed up last week for the $56,543-a-year job that the Democrats carved out for him at the Erie County Water Authority.

He lasted one day.

Scanlon, a vice chairman of the Erie County Democratic Party who had served as an unofficial aide to former Mayor James D. Griffin, reported to work last Wednesday and went through some orientation.

Scanlon showed up again Thursday morning but announced he did not want the administrative assistant's job after all.

One source said Scanlon was not willing to learn the computer skills needed for the job, which involves supervising time and attendance of seasonal workers.

"They weren't nice to me," another source quoted Scanlon as saying on the day he left.

But Scanlon discounted both reports.

"It wasn't about the computers," he said Tuesday evening when reached at his South Buffalo home. "I just didn't want to take the job. I just didn't want to handle it at this time."

Robert A. Mendez, the authority's executive director, said Tuesday that Scanlon's written resignation was expected any day.

"The commissioners have budgeted for this position, which we have need for," Mendez said. "There is no leading candidate for the position at this time."

The three commissioners voted July 2 to create the position. George F. Hasiotis, a Democratic appointee to the Water Authority, sponsored the resolution, which was seconded by Robert J. Lichtenthal Jr., the board's vice chairman and a Republican appointee. Mark G. Patton, board chairman and a Democratic appointee, made it unanimous.

The new position was part of the Water Authority's response to County Comptroller Nancy A. Naples' recent criticism of its purchasing practices.

Scanlon had been a close confidant of Griffin and was on the city pay rolls as a night laborer in the Streets Sanitation Department.

G. Steven Pigeon, chairman of the County Democratic Party, pushed for the job for Scanlon, who remains a political force in South Buffalo but, as a party vice chairman, is part of Griffin's team in the contest against Mayor Masiello.

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