Primary races are set Tuesday in eight towns, including races for supervisor in Newfane, Pendleton, Porter and Wilson. For the story on Wilson, see Page NC1.
William Amacher, Robert Blackman and Debra Kroening will be fighting it out to win the Republican line for two seats on the Town Board.
Both seats are four-year terms. Blackman's seat is up for election. He's currently finishing his third term as councilman. The other seat is open as a result of the death of Councilman Robert L. McCollum in June. Kroening is McCollum's daughter, and she said serving on the Town Board is something her father always wanted her to do.
"I would like to see our spending kept down so our taxes are kept low," said Kroening, who said her people skills also could benefit residents.
Amacher is Planning Board chairman and is running on the Independence line in November.
Blackman, also running on the Independence line, said if re-elected his focus would be taxes.
A GOP contest for supervisor matches incumbent Eric P. Krueger against Timothy R. Horanburg, a former supervisor.
Krueger, seeking his third term, has minor-party lines for November, while the Democratic line will be blank. Krueger, who serves on the IDA board, said his tenure has seen the relocation of Lockport Mattress Co. to the former Lockport Felt plant at Transit and Godfrey roads. Also, a water main over Eighteenmile Creek has been replaced, Sunset Orchards has been approved for expansion, and two new sewer lift stations have been built. "We've been able to reduce overall spending the last two budgets," he said.
"I just haven't seen anything happen the last two years, and I want to see something happen again. I want to see business, small business," said Horanburg, county parks commissioner and assistant director of emergency services since leaving as supervisor almost a decade ago.
He's now working for Hagemeyer North America, using his experience as a fire investigator to maintain the fire safety systems at the Occidental Chemical plant in Niagara Falls.
Horanburg also said he supports Paul A. Conrad and Anthony Fazzolari in a GOP Town Board primary against incumbent Robert A. Pettit.
> Town of Niagara
Primary races for town justice pit incumbent John P. Teixeira, 69, a registered Democrat, against newcomer Suzanne Marie C. Fulle , 47, a registered Republican, on five lines: Republican, Democratic, Independence, Conservative and Working Families.
In the Town Board race for the Republican line, Democratic incumbents Michael J. Ross, 48, and Marc M. Carpenter, 55, are competing with Jenelle L. Messer, 32, a Republican and newcomer to the political arena. The two top vote-getters get the GOP line.
Ross, a town resident for 23 years and Town Board member for four years, works at Ferro Electronic Materials as a mill operator. He said he would like to "keep taxes down, keep water rates down, continue on to the second phase of our park."
Carpenter works for GM Powertrain, Town of Tonawanda. He said he is running for the board again after 16 years "to try to maintain and improve the quality of life in our town, to attract new businesses and to try and maintain a stable tax base."
Messer, a dispatcher for the Niagara County Sheriff's Department, said, "I think that the town could use a woman's perspective, a younger person's perspective, and I think that with my experience and my education I can only do good things for our town."
In the board race for the Democratic line, Ross and Carpenter face fellow Democrats John P. Adams, 46, and Robert A. Clark, 30. Again, two slots are open.
Adams, a business rep for the Painters/Allied Trades Union 65 in Niagara Falls, said he's running to improve the quality of life for town residents. He ran for the Niagara County Legislature two years ago but lost to Danny W. Sklarski, D-Town of Niagara.
Clark said he's running "for more of an open government, to get answers when you ask, instead of waiting and never knowing what is going on." He said Town Board meetings should last longer than "seven minutes." He did acknowledge that the board holds two work sessions each month prior to the regular meetings.
Clark, a contractor for Adelphia until recently, decided to be a stay-at-home father and will return to school.
Incumbent James A. Riester, 54, and Richard A. Brauer, 57, square off in the Democratic primary for supervisor.
Riester has been supervisor two years. Before that, he served for eight years on the Town Board. He is a math teacher.
"We've cut the taxes, we streamlined government to make it more efficient," he said. "We need to control residential growth and encourage the right kind of commercial growth."
Brauer, who owns Brauer's Restaurant, formerly served 14 years as a Town Board member and two years as supervisor, but he was defeated for re-election in November 2003 by Riester. He already has sewn up the GOP line.
"I'm still a Democrat, but the Republicans approached me and asked me to run, and I told them I would . . ." Brauer said.
Incumbent Independence Party candidate Terry J. Pienta, 53, is running against Republican Kathleen A. Anthony, 58, for the GOP line for town clerk.
Two Town Board seats and the supervisor's seat are up for grabs.
Incumbent Merton K. Wiepert, who is also running on the Independence line, is finishing his second term as supervisor and squares off in the GOP primary against William McLaughlin.
Wiepert had previously served as councilman for 18 years. He could not be reached to comment.
McLaughlin ran an accounting business in Lockport for 40 years. He served as the chair of the town Zoning and Planning boards in the 1970s. He also is running on the Independence line. If elected, he said he would like to see the town combine services with other towns to promote better fiscal responsibility.
Republicans will vote in primaries for Town Board. Three of five board candidates will advance. Contenders are incumbents Lee M. Criswell, L. Kent Kilgore and Calvin W. Rhoney and challengers Samuel R. Vitello and Richard J. Lang.
Criswell, who owns a milk hauling business, said he worked to get a $100,000 grant for the town cemetery. Kilgore, deputy town supervisor, called for completing the town's master plan and luring more light industry. Rhoney, a retired sheriff's investigator, called for completed water and sewer lines in the town and making Route 31 a business development area.
Vitello, a retired Lockport technology teacher, called for funding sewer projects through grants and Lang, a retired state environmental conservation officer, said the town needs to find a grant for a new sewage plant.
Contenders for two town judgeships are incumbents Deborah A. Carpenter and Gregory A. Bass and challenger Margaret M. Raduns. None of them are lawyers. Carpenter is seeking her second term and Bass, his fifth term.
Raduns, who works in the shipping department at Wilson Greatbatch in Alden, has a part-time job answering the YWCA's domestic violence hotline, which is one of the reasons she became interested in running for justice.
All three Town Board candidates will vie for the Republican endorsement. Two seats are up for election this year.
Perry M. Ziegler, the newcomer, also has the endorsement of the local Democratic Party. He is the owner and operator of Pelco Equipment in Buffalo.
Arthur P. Palmer is seeking his third consecutive term on the board. Palmer has the endorsements of the Independent and Conservative parties. He runs A-K Mobile Home Service on River Road.
Kenneth Retzlaff has served 24 years on the board at various times. The owner of his own farm, Retzlaff also has the Independent and Conservative endorsements.
Niagara correspondents Thad Komorowski and Angelica Morrison contributed to this story.
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