Security guards stood watch as resident after resident addressed the Lackawanna City Council Monday to express discontent over 3rd Ward Councilmember William R. Leonard, who was forced to resign for violating the city’s residency requirement.
Last Thursday, Leonard admitted to Erie County Court Judge James Bargnesi he voted in a 2017 Lackawanna election even though he lived in West Seneca. Leonard listed a Ridgewood Circle address in Lackawanna's 3rd Ward, while residing in West Seneca.
"He was a liar, he was convicted of fraud," said the Rev. Mark E. Blue, president of the NAACP's Buffalo branch. "The Council did not follow the protocol of the City Charter. Something needs to be done."
First Ward resident Amira Muflahi demanded Leonard return stipends he received while serving as councilmember.
The council did not act on the vacancy, despite a plea from Mayor Geoffrey M. Szymanski to make a timely appointment.