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Niagara Falls decides it needs a public information officer

The Niagara Falls City Council voted 4-1 Wednesday to create a public information officer position with a $42,000 annual salary.

"The current Covid-19 situation has shined a bright light on the need for a Public Information Officer position to provide timely and critical information utilizing the news media and the various social media outlets," Mayor Robert M. Restaino wrote to the Council.

Former Mayor Paul A. Dyster had a $51,501-a-year special assistant who handled media work, among other duties.

"We voted to eliminate this position in the last budget and these guys who claim to be fiscal hawks voted to put it back in," said Councilman William Kennedy II, who voted against the new job.

"The city can do a better job of communicating with the media, with the public, with the taxpayers," Republican Council President Christopher P. Voccio said. He said other budget cuts "offset the low salary this public information officer will be paid."

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