by Timothy Chipp
Niagara Gazette — The Niagara Town Board has a new deputy supervisor.
Supervisor Steve Richards appointed Councilman Danny Sklarski to the position of second in command during the board's reorganization meeting Wednesday, a position last held by Councilman Marc Carpenter.
Richards said he made the change thinking of the town's political future.
"I feel like I'm going to run for one more term," he said. "That'll bring me to 65, when I will retire. In the meantime, I want to put each of these guys here into the position. I want each one of these guys groomed for the job, since they're likely to want my job."
The position, which comes with a stipend of $3,500 each year, is responsible for filling in for the town's chief executive officer during vacations, including signing for bills and payments, and running monthly meetings.
The deputy also would take over town operations should the supervisor be unable to perform the duties of the office or should he step down or be removed from office.
Richards said he chose to begin his rotation with Sklarski, a former Niagara County legislator, because he's the second senior guy.
"Danny brings knowledge of the county government, which we partner with often," Richards said. "And he was here before he spent 10 years on the county. He served as my deputy then."
Sklarski's experience makes him a good fit for the job, according to Carpenter. He said Sklarski is a fitting successor to him in the role.
"He's well aware of what it's about," Carpenter said. "He's very familiar with the duties. I'm happy for Danny and I wish him good luck."
Carpenter isn't upset about the change. He said he's come to terms with not holding the position, which he'd served in for the past two years.
"I'm OK with that," he said. "I had the opportunity to be a deputy and I understand Steve wanted to spread the position around. Danny's a good person to fill the position."
At the meeting, Richards also appointed Councilman Charles Teixeira police commissioner for 2013, a position which, like deputy supervisor, comes with a stipend of $3,500 per year.