Niagara Gazette


May 10, 2007

ERIE COUNTY BLOG: Candidates line up for Legislature

Several candidates running for Erie County Legislature in November, when all 15 seats are up for election, showed up at Thursday’s meeting.

Joel Feroleto, running against Legislature Chairperson Lynn Marinelli in the 11th district, was shaking hands and familiarizing himself with the Legislature’s business.

The North Buffalo resident says he decided to run on the Democratic ticket when Marinelli was making her now-ceased push for Erie County executive, but he isn’t intimidated by the 10-year incumbent.

“Voters deserve a choice,” he said.

Feroleto graduated from St. Joseph’s Collegiate Institute in 2000 and got his bachelor’s from Canisius College in 2004, where he’s finishing up a master’s degree. He worked as a staff member for Antoine Thompson when the state senator was a Buffalo councilman. He says that though he doesn’t expect Thompson’s endorsement, it would be nice if he stayed neutral. He’s had already held one fundraiser, and called himself “very well-financed.”

Feroleto doesn’t expect the Democratic Committee’s endorsement. He plans to force a primary for the Democratic line in September.

His mother’s son

Ed Rath III, the son of Mary Lou Rath, was also in attendance. The Republican is running for the seat being vacated by Barry Weinstein, R-Williamsville, and has been endorsed by the county’s Republican Committee and Weinstein, virtually ensuring his victory. He says he’s running on three points — making county services more efficient, continuing to reform the county charter and reducing taxes.

“I’ve been within the 15th District talking to residents about issues that affect them,” he said.

Rath III said Brad Rowles Jr., son of the Town of Tonawanda Highway Superintendent of the same name, plans to challenge Tom Loughran for the 14th district seat, which touches on the Town of Tonawanda.

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