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Falls City Council will have new chairman

By Charlie Specht

It appears Glenn A. Choolokian will soon become the next chairman of the Niagara Falls City Council.

Choolokian said he expects to be nominated for the position Monday, when the council will officially vote on its new leader. 

Two other council allies -- Bob Anderson and Sam Fruscione -- have pledged their votes to Choolokian, so barring a last-minute surprise the two-time councilman will be the next leader of the council. Just three votes are needed to secure the chairmanship.

Choolokian made headlines earlier this year because of a somewhat secretive pay raise he received from the Niagara Falls Water Board. But his political profile rose in recent months as the lead architect of budget cuts that saved jobs and eliminated a tax hike proposed by Mayor Paul Dyster.

Choolokian, 47, has spent two decades as a buildings and grounds worker at the water plant. I'll have a longer profile of him in the Niagara Weekend section on Sunday. Pick one up.

(On a related note, Councilwoman Kristen M. Grandinetti has announced she will run for re-election this year. She is one of three lawmakers -- Charles Walker and Fruscione are the others -- who are expected to run in November.)

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