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Schroeder on Council changes: It's a 'good thing'

Comptrollers 12.30.13

Former City Comptrollers Anthony Nanula, Joel Giambra, Andrew SanFlippo and Comptroller Mark Schroeder this morning in a Hall of Comptrollers ceremony. New portraits of Nanula, Giambra and SanFlippo were unveiled. 

By Jill Terreri

Comptroller Mark Schroeder, who watches city finances from his 12th-floor offices and is a former member of the state Assembly, is thought to have ambitions to one day run for higher office.  

I asked him about the changes on the 13th floor, specifically the impending election of Ellicott Council Member Darius Pridgen to the Council presidency. Pridgen, if elected on Thursday by a majority of his Council peers, would assume the executive suite on the second floor if Mayor Byron W. Brown decides to leave office in the next two years (the term length for Council presidents.) As Council president, Pridgen would be in a very good position to run for mayor if Brown leaves office early , or even if he does not.

Schroeder said the change at the top of the Council was good, and that an opportunity to transition the job every two years is called for in the city charter. 

"Unlike Albany, we've had a variety of different Council presidents," said Schroeder, whose battles with Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver are well documented. "I think it's a good thing. I think it's good to have fresh ideas." 

Schroeder declined to weigh in on the possibility that Brown might leave office early - there have been chatter that the mayor could leave to join Gov. Andrew Cuomo's team and run for lieutenant governor, but so far it appears to be just idle speculation.

Cuomo is right in saying that there shouldn't be political talk until 2014 - the year Cuomo runs for reelection - Schroeder said.  

Brown is beginning his third term on Wednesday. Pridgen says he has support from each of his eight Council colleagues for the presidency. He would replace Lovejoy Council Member Richard Fontana, who has held the presidency for two years.  

Schroeder this morning presided over a ceremony honoring past comptrollers, which included Joel Giambra (1990-99), Anthony Nanula (2000-03), and Andrew SanFlippo (2003-11). A drawing of each of the former comptrollers was unveiled in the hallway outside the Department of Audit and Control on the 12th floor.  


Byron Brown | City of Buffalo | Common Council | Darius Pridgen | Mark Schroeder
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About Politics Now

Robert J. McCarthy

Robert J. McCarthy

A native of Schenectady, Robert J. McCarthy came to The Buffalo News in 1982 following a six-year stint at the Olean Times Herald. He is a graduate of St. Bonaventure University, and has been covering local, state and national politics since 1992.

Tom Precious

Tom Precious

Tom Precious joined The Buffalo News in 1997 as bureau chief at the state Capitol, where he covers everything from statewide politics and state government fiscal affairs to health care, environmental and municipal government matters. Prior to The News, he worked for news outlets in Albany and Washington, DC.

Jill Terreri

Jill Terreri

Jill Terreri is an Amherst native and has covered politics and government in upstate New York since 2003. She joined The Buffalo News in 2012 and covers City Hall.

@jillterreri |

Jerry Zremski

Jerry Zremski

Jerry Zremski, The Buffalo News Washington bureau chief, has reported from the nation's capital since 1989 after joining The News as a business reporter in 1984. A graduate of Syracuse University, Zremski is a former Nieman fellow in journalism at Harvard University. In 2007, he served as president of the National Press Club.

@JerryZremski |