Erie County executive joined by Lt. Gov. Hochul, AG James for swearing-in ceremony at Old County Hall
Erie County Executive Mark C. Poloncarz was joined Tuesday by Lt. Gov. Kathleen Hochul, Attorney General Letitia James, numerous Erie County officials, county legislators, departmental commissioners and members of the public as he was sworn-in for his third term by the Hon. Gerald J. Whalen Sr., presiding justice of the Appellate Division Fourth Department.
Poloncarz, a Democrat, is Erie County’s eighth county executive, but only the second Democrat elected to the position in the 59-year history of the office. He and Dennis Gorski, also a Democrat, are the only Erie County executives elected to a third term.
“Eight years ago, we, the people of our community, took back our government and restored it to its rightful purpose: To serve the needs and create a better life for our citizens. We proved you can run a responsible government in a progressive manner, meeting the needs of our community, while maintaining fiscal discipline. We also proved government can lead the way forward when others won’t, or can’t, to create a better community for all,” Poloncarz said. “I believe that government, when run effectively, can be a force of good. It must lead when others will not. Moreover, it has to lead to address the issues we face. We have proven that a government built on the principles of compassion, inclusion, service to others, and that we are all in this together, can succeed. So today we go forth with a renewed sense of dedication to the ideals of what our county can be and with a purpose to create the best Erie County it can be for all.”
A standing-room only crowd witnessed Poloncarz taking the oath of office and then delivering an inaugural address that ranged from his administration’s achievements over the past two terms, such as economic development and job growth as well as public health initiatives, and moved to his vision for the future.
“We will continue to invest in our village, town and city centers to fight the sprawl that wastes resources and instead promote the advancement of clean energy, and the return of walkable, livable communities built to withstand the growing challenges of climate change. Furthermore, we will invest in the creation of ErieNET to improve broadband access and choice in our community, so Erie County is not left behind in the global, technologically rich economy of today,” Poloncarz said. “And we will face head-on other important issues to our community, like the future of the convention center and a new lease with the Buffalo Bills, so we can continue to grow, yet still have the high quality of life we enjoy here.”