Wm. Keith McNall will be the first post-Bill Ross chairman of the Niagara County Legislature.
That move—rumored in local media for several days—became reality Tuesday night as members of the Legislature’s Majority Caucus—which controls three-quarters of the seats in that body—formally elected the Lockport Republican to succeed the long-tenured Ross.
Nominating McNall was Legislature Vice Chairman Clyde L. Burmaster, R-Ransomville, who will continue in that role.
At the Majority’s reorganizational dinner, held at Pane’s Restaurant in North Tonawanda, McNall told fellow lawmakers. “The challenges county government faces today are unending, and I will try to lead our Legislature in the proper direction.”
McNall entered the Legislature in December 2006. He served for 18 years on the Lockport City School District’s Board of Education, with six years as president.
Second-term lawmaker Randy R. Bradt, R-North Tonawanda, was elected majority leader, succeeding Legislator Rick Updegrove, R-Lockport, as the Majority Caucus’s floor leader.
Legislators John Syracuse, R-Newfane, and Michael A. Hill, R-Middleport, will serve as deputy majority leaders. County Attorney Claude A. Joerg will continue in that role, as will Clerk of the Legislature Mary Jo Tamburlin. Public Defender David J. Farrugia will be reappointed to that post, and Gary Billingsley will continue as attorney for the elderly.