Tonawanda News

September 14, 2013

Working Families nomination remains unknown

By Jessica Bagley
The Tonawanda News

CITY OF TONAWANDA — City of Tonawanda Councilman Blake Boyle said he will make a return to city politics if he loses his Second Ward seat in this November's election. 

“I’m not done with city government, but that’s all I’m going to say,” he said, noting that he could make a comeback in two years. 

Boyle, who has served on the council for 12 years, lost in last week's primary to challenger Jackie Smilinich. Boyle had 83 votes to Smilinich’s 106. 

“I was running against a party machine, but I think I had a pretty good showing,” Boyle said.

Boyle could still win the write-in primary for the Working Families nomination and appear on the November ballot. Those votes are set to be counted later this week. 

After the primary, Boyle criticized the Democratic Party for dumping him for a political newcomer. If Boyle does not win the Working Families line, he said he will support Republican Jon Juliano in the race. 

Gayle Syposs, chair of the local Democratic Party, said she was pleased by Smilinich's victory last week. 

“Whenever your selection wins, you’re happy,” she said. “We think Jackie is the better candidate, and think she will do a terrific job on the council.”

In August, Smilinich objected to Boyle’s petition for the Working Families’ endorsement, and the Erie County Board of Elections rejected his efforts due to insufficient signatures, forcing him to mount the write-in campaign.

Juliano, who works at an accounts receivable company, is new to politics and has argued for change on the council.

“We have a lot of stale ideas, and we need someone new and fresh to bring families and businesses back to Tonawanda,” he said.

Contact reporter Jessica Bagley at 693-1000 ext. 4150, or follow her on Twitter @JessicaLBagley.