Erie County Councilman Leone reflects on 42-year career

Dec 29, 2019 312

BY: Matthew Rink

It was election night 1976. Fiore Leone and the others who had gathered at the office of District Judge Larry R. Fabrizi found themselves on the losing end of the ballot. Neither Leone's name nor the names of anyone else he was with were up for a vote that day. But they had waged a campaign against the establishment of a home-rule charter for Erie County — a charter that voters approved.

“We're there, we're drinking, we're all having drinks. We're half in the bag,” recalls Leone, who would have been 43 at the time. “I said to them, 'You know, I never read that home-rule charter, let me read that home-rule charter.' “So I started looking at it, reading, and in it, it said you only had one meeting a month and that was for $3,500 a year (about $13,600 today),” he continued. “I said, 'I could do that standing on my ear.'”

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