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Wednesday, February 25, 2015
City of Lockport Community Development Director Chuck Bell announced this evening that he would be leaving his post in April to take a position in the private sector. (ENP FILE PHOTO BY HEATHER N. GRIMMER)


Lockport Community Development Director Chuck Bell announced this evening that he will leave his position with the city.

Bell, who came to the city from North Tonawanda, told the Common Council of his decision, which he made in order to take a position in the private sector.

"I got an opportunity I had to take," Bell told East Niagara Post via phone this evening.

That opportunity is with H. Sicherman & Co., a company that helps businesses get economic development funds, IDA loans and the like.

"We're going to try to get a bigger footprint and grow the company," Bell said.

Mayor Anne McCaffrey, when asked for a statement, said Bell "will certainly be missed. He's done a great job for the city advancing our planning and development goals. I'm not surprised that he got a private sector offer. He's very talented and has a lot to offer. I'm glad that the city benefitted from his work the past few years and we wish him well in his new position."

Bell said he plans on staying in his position until April to allow for a smooth transition. Asked if he was going to assist in picking his successor, Bell reserved comment. He had kind words, however, for Brian Smith, who has worked as his right-hand man since being hired as the Vice President of Business Development for the GLDC.

"Certainly, Brian is a tremendous resource," Bell said. "Brian is going to be obviously a key player" in economic development going forward.

For his part, Smith praised Bell, calling him "the best in the business." He called his planned departure "a loss for Lockport," but speculated he would "find a way to stay involved."

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