Kenny Thompkins, the freshman Niagara Falls council member, has led the charge to eliminate health insurance for future council members.

Moving Niagara Falls Forward: Tale of Two Tourism Plans

May 11, 2017 Staff 0

By Kenny Tompkins;
Niagara Falls City Councilman

I’ve learned as a city councilman that it’s important to set the record straight as often as possible. I’m a firm believer in transparency, which is why I am addressing the online story that emerged suggesting a connection between the American Niagara Hospitality (ANH) project and my move to table the resolution on the Niagara Tourism and Convention Corporation (NTCC) contract. There is no connection between the two, as you can see from the following details that emerged from the May 1 council meeting.

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Niagara Falls Mayor Paul Dyster

Dyster’s involvement in Culinary Institute fiasco raises interesting questions here

May 11, 2017 Frank Parlato 0

By Mike Hudson

How closely was Niagara Falls Mayor Paul Dyster involved in the process that led to the opening of the Niagara County Community College Culinary Institute here?

In numerous statements made over the past eight years, he’s given the impression of being single handedly responsible for the facility.

Alleged bid rigging during the actual construction of the school — housed in what used to the Rainbow Centre Mall — is now the focus of an investigation by the FBI that led NCCC President James Klyczek to resign last week.

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We’re back and better than ever!

May 11, 2017 Staff 0

By Mike Hudson

I’m back. And so is the Niagara Falls Reporter.

We took a brief hiatus in order to conduct a major reorganization that Publisher Frank Parlato and I believe will propel the paper to becoming a national publication, something I’ve always dreamed of.

We’ll be back on the streets with a print edition in a few days. Tony Farina, Jim Hufnagel and I are chomping at the bit to get back in action, as is our most capable Managing Editor Chitra Selvaraj.

The Reporter was founded 17 years ago next month in order to provide an alternative to the pablum being served up by most of the establishment media here on the Niagara Frontier.

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Gov. Andrew Cuomo forgot to include payment in the Seneca Casino contract renewal. But faithful Dyster still has faith and hope.

Cuomo’s incompetence leads to end of casino cash; Dyster still optimistic

May 11, 2017 Staff 0

By Mike Hudson;

In the rush to placate the Seneca Nation of Indians during the casino cash dispute that dragged on for four years starting in 2009, Gov. Andrew Cuomo unilaterally granted a 10-year extension to the compact that allows the tribe to operate casinos in Niagara Falls, Buffalo and Salamanca.

He forgot one thing though. The original compact, signed in 2002, only calls for the tribe to pay the state 25 percent of the casinos’ slot machine revenue for 14 years. Those 14 years are now up, and there is no language in the extension that requires the Senecas to keep paying.

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Cancemi Excited About School District’s Progress, Wants Another Term as Board President

May 11, 2017 Staff 0

By Tony Farina;

Clarification:  Vincent James Cancemi is seeking a third five-year term on the Niagara Falls Board of Education in the May 16th election.  He is the current president of the board and the decision on whether he continues in that role will be up to the board members who vote on the position.  He is expected to seek another year as president if he wins re-election to the board against three challengers.  He has strong community support for his work on the board.

NY Attorney General and former Democratic State Senator Eric Schneiderman

Ortt’s political persecution calls Scheiderman’s ethics into question

May 11, 2017 Staff 0

By Mike Hudson

Republican State Senator Rob Ortt
Republican State Senator Rob Ortt

In one of the most blatantly political prosecutions in the state’s long history, New York Attorney General and former Democratic state senator Eric Schneiderman is going after war hero and current Republican state Senator Rob Ortt in the hope of tipping the balance of power in the Senate back to the Democrats.

Currently, there are 62 state senators, with one seat vacant. Should Ortt be convicted he would have to step down, and the Democrats would be left in control of the Senate.

He was indicted on March 23, on charges that his wife Meghan “secretly” received payments totaling around $20,000 from the Niagara County Republican Committee while he served as mayor of North Tonawanda.

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George Maziarz

Politically motivated Maziarz persecution more proof of Schneiderman incompetence

May 11, 2017 Staff 0

By Mike Hudson;

A rat in the woodpile, former county Republican Party chairman Henry Wojtaszek, who switched sides and decided to help former Democratic state senator and current state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman in order to save his own skin, is primarily responsible for the current five count felony indictment against long time former state senator George Maziarz, the Niagara Falls Reporter has learned.

“He’s been cooperating with the government authorities all along,” Wojtaszek’s defense attorney, Patrick Brown told reporters. “We expect that to continue.”

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Smelly Problem in LaSalle

May 11, 2017 Staff 0

According to our correspondent: The businesses on 56th St. near Niagara Falls Blvd. have been experiencing a strong sewer gas smell getting in the buildings for several months.
It has been getting particularly obnoxious in the last two weeks, to the point that businesses have to leave their doors open during the day to air the buildings out.
Repeated calls to the city sewer authority have produced no results, the last call made yesterday they claimed to be figuring out whose responsibility it is.
The DEC claims that Allied Waste on Niagara Falls Blvd is working on a fix.
Who do we contact to get some results? As bad as it was this morning, businesses we be at the point where their employees will not be able to go in their buildings soon.

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Delaware North's casinos aren't in luxury resorts, they're in downtrodden midwest locations like this spartan gaming floor outside of economically depressed Davenport, Iowa.

Low pay, long hours, few promotions, freezer sex all part of Delaware North employment experience

April 7, 2017 Staff 0
 Delaware North's casinos aren't in luxury resorts, they're in downtrodden midwest locations like this spartan gaming floor outside of economically depressed Davenport, Iowa.
Delaware North’s casinos aren’t in luxury resorts, they’re in downtrodden midwest locations like this spartan gaming floor outside of economically depressed Davenport, Iowa.

Buffalo-based mega-concessionaire Delaware North already plays a major role in the local economy – feeding the eight million tourists who visit Niagara Falls State Park every year at the expense of the handful of restaurants and diners that still exist in downtown Niagara Falls. Recent developments indicate that the global hospitality, casino, resort and fast food giant is poised to assume an even larger role here, so we decided to take a closer look at the business practices and reputation of the vast multinational conglomerate before it further muscles its way into Niagara Falls.

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Community Memorial Day Parade 2017 Kicks into Gear

April 7, 2017 Staff 0

By Kenny Tompkins

 Niagara Falls Councilman

Now that winter is over in Niagara Falls, planning for the 2017 Community Memorial Day parade has kicked into high gear. 

The date is set for Saturday, May 27, at 10 am. 

We’ll start at City Market and march down Pine Avenue to the Niagara Falls Veteran’s Memorial.

Last year if you recall, we pulled together a 70-unit parade in a matter of weeks following an announcement that it would be canceled. This year’s event has been several months in the making, as we’ve worked on gathering the funds needed to pay for bands and expenses, while inviting groups and others to be part of this parade to honor those who gave all for our freedoms.

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NIAGARA FALLS POLICE BLASTS CITY COUNCIL FOR SUPPORTING RAISING AGE OF JUVENILE OFFENDERS

April 7, 2017 Staff 0

By Mike Lee

President President-Patrol Division Niagara Falls Police Club

On March 20, 2017 the Niagara Falls City Council voted to adopt New York State resolution# 17 as it relates to Subpart J of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s budget bill. The city council voted 4-0 in favor of supporting the change for raising the age of criminal responsibility among youthful offenders.

Councilman Kenny Tompkins abstained requesting more information prior to casting his  vote.

The Police Conference of NY, which represents the union of Police Officers throughout New York State, has raised several issues as it relates to this proposed bill. Issues that some members of our city council failed to explore prior to voting in favor of this resolution.

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Scenic Woods stretching from the East River shoreline westward to Sturbridge Lane

Parks and Threats to our space

April 7, 2017 Staff 0
=&0=& =&1=& Since I have been Supervisor of Grand Island, I have met with developers who have come to my office trying to hawk the white elephant gift of sprawl as a solution to Grand Island’s problems.  Let me say it here clearly, “I DON’T WANT IT.”  You can keep your cloned apartment complexes and cut rate subdivisions. We don’t have the infrastructure to support it. And further, there is no apparent need or desire to have it. I don’t have droves of people coming in demanding more apartments. Quite the opposite.

Let me also say this clearly, “I did not, and do not support the apartments on Grand Island Blvd.” That was  underway before I took office.

I hope the apartments are a success, but I miss the green space that was there. Those apartments (no matter how fancy they claim to be) were a mistake. It’s too big, too costly, and poorly conceived. I’m not just against superfluous apartments. I don’t want big box stores covering Grand Island either. I would support (and am actively trying to find) a grocery store that would come here. But you can keep Walmart. Would a few chains make Grand Island a more convenient place to live? Maybe. But at what cost to our existing stores and our town? The path to success for Grand Island is keeping it unique and protecting its green space and not mimic the failed development schemes of other cities and towns in America.

Master Plan

Some people think a Master Plan means a plan to carve up the Island for developers. Or they think we should sell out to the big box chains.

I have seen the circles of decaying apartment complexes and strip malls in  Phoenix and Houston. Once they build one complex, they are off to the next, with each layer of development leaving its predecessor behind to decay.

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