By Jill Terreri
Comptroller Mark Schroeder was noticeably absent from Mayor Byron Brown's state of the city speech on Friday at the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center.
Schroeder's top-level staff was there, but it seems a disagreement between Schroeder and the Brown administration Friday morning left a bad enough taste in Schroeder's mouth that he decided to skip the luncheon, which drew 1,100 people.
"He was having a professional disagreement over policy with the administration," said Schroeder's spokesman, Patrick Curry. "We're working together and moving past it."
Schroeder has said he won't be borrowing as much for capital projects as the Brown administration has requested and the Common Council approved because in past years so much of the money has been borrowed and not spent. This has put him at odds with the administration. Schroeder wants to ensure that the projects are ready to be bid out before the money is borrowed.
"Debt will only be issued for projects for which funds can be spent immediately and quickly," Schroeder said in a Nov. 9 memo to the Common Council. The Council approved $21 million in capital spending after making few changes to Brown's capital budget recommendations, though the debt limit determined by the comptroller is $18.9 million.