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Rodriguez stands alone at block club meeting

By Jill Terreri

Republican mayoral candidate Sergio Rodriguez alerted reporters on Tuesday that he and Mayor Byron W. Brown were scheduled to appear that evening in front of a block club in the city's north east corner. 

The appearance could have marked the only venue where both candidates would appear before the Nov. 5 election. Brown has not agreed to any upcoming debates (Rodriguez participated in pre-primary debates, which also included Brown and Democrat Bernie Tolbert) and it's not clear they will discuss the issues one-on-one in any venue before general election ballots are cast. 

But Brown didn't attend the Judge's Row Block Club meeting at St. Michael's church near Kensington and Eggert, and a spokesman said he did not commit to going, though Rodriguez's campaign noted that the block club felt confident enough that the mayor would be there that they promoted the appearance on its web site

Rodriguez had the floor to himself, and talked about crime and education, jobs and a residency requirement for police officers, according to WBFO's Mike Desmond. 

Continue reading "Rodriguez stands alone at block club meeting" »

Conservative Party outlines casino opposition

By Tom Precious

ALBANY -- The state Conservative Party is just one of the groups pushing against a plan by Gov. Andrew Cuomo and lawmakers to dramatically expand casino gambling in New York. The proposal is on the November ballot for voters statewide to consider. Besides opposing the growth of gambling, the party also characterizes as "deceptive'' the rosy wording of the casino amendment on the ballot.

Here is the party's official take out this morning on the proposed change to the state constitution allowing up to seven new casinos in the state:

The Conservative Party recommends a NO vote on Proposal Number One.

The proposed amendment to section 9 of article 1 of the Constitution would allow the Legislature to authorize up to seven casinos in New York State for the legislated purposes of promoting job growth, increasing aid to schools, and permitting local governments to lower property tax es through revenues generated. Shall the amendment be approved?

The Conservative Party of New York State, since its inception in 1962, has promoted job growth through lower taxes, encouraged localities to lower taxes and believe that schools should provi de a solid education for our youth. The Conservative Party has been consistent in its legislative program calling for the need to reduce taxes and promote job growth and has stressed if we fail to provide jobs and remain a high tax state, we will lose our citizens to states with less taxes.

The proposed amendment, while it paints a rosy picture, will not accomplish the stated goal. Casino gambling will produce new problems as evidenced in the areas where casino s are currently located. In 1966, the Legislature told New York citizens, if they approved the Lottery, their school taxes would be reduced. Every year school taxes go up, despite the millions people spend on lottery tickets. It is time to close the money spigot that gives the Legislature more money to spend.

 

New vendor in the City Hall cafeteria

By Jill Terreri

The audience for this post is likely narrow, but it will be useful to anyone who works around Niagara Square and eats lunch.  

Sue's New York Deli is taking over operations in the City Hall cafeteria, under terms the Common Council is set to approve when it meets at 2 p.m. today. 

It appears, from the restaurant's menu from its other operations, that more healthy options will be offered in the cafeteria. Sue's has locations on Main Street in the theater district and at 130 S. Elmwood Ave., next to City Hall.  

Public Works Commissioner Steve Stepniak didn't know on Monday when the service would switch over, but said that the new vendor has done a walk-through and wants to bring its own equipment in. 

Continue reading "New vendor in the City Hall cafeteria" »

Brown, Rodriguez scheduled to appear together

By Jill Terreri 

Mayor Byron Brown and his Republican challenger, Sergio Rodriguez, have not scheduled any one-on-one debates before the general election.

But the candidates are scheduled to appear together tonight, according to a release from the Rodriguez campaign. (Rodriguez wants to debate, Brown does not.)   

The Judges Row Block Club is scheduled to meet at 7 p.m. at St. Michael's Church, 81 Burke Drive, near the Kensington and Eggert intersection. 

It could be the only time the two remaining mayoral candidates are in the same room before the Nov. 5 election. 

Continue reading "Brown, Rodriguez scheduled to appear together" »

Tuesday's must-reads from Washington

By Jerry Zremski

 WASHINGTON -- Of course, today's top story in the nation's capital is the mass shooting at the Navy Yard. And while much has been written and said about it already, The Washington Post tries to answer the question everyone is asking: How did the shooter get guns into a military facility?

Meanwhile, and on a very different issue, USA Today tells us that for millions, Obamacare will mean health insurance that costs less than $100 a month.

Lastly, The New York Times takes a look at Janet Yellen, who's now likely to be appointed as the next chairman of the Federal Reserve.

 

Appellate Division upholds ballot authorization

  
   By Robert J. McCarthy

   The Appellate Division of State Supreme Court has upheld a lower court decision allowing the authorization of two non-Democratic County Legislature candidates to run on the Democratic line on election ballots this November following the claim of a missed filing deadline.

   Erie County Democratic Chairman Jeremy J. Zellner announced the appellate ruling, saying it is a win victory for the party in the controversy.

   "The Democratic Party believes that voters deserve a choice at the ballot box and we are committed to preservng the pubic's right to fair and open elections," he said.

   Republican Elections Commissioner Ralph M. Mohr filed the appeal of an August decision by State Supreme Court Justice Henry J. Nowak dismissing the GOP lawsuit that sought invalidation of the legislative candidacies of William C. Conrad III against Republican incumbent Kevin R. Hardwick in District 4, and of Alan K. Getter against Republican incumbent Edward A. Rath III in District 6. The case also involves 16 candidates on the town level.

   Republicans claimed the Democrats had failed to postmark their authorizations allowing candidates registered with another party to run on their line by the July 15 deadline, while Democrats submitted a Postal Service affidavit pointing to post office error as the reason.

  Nowak ruled that a “timely mailing can be demonstrated absent a timely postmark.”

Monday's must-reads from Washington

By Jerry Zremski

WASHINGTON -- With the Syria situation returning to the back burner for the time being at least, today's top reads turn our attention back to the economy and domestic politics.

First and foremost, the Los Angeles Times reports that more Americans now consider themselves members of the lower class.

And with big battles on the budget and the debt ceiling looming, The Washington Post notes that both President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner enter negotiations in a weakened position.

Lastly, Politico notes that a pattern has emerged: President Obama does his no friends no favors.

A lot could happen in Amherst

Check out today's post on the Amherst first blog about all the crazy election scenarios that could pop up in Amherst come November.

And don't forget to read all about Erie County's suburban elections in today's story in The Buffalo News.

Rodriguez's economic development plans

By Jill Terreri

Republican mayoral candidate Sergio Rodriguez released a five-page economic development plan today, emphasizing greater hiring opportunities for women and minorities.

He continued to press his case that the construction around town is not helping people in neighborhoods and said he would make sure that hiring "goals" for women and minorities would be turned into requirements in his admininstration. 

Continue reading "Rodriguez's economic development plans" »

Video: Were laws broken by local group that contributed to campaigns?

A new state panel that will probe claims of public corruption is being asked to look into a political action committee that helped finance local primary campaigns. The News' Bob McCarthy tells Brian Meyer a familiar name has been a key contributor:

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About Politics Now

Robert J. McCarthy

Robert J. McCarthy

A native of Schenectady, Robert J. McCarthy came to The Buffalo News in 1982 following a six-year stint at the Olean Times Herald. He is a graduate of St. Bonaventure University, and has been covering local, state and national politics since 1992.

rmccarthy@buffnews.com


Tom Precious

Tom Precious

Tom Precious joined The Buffalo News in 1997 as bureau chief at the state Capitol, where he covers everything from statewide politics and state government fiscal affairs to health care, environmental and municipal government matters. Prior to The News, he worked for news outlets in Albany and Washington, DC.

tprecious@buffnews.com


Jill Terreri

Jill Terreri

Jill Terreri is an Amherst native and has covered politics and government in upstate New York since 2003. She joined The Buffalo News in 2012 and covers City Hall.

@jillterreri | jterreri@buffnews.com


Jerry Zremski

Jerry Zremski

Jerry Zremski, The Buffalo News Washington bureau chief, has reported from the nation's capital since 1989 after joining The News as a business reporter in 1984. A graduate of Syracuse University, Zremski is a former Nieman fellow in journalism at Harvard University. In 2007, he served as president of the National Press Club.

@JerryZremski | jzremski@buffnews.com

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