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Thread: Free Buffalo/Free Niagara 2005 Agenda

  1. #1
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    Free Buffalo/Free Niagara 2005 Agenda

    Free Buffalo--Free Niagara
    Agenda for 2005

    I. Policy reports by staff—“Follow the money”

    A. Public sector/private sector wage/benefit gap
    B. Excessive State Pensions
    C. Medicaid

    II. Projects for citizen-volunteers--“If you want a job done right….”

    A. Deconstruct/reconstruct the Erie County budget
    B. Deconstruct/reconstruct the Niagara County budget
    C. Critique of Hevesi Report: was it a political document?

    III. Projects for Student-Interns

    A. The Men Behind the Curtain—a study of who runs Buffalo.
    B. Who are those guys?—a profile of the members of the Waterfront Commission.
    C. Where did all the pension checks go?—A study of where New York State pensions checks go and what it means.

    IV. News Alerts—brief reports on issues of current interest—example—retaliation against citizen-activists

    V. Forums—example—should we move toward a council-manager form of local government?

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    Free Buffalo now has copies of the Erie and Niagara County budgets. Getting the Erie budget was a hassle.

    Anyway, those who would like to help us review and re-do these budgets, please let us know.

    We're at 1535 Hertel at Wellington. 566-7720. Call first; we're not fully staffed yet.

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    And we have three very interesting projects designed for students, as stated above. If you know of any high school or college sudents who might be interested, please ask them to contact us. We're working on getting a formal internship program going with various local colleges.

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    Free Buffalo/Free Niagara Update

    • Critical fundraiser at Shanghai Red’s Thursday from 6-8pm, $100; $175 per couple. Please spread the word through your email lists and blogs, etc. If we have a turnout of 100 people, we will have the funds to stay open the rest of the year and pursue our agenda.
    • Our second Bass Pro News Alert made quite an impact and was read by hundreds of people thus far. It generated much comment on the web but, strangely, our elected officials who received the report are as silent as the Sphinx on how much Bass Pro is spending.
    • We will release an equally controversial News Alert this week and probably one more next week.
    • I’ll be speaking at the Jewish Center and the E. Aurora Kiwanis club this week.
    • We are looking for a printer who can donate services to print a 90-page pamphlet for us, consisting of a compendium of my essays and speeches concerning Free Buffalo. It will include my speech at the first meeting of Free Buffalo which explains the concept and approach. The title is “Free Buffalo! And Other Controversial Essays”. We’ll sell it for $5 and go for mass sales.
    • We have the Erie and Niagara County budgets and need volunteers to review them line-by-line.
    • And we need students for three major projects.
    • Thanks.

  5. #5
    Tony Fracasso - Admin
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    We'll have the budget up for review shortly. IT will be in PDF format for your viewing pleasure.

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    It took a lot of horsing around at the Rath Building, but Free Buffalo finally acquired a copy of the 2005 Erie County Budget, more or less current.

    http://www.freebuffalo.org/articles/...nty_budget.htm

    Now, we need volunteers to come down and go through it line by line and tear it apart, frankly.

  7. #7
    Gold Member Night Owl's Avatar
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    We'll have the budget up for review shortly. IT will be in PDF format for your viewing pleasure.

    Thanks ... WNYresident !!!!

    Unbiased, impartial.... middle-of-the-road ?
    Last edited by Night Owl; August 20th, 2005 at 09:54 PM.

  8. #8
    Tony Fracasso - Admin
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    Originally posted by Night Owl
    We'll have the budget up for review shortly. IT will be in PDF format for your viewing pleasure.

    Thanks ... WNYresident !!!!

    Unbiased, impartial.... middle-of-the-road ?

    NO just the budget non edited.

    So what do you mean by unbiased, impartial.... middle-of-the-road?

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    Note: this is the most current budget the county would give us. It does not include recent amendments.

    We will be making a freedom of information request for those amendments next week.

  10. #10
    Member dtwarren's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Jim Ostrowski
    It took a lot of horsing around at the Rath Building, but Free Buffalo finally acquired a copy of the 2005 Erie County Budget, more or less current.

    http://www.freebuffalo.org/articles/...nty_budget.htm

    Now, we need volunteers to come down and go through it line by line and tear it apart, frankly.
    It would also be interesting to get a Budget Monitoring Report.
    “I own I am not a friend to a very energetic government. It is always oppressive.” – Thomas Jefferson
    https://restore-representation.org/

  11. #11
    Tony Fracasso - Admin
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    Originally posted by dtwarren
    It would also be interesting to get a Budget Monitoring Report.
    Just for giggles are the legistures getting thier monthly spending reports from Giambra?

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    All these documents need to be posted on the web as soon as they are produced. There seems to be mass-chaos down there. In the Partnership's report, they said they couldn't get current or accurate figures. There are rumors that some legislators don't have a copy of the current budget. Is there a copy of the current budget?

    I'm told it's on some strange computer file somewhere. We'll see.

  13. #13
    Member dtwarren's Avatar
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    In my action they did produce some budget amendment information. I will scan it in as soon as I can and post it.
    “I own I am not a friend to a very energetic government. It is always oppressive.” – Thomas Jefferson
    https://restore-representation.org/

  14. #14
    Member steven's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Jim Ostrowski
    There seems to be mass-chaos down there.
    So whats new?

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    Not sure if this is the right place for this comment, but--

    We've had some comments (from those hostile to Free Buffalo) about the brevity of our News Alerts. And other complaints that we haven't done enough of this or that.

    First, News Alerts are designed to be brief comments on timely issues. They are not full-length studies. Second, you never say in many pages what can be said in fewer.

    As for "what has Free Buffalo done?" in its brief existence (since July 21st)--

    The plan for Free Buffalo was to raise funds for a full-time professional staff. Had that occurred, such questions would have been fairly raised. The truth is, we have not raised those funds. We have merely raised funds to pay for a brick and mortar office. Offices don't write policy reports; writers do. We have no paid writers.

    Nevertheless, we press on and intend to release a report shortly.

    We expect that by October, we will have about four or five News Alerts and two longer reports out.

    Time will tell whether this community will support the Free Buffalo concept. If not, we will continue to be at the mercy of the special interests and their numerous and well-funded policy organs.

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