Buffalo Common Council Report for July 26

September 27, 2013 Updated Jul 26, 2011 at 6:25 PM EDT

By WKBW News

...

Buffalo Common Council Report for July 26

September 27, 2013 Updated Jul 26, 2011 at 6:25 PM EDT

Buffalo, N.Y. (WKBW release) -- The following is a summary of the July 26 meeting of the Buffalo Common Council.

 

Great Lakes Experience on Outer Harbor

The Council adopted a resolution sponsored by Fillmore District Council Member David A. Franczyk supporting a plan for the Great Lakes Experience Institute (“GLEI”) to be located on Outer Harbor land. For decades the City of Buffalo has worked hard to reinvent the Lake Erie Waterfront and many concepts have been considered or launched on the waterfront. The GLEI, comprising the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, University of Buffalo, Buffalo State College, Erie Community College, Times Beach Nature Preserve and Stieglitz Snyder Architecture, has suggested an exciting and innovative concept for sections of the Outer Harbor. The GLEI hopes to create a venue for ecological tourism while replenishing aquatic life that once inhabited Lake Erie in great abundance, but has diminished throughout the decades. The GLEI will be located on land that includes the former Coast Guard Station, Times Beach and land adjacent to the south of Times Beach. 

 

Mandatory Notification of Privately Promoted Parties

The Council adopted a resolution sponsored by Ellicott District Council Member Darius G. Pridgen requesting that the Department of Law advise the Council of the steps needed to mandate that all privately promoted events at which alcohol will be served in a licensed facility be reported to the City in advance of the event through use of a Council approved Event Notification Form. In light of community concerns and business owner complaints concerning privately promoted parties in the Downtown Entertainment District, the Council supports efforts to ensure a safe City free from criminal behavior and will do everything in its power to increase public safety.  Privately promoted parties held in locations with New York State liquor licenses are becoming more common and have been reported to be financially lucrative for venue owners. Accordingly, and in order to maintain public safety, the Council maintains that it is necessary for the City to be notified prior to a promoter conducting a private party at which alcohol will be served. 

 

Funding for Arts and Cultural Organizations

The Council adopted a resolution sponsored by Delaware District Council Member Michael J. LoCurto requesting that the City of Buffalo Department of Law prepare a contract between the City and the Fund for the Arts, whereby the City would agree to provide the sum of $200,00 to the Fund for the Arts, and whereby the Fund for the Arts would agree to, upon their receipt of these funds from the City, disperse these funds to individual arts and cultural organizations. During the 2011 operating and fiscal period, certain arts and cultural organizations that previously received funding from Erie County had their funding cut by the County for a combined total of approximately $200,000. As a result of a joint effort by the Common Council and the Mayor, the City of Buffalo has allocated approximately $200,000 of funding for these same art and cultural organizations. The Council maintains that this support will allow the arts and cultural organizations to continue to operate and ensure the continued viability of venues that attract residents and visitors to our City.

 

Swimming in Unauthorized Areas

The Council adopted a resolution sponsored by Ellicott District Council Member Darius G. Pridgen reminding residents of the dangers of swimming in unauthorized areas. The City of Buffalo has been experiencing unusually high temperatures during the summer. To combat the heat, the City provides numerous areas where residents can cool-off including cooling centers, pools, and splash pads. Unfortunately, however, the City of Buffalo and surrounding areas have lost several people to drowning in unauthorized swimming areas despite posted signage discouraging swimming. The Council maintains that the safety of residents and visitors is of the utmost importance.

 

Goldman Titanium Fire

The Council adopted a resolution sponsored by Fillmore District Council Member David A. Franczyk requesting that the relevant agencies investigate the fire at Goldman Titanium and assess its record of safety to determine if it is a threat to the health and welfare of the community. For the fifth time since the 1990’s, a fire has broken out at the Goldman Titanium Company on 105 Dorothy Street. Goldman Titanium, a titanium recycling company, has long been a concern of community member living in close proximity to the facility. The leaders of the Seneca/Babcock and Clinton/Bailey Block Clubs have expressed serious concerns about Goldman Titanium despite assurances from the company owner that he would work to address neighborhood concerns. The Council maintains that it is of paramount importance that the health, safety, and well-being of the people living in vicinity of Goldman Titanium be protected.

 

Closing of the National Kidney Foundation, Inc. WNY Branch

The Council adopted a resolution sponsored by Ellicott District Council Member Darius G. Pridgen announcing to City residents the closure of the Western New York branch of the National Kidney Foundation, Inc. The mission of the National Kidney Foundation, Inc. is to prevent kidney and urinary tract diseases, improve the health and well-being of individuals and families affected by these diseases, and increase the availability of all organs for transplantation. With the closing of the office for the Buffalo and Rochester region, there is now no local centralized location for education, information, and support for kidney and urinary tract diseases. The Council maintains that residents affected by kidney disease should seek aid and information from other national or local centers dedicated to kidney diseases.

 

Waiver of Fees

·         * The Council adopted a resolution sponsored by Lovejoy District Council Member Richard A. Fontana requesting of the City of Buffalo Department of Public Works and any other relevant City Departments, that they waive any and all fees required of the Kaisertown Cultural Revitalization Committee (“KCRC”) for a concert being conducted in Houghton Park. KCRC is dedicated to unifying the residents of the Kaisertown neighborhood in the City of Buffalo. In an effort to achieve a greater quality of life for the residents of the Lovejoy District by promoting cultural understanding, KCRC has taken the necessary steps to organize and administer a family-oriented concert in Houghton Park. The Council maintains that waiving all permit fees associated with the concert is necessary to assist KCRC, which operates with very limited financial means.

·         * The Council adopted a resolution sponsored by Delaware District Council Member Michael J. LoCurto requesting of the City of Buffalo Department of Public Works that they waive any and all fees associated with renting a stage required by the ALS Association for the “Walk to Defeat ALS” to be held in Delaware Park. This charity event, scheduled for August 6, 2011, hopes to raise money to fight and defeat ALS, more commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, which is a degenerative and often paralyzing condition that affects tens of thousands of people in the United States alone. The Council maintains that due to the charitable nature of this event, the City of Buffalo should support this initiative by waiving the stage rental fees.

·         * The Council adopted a resolution sponsored by University District Council Member Bonnie E. Russell requesting of the City of Buffalo Department of Public Works that they waive any fees associated with the rental of a Band Shell by the Rounds Avenue Association, Inc. The band shell would be used on July 30, 2011 as part of a “2011 Bring Back The Pride” community event to be held at the University of Buffalo South Campus Rotary Field. This event intends to highlight the positive activities and services that are available to University District residents.

·        * The Council adopted a resolution sponsored by Masten District Council Member Demone A. Smith requesting of the City of Buffalo Department of Public Works that they waive any fees associated with using Martin Luther King, Jr. Park for Saint Phillip’s Episcopal Church on July 24, 2011. Saint Phillip’s will be using the park to celebrate its 150th anniversary.

 

Banners to be Hung in the City of Buffalo

·         The Council adopted a resolution sponsored by South District Council Member Michael P. Kearns granting permission to hang an informational banner on certain light poles on Abbott Road. The banner will promote the Celtic Challenge and will be displayed from August 1, 2011 through September 5, 2011.

 

Ordinance Amendment – Taxicabs, Liveries, and Sightseeing Buses

The Council approved an ordinance amendment to Chapter 437, Section 19 of the Code of the City of Buffalo adding the following locations to the designated places where taxicabs may stand while awaiting employment:

 

 

Name of Street

Side

Location and Restrictions

Number of Cabs

Commercial Street

West

North of Marine Drive

5

Franklin Street

East

South of W. Chippewa Street from 5:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. only

5

Franklin Street

West

North of W. Chippewa Street from 5:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. only

5

Pearl Street

East

North of W. Chippewa Street from 5:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. only

5

Pearl Street

West

North of W. Chippewa Street from 5:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. only

5

 

 

Trailblazing Signs

The Council approved the following Trailblazing Sign to be placed in the City of Buffalo:

  • Masten District
    • The section of Leroy Avenue near School #61 in honor of Reverend Carnell Robertson

 

Sale of City Owned Property

The Council approved the sale of the following City owned properties:

·         Fillmore District

o   271 and 283 Walden Avenue and 133 Ruhland Avenue were sold to Ms. Shirley Davis for $6,400

o   The sale of the northern portion of 260 Herman Street to Mr. Benjamin Holmes and Mrs. Gertrude Holmes was rescinded and the deposit forfeited.

·     

Appointments

·         The Council appointed the following individuals to positions within various District Common Council Offices:

o   Ellicott District

Vernee Shaw was appointed to the position of Senior Legislative Assistant

o   Masten District

§  Todd McAlister was appointed to the position of Senior Legislative Assistant

 Tashares Burkes was appointed to the position of Legislative Aide II

o   Niagara District

 Sean Mulligan was appointed to the position of Legislative Aide II

·         The Council appointed the following individual as its representative on the City of Buffalo Citizens Planning Council (“CPC”):

o   Steven Banko

·         The Council appointed the following individual as its representative on the Buffalo Public Schools Advisory Evaluation Committee:

o   Janique Curry

·         The Council appointed the following individuals to the position of Intern within various District Common Council Offices:

o   Lovejoy District

Jeffrey Bowens, Jr.

 Riyath Mallahi

o   Masten District

Frank Garland III

o   University District

 Damone Huff

 Dominique Stephens

·         The Council approved the appointment of the following individuals to positions within various City of Buffalo Departments at a step above the base salary:

o   Department of Audit and Control

Associate Auditor

·         Ann O’Donnell

o   Department of Public Works

Chief Pumping Plant Engineer

·         William Appenheimer

·         The Council accepted the appointment of the following individuals to positions within various City of Buffalo Departments at the base salary:

o   Department of Public Works

Meter Reader

·         Otis Workman

 Equipment Operator

·         Robert McHenry

Street Worker

·         Korry Smith

·         Demetris Stepney

·         Clayton Maynard

·         Joseph Brocato

Account Clerk Typist

·         Lisa England

Senior First Class Stationary Engineer

·         Richard Veroba

Lifeguard – Seasonal


·         Angel Torres, Jr.

·         Frank Buttino III

·         Kathleen Battel

·         Aaron Santiago

·         Samuel Wichlacz

·         John Marinaccio


Clerk – Seasonal

·         Margaret Nash


o   Department of Audit and Control

Assistant Auditor


·         Elizabeth Krause


 


License and Permit Approvals

Upon the recommendation of the Department Permit & Inspection Services, the Council approved the following license and permit applications:

·         Delaware District

o   Permit for an Outdoor Café

D. Kirchmeyor, owner of property located at 1200 Hertel Avenue

P. Moran, agent of property located at 299 Parkside Avenue

·         Ellicott District

o   Food Store License

Broadway Discount Mart located at 535 Broadway

o   Restaurant Dance Class License

Pure Live located at 67 West Chippewa Street

·         Fillmore District

o   Permit for a Free Standing Sign

B. Baumker, agent of the property located at 1 Seymour Knox III

·         Niagara District

o   Food Store License

Golden Burma Asia Foods Inc. located at 92 Grant Street

·         North District

o   Restaurant Dance License

Niagara Frontier Post #1041 located at 533 Amherst Street

o   Sidewalk Café License

Vital Life Juice Bar & Café located at 1000 Elmwood Avenue

·         South District

o   Permit to Replace Signs

D. Vitka, agent of property located at 565 Abbott Road

 

The Council denied the following license and permit application:

·         Ellicott District

o   Food Store License

S&S Food Mart located at 278 Trenton Avenue

 

Claims, Contracts, Change orders & Agreements

  • The Council approved the following contract change orders submitted by the City of Buffalo Department of Public Works (“DPW”):
    • The contract with Greater Niagara Mechanical for the Broadway Market HVAC Unit Replacement Project was increased by $3,500 due to a five percent material price escalation. The contract was initially awarded in the amount of $94,700 and with this change the contract will increase to $98,200.
    • The contract with Titan Development, Inc. for the Martin Luther King Jr. Park Humboldt Basin Splash Pad Equipment Project was increased by $7,035 to replace 16 Wall Wave Jets and 10 Mysticalfun Embeded Jets with 16 Pond Spray Jets. The contract was initially awarded in the amount of $339,950 and with this change the contract will increase to $346,985.
    • The contract with Executive Investigation & Security, Inc. for Guard Security at City of Buffalo pools was increased by $17,000. The contract was initially awarded in the amount of $90,835 and with this change the contract will increase to $107,825.
  • Upon the recommendation of its Committee on Legislation, the Council:
    • Authorized the naming of a new street in the Colvin Estates as Rachel Vincent Way. The Colvin Estates project is currently being built and is in the initial phase of home construction.
  • Upon the request of the City of Buffalo Office of Strategic Planning (“OSP”), the Council:
    • Authorized OSP to enter into an agreement with the Valley Community Association and the Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper Association for implementation of $390,100 in New York Department of State grant funding for the Buffalo River Greenway Project – Phase 1. The Valley Community Association will provide $301,000 of the New York State grant funding and the Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper Association will provide $89,100 of the grant funding.
    • Authorized a PILOT agreement between the City of Buffalo, the County of Erie, Walden Park II Housing Development Fund Corp., and Walden Park Senior Housing II, LLC. for the Walden Parks Senior Housing Project located at 101 Bakos Boulevard. The agreement outlines the duties and responsibilities of the parties associated with the maintenance of 126 senior housing units, 114 of which are one bedroom units and the remaining 12 are two bedroom units.
  • Upon the request of the City of Buffalo Department of Administration, Finance, Policy & Urban Affairs, the Council:
    • Authorized a contract for the sale of scrap plastic garbage totes to HEI Recycling. HEI Recycling will pay $0.12 per pound for the scrap plastic garbage totes.
  • Upon the request of the City of Buffalo Department of Fire, the Council:
    • Authorized the purchase of two pumpers/engines for the sum of $1,006,000. The funding for the purchase of the fire apparatus was allocated in the 2010 Capital Improvement Budget.
  • Upon the request of the City of Buffalo Department of Human Resources, the Council:
    • Authorized the Department of Human Resources to enter into a contract with Palladian for the administration of an Employee Assistance Program (“EAP”) for the City of Buffalo. The EAP is a contracted benefit provided by the City to its employees and dependents to assist them with difficult or troubling situations in their lives that may affect their performance in the workplace. The EAP will include early intervention programs for troubled employees which can hopefully prevent or lessen any decline in work performance.
  • Upon the request of the City of Buffalo Department of Public Works (“DPW”), the Council:
    • Authorized DPW to issue a mere license to the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority (“NFTA”) for the installation of a bus shelter within the City right-of-way at Elmwood Avenue and West Utica Street. The NFTA will be responsible for constructing and maintaining the bus shelter and the mere license is subject to various terms and conditions.
    • Authorized a Canal Bridge Maintenance agreement between the City of Buffalo and the Buffalo Urban Development Corporation (“BUDC”). BUDC is overseeing the construction of a pedestrian bridge that spans the former Union Ship Canal and is organizing a landowner’s association comprised of landowners in Buffalo Lakeside Commerce Park to help maintain this new pedestrian bridge. The Canal Bridge Maintenance agreement is designed to facilitate the landowner’s association’s participation in bridge maintenance.
    • Authorized a Canal Park Maintenance agreement between the City of Buffalo and the Buffalo Urban Development Corporation (“BUDC”). BUDC is overseeing the construction of park amenities on the 22 acres surrounding the former Union Ship Canal and is organizing a landowner’s association comprised of landowners in Buffalo Lakeside Commerce Park to help maintain the 22 acre City-owned parcel. The Canal Park Maintenance agreement is designed to facilitate the landowner’s association’s participation in park maintenance.
    • Authorized an agreement between the City of Buffalo and LP Ciminelli Construction Corporation to enable access to Buffalo Water Board property located at 3447 Bailey Avenue, for the purposes of utilizing a portion of the property for parking and construction access. LP Ciminelli will be constructing a parking ramp on Veterans Hospital property and intends to use the property located at 3447 Bailey Avenue for temporary parking and construction vehicle access.
    • Authorized DPW to accept funds from the Federal and New York State governments for the Amherst Street Signal Replacement Project. The project included the replacement of street signals on Amherst Street from Military Road to Parkridge Avenue.
  • The Council approved the reports of bids from the City of Buffalo Department of Public Works for the following project:
    • The City Court Basement Detention Area Project – General Construction Phase. Of the bids that were received, Wilsandra Construction was the lowest with a bid of $1,364,000.
    • The City Court Basement Detention Area Project – Electrical Construction Phase. Of the bids that were received, Frey Electric Construction was the lowest with a bid of $920,000.
    • The City Court Basement Detention Area Project – HVAC Construction Phase. Of the bids that were received, Greater Niagara Mechanical was the lowest with a bid of $327,300.