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Reed blames Cuomo for money problems in the City of Salamanca

Posted at 5:55 PM, Sep 05, 2019

SALAMANCA, N.Y. (WKBW) — The City of Salamanca is short on funds. City officials and Congressman Tom Reed point blame at the State.

The city's roads have been a point of contention for a few years now.

"The roads are really bad around here, I don’t see how that would make people want to come. You know, drive your car and you hit a little pothole and there you go,” said Jasmine Jimerson, 22, who's lived in Salamanca all of her life.

The roads aren't the only problem. Fire Chief Nick Bocharski says he's extremely understaffed.

“We had a cardiac arrest that we could only send one paramedic to because our one ambulance was on another call, and we had to transport 20 miles away to our nearest hospital,” said Chief Bocharski.

This person passed away after waiting more than 20 minutes for an ambulance, per Chief Bocharski.

"I think if the Governor called for an ambulance he’d expect someone in three minutes, why shouldn’t someone in the city of Salamanca?” asked Bocharski

He says the city was promised money from the state as part of the casino pact with the Seneca Nation, but the money still hasn't come.

That's why he joined Congressman Tom Reed (R-District 23) to call on Governor Andrew Cuomo to deliver.

“We have a death that I believe the governor has to answer for. They were promised from the governor’s office the 6 million dollars they were requesting and then the governor at the last minute changed his mind,” said Congressman Reed.

But the governor's office says the city has not yet told the state about their needs.

“The city should call the division of the budget to talk about their needs about what their cash flow is and how we can be helpful. That has not happened,” said Rich Azzopardi, Senior Advisor to the Governor.

Azzopardi is pointing blame at the Seneca Nation.

“It’s help that’s needed because the Seneca nation has not made good on their obligations," said Azzopardi.

Reed plans to pursue the issue in court, with the safety of a city on the line.