Council Chambers

Tonawanda, New York

July 7, 2009

 

A Regular Meeting of the Common Council

 

Present:  Council President Zeisz

Present Councilmembers:  Perkins, Waterhouse, Davis

Excused:  Kossow

 

Pledge of Allegiance led by Council President Zeisz

 

Prayer led by Council President Zeisz

 

COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE MAYOR

 

A letter to the New York State Department of State, Office of Fire Prevention and Control, dated June 18, 2009, regarding Community Projects Appropriations #TM04470, Fire Department Communications Grant $6,000.

 

A letter to the New York State Department of State, Office of Fire Prevention and Control, dated June 18, 2009, regarding Community Projects Appropriations #TM07867, Fire Department Capital Improvement $8,500.

 

A letter to Linda Foels, President of the Tonawandas Gateway Harbor Inc., from Assemblyman Robin Schimminger, dated June 19, 2009, regarding funding to acquire a portable stage for use at Gateway Harbor Park in the Twin Cities.

 

A letter from Senator Antoine M. Thompson to the NYSDEC dated June 23, 2009, regarding cutting health impacts from air pollution in Tonawanda.

 

A letter from Commissioner Grannis of the NYSDEC dated June 23, 2009, responding to the Mayorís letter regarding the air quality in the Tonawanda area.

 

A letter from the CSEA Union members dated June 25, 2009, regarding the lack of security at City Hall and the safety of the CSEA members.

 

A letter to the members of the CSEA Union dated June 26, 2009, regarding their security concerns at City Hall.

 

A letter to the grant representative of the Western District Ė Niagara Frontier Region Niagara Reservation State Park, dated June 26, 2009, regarding NYS Contract #PKS-08-NI-009, $1 0,000 Underwater Squad Building.

 

A letter from the Director of the NYS Canal Corporation dated June 22, 2009, Canal Splash taking place August 7-9, 2009.

 

A letter to Dennis Conroy, 184 Niagara Shore Drive, dated July 2, 2009,acknowledging receipt of his resignation from the Planning and Zoning Board.

 

A letter to Alice A. Roth, 60 Morgan Street, dated July 1, 2009, congratulating her on her recent appointment as a Commissioner on the Niagara River Greenway Commission.

 

A letter from Time Warner Cable dated June 30, 2009, keeping the City apprised of developments affecting Time Warner Cable subscribers in the City of Tonawanda.

 

A letter from the NYSDEC announcing the Water Quality Improvement Projects (WQIP) Grant Program.

 

A letter from the United Way, dated June 26, 2009, regarding Day of Caring

 

A note from Doris Dreuz, dated June 25, 2009, commenting on the good condition of the parks and suggesting various ideas that could use improvement.

    Ordered filed

 

COMMUNICATION FROM CITY OFFICIALS AND CORRESPONDENCE

 

The following monthly reports were received by the City Clerk:

            May Activity Report of the Fire Department

June minutes of the Civil Service Commission

June minutes of the Traffic and Safety Board

            General Fund and Sewer Fund Budget Revenue and Expenditure Report for

the City of Tonawanda as of 6/30/09

              Referred to the Committee of the Whole

                   Ordered filed

 

A letter from Judge Cassata to the Unified Court System dated July 2, 2009, regarding City of Tonawanda Court Security.

            Referred to the Committee of the Whole

 

A letter from Tonawanda Castle dated June 30, 2009, regarding various issues they feel would help their organization.

            Referred to the Committee of the Whole

 

A letter from City Attorney Trabucco, to Spaulding Fibre Co., Inc., dated June 30, 2009, regarding an order lifting the Stay of Foreclosure and terminating the City of Tonawandaís Temporary Incidents of Ownership under Section 56-0508 of the Environmental Conservation Law.

            Referred to the Committee of the Whole

                        Ordered filed

           

COMMENTS BY THE PUBLIC ON RESOLUTIONS

 

There were no comments by the public on the resolutions.

 

MOTIONS AND RESOLUTIONS

 

137.     By the Council                                                              seconded by the Council

            WHEREAS, the Common Council of the City and the Board of Directors of the CANAL FEST OF THE TONAWANDAS, INC. (hereinafter referred to as ďthe CorporationĒ) are desirous of entering into an agreement for the purpose of accommodating Canal Fest 2009; and

            WHEREAS, the parties have negotiated the following agreement so that the concerns of the City and the Corporation have been addressed; and

            WHEREAS, the utilization of city property, personnel and equipment as specified in said Agreement is deemed to be for the promotion of Canal Fest 2009 and the protection of public health, safety and welfare which is in the best interests of the City and its residents;

            NOW, THEREFORE,

            BE IT RESOLVED, that the Common Council hereby authorizes and directs the Mayor to execute the Canal Fest 2009 agreement, and

            BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the parties hereto approve and enter into the following Agreement:

AGREEMENT

 

            1.            The City and Corporation in conjunction with the City of North Tonawanda, shall support Canal Fest 2009 of the Twin Cities.

 

            2.            Canal Fest 2009 shall be held July 19, 2009 through July 26, 2009.

 

            3.            The Canal Fest 2009 ďCampus AreaĒ will utilize Niagara Street between Main and Seymour Streets and that portion of Young Street which lies between Main Street and Delaware Street, which leads into the Walgreenís parking lot.  The parking lot adjacent to McDonalds is not included in the Campus Area.  The ride promoter, Powers Great American Midways, Inc. will be permitted to place two trailers in the parking lot adjacent to the Tonawanda Towers.  In the event that construction is occurring within the City of Tonawanda during the time Canal Fest is taking place, the City may, in its sole discretion, modify the ďCampus Area: so that the Festival does not interfere with on-going construction or other related development activities.

 

            4.            The Renaissance Bridge shall be closed during Canal Fest to permit its use by various concessions without the need to remove their set-ups at the conclusion of each evening.  The parade route shall begin at Main and Minerva and shall utilize Minerva from Main to Grove, Grove from Minerva to Roosevelt and Roosevelt from Grove to Main Street as a staging area.  The parade shall proceed to and cross the Renaissance Bridge.  The concessions shall be required to be removed only during that Tuesday night, July 21, 2009.

 

            5.            Portions of Minerva, Grove, Roosevelt and Main Street shall be closed for the Canal Fest Parade on Tuesday, July 21, 2009 as stated in paragraph 4 above.

 

            6.            The Corporation will be permitted to use Main Street, from Niagara Street to Broad Street and a portion of Adam Street running from Main Street to Seymour Street for the Craft Show on July 25 and July 26, 2009.

 

            7.            The Corporation will be permitted to use Main Street from Niagara Street to Broad Street for the Cruise Nite Car Show on July 22, 2009.

 

            8.            The Four Mile Run shall be held as before and streets shall be closed as are appropriate to accommodate the event, however, course location is subject to mutual agreement by the parties.

 

            9.            The Corporation will be permitted to use the Miller Bandshell in Niawanda Park for various music and other performances.  For the convenience of the musicians, the Community Room on the lower level of City Hall will be available, if a request is made, for the musicians to gather and have a place to store instrument cases and their personal belongings during the concert.

 

            10.            The corporation will be permitted to use Clinton Park for the Flea Market on July 25 and 26, 2009.

 

            11.            The Canal Fest 2009 ďCampus AreaĒ has been designated on the Canal Fest map.  No additional permits will be granted for vendors, performances or advertising posters within said ďCampus AreaĒ unless mutually agreed by the parties.  This section shall not be applicable to official City of Tonawanda government entities and/or official City sponsored events.  Said ďCampus AreaĒ shall be subject to the private property rights of landowners and tenants.  The parties agree to respect any and all private property rights.

 

            12.            The City reserves the absolute right to approve the nature, type and location of all rides, amusements and concessions for purposes of public health and safety.  Such approval will be memorialized by noting same on the Canal Fest map on file in the office of the City Clerk.

 

            13.            The Corporation shall be entitled to utilize the footbridge leading to the Long Homestead at its discretion.  Any docks located on the canal and Ellicott Creek are to be excluded from the ďCampus AreaĒ and remain under the jurisdiction of the City.  Any and all use of docking area shall be solely within the discretion of the City.  All rules and regulations regarding dock usage shall apply.

 

            14.            The Corporation shall reimburse the City in a sum not to exceed $14,000.00 for the year 2009, in order to offset the additional reasonable expenses incurred by the City to provide City services to Canal Fest 2009.  Said services shall include, but are not limited to, police and emergency services.  Reimbursement shall be paid no later than August 10, 2009.  The City Treasurer shall present a statement of services to the Corporation on or before September 14, 2009.  Should said statement of services be less than the $14,000.00 for the year 2009 noted above, the City shall rebate the difference.  Should the statement of services reflect the Cityís expenses are greater than the said $14,000.00 for the year 2009, the City will absorb the difference.

 

            15.            The Corporation shall reimburse the City up to $3,000.00  (However, the City shall have the option at its sole discretion to receive the $3,000.00 any time during the term of the Agreement.) for the Cityís purchase, at its sole discretion, of any tangible items or articles, or for any items of capital improvement; with the understanding that these funds shall benefit the City of Tonawandaís Canal area and/or Riveredge area and/or Riverwalk area and/or Waterfront area and/or Gateway Park area. These funds may be used by the City at its sole discretion as above stated, however, these funds are not to be used for City operation or personnel costs.  Reimbursement shall be paid by the Corporation to the City within thirty days of presentation of a receipt for qualified purchases and/or expenditures.  The Corporation shall receive proper recognition for such items or expenditures which benefit the City.

 

            16.            Proof of liability insurance approved for the Corporation, naming the City as an additional insured, with aggregate policy limit of $3,000,000.00 for personal injuries and property damage shall be provided to the City Clerk on or before July 9, 2009.  The Corporation shall indemnify and hold the City harmless from any and all claims or causes of action which are the direct result of any negligent act or omission or intentional misconduct by agents of the Corporation with respect to Canal Fest 2009.  The City agrees to indemnify and hold the Corporation harmless from any and all claims or causes of action which are the direct result of any negligent act or omission or intentional misconduct by agents of the City with respect to Canal Fest 2009.  The Corporation shall require the amusement and concession operator, Powers Great American Midways, Inc., to provide and submit a certificate of insurance and proof of premium payment acceptable to the City, which certificate shall name the City as an additional insured.  The Corporation shall further require said Powers Great American Midways, Inc., to enter into an agreement holding the City harmless and indemnify the City from any and all claims and causes of action which might be commenced against the City as a result of the negligence or omission or intentional misconduct by an agent of Powers Great American Midways, Inc. with respect to Canal Fest 2009.

           

            17.            The Corporation shall be solely responsible for and shall provide adequate public restroom facilities for the event.

 

            18.            The Corporation shall provide the City with complete copies of all contracts and amendments between it and Powers Great American Midways, Inc., and any other amusement company that may be under contract regarding Canal Fest 2009.

 

            19.            Any damage caused to City property as a result of the rides, attractions and/or activities shall be repaired by the City; however, the cost of said repairs shall be borne exclusively by the Canal Fest Corporation pursuant to an agreed upon fee schedule and/or reimbursement procedure to be determined by the parties.  The cost of repairs shall be paid to the City by the Corporation in addition to the reimbursement pursuant to the reimbursement pursuant to paragraphs 14 and 15.

 

            20.            Only those entities located within the ďCampus AreaĒ are to contribute monies to the Corporation.  However, nothing hereunder shall restrict the Corporation from being able to pursue sponsorships or preclude it from protecting against the unauthorized use of its name and logo.

 

            21.            The Corporation shall meet with the Council on August 4, 2009 or such other date as the parties may mutually agree to discuss the results of the 2009 festival, including but not limited to financial data, logistics and to further discuss future events.

 

            22.            The Corporation shall take every reasonable effort to accommodate the needs of the adjacent businesses.

 

            WHEREAS, the City of Tonawanda must strive to minimize any and all unnecessary financial burdens on its taxpayers; and

            WHEREAS, the City of Tonawandaís utmost concern must be for the safety and welfare of its residents and business people; and

            WHEREAS, the City of Tonawanda has for twenty-six years substantially supported Canal Fest, Inc. and has facilitated and housed events for those twenty-six years; and

            WHEREAS, the City of Tonawanda recognizes the monumental task the Canal Fest Corporation has in preparing for this event, now, therefore, be it

 

            RESOLVED, that the City of Tonawanda agrees to produce a detailed accounting of all expenses incurred in 2009 and to continue negotiations for Canal Fest 2010 and thereafter, based on the above stipulations on the earliest practicable date, so that an agreement can be finalized early in 2010.

 

ADDENDUM to 2009 CANAL FEST AGREEMENT

LAUNCH OF FIREWORKS FROM THE RENAISSANCE BRIDGE

 

            Fireworks shall be launched from the Renaissance Bridge on the final night of Canal Fest (July 26, 2009) in accordance with the following terms and conditions:

 

            1.            The Bridge shall be closed to pedestrian traffic at 5:00 P.M. or earlier

                        when Young Company arrives.

 

            2.            The Canal shall be boat free from the Delaware Bridge to the Seymour

                        Bridge and Tonawanda Creek from the end of dock to the Canal.

 

            3.            Canal Fest personnel shall clear all boats in violation of the Safe Zone

                        by 7:00 P.M.

 

            4.            Crowd control is to be determined by Police Chief Young or her designee.

 

            5.            Rides and concessions cannot be in the process of tear down from

                        7:00 P.M. until the crowd has departed.

 

            6.            Pedestrians, crafters, rides and concessions shall not be located within

                        the fallout area.  The Fallout area can change due to wind direction and

                        speed.

 

7.         Fire Suppression Crew accessibility - Fire Suppression Crew shall be able to reach all areas exposed to potential fallout including Niagara Street from Seymour to Main and Young Street from Main to Delaware.

 

            8.            There shall be room for a fire truck in front of HSBC on Young Street.

                        Also there shall be room to ladder HSBC on Young Street.

 

            9.            All hydrants in the Canal Fest area are to be disconnected.

 

            10.            Sufficient Emergency Personnel are required:  1 Pumper manned

                        with four personnel and 1 EMS Crew manned with two personnel.

 

            11.            Canal Fest Committee personnel will be on hand at the Bridge for

                        consultation with the Fire and Police Departments.

 

            12.            Crafter tents are to be cleared out by 6:00 P.M.

 

            13.            Sidewalks shall be kept free of any items during the Arts and Craft Show. 

Vendors participating in the Craft Show must leave at least three feet clearance from store fronts.

 

            14.            During the Car Show, hydrants shall have fifteen feet of access on

                        either side.

15.       The Pastry Table at 38 Niagara Street shall have access of one car lane from the tree in front of the shop to Seymour Street each day until 2:00 P.M. - Monday through Saturday.

 

            16.            Police, Fire, Young Explosive Corporation or any Authority has the

                        right to stop, delay or cancel the fireworks for safety issues.

 

Council President Zeisz Ė On the question, I just wanted to point out to everyone, especially the news, that I donít think it can be said enough times, if you notice there is an addendum to the Canal Fest Agreement for the launch of this yearís fireworks and they will be set off from the Renaissance Bridge this year and, like I said I donít think weíll be able to say this enough times because otherwise weíre going to have a lot of people in the wrong place for the fireworks. 

 

Ayes: Perkins, Waterhouse, Davis, Zeisz

Nays: None

Resolution declared adopted

 

138.     By the Council                                                              seconded by the Council

            WHEREAS, the Common Council of the CITY OF TONAWANDA, the Board of Directors of the CAROUSEL SOCIETY OF THE NIAGARA FRONTIER, INC. (hereinafter referred to as ďCSNFĒ) and POWERS GREAT AMERICAN MIDWAYS, INC. (hereinafter referred to as ďPGAMĒ), are desirous of entering into an agreement for the purpose of accommodating Canal Fest 2009;

            NOW, THEREFORE,

            BE IT RESOLVED, that the Common Council hereby authorizes and directs the Mayor to execute this Agreement, and

            BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the parties hereto approve and enter into the following Agreement:

AGREEMENT

 

            The CSNF and PGAM shall provide the City with a supplemental payment to reimburse the City for the cost of City services in support of Canal Fest of the Tonawandas 2009 in the amount of $3,000.00, to be paid no later than August 10, 2009.

 

Council President Zeisz - And then this is a new section for this year.  The agreement with Canal Fest provides for the same amount of compensation as last year.  However, through the Carousel, we will get an increase of $3,000 this year to cover the cost of the event. 

 

Ayes: Perkins, Waterhouse, Davis, Zeisz

Nays: None

Resolution declared adopted

 

139.     By the Council                                                              seconded by the Council

            WHEREAS, the cities of Tonawanda and North Tonawanda have previously agreed to allow Tonawanda Gateway Harbor, Inc. to organize and run various concert events between June and September of this year in the Gateway Harbor Park; and

            WHEREAS, the parties have agreed on various terms and conditions which are contained in a proposed Agreement regarding these events; and

            WHEREAS, the Common Council of the City of North Tonawanda has already authorized North Tonawanda Mayor Lawrence V. Soos to execute the proposed

Agreement;

            NOW, THEREFORE

            BE IT RESOLVED, that Mayor Ronald J. Pilozzi is hereby authorized and directed to execute the proposed Gateway Harbor Agreement for Summer Concerts.

 

Ayes: Perkins, Waterhouse, Davis, Zeisz

Nays: None

Resolution declared adopted

 

 

140.     By the Council                                                  seconded by the Council

Whereas, the City of Tonawanda currently owns the former Water Treatment and Pumping Plants and is pursuing initiatives to prepare those properties for redevelopment; and,

Whereas, based on a Phase II environmental study of those facilities, it was confirmed and documented both contain hazardous materials that must be properly and legally removed prior to development and demolition activity; and,

Whereas, in an effort to identify public funding to undertake needed remediation work, the City of Tonawanda budgeted $100,000 in its fiscal year 2009 capital budget and requested assistance from Erie County for additional remediation funding; and,

Whereas, Erie County has identified and offered $200,000 for remediation work; $100,000 from fiscal year 2009 Community Block Grant Program funds (CDBG) and an additional $100,000 from previous year CDBG funding;

Now, therefore, be it resolved, that the City of Tonawanda Common Council hereby authorizes the Mayor to sign and execute any and all documents and contracts for the previously referenced $200,000 on Community Development Block Grant funding provided and identified by Erie County; Project name, Brownfield Site Preparation Ė Waste Water Plant/City of Tonawanda; IDIS Project #162-PY08; UOG Code Ė NY369029 Erie County; and be it further

Resolved, the City of Tonawanda wishes to express its appreciation for the financial assistance provided by Erie County and for the continued outstanding cooperation provided by the County for City of Tonawanda projects.

 

Ayes: Perkins, Waterhouse, Davis, Zeisz

Nays: None

Resolution declared adopted

 

141.     By the Council                                                              seconded by the Council

            Resolved, that permission be granted to the residents of DeKalb Street, between Amsterdam and Maldiner Streets, to hold a block party on August 29, 2009, from 11:00 A.M. to midnight, and be it further

            Resolved, that ingress and egress be provided for local traffic and emergency vehicles. 

 

Ayes: Perkins, Waterhouse, Davis, Zeisz

Nays: None

Resolution declared adopted

 

142.     By the Council                                                              seconded by the Council

            Be it resolved by the Common Council for the City of Tonawanda that proposed Local Law No. 3 of the year 2009, entitled:

 

ďExemption of Capital Improvements to Residential BuildingsĒ

 

            be and it is hereby introduced before the Common Council of the City of Tonawanda, New York; and be it further

            Resolved, that copies of the aforesaid proposed Local Law be laid upon the desk of each member of the Common Council by the City Clerk in accordance with the NYS Municipal Home Rule Law, a copy of which is on file in the Office of the City Clerk.

 

Ayes: Perkins, Waterhouse, Davis, Zeisz

Nays: None

Resolution declared adopted

 

143.     By the Council                                                              seconded by the Council

            Whereas, a $25.00 Special Events application fee and application were received by the City Clerk for the Glory Be To Kids Charity Softball Tournament, and

            Whereas, the application is being reviewed and commented on by all appropriate department heads to insure the safety and well being of our residents, and

Whereas, a certificate of insurance naming the City of Tonawanda as additional insured is to be given to the City Clerk no later than July 15, 2009, now, therefore be it

            Resolved, that permission be granted to the Glory Be To Kids Charity Softball Tournament to hold their annual womanís softball tournament on July 17th, 18th, 2009, at Niagara Field #1 and Niagara Field #2 in the City of Tonawanda.

 

Ayes: Perkins, Waterhouse, Davis, Zeisz

Nays: None

Resolution declared adopted

 

Council President Zeisz Ė Iíd just like to point out that when we adjourn tonight, it will be until July 28th.  We are skipping July 21st because thatís the week of Canal Fest. 

 

COMMENTS FROM THE PUBLIC AFTER RESOLUTIONS

 

Marshall Banks, 132 Niagara Shore Dr. Ė I was here at the first meeting last month and I asked the question about the definition of waterfront property from the City of Tonawanda.  Iíve gotten that definition from the State but evidently it has a different definition, and you said youíd get back to me. 

 

Council President Zeisz Ė Why do you say we have a different definition?

 

Marshall Banks Ė Well, I donít know. 

 

Council President Zeisz - Well, itís property thatís adjacent to the waterfront. 

 

Marshall Banks - Well, that isnít the Stateís.  They said it has access to the water.  Thatís what they say, that New York says, access to the water.  We have no access.  We get tickets if you have a boat there.  We have a bicycle path, not that I care, but I mean you canít get across, especially like this last Saturday when they had the Ride for Roswell.  You must have seen all the bicycles. I mean, thatís fine, Iím not saying anything about that but Iím saying there must be a different definition of it.

 

Council President Zeisz Ė I guess Iím not sure what youíre asking.  

 

Marshall Banks Ė A definition of the City of TonawandaÖ

 

Council President Zeisz - Öin relation to what though, as far as what?

 

Marshall Banks Ė What is waterfront property to you?  What means waterfront property. What does it mean? 

 

Council President Zeisz Ė When youíre adjacent to the water.   

 

Marshall Banks Ė Adjacent to it, no access to it?  Iím only telling you what the State told me.  They said access to the water. 

 

Council President Zeisz Ė Iím not disputing that.  What Iím asking is in relation to what? 

 

Marshall Banks Ė You might say I have a water view, but not waterfront. I canít use it, you canít go swimming, you canít go boating, you canít do nothing. 

 

Council President Zeisz - In relation to what though?  What are you saying?

 

Marshall Banks Ė Where I live.

 

Council President Zeisz - I understand that, but what difference does it make, one way or the other? 

 

Marshall Banks - I say it makes a difference because of the assessment. Niagara Street you say has water view property.  Niagara Shore Drive you say is waterfront property.  We have no access to the water at all, and Iím not disputing that.  I just figured that the City had a different definition or the Assessor did.  I donít know.  Thatís why Iím asking.  You said youíd get back to me last month.  I know it takes time.    

Council President Zeisz Ė No, I actually thought you were going to be at the next meeting.

 

Marshall Banks Ė No, I couldnít be there.  I took my wife to the hospital but thatís beside the point. 

 

Council President Zeisz Ė As far as the situation with the assessments, I might as well just say thisÖ

 

Marshall Banks - Öno, Iím not getting into the assessment, Iím just asking for a definition.  If youíre saying itís the same as the State, thatís fine with me.  If you have a different definitionÖ

 

Council President Zeisz - Öno, we donít have a differentÖ

 

Marshall Banks - Öokay, thatís all I want to know because thatís the only thing I want to know.  And you say there is no different definition.  Theyíre telling me itís access to the water, the State of New York is saying that.  So, I donít know.  Thereís one other thing, over at the Senior Center, we have five parking spaces in the back.  I was wondering if there was some way, I think some of that is City property, parking back there, but if you park on Main Street, the police come by, itís only two-hour parking, they mark the tires and everybodyís leaving because they donít want a ticket and we can understand that because of the businesses there.  I know what the two-hour parking is for but thereís only five spots in the back and if you go back there to park, itís full. 

 

Mayor Pilozzi Ė Excuse me, are you talking about handicap parking?

 

Marshall Banks - Iím talking about behind the building. 

 

Mayor Pilozzi - But are you talking about handicap parking?  

 

Marshall Banks - No, Iím talking about any kind of parking.  Thereís two handicap spots and three parking spots. 

 

Mayor Pilozzi Ė I just wanted to clarify that. 

 

Marshall Banks - Iím sure itís all the workers from the old Grants Building there that are parking there but I think you could give the senior building more than five spots. If somebody wants to park on Main Street for a while, if theyíre only going to be there an hour, thatís fine, if thereís a parking space. 

 

Councilmember Perkins Ė So itís just during the day like between the hours of 8-5?

 

Marshall Banks Ė Yeah, a lot of the activities start at 9:30 until noon.  Thatís 2-1/2 hours.  That means you get a ticket. I donít blame them for doing it, thatís the way life is.  But I think they should provide something in the back. 

 

Council President Zeisz - Well, weíll definitely look into it. 

 

Kory Schuler, 59 Main Street Ė Just a quick question kind of in regards to #3.  A couple of the businesses have asked me to ask you folks, is it possible to see the agreement or is there a copy of the Gateway Concert Agreement floating around anywhere?  Oh, perfect.  The reason I ask is, weíre just wondering what the oversight is on the vending for the concerts.  Thereís different rates for different vendors.  One group has a 15% commission they pay.  The Veteranís group pays 85% to Gateway.  One of the restaurants on the other side doesnít pay anything.  I was soliciting several restaurants and bars on our side of the City and none of them went out to bid. Food vendors never went out to bid for the Gateway Concerts.  So theyíve asked me to ask you folks if I could get a copy of the agreement, and what kind of oversight or involvement does the City have to kind of rectify that or get involved in that or is that solely a Gateway agency?

 

Council President Zeisz - Well, the agreement, obviously, you see we all have the agreement.   (Councilmember Perkins gave Kory Schuler a copy of the agreement)

 

Councilmember Davis - It specifically states in here that Gateway is responsible to sub-contract for all vendors. 

 

Kory Schuler - So if there were no bids taken, how would you rectify that or whatís their bid process?  I mean, seeing as the City has a hand in it, I would think that something would have to be entered someway, and the bid percentages are certainly different.  I canít understand why it would be 15% for one and the Veteranís 85% of their sales to the Gateway Harbor.  I just donít know where they came up with that.  Or is that just something arbitrarily that Gateway came up with?  Is there any kind of checks and balances, I guess, is what Iím asking, just out of curiosity. 

   

Council President Zeisz Ė Well, up to this point in time, the Gateway, they handle the concerts.  Itís not something thatís been dealt with by us.  So I canít even answer exactly how theyíve gone about getting the vendors they have and how they make determinations on who pays what. 

 

Kory Schuler - And for the record, I donít own a bar or restaurant.

 

Councilmember Waterhouse Ė Mr. President, remember when we discussed this in the back and I specifically asked Linda Foels the question, what if someone on the City of Tonawanda side wanted to sell food?

 

Council President Zeisz Ė Right.

 

Councilmember Waterhouse - There was nothing about bidding or anything like that.  She said all they do is submit it in writing to them, a request. 

 

Kory Schuler Ė Has anyone ever been made aware of that?  When I spoke to her, when I questioned it, about how they handle the percentage, I was told they figure the vending that they do is, actually I was told it was a North Tonawanda event so they went with a North Tonawanda vendor. 

 

Councilmember Waterhouse Ė I specifically asked her in the back room when everybody was there, about someone in the City of Tonawanda that wanted to sell food or pop and stuff like that on our side.  So there was nothing about any bidding, we didnít get into percentages or stuff like that.  I asked is it possible, in the procedure someone would go through to do that and she said yes, you just have to submit it in writing to the Gateway.  

 

Kory Schuler - I guess thatís one of the questions some of the vendors had.  Because itís a Gateway Harbor Inc. event, why is it ďour side, their sideĒ, it should only be Gateway, it should be, well the concertís on their side, they get it.  It should be whoever has the best bid because itís not a City of Tonawanda or North Tonawanda event.  Itís a Gateway event.  I think thatís where weíre getting confused, or at least thatís where the restaurants that approached me were confused.  Thatís what they couldnít understand, unless itís different, maybe weíre wrong, maybe the business association is unaware of that, but itís not an ďour side vs. their sideĒ, itís a Gateway event. 

 

Council President Zeisz - But we were also lead to believe that no one on this side really wanted any part of when theyíre on that side. 

 

Kory Schuler - Well, of course, Iím sure you were lead to believe a lot of things, but again, thatís where there are no checks and balances.  Maybe it would be a good idea, and this is just a suggestion, is to have that Department Head here to answer the questions of the people that own the businesses and the restaurants and bars because we donít really seem to have that access all the time. (inaudible) if there was anything you were involved in, seeing as how you sign the agreement or if you were aware of any of the issues and situations.

 

Councilmember Davis - Also in the contract it also states that Gateway shall grant exclusive licenses to sell alcohol and food products in Gateway Harbor Park and shall be responsible to ensure that those vendors have proper licenses and permits to sell such products.  So, I think what heís asking us is pretty reasonable.

 

Kory Schuler Ė If there was a bid process, there should be bids that should be public record somewhere.  It wouldnít be unreasonable to see the bids, see the low bids versus winning bids.  There should be bids somewhere on record that exist in all your rooms of paperwork, there should be bids somewhere Iím assuming.  I would hate to think that somebody just made that arbitrary decision rather than actually taking bids and following the bid process.  That wouldnít be very good.  I am not saying that ever happens but if it did I am sure that is not right.  So I am just putting out there, just a thought.  

 

Mayor Pilozzi Ė Have you ever asked her?  I know she attends your meetings, if you ask her to.

 

Kory Schuler - No, we have. I know the food vending issue came up, one of the restaurants asked about it and I was told that Wardynskiís backed out so they grabbed a restaurant on that side to fill in but again, I wasnít informed of any bid process that went on and thatís where the Veteranís were a little bit confused because theyíre paying 85% of their profit to Gateway, when the food vendor pays nothing.  Then they decided that they are going to pay something to an organization that theyíre actually part of so theyíre basically paying their profits back to themselves.  Weíre getting into that whole convoluted odd relationship situation again where public events that are getting a little convoluted.  I think more and more people, their eyebrows are starting to get raised, at least in our association they are.  So I just wanted to know if the City was aware of that or if you all agreed to all of this or if anyone ever questioned any of the bids or if there was a bid process, or how you can rectify it if there wasnít.  Itís probably a little too late for this year but it would be interesting to see if that process was ever followed.  So I just wanted to ask you and put it out there.

 

Council President Zeisz Ė Just as an example, like the Saturday night concerts, thatís like totally an NT event. 

 

Kory Schuler - Itís not an NT event.  Itís a Gateway event.    

 

Council President Zeisz Ė I understand what youíre saying. 

 

Kory Schuler Ė If itís an NT event, and I can go with the argument, thatís fine, but if itís an NT event, then the problem you run into is the head of Parks & Recreation is also the President of Gateway, so where do we start defining job responsibilities of are you President of Gateway today, or are you head of Parks & Recreation for the City of Tonawanda?  If itís a Gateway event, then itís a Gateway event, which means the contract that you all agreed to would be (inaudible) because itís for Gateway Harbor and the concerts, not North Tonawanda and the City of Tonawanda.  If itís City of Tonawanda concerts, then Gateway really should have no responsibility in it because itís the City of Tonawanda, not Gateway.  I could be wrong.  Iím just a member of the public just questioning, but to me it just seems a little odd and convoluted.

 

Mayor Pilozzi Ė I sit on the Gateway Committee, so does Mayor Soos, so does their Rec Director.  To my recollection, anybody thatís ever put a request in for consideration for vending at one of those events, to my knowledge, has been always considered.  Iím not sure, again, Iím going by memory here, I donít think anybodyís been turned down exclusively, I could be wrongÖ

 

Kory Schuler Ė Öthey probably havenít been turned down, how can you if you donít even know about it?  I mean, you didnít solicit a bid, thereís some kind of ad, thereís an ad placed in the classifieds soliciting for bids, or thereís a flyer or itís made public.  Thatís how you get fair bidding, and again, Iím not an expert on taking bids, but I would assume that you wouldnít wait for people to come to you, I mean, if you were building a road, youíd wouldnít say, hey contractors come to me, you would solicit for bids, thatís how you get a wide range of bids. 

 

Mayor Pilozzi - To my recollection thereís never been a bid process that I recall.  Iím not saying there should be or shouldnít be, Iím just saying, Iím answering your question, I donít recall any bid process, all right?  In terms of the Gateway Harbor as an oversight committee, both of the communities decided that thatís what it would be.  As you can see from the Saturday night concerts, that went down the tubes because basically everything was done by Gateway except Saturday night concerts and that became, for lack of a better word, a political issue on the other side of the canal, not our side.  Whether or not we should be doing venues of that size on our side, if you look at from strictly a side standpoint, they can control the crowd better over there because they can close off both ends.  We canít, unless you put up fences and probably that would float a pretty big expense, but that doesnít mean that the issues you had and brought to this body should not be talked about maybe in more detail.  I would suggest that you come to a Gateway Harbor meeting.  Those kinds of questions, you have every right to ask those kinds of questions but there is some rhyme and reason to some of it.  Again, Iím not going to stand here and defend Gateway Harbor for everything but I donít have all the answers.  I do know that they are the oversight committee for what happens at Gateway Park. 

 

Bethany Peacock, 5 Main Street Ė If we have the problems that we had last year, would the City be opposed to only a weekend Canal Fest instead of a week long? 

 

Council President Zeisz Ė Well, itís been proposed in the past that it be cut down.  Obviously, that never came to fruition, but that has been discussed.  Not a weekend, I think people were talking more like 5 days.  Could that happen some day?  It could.  Not saying itís going to, but it certainly is an option, yes.

 

Mayor Pilozzi Ė Iíd just like to make a comment.  If youíre referring to some of the activities of the youth and the problems they bring to Canal Fest, we guarantee that our Police Chief and I will make that decision on the spot, like we did last year.  This is a family event.  We donít intend to put up with that kind of nonsense, and Iíve made that clear to folks that run the rides and the Carousel Society and they have been receptive.  Weíre trying to look at the overall event and where the problems really lie and if we look at right where you live, in that intersection, weíre trying to come up with ways to disperse the crowd, and again, our Chief and I have sat down with these individuals and I think weíre all writing on the same sheet of music but weíre not going to, and I can guarantee, weíre not going to put up with that, if it does indeed happen.  You look at statistics, strictly statistics, on our side vs. North Tonawanda side and if you took a person and put blind folders on, took them to the North Tonawanda side, took them off, put them back on, brought them to our side, itís like two different countries.  We donít know why, I wish we did.  You can say itís the rides, we donít know, but I do know that itís up to that Chief, right there, and myself and the people sitting up here, for public safety and weíll react to that, if need be.  Hopefully, we wonít need to.  Hopefully that answers your questions and your concerns.

 

Herb Young, 251 Adam Street Ė Talking about the Canal Fest, if you notice in this map that they have, over on Sweeny Street, thereís 27 concessions, food concessions, and people are going to make good money.  Tonawanda side, we have 14.  What have we got on the Tonawanda side?  All the rides, all the games, and who gets most of the money from that?  North Tonawanda.  So, it looks like they get the crŤme, Tonawanda gets the skim milk and if you guys have any chance to make any changes, I wish you would.   

 

COMMENTS FROM THE COUNCILMEMBERS AFTER RESOLUTIONS

 

Councilmember Perkins - I have nothing else this evening.

 

Councilmember Waterhouse Ė Nothing at this time.

 

Councilmember Davis Ė Iíd just like to thank the Chief and the Auxiliary and the rest of the Police Department for how they handled the 4th of July.  There was quite a few people downtown and trying to take my daughters back home across town turned into a 40 minute adventure, sitting in traffic but the police did the best job they could and the fireworks were great but the police should be commended for the job they did that night with that many people out of a confined area. Myself, Assemblyman Schimminger and the Mayor attended the re-dedication for some memorials that were stolen out of the area surrounding the Historical Society.  Iíd just like to thank Elmlawn for donating two plaques that replaced the two that, more than likely, some youth in our City that had nothing better to do, the day before Veteranís Day of all days, decided to ransack and steal those plaques.  Itís my hope that one day down the line, when we find out, if we find out who did it, that we send them to marine boot camp for three months as their punishment for them to appreciate the sacrifices of those that have come way before us and given their life to our country.  Canal Fest, everybody knows about it.  The Mayor talked about the problems on our side and Mr. Young, you hit it right on the head, itís the games and itís the rides in a nutshell and it is pretty sad that the people that get inebriated behave themselves better than some of the youth that attend Canal Fest. 

 

Council President Zeisz Ė That is because they are caged in.  They canít get out.

 

Councilmember Davis - Like the Mayor said, it is a family event and hopefully everybody will go down because it is a big attraction for our City and itís actually one time of the year that it actually puts the City of Tonawanda on the map.  Finally, my heart goes out to the family of the young man that wandered off from the softball game and got hit on the train tracks, but also my heart goes out to the supervisor, that young lady that was in charge and probably did not have enough personnel there to keep track of all of the people that were at that softball field.  Being the father of 7, it doesnít take but a few seconds for you to get preoccupied with something else and turn around and your kids not where he or she was 30 seconds ago.  So, again, my heart goes out to that young manís family but also to that worker because itís something that sheís going to have to deal with for the rest of her life. 

 

Mayor Pilozzi Ė I think some of the issues that were brought out tonight regarding Canal Fest are very good issues, theyíre poignant to the point but the bottom line is, it brings a lot of people to this community.  Can we do better?  I think Mr. Young pointed out yes we can do better, especially on our side of the fence. Whether thatís ever going to happen, I donít know, but itís my hope, along with yours, Mr. Young, that maybe someday that will happen.  If you look strictly at numbers, Iím a numbers guy, I did it for 30 years in my private life, and if you look strictly at numbers, the Carousel Society in North Tonawanda, basically obtained about $1,000,000 over the 26 years of Canal Fest, and I have no problems with that. God Bless them for that. But, I havenít seen anybody on our side of the fence get anywhere close to that.  Just work the numbers, work the numbers, itís not hard to do.  But the bottom line is, itís a good event for our community, the Twin Cities in general, and hopefully it will come off without a hitch.  Iíd like to also congratulate our Police Chief, Chief Young and her department for doing an exemplary job, not only with the 4th of July event, but a week earlier we had the Ride for Roswell where somewhere between 4,000 Ė 5,000 bicycles came through this community.  Now, I donít know about you folks, I donít know if anybodyís here from the Tonawanda News, oh there he is.  I donít usually read Sound Off.  I donít like it.  If youíre not going to sign it, I donít read it, but there was one good one in there and it had to do with Chief Youngís department and what a great job they did and at least somebody recognized that.  Of course, they didnít sign it, but itís always nice to see a good one.  The re-dedication of the two stone monuments that we did today, Bill Poole was also there, it was a nice event, itís kind of gut-wrenching to think that anybody would go out of there way to take two of those stones that memorialize and pay tribute to a couple veterans from World War I because you really slap every Veteranís face, WWI, WWII, Korea, Viet Nam.  Young people today, itís just unconscionable, but it was nice to have Elmlawn Cemetery and Mr. Mike Austin and Jim Huggins from that organization donate those two stones and it was a great event and hopefully, that wonít happen again.  One thing that Councilman Davis mentioned, the unfortunate incident that caused a human life.  I had a discussion with our Police Chief about this unfortunate accident and one of the things that really got to me was the fact that that young man donated five of his organs.  His family donated five organs. That never got into the paper.  Maybe the family wouldnít want that in the paper. I donít know, but right now somebodyís walking around with a 15 year oldís liver, heart, lungs, kidneys, and corneas.  So out of the tragedy there is some good news.  We hate to see it happen in our City, but it happened. Hopefully those kinds of things wonít happen again but unfortunately we already lost two people killed in our City by tragedies this year.  Weíll do our best to make sure that doesnít happen again. 

 

Council President Zeisz Ė Iíd commend the Chief and her department too but she has to leave the room and the doorís only so wide, but they always do a great job and Iím sure with Canal Fest theyíll do the same.  It doesnít take a genius to figure out the issues with Canal Fest.  The NT side is very confined, regardless of the rides, forget the rides, NT side is very confined and itís a very small space.  You come over on our side, thereís a lot more places to hide, cubby holes, buildings to go behind, thereís just a lot more places where the groups want to try to hang out.  Hopefully, weíve got some ideas to disperse some of the people this year.  The only issue becomes, when you disperse them, where do they go?  Hopefully, it will be a great event.  It always is and thereís always going to be issues.  I donít care what you do, thereís always going to be issues because thereís a lot of people in a small area, somethingís always going to happen, youíre going to have problems but I have all the faith in the world things will work out and it will be a great event.  Itís really good for the City.  Itís a good opportunity to showcase the place that we live in and for people to come down here and enjoy the Canal and that.  Have a great night, drive home safely, and God Bless.

 

ADJOURNMENT

 

144.     By Councilmember Waterhouse                              seconded by Councilmember Davis

            Resolved, that this Common Council adjourn until July 28, 2009.  

 

Ayes: Perkins, Waterhouse, Davis, Zeisz

Nays: None

Resolution declared adopted

 

 

 

 

 

 

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