Over the last week, the editorial board of The Buffalo News met with policy-makers and leaders and researched, analyzed and debated issues affecting this community. Here's a summary of the week's editorials, which can be read in full on our Web pages:
Sunday: The News' editorial observed that Kimberley A. Minkel has forward-looking plans for the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority, where she has been named executive director. It also noted that she faces several challenges in ensuring adequate bus service, in making sure that the authority's police department is better managed and, most broadly, in extricating the authority from activities that fall outside the scope of its mandate.
Monday: The day's editorial praised Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo for his plans to focus on the upstate economy, but noted that more steps should be taken, and it called on the State Legislature to do its part.
Tuesday: The day's editorial observed that, while arguments were already erupting over what role, if any, political incivility played in the shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and six others, the nation's discourse had eroded to the point that violence would not be surprising.
Wednesday: This page endorsed Cuomo's call for public financing of state elections as a way of diminishing the influence of special interest money. A second editorial credited Bridget Quinn-Carey, outgoing director of the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library, for setting the system on a better path after only three years on the job.
Thursday: We called on the federal Department of Transportation and Western New York's congressional delegation to keep up pressure on airline ticket-sellers to follow the law on disclosing what airline is actually flying any given aircraft. A second editorial observed that a clue to the seriousness with which the state pursues redistricting reform can be seen in what happens to Assemblyman Mark J.F. Schroeder, a thorn in the side of Speaker Sheldon Silver.
Friday: The lead editorial noted the overarching lesson of the painful and ultimately successful effort to fire Buffalo's former underperforming human resources commissioner, Karla Thomas: Hire based on ability, not political connections. A second editorial supported a push to make permanent federal tax credits for research and development