I am writing in response to the Sept. 12 News article, "City schools pay less than suburbs." It seemed to imply that there is some right of the Buffalo teachers to be paid what their counterparts get paid in the suburbs. What was not mentioned is that we pay for those higher-paid teachers and quality schools.
When my wife and I were looking for a house, we considered all areas of Western New York. A large benefit of living in the city would have been paying half the taxes that were paid in the suburbs. We decided to move into Cheektowaga's Maryvale School District. We felt that if we had children, they would benefit from a better school district, and we were willing to make the sacrifice to pay much higher taxes in return.
Well lucky us, we have the highest school-tax rate and the highest-paid teachers in the area. We also have one of the highest-achieving schools systems, which my two children will benefit from.
For 12 years, Jimmy Griffin was proud of the fact that he didn't raise taxes. And for 12 years, the people of Buffalo re-elected him, and that was their choice. However, a very high price was paid, and the people of Buffalo are now reaping the results of not raising taxes.
If the city teachers expect to be paid as well as suburban teachers, then city taxes have to be raised to finance that. Because it's painfully obvious that the city does not have the money to pay for large raises. You can't get blood from a stone.