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Lewiston tennis center needs careful review

The most historic square mile in the United States, the Village of Lewiston, is mired in a major controversy concerning an indoor tennis center.

All five Village Board members have ties to Lewiston's strong history and historic preservation. So why would they consider construction of a modern barnlike building at the historically designated Red Brick School and in a beautiful residential area with at least six historic properties? Further, they would be relinquishing a popular outdoor recreation area utilized by toddlers, kids, teens, adults and seniors.

At the Nov. 21 public information meeting concerning the project, the benefactor heard a multitude of dissenting and intelligent outcry that Marilyn Toohey Park was not a prudent site for his largesse. He then indicated that he would find another site. This was a sincere and noble action by this gentlemen.

Many residents inquire about parking capacity and the cost for maintenance and operating this center particularly when this Village Board has significantly raised our property taxes and recently raised water and sewer rates now in juxtaposition they would reduce property values.

Western New York currently has five indoor tennis centers, four in Erie County and one in Niagara County, and they are all privately owned.

It is important to apply reason, judgment and vision by assembling the leaders of our Lewiston and Porter governments and schools to review the advisability of this major project.

Richard Soluri, former mayor



Catch speeders at mobile home park

Regarding the Dec. 18 article "Mobile home park under lawmen's scrutiny," I was shocked and happily surprised that someone had finally written about this continuous problem [in the Woodlands mobile home park in Lockport].

What I am amazed at is that it seems that the law enforcement offices have excuses for not being able to solve the problems due to "what their [drivers'] rights are."

Then again, so does management. I would think the management of the Woodlands can only go so far -- their office does close by 5 p.m. -- but law enforcement should be able to take a step up. Most of the speeding happens between 6 and 8 a.m. -- on their way to work -- and between 5 and 8 p.m.

It's pretty sad when I pull out of my driveway on Lockwood Drive that a car going over 35 mph has to pass me because I am going too slow. What if a child had just run out to grab a ball, or an animal such as a cat or dog had been in the street? Don't these people think?

The Sheriff's Office can work it both ways: Show up in marked cars, show your presence, and also put a unmarked car at the corner of Timberwood and Lockwood drives. I bet you they would make their quotas in about one hour. Then put an unmarked car at Ridgewood and Lockwood drives.

Nail these people here and there, and just maybe, people will get the hint. Maybe people will think twice before flying down the street at 50-60 mph -- and no, I am not blowing the speed limit out of proportion!

Margie Weber

Town of Lockport


County employees need their step increments

What a slap in the face!

Niagara County Manager Jeff Glatz has frozen step increments for more than 300 county employees, eliminated more than 50 positions and laid off at least eight working employees. He is asking unions to agree to a 5 percent wage reduction, give up vacations, increase contributions to health care, give back holiday pay It would seem that hard times have arrived to Niagara County.

Except on Dec. 13, the Niagara County Legislature Administration Committee recommended giving a wage increase to the recently re-elected county clerk.

Why would these legislators agree to boost this kind of salary up to nearly $100,000 while denying the people making less than $35,000 the small increases they were promised when hired?

There are 35 members that I was elected to represent not getting a step increase next year. The increases average $700 per year. These are hard-working employees hired to provide such services as plowing snow during blizzards, repairing water line breaks, cooking, delivering and serving meals to senior citizens, remodeling county offices.

Why would you deny them a promised $700 increase that would feed, clothe, house and educate their families, then give the county clerk's family $3,366 in 2013, $2,625 in 2014, then $2,704 in 2015?

County employees need these step increments to keep up with the high cost of raising a family. They were hired at a low starting wage then promised to be incremented to what they are worth.

Please contact your Niagara County legislator and insist they be fair and honest with their employees and give them their promised increments. Obviously the county is not as broke as they say.

Bill Rutland

President AFSCME Local 182

Niagara County Blue Collar Employees