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Webcam debuts at North Tonawanda’s Gateway Harbor Park

NORTH TONAWANDA – The city’s Gateway Harbor Park has gone live with a new webcam.

The new camera was purchased by the city from its share of casino funds and replaces a camera that was more than 13 years old and had stopped working.

After the Common Council meeting Tuesday, Mayor Arthur G. Pappas praised the new camera, saying that it not only gives viewers a beautiful panoramic view of the harbor, but also provides top-notch security.

The webcam view extends along the Erie Canal from the Delaware Street Bridge and ends at the entrance of Gateway Harbor Park at Sweeney and Webster streets.

Nearly $3,000 in casino funds received through Niagara County Legislators Randy R. Bradt, Richard L. Andres Jr. and Kathryn L. Palka-Lance was used to purchase the camera.

The webcam can be accessed from three websites – northtonawanda.org, the-tonawandas.com and lumbercitydc.com.

In other business, the Council voted to hire JMDavidson, of North Tonawanda, as a consultant to increase the city’s public education and outreach programs, oversee a storm water Web page, prepare the annual storm water report for the state Department of Environmental Conservation and ensure compliance.

The consultant also will inspect city storm water detention facilities and assist in the inspection of storm sewer outfalls to the Niagara River, and to Tonawanda and Sawyer creeks. The annual cost will be $9,200.

City Engineer Dale W. Marshall said that it’s a big job and that it makes sense to hire a consultant rather than add another city employee. Engineer Jaime M. Davidson has worked with the city in the past but recently started her own firm in North Tonawanda.

The city has been part of the Western New York Stormwater Coalition since 2010, and each community is responsible for putting into place public education, as well as programs to detect and eliminate storm water runoff that can pollute local water systems.

The Council also approved hiring Belmont Housing, of Buffalo, as an administrator to oversee a $400,000 grant that will used to upgrade housing for low-income residents in the Oliver Street corridor.

Michael D. Zimmerman, director of Lumber City Development Corp., told the Council that the grant was received from New York State Affordable Housing in the summer. Belmont Housing will manage the project.

He said that the money is expected to be spread out among about 15 homeowners but noted that there is a waiting list of 75 people who signed up for previous grant money.

Priority will be given to those who need repairs to bring their homes up to code.

Zimmerman said the grants are not for aesthetics, but for truly needed repairs. All applicants must fit low-income guidelines.

Also, Pappas and State Sen. Robert G. Ortt, R-North Tonawanda, made presentations Tuesday to Andrew Rossi and Brad Davis, both from Boy Scout Troop 184, who attained the rank of Eagle Scout.

Andrew’s project was to clear the nature trail for the New York State School for the Blind in Batavia, and Brad installed signs in the Food Bank warehouse in Niagara Falls.

email: nfischer@buffnews.com