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City Hallways (Dec. 7) Friday night lights

Back story on this week's photo: I stopped in the  Common Council Staff office to pick up the agenda for an upcoming Council  meeting and  noticed  this collage outside the office, in the 14th floor hallway. I thought it sort of had the feel of Springsteen's "Greetings from Asbury Park" album cover.

On  the waterfront
Erie Basin Marina boat slip holders are giving positive reviews to the Smith Boys, the firm the city hired this year as its new marina operator.

But the slip holders say they're worried that City Hall wants to hike slip fees another 35 percent in the upcoming year on top of the 35 percent hike they paid this season. And they also don't like the pricing system Buffalo uses, which charges a premium for boat size rather than establishing a flat rate based on slip size.

City officials say they are going to be reviewing this year's marina finances before deciding on rents for next  year.

The Marina slip holder association members said that if rates go much  higher, they will be higher than rates at other marinas in the area, although city resident rates are lower than non-residents fees.

The association members also pointed out their fees subsidize portions of the public section of the Erie Basin Marina park area, such as the flower gardens, and not just their marina slips.

City officials responded that their main responsibility is to the city -- not to the marina slip holders association. There's a lot of demand for the Erie Basin Marina slips, said the officials, who also said the marina association concerns will be considered before a decision is made on 2016 fees.

Neighborhood News
City Hall has requests for Food Store licenses at 2594 Bailey Ave., Nab Market Inc. grocery; 1347 Kensington, Golden Farms grocery; and for Used Car licenses at 283 Broadway,TMCB Cars; 30 Cayuga, Hardy Automotive Wholesale; and 1536 Seneca, The Four D's Auto Sales & Service.

Friday night lights
I did a before and after at Friday night's lighting of the tree of lights on the City Hall outdoor balcony.



Death count: The first homicide of the month happened Saturday, Dec. 5. The victim was JaQuan Sullivan, a  19-year-old shot and killed on Parkdale Avenue, off Potomac between Grant and Hoyt. I just read his Facebook page. Here's one of the posts: "All I can think about is the last time we talked damn Jaquan I told you damn near all the time leave this life alone and you always told me it ain't that easy... Gone but never forgotten rip Jaquan imma miss you the most!"jaquan25_n

I have a story in today's Buffalo News and on on the most expensive Buffalo Common Council race in history.

Calendar Items:
Common Council caucus this afternoon.

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