Jobs to housing, crime to taxes
A City Hallways poll: Tell us what you think. Which of these nine issues do you consider the most important facing the city of Buffalo? Next most important, and next after that?
As always, I'll leave the poll up all week, then report back on the results next Monday, and try to have an analysis of results later in the week.
City Hallways readers know the routine. Only one ballot per person please.
And for analysis purposes, we'd like to get some demographic info from you:
Thursday Town Meeting
During a news conference on the upcoming Town Hall on the heroin/opioid epidemic, I heard what sounded like a new approach emerging from law enforcement.
"Addicts need treatment. Dealers need jail," said acting District Attorney Michael Flaherty.
And Mayor Brown spoke of the Buffalo Police Department working with other law enforcement on a plan to assist addicts who ask for help in getting them that help, rather than criminalizing their behavior.
There were over 200 overdose deaths in Erie County last year.
Thursday's Town Hall is being held 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.at the North Park Theater on Hertel Avenue. It was organized by Avi and Julie Israel working with Delaware Councilman Joel Feroleto. A full slate of politicians, law enforcement officials and medical experts will be there. The Israel's son killed himself in 2011 while addicted to prescription opioids.
BTW, Buffalo and Erie County aren't the only localities looking for new approaches to the epidemic. I read over the weekend that the mayor of Ithaca wants to create a safe zone in that city where addicts can inject heroin under supervision to help reduce the overdose deaths.
Senate District 60 Update
Latest is Republican County Clerk Chris Jacobs considering run for the high profile state Senate race.
Some money facts: Jacobs doesn't have an active Senate finance campaign fund, but his county clerk campaign fund had $316,957 in it at the end of January. Kenmore attorney Kevin Stocker, also considering a GOP run for the 60th Senate GOP primary, had $6,238 in the Senate campaign fund, set up from past elections. Assistant D.A. James Gardner, also talking about jumping in on the Republican side, doesn't have a campaign finance fund set up.
On Democratic side, incumbent state Sen. Marc Panepinto has $140,922 in his campaign fund. Amber Small, the Parkside Community Association executive director who recently jumped into the Democratic race, has not yet reported any campaign funds, but she just announced a $25-per-person event on March 16. Democrat Al Coppola is also again talking about a run. Coppola's campaiagn fund, set up from prior races, had $10,240 left from 2014 campaign, finance reports show.
City officials this morning announcing a "language access plan" to help the city police department better serve residents with limited English language proficiency.
Common Council has pre-meeting caucus this afternoon.
Also, Happy Leap Day!