Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Buffalo Citizens Getting Started

A group of citizens has organized in Buffalo to start addressing the need for change in their city. They are calling themselves Revitilize Buffalo. They met last thursday and 60 people showed up. If you get 60 motivated people in a room on a regular basis. You can make things happen. Just ask Paul Clyne.

Their goals:
  • Improve urban experience
  • Acquire a building to use as business incubator
  • Promote photography
  • Promote music
  • Neighborhood revitalization

Good news for Buffalo. And they need it because they are facing quite the tax crisis. To get a taste of what they are facing here is the opening to this article:

"This area has two choices: a new approach to regionalism or even deeper chaos. It's over. Screeching and shuddering, the golden age of the Status Quo in Buffalo has finally ground to a bitter halt.

It ended this winter, as Erie County officials bickered and scrapped over the bloated carcass of the 2005 county budget. It vanished in the heat and energy generated by thousands of Western New Yorkers' voices, as they dug in their heels and said, at last, an emphatic "No" to any new sales tax. The message is clear. It is no longer acceptable - no longer excusable - in the Buffalo Niagara region to do things the Same Old Way. What we've been through the past few months has taught us nothing less. Now, we're faced with a mess.

Our elected leaders have failed us, most of them, by their selfishness and incompetence. While the city remains under a control board, the county is in fiscal meltdown. Services that we care about, like parks and libraries, have been threatened, cut and closed, while many officials have fought to protect pork and patronage. It's been a soul-sapping process to witness. And rather than getting better, the situation will soon grow worse.

Next fall, chances are good you will have to pay more - much more - in county property taxes on your home, to support a government that's been exposed to public view this winter for what it has been for quite some time: Too big. Too expensive. Too inefficient. Too out-of-date. Prepare yourself for the Coming Fiscal Disaster of 2005-2006."