Friday, May 29, 2015

BUFFALO BUSES IN CANADIAN ENTREPRENEURS. FORT ERIE'S CHAMBER PLAYS GOLF.

An innovative company 43North has hosted about 150 Canada-based entrepreneurs for a tour of what Western New York has to offer young start-up companies. The guests were impressed, many considering expanding their businesses to Buffalo and Western New York.

Funny, isn't it that Buffalo can attract young business people while the best that Fort Erie's Economic and Tourism Development seems be able to do is prop up a dying seasonal industry and to find a way to get the government to build a NOT-NASCAR raceway. Way to look to the future.

As we watch the eventual decline of Fort Erie into a hapless border town, we can also thank those who have been at the public trough too long. Fortunately, the present council wisely chose Tom Kuchyt as the new CAO despite a very strong campaign by some to appoint the notorious Russ Wilson to the post.

He has certainly earned his notorious label. Years ago, he abruptly left his job at Canada Customs. It was alleged that there was money missing from the office Christmas Fund which was administered by Wilson. No proof but a precedent was set. There were many "shortages" in bingo revenue since Wilson is in charge of Gaming for the town. Fortunately, the OLG has put a stop to that possibility because of widespread abuse of bingo money all through the province. Some familiar names crop up on long-ago documents regarding bingo theft. One local event planner was banned from bingo parlours or any involvement with bingos because of alleged theft.

The Wilson becomes head of Bridges Medical Program. Oops, his treasurer gets caught embezzling over a quarter million dollars and somehow she was able to get away with it for a couple of years and Wilson knew nothing about it. Now there's a guy with his finger on the pulse of his organization. Great experience for CAO. (That is, if you want a CAO who looks the other way while the cupboard is being emptied.) 

Isn't it time for Russ to go off into the sunset and pursue his dream of owning a strip club on the highway? Maybe he could go into the jewelry business with his wife and her old boss, Doug Martin. Or maybe he can try to run for office. He was elected once; then people smartened up. 

I must say that, like Jim Thibert, Russ Wilson is Teflon® coated. No matter how many try to chip away at the veneer, it refuses to break down.

24 comments:

  1. If reports are to be believed, the FE Post reports Mr. Kuchyt as saying projects like the CMS could rekindle economic development here. Hes beating that old CMS drum pretty hard it seems. On the same page, Culic reports that without 80 million dollars from the provincial government, the same CMS project wont proceed. And is that likely to happen? Seems James is beating the other side of the CMS drum pretty hard too. Eighty million? Handed over to persue a motor speedway project up in naughty little Fort Erie? From the Liberals sitting in Queens Park? Tom may or may not be the "guy for the job", but if wish lists and guessing are a requirement for that position there are people that will work those angles for a lot less money. Council is to draft another letter they say. Better put it on soft tissue paper, because you know what theyre going to do with that "latest request for information regarding our funding request for the FE CMS". These are true blue conservatives up this way, a fact not lost on the money changers in Toronto.

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  2. Fort Erie has very little going for it at Queen's Park thanks to Doug Martin and Jim Thibert. Doors do not open for Jimbo at Queen's Park. On the federal level there is Rob Nicholson who is now the minister of state. Whew. He can breathe a sign of relief that he doesn't have to listen to the whining coming from Fort Erie.

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  3. CorruptionFighterMay 29, 2015 at 7:48 PM

    It wasn't that long ago that Dirty Doug and Jimmie Dirt Bag were waving banners around telling McGuinty to stuff it......smooth move by our 2 top asswipes both paid a lot of money to use at least some grey matter. Now Dirty Doug tries to put his BFF into the CAO role and King Jimmie is finally shovel ready after just a decade or so and at least 6 million down the shitter.

    Only in Fort "not so smart" , there Marina.

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  4. Besides the sitting mayor running for (and losing) the nomination for the NDP rep to run in this provincial riding a few years ago. Eighty million reasons to laugh at these motor vehicle addicted fools up river in the "Fort". The 60's called. They want their race track idea back.

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  5. What a waste of time, money not to mention the environment. Doing all these years of costly hearings and disrupting lives when there was not a guarantee from the different levels of government to support and even approve the speedway. Infrastructure must be worked out ahead of time.
    Poor governing in my opinion.

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    1. As Sandy Annunziata would say; " Product over Procedure ", which was his Rationale for voting in Favour to Give the Bay Beach Lands away to a Developer.

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  6. Word is that some of the properties they need for the project have still not been "bought." They just increased the "lease" on said properties. Something has been bothering me about this project from the get-go. Of course I want to see prosperity and tourism dollars to come to Fort Erie, but I think that the approach now being taken is all wrong. First, there has to be an effort to promote and encourage small businesses. They are the backbone any community. Also, there has to be a concerted effort to bring good-paying, full-time, skilled jobs to Fort Erie. A place like AirBus (Eurocopter) has set the benchmark for such industries, yet Jim Thibert cannot take credit for that at all. He is more concerned about his hobby: the Fort Erie Race Track which could be self-sustaining if the local economy was better. I do remember how busy the track was back in the 1950s. It was sustained by a growing middle class from both sides of the border. It was a showcase, much like Churchill Downs which is also experiencing declines in betting and attendance.

    A NOT NASCAR car racing venue is a costly gamble in Fort Erie. The aging, small Peace Bridge cannot handle the expected surge of race fans and there are few facilities where fans can camp or stay. If one were to wave a magic wand and the track was completed and ready to go, how many people could we expect to come to a second-rate racing card? Of course it's the same with the Fort Erie horse track. "B" level track while Woodbine gets all the perks, including slots.

    Why? Because that's where the people are. "If you build it; they will come," is an old movie line. Sounds catchy but it is not always the truth.

    This town needs to get its economy back on track and a couple of race tracks are not going to do it.

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  7. James Thibert has poisoned the well water , and the OLG did not appreciate him using the "F" bomb word on them in the meeting held in St.Catharine.'s many years ago, relations with the Province will never improve while we have a person with the personality of a "Tasmanian Devil" in charge of Economic Development. The St..Catharines Standard the local paper reported the meeting and took note that a representative of Fort Erie would talk to government officials in that manner, I have dealt with lower level government officials in the past, and found that wooing them with honey and sweet talk gets them on your side and they go the extra mile in helping, I have had experiences with the head of Bingo licence officials in Toronto back in the 1980s and got grants from numerous agencies Federal and Provincial , they are very helpful and smooth paperwork through the system. We recently got two grants from the Federal and Provincial agencies to put a new roof , handicapped access doors and other goodies , just by treating these public servants with respect and asking for ideas. they even have us down for any other monies that may come up at future dates. Our Project Manager with the Black Creek Community Association uses diplomacy and does the small talk to win over the people that we want, to help us, and it works big time.!!!

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  8. Porgeys comparison of JT to the Tasmanian Devil (the Sarcophilus harisii) is an insult to Tasmanian Devils everywhere. The TasDevs serve a usefull purpose cleaning up roadkill and other dead critters at NO COST to anyone. They also serve as a powerful image to promote tourism to Australia and Tasmania. If JT and the Sarcophilis harisii have anything in common it is that their "social interactions are poorly understood."

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  9. CorruptionFighterJune 8, 2015 at 9:18 AM

    Madam Editor, I see you have ran afoul of the mouth from the south, Leslie North and her little fat sycophant buddy Greg Bonito........you must be doing something right to upset these ol boy camp followers, neither of whom are capable of independent thought unless approved by King Jimmy and Co. first.

    Keep up the good work, maybe the town may someday wake up to the rip offs, scams and backroom deals these 2 support so vehemently at the town's future and the taxpayer's expense.

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  10. Right, they can't handle the truth. Even reading the court transcripts that the mayor and pessaro made up the four votes along with Bob Steckley and John HIll to just pay off the lawyer to leave, that 4 to 3 vote was ignored.

    I sure wish that Conflict of Interest hearing would get underway, I'm talking about the one marina butt backed.

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  11. Tonight's council meeting - councillors, what a farce!

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  12. Tonights Council meeting was not about Bay Beach, but about power and control. Why bother to go to the expense of an ad for applications from residents and then ignore them? Why hire a consultants and ignore their recommendations? No doubt a coup has taken place. The jokers are running the show.

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  13. I hope the good people of Crystal Beach rise up protest and INVADE the next meeting of Council. Tonights meeting was shameful, disgraceful and and five members should be tarred and feathered .Knutt, McDermott,the Barbie dolls and PISSaro showed their complete disdain and unspoken devious plans for the future of Bay Beach. A consultant recommends the 29 applicants to an ad for a focus group ALL be accepted. Not good nuff for Council who amended it to 10 handpicked members. Even worse when it came to Council representation they reduced it from 3 Councillors to two and then VOTED against that wards Councillor Don Lubberts in favor of Zanko and McDermott who would need a map to even find Bay Beach. All this was set up behind closed doors and over the weekend. Dirty dirty politics and showed their true agenda, SCREW the BEACH . We await their next move to call Molinaro back in......

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  14. Why hire a consultants and ignore their recommendations? Yes why would any coucil do that. Oh wait the last one did that when it came to the operational review not once but twice.... Seems some have short and or selective memories

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    1. Well, obviously the present council has learned nothing if they just keep repeating the same "mistake". However this one involves even more money and it is just beginning. The plotting going on behind the scenes was so obvious even the councillors were uncomfortable. It would be a lot easier to hide the comings and goings from an operational review and we know previous councils were very good at hiding! This is such a good start at healing the divisions in this town!

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  15. Mr. McDermott on the focus group and his "fresh eyes" is a joke. Maybe we should resurrect some of his comments about eating toad legs, or perhaps some of his comments about Donnie. Yes, he is so impartial and unbiased and meets the requirements of "fresh eyes". We are watching you George with "fresh eyes"! Perhaps those comments should be posted so the true George McDermott could be revealed.

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    1. CorruptionFighterJune 9, 2015 at 9:31 AM

      Georgy is a liar.

      He was adamant during the last election, when challenged, that he had no connections whatsoever to the Ol Boys Club. His actions again and again clearly state otherwise.

      I have another suggestion for you Georgy........stay the hell out of Crystal Beach. It's a long way from the east end and even further with it's completely different attitude. Part of the problem here is simple jealousy as the east end slides further and further into decay and CB pulls itself out of the disaster of the closing of the park and then selling out to a developer for a now walled community and limited access to the beach. Real forward thinking there by the so called leaders of that day.

      Worry about your own ward Georgy as there are more than enough issues there to keep you busy and let CB continue it's recovery. So it begs the question, Georgy.......what do you get by giving away the last and best beach in the area?? or should I ask how much???

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  16. So 5 to 2 votes are fine good government, but 4 to 3 votes were not.

    I think even a kangaroo court would have made more sense than these fools. First 29 participants in a discussion group was too many, then 46 stake holders is better and then two representatives more from each ward, that's 12 more was suggested.

    Fort Erie has met a new low.

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  17. Applications for input from residents? The present council needs to create the "effect of listening" to residents concerns, and they are, sort of, but when it comes to acting on any of those concerns, not so much. Listening then ignoring what is said. Lots of nodding, even some note taking, this is an old trick used time after time. Weve seen it before, we will see it again. The only people that receive anything from these "ads" are the people that run and profit from the business of putting out a newspaper. Ads for input?? Like the expencive consultants didnt suggest that bit of nonsense. So, lets go for it. If its input they want, its input they will get, in spades.

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  18. Let's not forget the dark side of Ms. Zanko. Wasn't she the spokesperson for Citizens of Greater Fort Erie for development or some bizarre, pro-business, all business group that put up that bulletin board that called the 4 councillors liars and other derogatory names? Such good representation! Such a class act!

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  19. Does Ms. Zanko have "fresh eyes" for the Focus Group when that hateful group she represented were in such strong support for a huge condo on our PUBLIC BEACHFRONT?

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  20. Fort Erie has never been known for class. Truly a run down race track, Bingo Parlors & the Garrison Rd strip. Really??? However, before being dragged kicking & screaming to join the TOFE ,Ridgeway & Crystal Beach had lots of class .
    The Niagara Park Way is lovely but it is run by the Niagara Parks commission thank goodness. I can't understand the propensity of some East Fort Erie residents to want to screw the residents of Crystal Beach. If they spend more time developing ways to improve their areas & attract tourists it might help. BUT no this group of trolls & Chamber Maids directed by the mistro aka JT continue to want to
    control how CB is being changed. Some think a 12 story condo is going to improve tourism really what nit wit convinced them of that. Obviously the EDTC thinks residential highrises are a tourist boon but residential single detached homes new builds are not. Well take a look at the Marz dev. it is doing very well & the home designs fit the Beachy feel. As opposed to glass & concrete with folks living in cubby holes. Ridegway by the lake is expanding into a new phase but according to the EDTC that also doesn't count for much, why because these are wealthy out of Towners deciding to retire to Ridgeway. Increase in the Towns tax base I guess is not a priority, the fact the population is growing in these areas & these new welcomed residents will keep our retail business operating but I guess because Thibert isn't part of it isn't relevant.

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