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February 18, 2009 - 12:19pm
posted by Philip Anselmo in batavia, budget, city council, downtown, polls.

Earlier today, we reported that the city of Batavia may not release the salaries of its city employees until after the City Council has already voted on the budget. Several individuals have come to us to express concern over the choice by Council to institute raises for city officials when unemployment is on the rise and every week seems to bear the news of another downtown business closing shop.

Is it just? Should city officials and department heads get raises just because all other city employees are guaranteed a raise under their union contract?

February 17, 2009 - 8:16am
posted by Philip Anselmo in polls, digital television.

An article in the Democrat & Chronicle this morning reports that Rochester's Fox affiliate will cut off its analog signal at midnight tonight. They will be the only Rochester-based station to shut down before the new switch date of June 12.

Feb. 17 was the original deadline for stations to switch from analog to digital, but earlier this month Congress voted to allow stations to postpone the move until June 12, giving households with rabbit-ear antennas more time to obtain a digital converter box. An estimated 15 percent of Rochester-area homes needed the converter boxes. Those that do not have a converter box will not be able to get WUHF after midnight.

Are you ready for the switch?

February 13, 2009 - 10:21am
posted by Philip Anselmo in Western New York, polls.

Earlier this week, we picked up an article from Forbes magazine that dubbed Buffalo the 8th most miserable city in the nation. Just or unjust, we thought that may have touched on a few of the less desirable aspects of living in this part of the country. Sure, we've got much to boast about here in Western New York—the people, the history, the landscapes, the fresh water—but surely they are a few things about our region that we would get rid of if we could.

So, what would you scrap if you could?

February 4, 2009 - 12:00pm
posted by Philip Anselmo in government, polls.

The New York Times reports this morning that there are plans to institute a $500,000 salary cap for executives whose companies will receive large amounts in the proposed bailout. From that article:

The new rules would be far tougher than any restrictions imposed during the Bush administration, and they could force executives to accept deep reductions in their current pay. They come amid rising public fury about huge pay packages for executives at financial companies being propped up by federal tax dollars.

Executives at companies that have already received money from the Treasury Department would not have to make any changes. But analysts and administration officials are bracing for a huge wave of new losses, largely because of the deepening recession, and many companies that have already received federal money may well be coming back.

What are your thoughts?

February 3, 2009 - 9:29am
posted by Philip Anselmo in Spring, weather, winter, polls, Groundhog Day.

Punxsutawney Phil climbed out of his burrow on Gobbler's Knob yesterday to find his shadow and thus predict for us another six weeks of winter. From the Washington Post:

According to legend, if a hibernating animal wakes up and casts a shadow on Feb. 2, winter will last six more weeks. If there is no shadow, spring will supposedly come early.

Early American farmers relied on groundhogs, though there is no scientific evidence that the animal has any weather-predicting skills.

What do you think?

January 27, 2009 - 9:40am
posted by Philip Anselmo in weather, snow, winter, storm, polls.

Meteorologists are holding true to their winter storm watch, still expecting the massive system now sweeping up from Ohio to hit hard tonight—check out our post from this morning. Although, initial predictions of up to a foot of snow for the region have already been eased. We're know expecting between five and eight inches of snowfall. Still, looking at this thing, there seems a chance that it could just sail right by us, never lifting north enough to cause any damage.

Last year, if I remember correctly, there were about a half dozen "major" snow storms that were predicted that never came to pass. Are we looking at another flop, or should be all be picking up our shovels?

January 26, 2009 - 10:15am
posted by Philip Anselmo in batavia, city council, ambulance, polls.

Later tonight, Batavia's City Council will vote to cease its funding and operation of the county-wide ambulance service managed by the city fire department. Discussion among members of Council was had at a recent budget meeting, and Council President Charlie Mallow has assured us that they are essentially all in agreement and that tonight's vote is merely the formal act on what has already been decided.

Seventeen of the 18 other municipalities in the county that benefit from the ambulance service have expressed their desire to continue with the city-run service. So we may see a few speakers at tonight's meeting. The vote will follow the Council's conference meeting, which begins at 7:00pm at City Hall.

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