No budget, no contracts, no idea about train station opening here

 

Niagara Falls – Although the Dyster administration has had more than five years to come to an agreement with Amtrak for use of the new, $44 million train station on Whirlpool Street, market the facility to other prospective tenants and come up with a budget to run the place, it has not done so.

Now, with the station and Underground Railroad Interpretive Center set to open in May, there are far more questions than there are answers.

It was back in August 2010 that the first of several official groundbreakings was staged at the site of the new 20,000 plus square foot train station and the adjoining 9,000 square foot Custom House.

Since no contract exists between the city and Amtrak, there is no guarantee that the financially troubled passenger railroad service will even use the new station. And even if an agreement is reached, it is unlikely that the railroad will want to lease much more than the 800 square feet it currently occupies on 27th Street off Lockport Road.

City Planner Tom DeSantis told the city Council last week that a “management plan is contingent on finalizing a lease with Amtrak, and those lease terms and negotiations are ongoing.”

Because the train station opening is imminent, and because city officials would be embarrassed beyond belief to open a train station that no trains came to, Amtrak pretty much has the upper hand in the negotiations.

A rational individual might be forgiven for asking why the city would spend $44 million on a new train station without a single agreement in place regarding its use, but apparently DeSantis and Niagara Falls Mayor Paul Dyster are operating on the “If you build it, they will come,” theory.

Not only is there no agreement with Amtrak after more than five years, but no one in the administration seems to have given any thought whatsoever to how much it will cost to operate the new facility. There is no projected budget, and an accurate financial forecast has to be constructed in the next 90 days.

“We’ve reported in the past on plans for the business model for the train station — it’s not finalized — but that doesn’t mean there hasn’t been thought put into this,” Dyster said.

Asked by Councilman Charles Walker about operational expenses, DeSantis pulled a figure of $100,000 a year out of thin air, but added a caveat.

“The $100,000 reflected the operation of the facility as independently operated by a third party, that’s not likely to be the case,” he said.

The city will have to provide for maintenance and security needs, heat, air conditioning and lighting, snow plowing in the parking lot and a myriad of other expenses. Obviously, DeSantis’s $100,000 figure would barely cover the salary and benefit packages of two janitors and isn’t even in the ballpark of what the cost will actually be.

[Two full time $25,000 maintenance persons with $21,000 health insurance, $4,000 pension and other benefits etc. equals $100,000.]

Much of the justification for the new train station in 2010 was pinned to the promise of high speed rail, a pet idea of President Barack Obama. But in 2011, Congress defunded the high speed rail program and it remains dead in the water.

Meanwhile, the lease for an associated venture, the Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Interpretive Center also remains undrafted and unsigned.

While the commission has received $2.45 million in city casino revenue since its formation in 2009, no one at City Hall seems to have any idea about what they’ve done with it, other than to produce a report that provided no incontrovertible evidence that links what it now the city of Niagara Falls with the activities of the antebellum Underground Railroad.

The museum and the city’s connection to the Underground Railroad were the fanciful notions of Kevin Cottrell, a former city employee who was fired after this newspaper uncovered him promoting a private Underground Railroad tour business he owned on city time.

No artifacts have been known to have been acquired for the museum, no displays have been commissioned. The museum, after five years, remains nothing more than a vague idea.

And yet, DeSantis told Council members last week that the city planned to charge visitors $5 to see whatever it is there will be to see in 90 days. The revenue projections are another story. They require the city’s Department of Economic Development to bargain with tenants for lease contracts before they can be outlined with accuracy.

DeSantis said conversations have been “started” and city officials are meeting with a New York branch of Chase bank to try to establish contracts.

Back in 2010, Dyster and DeSantis were talking about high speed rail service, an “intermodal transportation center” that would house upscale shops and restaurants, a cutting edge moneymaker that would be the envy of municipalities throughout the state.

Now, in just 90 days, the city will open a train station that has cost taxpayers $44 million. There are no signed tenants, no operating budget and officials here seem clueless about what the ongoing costs will be for city taxpayers.

Dyster and DeSantis have had five years to address these issues but chose instead to wait until the last minute to begin the process.

That’s a hell of a way to run a railroad.

PTNFIntermodal1

How much will it cost to maintain this? Senior Planner Thomas DeSantis said it might cost $100,000. This is obviously wrong.

07MUNPLAN_NF2

Now, for the first time, Niagara Falls taxpayers will pay for a train station. Amtrak’s present train station is paid for by Amtrak. How much will it cost?

93 Comments

  1. What a f-ing joke.

  2. Have you ever considered writing an ebook or guest authoring on other blogs?
    I have a blog based on the same subjects you discuss
    and would really like to have you share some stories/information. I know my
    visitors would value your work. If you’re even remotely interested,
    feel free to shoot me an e-mail.

  3. Outstanding quest there. What occurred after? Good luck!

  4. Hi! Would you mind if I share your blog with my zynga group?

    There’s a lot of folks that I think would really appreciate your content.
    Please let me know. Many thanks

  5. I every time spent my half an hour to read this blog’s
    articles everyday along with a mug of coffee.

  6. Your style is really unique compared to other people I’ve read stuff
    from. Thanks for posting when you’ve got the opportunity,
    Guess I will just bookmark this page.

  7. It’s hard to come by knowledgeable people about this topic, however, you sound like you
    know what you’re talking about! Thanks

  8. I think other web-site proprietors should take this web site as an model, very clean and excellent user friendly style and design, let alone the content. You are an expert in this topic!

  9. Hello there! I know this is somewhat off topic but I was
    wondering which blog platform are you using for this website?
    I’m getting tired of WordPress because I’ve
    had issues with hackers and I’m looking at options for another platform.
    I would be fantastic if you could point me in the direction of a good platform.

  10. You can certainly see your enthusiasm within the article you write.
    The arena hopes for more passionate writers such as you who
    aren’t afraid to mention how they believe. Always follow your heart.

  11. Having read this I thought it was really enlightening.
    I appreciate you spending some time and effort to
    put this information together. I once again find myself
    spending way too much time both reading and commenting.

    But so what, it was still worth it!

  12. Today, while I was at work, my cousin stole my iPad and tested to
    see if it can survive a 25 foot drop, just so she can be a youtube sensation. My iPad is now
    destroyed and she has 83 views. I know this is entirely off topic
    but I had to share it with someone!

  13. My partner and I stumbled over here by a different
    web address and thought I may as well check things out.
    I like what I see so i am just following you. Look forward to going over
    your web page yet again.

  14. Well, this Thursday I read through a couple of your posts. I must say this is one of your better ones. ..

  15. This is really interesting, You’re an excessively
    skilled blogger. I’ve joined your feed and stay up for looking for
    more of your wonderful post. Also, I have shared your site in my social networks

  16. Wonderful website. Lots of useful information here.
    I’m sending it to some friends ans additionally sharing in delicious.

    And of course, thanks to your effort!

  17. Just wish to say your article is as astounding.
    The clearness on your put up is just cool and that i can assume you are a professional on this subject.
    Fine together with your permission let me to clutch your RSS feed
    to keep up to date with coming near near post.
    Thanks a million and please keep up the gratifying work.

  18. Have you ever thought about adding a little bit more
    than just your articles? I mean, what you say
    is important and all. Nevertheless imagine if you added some great graphics or videos to give your posts more, “pop”!
    Your content is excellent but with images and video clips,
    this site could certainly be one of the very best in its niche.
    Awesome blog!

  19. May I simply just say what a relief to uncover an individual who
    really understands what they are talking about on the internet.
    You definitely understand how to bring an issue to light
    and make it important. More people should read this and understand
    this side of your story. I can’t believe you’re not more popular since
    you surely possess the gift.

  20. I like the valuable info you provide in your
    articles. I’ll bookmark your weblog and check again here
    regularly. I am quite sure I’ll learn plenty of new stuff right
    here! Best of luck for the next!

  21. Enjoyed this article. I believe that the writer took an rationale perspective and made some pivotale ideas.

  22. I like what you guys are up too. Such clever work and coverage!
    Keep up the fantastic works guys I’ve included you guys to blogroll.

  23. My brother recommended I might like this website.
    He was entirely right. This post actually made my day.
    You can not imagine simply how much time I had spent for this
    information! Thanks!

  24. I don’t even know how I stopped up right here, but I believed this put up was once great.
    I don’t know who you are but certainly you’re going
    to a famous blogger when you aren’t already. Cheers!

  25. What’s up every one, here every person is sharing such know-how,
    thus it’s good to read this webpage, and I used to pay a quick visit this website every day.

  26. Hey there, You’ve done a great job. I will certainly digg it and personally recommend to
    my friends. I’m sure they’ll be benefited from this web site.

  27. Greetings! Very useful advice in this particular post!
    It is the little changes that will make the most significant changes.
    Thanks a lot for sharing!

  28. Keep on working, great job!

  29. I’m amazed, I must say. Rarely do I come across a
    blog that’s equally educative and amusing, and without a doubt, you’ve hit the
    nail on the head. The issue is an issue that too few people are speaking intelligently about.
    I’m very happy I stumbled across this in my search for something concerning this.

  30. Incredible! This blog looks exactly like my old one!
    It’s on a totally different topic but it has pretty much the same page layout and design. Excellent
    choice of colors!

  31. We are a group of volunteers and opening a new scheme in our community.
    Your site offered us with valuable information to work on. You have done an impressive job and our entire community will be thankful
    to you.

  32. Hi! Someone in my Myspace group shared this website with us so I
    came to give it a look. I’m definitely loving the information. I’m bookmarking and will be tweeting this to my followers!

    Great blog and terrific design.

  33. It is not my first time to pay a visit this web site, i am browsing this web page dailly and take nice facts from here daily.

  34. Wow that was strange. I just wrote an very long comment but after I clicked submit
    my comment didn’t show up. Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that over
    again. Regardless, just wanted to say fantastic blog!

  35. I’m gone to convey my little brother, that he should also pay a
    quick visit this website on regular basis to take updated from most up-to-date news.

  36. I am regular visitor, how are you everybody?
    This post posted at this web site is actually good.

  37. I enjoy reading through an article that will make people think.
    Also, thank you for permitting me to comment!

  38. whoah this weblog is fantastic i love studying your posts.

    Keep up the good work! You know, a lot of people are looking around for this information, you could aid them
    greatly.

  39. Hello! Quick question that’s completely off topic.
    Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly?
    My site looks weird when browsing from my iphone4.
    I’m trying to find a template or plugin that might be able to
    fix this problem. If you have any suggestions, please share.
    With thanks!

  40. This piece of writing presents clear idea in favor of
    the new viewers of blogging, that genuinely how to do running a blog.

  41. I was curious if you ever considered changing the page layout of your site?
    Its very well written; I love what youve got to say.
    But maybe you could a little more in the way of content so people could connect with
    it better. Youve got an awful lot of text for only having 1
    or 2 images. Maybe you could space it out better?

  42. Thank you for any other informative blog. Where else may just I
    get that kind of information written in such an ideal method?
    I have a venture that I’m just now operating on, and I’ve been at the look out for such information.

  43. Peculiar article, exactly what I was looking for.

  44. Thanks for sharing your thoughts about lose weight.
    Regards

  45. I am now not sure where you’re getting your info, however good topic.
    I must spend some time learning much more or
    understanding more. Thank you for magnificent info I was in search of this info for my mission.

  46. Since the admin of this web page is working, no hesitation very rapidly it will be renowned,
    due to its feature contents.

  47. Hey would you mind sharing which blog platform you’re working
    with? I’m looking to start my own blog in the near future but I’m having a tough time selecting between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution and Drupal.

    The reason I ask is because your design seems different then most blogs and I’m looking
    for something unique. P.S Sorry for getting off-topic but I had to
    ask!

  48. Hello there, I found your blog by way of Google even as searching for a related subject, your web site got here up,
    it seems good. I’ve bookmarked it in my google bookmarks.

    Hello there, just was aware of your weblog via Google, and found that it’s truly
    informative. I am going to be careful for brussels.
    I’ll appreciate in the event you continue this in future.

    A lot of other folks shall be benefited from your
    writing. Cheers!

  49. My brother recommended I might like this web site.
    He was totally right. This post actually made my
    day. You can not imagine just how much time I had
    spent for this info! Thanks!

  50. I have read so many articles or reviews concerning the blogger
    lovers however this article is genuinely a nice paragraph, keep it up.

  51. Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally, it seems as though
    you relied on the video to make your point. You definitely know what youre talking about,
    why throw away your intelligence on just posting videos to your weblog when you could be giving us something enlightening to read?

  52. Thankfulness to my father who stated to me about this weblog, this web
    site is actually amazing.

  53. I know this web page offers quality depending articles or reviews and additional data, is there any other web site
    which provides such stuff in quality?

  54. Nice post. I was checking constantly this blog and I am impressed!
    Extremely useful info specially the last part 🙂 I maintain such
    info much. I was seeking this certain information for a very
    lengthy time. Thank you and best of luck.

  55. I am really pleased to glance at this blog posts which carries lots of helpful
    data, thanks for providing such data.

  56. Your style is very unique in comparison to other people I have read stuff from.
    Thank you for posting when you have the opportunity, Guess I will just book mark this site.

  57. Tabletten Viagra [url=http://cialtobuy.com ]buy cialis[/url] Standard Dosage For Cephalexin 500mg
    Levitra Spermiogramma
    Venta Cialis Tadalafil cialis Vente Lioresal En France

  58. I’m no longer sure where you are getting your information,
    but great topic. I must spend a while finding out
    more or understanding more. Thanks for great info I was searching for
    this info for my mission.

  59. I blog often and I really appreciate your information. Your article has really
    peaked my interest. I will book mark your site and keep checking for
    new information about once per week. I opted in for your RSS feed as well.

  60. There is certainly a great deal to find out about this topic.
    I really like all of the points you made.

  61. The other day, while I was at work, my sister stole my apple
    ipad and tested to see if it can survive a 40
    foot drop, just so she can be a youtube sensation. My apple ipad is now broken and she has 83 views.

    I know this is entirely off topic but I had to share it with someone!

  62. Hi to every , as I am really eager of reading this webpage’s post to be updated on a regular basis.

    It consists of pleasant material.

  63. It’s remarkable for me to have a website, which is good designed for my knowledge.
    thanks admin

  64. Your mode of telling the whole thing in this article is in fact fastidious,
    every one be able to effortlessly be aware of it, Thanks a
    lot.

  65. Paragraph writing is also a excitement, if you know afterward you
    can write or else it is difficult to write.

  66. These are actually enormous ideas in concerning blogging.
    You have touched some nice things here. Any way keep up wrinting.

  67. Incredible! This blog looks just like my old one! It’s on a completely different subject but it has pretty much the same layout and design. Great choice of colors!

  68. If some one desires expert view regarding blogging afterward i recommend
    him/her to visit this website, Keep up the pleasant work.

  69. Marvelous, what a webpage it is! This website provides useful information to
    us, keep it up.

  70. always i used to read smaller content which as well clear their motive, and that is also happening with this paragraph which I
    am reading at this time.

  71. Simply want to say your article is as surprising. The clarity in your post is simply nice and i could assume
    you are an expert on this subject. Well with your permission let me
    to grab your RSS feed to keep updated with forthcoming post.

    Thanks a million and please carry on the rewarding work.

  72. Cialis En France Prix Clomid Estima Byetta And Gastric Dumping [url=http://cheapestcial.com ]generic cialis[/url] Where To Buy Levothroxine Without An Rx Cheap Levitra Canadian Pharmacy

  73. What’s up colleagues, good post and good arguments commented here, I am in fact enjoying by these.

  74. Thanks designed for sharing such a good thought,
    post is fastidious, thats why i have read it completely

  75. This post is really a fastidious one it helps new web people, who are wishing for blogging.

  76. Please let me know if you’re looking for a writer for
    your weblog. You have some really great posts and
    I believe I would be a good asset. If you ever want to
    take some of the load off, I’d absolutely love to write some articles for your blog in exchange for a link back
    to mine. Please send me an email if interested. Cheers!

  77. I blog quite often and I really thank you for your content.
    The article has really peaked my interest. I will take
    a note of your website and keep checking for new details about
    once a week. I opted in for your RSS feed as well.

  78. you are actually a good webmaster. The website loading speed is incredible.
    It seems that you are doing any distinctive trick. In addition, The contents are masterwork.
    you have done a great job in this topic!

  79. Woah! I’m really loving the template/theme of this website.
    It’s simple, yet effective. A lot of times it’s challenging to get that “perfect balance” between user friendliness and appearance.
    I must say you’ve done a excellent job with this.
    In addition, the blog loads super quick for me on Internet explorer.

    Superb Blog!

  80. Thanks for the marvelous posting! I certainly enjoyed reading it, you could be
    a great author.I will ensure that I bookmark your
    blog and will eventually come back in the future.
    I want to encourage continue your great writing, have
    a nice holiday weekend!

  81. When someone writes an paragraph he/she maintains the image of a user in his/her brain that how a user can be aware of it.
    So that’s why this post is great. Thanks!

  82. Genericpillsshop No Prescription Viagra Kamagra China [url=http://howmuchisvia.com]viagra[/url] Flomax Ordering Prednisone From Canada

  83. Hello! This is my first visit to your blog! We are a team of volunteers and
    starting a new initiative in a community in the
    same niche. Your blog provided us valuable information to work on. You have done a
    extraordinary job!

  84. I am not sure where you are getting your information, but good topic.
    I needs to spend some time learning much more or understanding more.
    Thanks for magnificent info I was looking for this information for
    my mission.

  85. I read this paragraph completely concerning the resemblance of most
    recent and previous technologies, it’s awesome article.

  86. Zithromax Medicine Comparaison Cialis Et Viagra [url=http://cialgeneri.com]online pharmacy[/url] Cialis Generico Alfemminile

  87. Sweet blog! I found it while surfing around on Yahoo News.
    Do you have any tips on how to get listed
    in Yahoo News? I’ve been trying for a while but I never seem to
    get there! Cheers

  88. For latest information you have to pay a visit world-wide-web and on world-wide-web I found this web page as a
    finest website for newest updates.

  89. My brother recommended I might like this web site.
    He was totally right. This post truly made my day.

    You can not imagine just how much time I had spent for this
    information! Thanks!

  90. I was able to find good information from your blog articles.

  91. This piece of writing provides clear idea for the new users of blogging,
    that in fact how to do blogging and site-building.

  92. I blog quite often and I really thank you for your
    information. This great article has truly peaked my interest.
    I am going to take a note of your blog and keep checking for new information about once
    a week. I subscribed to your Feed as well.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK

https://www.facebook.com/NiagaraReporter/
 
Scroll Up.wpzoom (color:black;}