Updated 04/02/2012 10:49 PM
Falls spending freeze passes 4 to 1
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NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. --- A spending freeze proposed by Council Chairman Sam Fruscione passed 4 to 1 at a council meeting Monday night.
"We're doing this to prevent tax increases and layoffs, that's our main goal as a council," Fruscione said.
The freeze means the council now has full control over the Dyster administration's spending in the wake of an on-going dispute between the state and the Seneca Nation.
Councilwoman Kristen Grandinetti, the only negative vote, said she supported a freeze but was concerned by the resolution's language.
"It looks like we're starting an in-struggle. I think that's absolutely the wrong message to send to the Seneca Nation and to the State of New York," Grandinetti explained.
Also a concern to Grandinetti, council members voting down several resolutions including repairing a fence outside the city's municipal building.
"That's how things begin to deteriorate. Everything needs to be evaluated on a case by case basis," she said.
During a work session prior to the meeting, Fruscione said the council discussed sending delegation of six to Albany that included two council members and four local business leaders --- on their own dime.
He said the delegation will work with Senator George Maziarz to secure a meeting with Governor Cuomo, who he said needs to make the issue more of a priority.
"It’s a state issue. The ball is in the state's court, the governor is the boss."
The city faces a $21 million deficit if casino revenues aren't received by the end of the year.
Fruscione said the delegation could travel to Albany sometime within the next several weeks.