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Comment Archives: stories: News & Opinion: News

Re: “Warren explains need for bodyguards

Mayor Warren probably does need this extra security, at least temporarily, but it was still unethical for her to hire her uncle, instead of posting the job. There are other equally qualified individuals who should have an opportunity to apply for this taxpayer-funded position. That is not difficult to understand, especially at this time when so many city residents are unemployed.

Plus, it can be argued that a relative will not be able to make the clear unbiased, quick decisions required of the role. A relative may in fact be a BAD choice.

Taxpayers need to know what the full job responsibilities are. It is said that these guards are available to her 24/7. Does this mean we have to pay to protect her family as well, when they are sitting in their own private home, after City Hall hours? It is not unreasonable to expect a full understanding of this function, since it would be a substantial new administrative expense added by Mayor Warren.

But, I chalk it all up to some awkward missteps as the new mayor builds her new team, some of whom seem eminently qualified to serve our city well.

18 likes, 6 dislikes
Posted by Larry Champoux on 01/10/2014 at 8:20 AM

Re: “Warren explains need for bodyguards

Does the money exist to just create these positions? Any truth to the rumour that Lovely purchased two Chevy Tables for her body guards?

14 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by Tom Janowski on 01/10/2014 at 8:04 AM

Re: “Warren explains need for bodyguards

When did she 'appoint' Uncle Reggie? Was it before or after she was sworn in as mayor? Does she have the authority to create positions and fill them with anyone she chooses? You would think there would be an existing process for this rather than making it up as you go along.

23 likes, 7 dislikes
Posted by Allen on 01/10/2014 at 6:32 AM

Re: “Warren explains need for bodyguards

Lets all make a pact...before we comment on the Mayor, we say whether we live in the city or elsewhere. That way our comments can be graded by who is paying for things in their taxes. I will start, I live in the city.
I have no problem with her being protected, in fact, I am glad she is. I want her to get guns off the streets and drugs sellers off the corners. I doubt they will do that voluntarily simply because she is a woman. And, I believe that if she was a white woman and asked for body guards this would not be an issue, sadly.
So, lets see who she selected...a state trooper retiree who also guarded the Governor and the former Kodak guy who protected Antonio Perez. Both good and valid choices! The fact that one is an uncle is in my view complete BS as an argument. There is only one question...is he qualified? In actual fact in life, we hire people we know and trust.

23 likes, 31 dislikes
Posted by clint on 01/10/2014 at 5:14 AM

Re: “Warren explains need for bodyguards

Typical liberal response, the mayor makes an unethical decision which is wasting taxpayer money that the city doesn't have and anyone who calls her out on it must automatically be a racist.

40 likes, 9 dislikes
Posted by Pat on 01/09/2014 at 8:01 PM

Re: “Warren explains need for bodyguards

I believe Warren should have a body guard at all times as any Mayor should. It's probably not a good idea for that guard to be a relative. This can be rectified by posting the job as she says she will do. Now can we let her get to the business of helping improve the city?
My goodness, she isn't in office not a full week and the bigotry is in full force!

14 likes, 37 dislikes
Posted by Tommy on 01/09/2014 at 5:46 PM

Re: “Locally run grocery store coming to the East End

"Reliable sources say it will be a local -- meaning, not a chain -- privately owned store that gets much of its product from the local community." Cool.

6 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Nina Alvarez on 01/09/2014 at 3:47 PM

Re: “NY's economic development Hunger Games

Several years ago I attended a seminar where a U of R dean broke down how the numbers work for state aid. He took a hypothetical billion dollar announcement and showed what actually happened to the money. By the time it went through various requirements and agencies, local governments, etc., it was tens of millions, not hundreds. And, because several years had passed, no one paid any attention to this attrition. This is the norm, not the exception. These announcements are made for political purposes so various politicians can tout them as achievements. They are not real numbers.
So how about writing a story that tracks what actually happens in detail to this money? Where it goes, who gets it, the results in measurable terms: jobs actually created, dollars that enter the local economy, buildings built, etc.
I don't actually think this can be done because it is not in the interest of anyone involved to share those details. Otherwise they won't be in line next time the money game is played.

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Martin Edic on 01/08/2014 at 11:36 AM

Re: “Snowy owls sightings

Yep. I saw some penguins today. But if we're experiencing global WARMING like everyone says, shouldn't we be seeing flamingos?
Seriously, how can you use random anecdotal observations to try and make a case for global warming when the "science" is indeterminate?

3 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Perry on 01/07/2014 at 8:29 AM

Re: “Snowy owls sightings

If we are seeing a pattern to the increase sightings of the Snowy owl in our region, and if that’s due ultimately to Climate Change, that’s important info we need on the connection of Wildlife and Climate Change.

More on Wildlife in our area: http://rochesterenvironment.com/animals.ht…

0 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Frank J. Regan on 01/06/2014 at 7:52 AM

Re: “Shifting gears

Wouldn't it be GREAT not to HAVE to own a car? Some of my co-workers drive company cars which are justified because they are often driving very long distances. But they make short trips too. Costs for the car, the insurance, the gas, and the maintenance are all paid for by the company. It's unfair that travel costs are covered for some, but not others. Gas is still HIGH! I've had some very large repair bills, and my already high car insurance just went way up! If I don't get a raise soon, I will be asking for one while looking for a better job. And, BELEIVE ME, working nearby, so I can ditch the car IS being considered!! If this happened, I would ABSOLUTELY want a bike! Bus and taxi rides as well as getting rides from others would then become a necessity. I like having my own vehicle, but am rethinking if I can really afford this.

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Michael Bruton on 01/01/2014 at 12:50 PM

Re: “Shifting gears

Well - 400 million fewer miles of driving? Curious as to where they came up with that number. My guess is the major contributor is likely higher unemployment numbers during the study period from 2006-2011 (people who don't work tend to drive fewer miles - as our daily commute makes up the bulk of time we spend behind the wheel). In fact, area unemployment climbed from ~4.5% to 8.25% from 2006 to 2011 - so the decrease in miles driven makes sense because people aren't going to drive to/from their former place of employment.

Additionally, during that time, it's likely that people started driving less by combining trips to the store to save on increased fuel costs - which rose from about $2.50/gal to $4.00/gal from 2006 to 2011. I'd say yes, that's a travel habit change - but mainly out of economic necessity to try and stretch what less disposable income they have.

Again, travel choices aren't being dictated by "doing the right thing" for the environment - but out of fiscal necessity. Fewer people are working and the cost of fuel is increasing.

Unfortunately, RGRTA and GTC are attempting to capitalize on these numbers to justify their own existence and funding by saying "hey - more people are choosing to ride the bus" (they're not - the bus they've been taking all along is now being provided by someone), or "hey - more people are taking their bikes". Again - where do these numbers come from? Very few people are taking their bike to work to begin with, especially in February. So this .4% increase probably means 10 more people are now biking to work increasing the very small pool of a few hundred existing bike commuters (if that) - most of which are doing it because they are unable to drive a car for reasons in my last post. A handful more people out of a very small minority opting to do so doesn't signal a major habit change.

These numbers and charts look impressive in press releases and board meetings to justify more funding (disclaimer - I used to work for RGRTA... so these aren't pie in the sky assumptions). But in reality the shift in travel habits is very insignificant. You'll see a corresponding increase in miles driven as unemployment numbers decrease, along with a corresponding increase as fuel prices either decrease or stabilize.

3 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by Lester Wilson on 12/31/2013 at 12:49 PM

Re: “Shifting gears

RGRTA's numbers are misleading. The reason for the significant jump in ridership is due to a long-term contract with Rochester City Schools to transport students who previously got to/from school with a private yellow school bus company. Also factor in the contracts with area colleges for local transportation that was once provided by private, college and/or student government provided transportation. The only thing changing here is the provider of transportation, and not travel habits.

Take away the school and college kids and the actual increase in discretionary ridership (i.e., those who opt to leave their car home and choose to take public transit) is actually quite insignificant. Public transportation will always be primary the carriage of choice for those who do not have the means to afford or acquire other sources of transportation due to financial hardship, criminal sanction (i.e., loss of driving privileges due to DWI), and/or physical disability.

Sure, these numbers are good for RGRTA's public relations and bottom line who has increased revenue from sources other than state transit operating assistance dollars - but let's not go to lengths to say travel habits have voluntarily changed either. The numbers who voluntarily take the bus or bike to work is statistically insignificant.

2 likes, 5 dislikes
Posted by Lester Wilson on 12/31/2013 at 12:03 PM

Re: “Shifting gears

Even if you personally don’t like to walk or bike through Rochester’s streets or take public transit, news that “Rochesterians are spending less time driving and more time on bikes and buses” should be welcome. Shifting to a more humane transportation system that doesn’t cost a zillion dollars for its infrastructure means a healthier and wealthier community.

More folks walking and bicycling and taking public transportation can have a dramatic effect on lowering our greenhouse gas emissions and our blood pressure. Imagine a Rochester where those who wish to (and these numbers will grow as our streets and sidewalks become more accommodating to active transportation) can move about our community without the relentless drive of vehicular traffic.

Our out-going mayor has begun an incredible legacy of moving Rochester towards a healthy active transportation system (Really check out: Rochester’s ROC the Bike!) and our in-coming mayor has a great opportunity to continue that move towards a resilient community in a warming climate, a community that can provide jobs and transportation options for those not especially keen on our present transportation system that is expensive to maintain, expensive to use, expensive on our health, and especially grating on our nerves.

Take a deep breath and imagine a community devoted to people, not cars.

8 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Frank J. Regan on 12/31/2013 at 11:19 AM

Re: “Vargas warns board of $33 million to $46 million budget gap

In my view, the idea below regarding "consolidating management within departments" --- is an absolutely logical, excellent idea.

Additionally, according to the article, Dr. Vargas noted that: "Other cost savings could be achieved through reducing employee travel..." I have a better idea --- why not cut all funding for so-called "employee travel?" Let those who believe there is value in traveling on behalf of the District, which is really very doubtful, pay out of their own pockets. I am certain this would save at least hundreds of thousands of dollars --- if not more.

1 like, 22 dislikes
Posted by Howard J. Eagle on 12/29/2013 at 10:17 AM

Re: “Dialing it down: local media changes

Quite a while ago when I leased tower space on FM & TV broadcaster facilities there was a lot of consolidation going on in tier 2 and 3 markets. Rochester is a low Tier 2 market when it comes to wireless usage. Not sure where it is in broadcast TV. I believe these moves have more to do with operating and capital budgets than anything else. Re political bias or influence it's like religion- you tell them wharf they want to fear.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Benny Campanelli on 12/25/2013 at 9:52 AM

Re: “Dialing it down: local media changes

I think if some people are having a problem with the fact that the owner wants its stations to report ALL the news in whole not one part or the other all I have to say is about time..... I love all the News stations in Rochester and the way they report. However I can say I turn to FOXNEWS Channel because I get tired of the Praising one party and slamming the other which is how ALL Main Stream Media does..... Also I wish that if the Rochester Media will report about a car accident in Rochester well then they should report the one that happen in other areas like Livingston. Wyoming, Genesee, Orleans, Ontario and Wayne Counties. For some reason some of us gets the idea we don't matter in the other areas. Only Rochester Matters, Think again....

3 likes, 5 dislikes
Posted by Clay Taft on 12/24/2013 at 11:00 PM

Re: “Dialing it down: local media changes

The loss comes at 10pm where there will be one newscast to watch instead of two. One point of view.... No choice.

0 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Jerry Gasser on 12/24/2013 at 10:02 PM

Re: “Dialing it down: local media changes

It's interesting to note the conservative bias of Sinclair without noting the bias of Humboldt or Nextstar. The sad fact it today is that all major media companies owners have biases that are reflected in their reporting (or lack of reporting). Good national journalism in the US ended with Watergate.

9 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Kevin Sean Sweeney on 12/24/2013 at 1:15 PM

Re: “Dialing it down: local media changes

I dont see any loss here. WHAM produces a better product and will now take the place of WROC. What will they air on the CW though, in place of the news broadcasts in the morning and at 10p? Syndicated programming?

0 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by MrRochester on 12/24/2013 at 12:16 PM

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