Tonawanda News

June 22, 2013

TUCKER: Kids fishing derby a true success

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The Tonawanda News

Tonawanda News — Another gold star for John and Kate White, organizers and chairmen of the Fishing Derby that took place June 15. In a note to his volunteers and committee, John wrote: “Well, a job well done. We had 418 kid’s and the 30 combos for the Camp Spirit brings the total to 448. We are blessed to live in an area surrounded by water, the Niagara River, Lake Erie, the Canal, and Ellicott Creek. We just introduced 448 Kid’s to our local gems.

“The Derby could not have happened without all the volunteers, sponsors and the City of Tonawanda. I just wanted to extend a Job Well Done.

“A inner city child came up to Brian, a relatively new volunteer, and said, ‘This is the most fun I ever had.’ Now that’s what it is all about. I hope all had as much fun as the kids did.”

Congratulations John and Kate — the Tonawandas are fortunate to have you.

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A gentleman stopped by with a query about activities in the Twin Cities.

“I read the community page news, and it strikes me that Tonawanda isn’t doing anything, but North Tonawanda is full of activities. What’s with that?”

Not sure there was such a large difference in activities between the cities, I started keeping track of which city outshines the other. North Tonawanda wins.

Of course, Tonawanda is a lot smaller and perhaps has fewer organizations doing projects. It seems the library tops the list. So Tonawanda, start moving faster.

Speaking of Tonawanda, it was surprising to read that the Central School bid was rejected. Could that be a bit of good news for the Historical Society of the Tonawandas? The society has a lot of items stored in the basement of the school, which, unfortunately isn’t as dry as it could be. The Historical Society needs room — plain and simple. Can’t the mayor and common council help out by finding an appropriate building that could be deeded over to the society, or at the least, sold for a reasonable fee? Are there no vacant buildings in the city? How about the city leaders working actively to preserve the history of the Tonawandas?

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For the past few weeks, I’ve been searching for a battery operated lawn trimmer with a battery that’s easy to change. The battery in the one I had was too difficult to remove. Finally, the Internet solved the search. There were two trimmers recommended, Oregon (which I never heard of) and Black & Decker. There were three local places listed. When I went to see the Oregon trimmer, it was perfect — except for the price, $399. No deal there. So off to Home Depot for a Black & Decker. A salesman took if down so I could see how the battery pack worked. Whoops — the battery had a screw in it so no one could steal it. The salesman said he didn’t have a tool to remove the screw but assured me the battery was easy to remove. 

“Sorry,” I said, “no deal. If I can’t try it, it can stay right here.”

So off I went to RAF Supply in Cheektowaga. Having called first, I found that the salesperson had the trimmer unboxed and ready for me to try. The battery was indeed easy to pop out, the trimmer came with two batteries and recharger and was lightweight. The cost was phenomenally low, the service terrific, the salesman accommodating (took it to my car for me) and with a great sense of humor. On top of all that the trimmer works great. A good day and worth the ride. Happy summer.

•••

Can’t help but wonder where our governor, senators and assemblymen’s minds are that they approved the tax-free zone — calling it a “business bonanza.” For who? The new companies that receive valuable tax breaks at the expense of existing companies? And what about the municipalities around the colleges and universities where these businesses will start up? Won’t they have to provide police, firefighting and other servies to the tax-free zones? 

The worst part is that there will be a three-person board overseeing the projcets, one member appointed by the governor, one from the Senate and one from the Assembly. Remind you of the “three men in the room” at the state level? This is an accident waiting to happen. Of course, the governor says that state wasn’t counting on these new jobs anyway, so what’s the problem? But did they consider how paying no taxes can hurt area businesses competing for the same dollar? 

Of course the explanation of this new idea makes it sound as if all the negatives have been solved. Don’t you wonder why colleges and universities should be in the development business rather than becoming better educational institutions? 

Woe to New York.

Contact community editor Barbara Tucker at 693-1000, ext. 4110 or email barbara.tucker@tonawanda-news.com