Tonawanda News

The City

October 30, 2013

Development debated

(Continued)

Tonawanda News — But on the Republican side, Mayor Ron Pilozzi said that he completed his job successfully to negotiate a contract with Natale that was responsive to the council’s requests. He, along with his Republican cohorts, said the project will not cost the city anything, and that the homeowners association will be responsible for the upkeep of the property for years to come. 

“We do not have to bond for this project at all,” Pilozzi said. “When things need to be replaced, that’s on their dime, not ours.” 

Republican council candidates Charles Gilbert in the First Ward, Jon Juliano in the Second Ward, John Hall in the Third Ward and Brian Jopp in the Fourth Ward agreed. 

Gilbert said the company’s bid was the best the city received, and he, along with the other Republicans, argued that the project is bringing in tax revenue without any cost to Tonawanda. 

“I know the tax break is frustrating to a lot of people, but we are paying zero dollars for the infrastructure work,” Juliano said. 

Hall did note that he is concerned about the neighbors near the property, and said that the city should be responsive to their needs. 

Here’s a look at where the candidates stand on other issues:

Mayoral candidates

Davis, who lost to Pilozzi in 2009 by just 150 votes, has taken issue with the city’s investment in the Niawanda Park Pavilion, a project the mayor spearheaded. While Pilozzi said the project was a success and that the debt service was paid off within just four months, Davis said the build shouldn’t have been a priority.

“I equate it to putting an underground pool in your backyard when your foundation is crumbling,” he said.

Davis said that the maintenance and utility costs need to be taken into account, and that the city needs a marketing plan for the structure to increase rentals during the week.

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