Fighting for our Freedom
in Western New York
An in depth look into the politics of Erie County, Albany and Western New York.
WHERE ARE ALL THE PROMISED REFORMS?
According to Iannello4change.com 2005,
We could expect the following from our new legislator:
-The end of waste, fraud & abuse
-A reduction in spending
-Return of public confidence
What did we get instead?
At the very first meeting, a vote to keep all the district offices open and $100,000 increase in district office staffing; Created a new position at $78,000 a year; A vote to hire 13 new staff members for the downtown offices, doubling their salaries, while eliminating all of the Minority staff. The Majority Caucus now meets behind closed doors in two groups, in order to circumvent the open meetings law. This keeps the media out, as well as concerned citizens.
Within 6 months, she voted for the Apprenticeship Law, which raises the cost of projects, while prohibiting qualified non-union contractors from even bidding on jobs.
Within a year, she voted with fellow non-reformers to amend the County
Executive’s budget, thus increasing the county property tax levy $3,250,000 over Giambra’s proposal. That translates to $5 more per thousand.
It’s Time for Real Reform.
Rus releases statement on the Tonawanda Landfill
For years the residents of the Riverview area have been trying to deal with the issues surrounding the known contamination that is in the Tonawanda Landfill. Until this point they have been getting the run around from government agencies. The Army Corp of Engineers (ACE) in a recent report tells everyone that there is no problem and they simply want to close and cap the landfill and leave nuclear and hazardous wastes left over from the Manhattan Project where it is. ACE has declared that the risk to public health and safety due to the dump is not significant.
The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has a completely opposite opinion. The DEC says the site needs to be cleaned up, waste removed and stored in an offsite location. The DEC's acting director of the Bureau of Hazardous Waste & Radiation Management Robert Phaneuf says, he disagrees with ACE and the waste must be removed.
It appears that we are actually at a breakthrough point.
In order for this to move forward more quickly I am proposing we follow the advice of experts and that three things be done immediately. We have no more time to lose.
The three things must be done to insure the health and safety of people living near the Tonawanda landfill are as follows.
1- Blood Tests: Since the first effect of ionizing radiation is on the blood system, it would be important to undertake CBC (Complete Blood Counts) and Differential (Counts of the various kinds of white blood cells), especially on the children. The purpose is to determine any changes from the normal count and any beginnings of anemia.
2- Tests need to be done to check the sump pump pits in the houses on Hackett Drive for ground water contamination. If as suspected the radio active uranium is leaching down and into the ground water, a simple test done in the standing water of the sump pump pits can determine this.
3- Radon testers need to be put in the basements of the homes on Hackett Drive. Radon is a radioactive gas that can seep into the basements of the homes from the earth surrounding the basement. Radon gas is just one by product of radioactive uranium
There is no reason in the world that we cannot spend a few hundred dollars per house to find out conclusively if there is a health risk to the children and adults that live in the area that borders this landfill. Tests like this should have been done years ago or in the least, yesterday. It makes no sense to me to allow these people to constantly live in fear while government entities, including politicians in Albany and locally, debate the issue.
I am today asking for help from the medical and mediacal research community to do these blood tests, I am asking the parents to bring their children in for the blood tests to conclusevily prove one way or the other if there is a health risk here. I am asking for test kits for radon and sump pump water.
If when the results come back positive then action must be taken immediatley. Parents need to know about simple, inexpensive remedies that they can take to restore health if they or their children at at risk. There is no question funding from the federal government must come quickly and without delay and the cleanup of the landfill be done swiftly as the DEC suggests.
Public health and safety must be our number one concern. We need definitive information about the risk to residents and a firm commitment from the Army Corps that the Tonawanda landfill will be cleaned to the most protective standards.
For Immediate Release
Rus accepts Republican endorsement for Erie County Legislature in 10th district.
Co-Founder of the political reform groups Primary Challenge and Free Buffalo.org, Rus Thompson has gratefully accepted the endorsement of the Erie County Republican Committee to run for Legislature in the 10th district.
Rus has been a leader in the reform movement and as co-founder of Primary Challenge helped candidates run against incumbents in the county legislature and Amherst town board races two years ago. With the successful elections of Supervisor Satish Mohan and Legislator Cynthia Locklear, his desire to continue with the reform movement across Erie County drove him to run for legislature again this year.
Rus has been leading the petiton drive to eliminate the Grand Island Tolls and has recently received the help of Carl Paladino who was instrumental in the successful removal of the Buffalo tolls. Rus says we are moving forward with a positive attitude that we can and will succeed in not just the removal of the tolls but we will be successful in our drive to reform County Government.
A major part of the campaign will be to focus on the down sizing of County government, reduce the legislature to nine seats, close all district offices and have a central staff with less employees at County Hall, Lowering the sales tax and consolidating county services.
As a Registered Conservative for 13 years Rus was an active member of the Grand Island Conservative committee. When the County Conservatives care more about preserving their peoples jobs and less about the fiscal health of Erie County, they have lost focus. It is time to bring that back to Erie County and focus on fiscal restraint and end the excessive spending and tax increases.