Niagara Gazette

Columns

October 15, 2013

CONFER: Proposition 1 is a losing bet

(Continued)

Niagara Gazette — In the absence of a casino, an individual’s discretionary dollars would be spent on services, food and goods, rather than being thrown away. Every one of those economic transactions has measurable economic benefit, especially when it comes to the purchase of farmed or manufactured goods because they have a multiplier effect – getting that one item to market required acquisition and transformation of resources, transportation, packaging, marketing and sales. Numerous facets of the economy are involved. Casinos can’t claim that and it’s likely that they have a negative effect on the economy.

Look no further than Niagara Falls. Wasn’t the Indian-run casino supposed to be the catalyst that turned around the dying city and made it an American version of Niagara Falls, Ont.? Take a walk around the American side (that is, if you feel safe doing so) – the Seneca Niagara Casino and Hotel is a jewel surrounded by blight, crime, and depression. It has done nothing to excite development and, if anything, it has made the poor poorer in the city limits.

Niagara Falls, Ont., has embarrassed us because they saw their casino(s) as one piece of the puzzle (not the cure-all like we did) and understood the need for smart development, tourism, and the maintenance of critical green space. It was a package deal overseen by really bright people in the public and private sectors.

Maybe that’s who we’re lacking. Our state officials are using casinos as a crutch, a revenue grab, since they don’t have the intellect or backbone to make measurable and lasting cuts to spending (like Medicaid).

Those same shysters are also trying to sell us on the concept that property taxes will be lowered because of the casinos (allegedly 80 percent of state tax revenues from the casinos will go to elementary and secondary schools statewide). Generations before me heard the same about lottery gaming when it was introduced. I don’t know about you, but despite these windfalls, my school taxes go by an appreciable amount annually ($169 in this year alone). I guarantee they will yet still, even if Proposition 1 passes.

Gasport resident Bob Confer also writes for the New American magazine at TheNewAmerican.com. Follow him on Twitter @bobconfer

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Columns
  • NIA Confer, Bob mug new CONFER: It's time the U.S. stopped giving aid to Israel When you see some of the atrocities that Israel has committed in Gaza, including last week's bombing of a United Nations school that was being used as a civilian emergency shelter, you should really wonder why we count them as an ally and why we devote so much of our financial and political resources to the scoundrels.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Higgs, Norma mug HIGGS: A cupcake gets the Niagara Beautification Commission spotlight Not a cupcake per se, but a cute shop in LaSalle operated by a "sweet" lady who is a real dynamo when it comes to running a business.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Glynn, Don mug [Duplicate] GLYNN: A key factor in luring the convention A natural wonder in the nation's oldest state park isn't the lone factor for selecting Niagara Falls as a convention site.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • SINGER: Regional poetry and sad realities If that isn't (or wasn't) poetry, I don't know what is! I'm referring to the self-satisfied, sluggish trot of ice chunks emanating from Lake Erie in early May 2014 -- sauntering, it felt, along the lovely Niagara.

    July 27, 2014

  • NIA Smith, Doug and Polly LETTERS FROM THE ISLAND: Quest for an appointment comes up short We're rolling up our sleeves for Quest. The Big Mac of blood tests, the Tops of tourniquets, the Sears of screenings, opens on our Island at Monday's crack of dawn.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Davis, Vincent mug VINCENT DAVIS: Pledge your allegiance to the Slurpee, America's treat By now you must be aware that it is, in fact, summer. And since summer is a season not characterized by any obvious weather events (sometimes it's hot for days in a row, sometimes you get a bunch of rainy days and chilly nights) but instead activities, I'd like to bring attention to an underrated staple of summer sun enjoyment: Consuming the brain freeze-inducing snack classic, the Slurpee.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Hamilton, Ken mug HAMILTON: Popeye's '7-Minute' guide to educating southerners -- and me! Writer Mark Twain said that when he 14, his father was so ignorant that he could hardly stand to have the old man around. But upon turning 21, Twain said that he was astonished by how much his father had learned in just seven years.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA DeLuca, Michele mug DELUCA: Wegmans call warns of bad fruit I was humming to myself the other day, getting ready for work on a lovely summer morning, when I decided to check my messages on the house phone. I hit the play button and heard a message from Wegmans warning me about some fruit that I had bought at their store. As quick as that, a message with the scary potential to change my life or the life of someone I love.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • NIA Glynn, Don mug GLYNN: Ortt jumps on drive to repeal the SAFE Act It was a no-brainer for North Tonawanda Mayor Rob Ortt, a Republican candidate for the 62nd Senate District seat, to join the forces to repeal the state's SAFE Act.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Verplank: Turn back the clock at the Porter Cup

    July 24, 2014

Featured Ads
House Ads
AP Video
Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US
Opinion
House Ads
Night & Day
Twitter News
Follow us on twitter
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Front page