Niagara Gazette

Local News

December 9, 2012

Tour-boat companies prepare to share river

Niagara Gazette — NIAGARA FALLS, Ont. — It’s premature to discuss potential problems with having two companies running boat tours in the Niagara River, says a spokeswoman with Hornblower.

“It is too soon to predict any problems or challenges,” said Tegan Firth when asked if having Maid of the Mist operate from the American shore and Hornblower from the Canadian side will make life more difficult for both parties.

“We have always held the position that two operators in the gorge is not ideal.”

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced a deal with Maid of the Mist operators last week to allow the longtime tour boat company to continue operations on the U.S. side of the falls.

Under the amended agreement, the Maid will increase its licence payments to New York State Parks, projected to reach $105 million during the 30 years remaining on the contract. The money is three times larger than the revenues projected when the contract was initially approved in 2002.

Cuomo’s announcement comes 10 months after Canadian officials with the Niagara Parks Commission awarded a 30-year, $500-million contract to California-based Hornblower to provide boat tours from the Canadian side of the river, starting in 2014. It ended the Maid of the Mist’s decades-old presence on the Canadian side.

That decision led some to wonder whether the Maid business could continue because the company has used property it leases from Niagara Parks to store all of its boats since there is no such location on the American side.

On Tuesday, Cuomo said the Glynn family that owns the Maid of the Mist plans to invest $32 million in the former Schoellkopf Power Station on the U.S. side to make it suitable for winter storage and maintenance of its tour boats, and to provide amenities for public use and recreational activities. Upon completion, State Parks will own the improved facilities.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
Featured Ads
Seasonal Content
House Ads
AP Video
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 Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow
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
Poll

Do you think cigarette sales to non-Native American customers should be taxed on reservations?

Yes. Items should be taxed like they are everywhere else.
No, the indian reservations are sovereign land and they are selling them on their land.
Not up to me. Native Americans decide the rules on their land.
Don't care. Smoking isn't good for you.
     View Results