Niagara Gazette

June 9, 2013

GLYNN: Many voters think Silver fails in job

By DON GLYNN
Niagara Gazette

Niagara Gazette — People interested in state government operations and their elected officials must have been shocked to read that among the findings in a New York Times poll was a concern parents raised about their children working someday in Albany. 

The poll found that 58 percent of the respondents made it clear they would not want their daughter employed as an intern in the State Legislature. That’s indeed a sad commentary about the place where lawmakers are entrusted to fulfill their important duties as public servants.

In the wake of recent scandals, another poll conducted by Quinnipiac University shows countless New Yorkers are outraged by allegations against disgraced lawmaker Vito J. Lopez, D-Brooklyn, who resigned in May to avoid expulsion from the Assembly. To compound matters, many voters also are disgusted with the way Assembly Speaker Sheldon L. Silver handled the sexual harrassment against Lopez. In fact, 51 percent said Silver should leave his office while 22 percent percent had no objection if Silver stayed on.

For the record, Silver’s not scoring many points anywhere in the Empire State. His approval rating is also the worst ever in the Quinnipiac Poll. At present, 52 percent of the voters responding said they disapprove the way he’s performing his job, up from 44 percent in April.

If Silver’s performance is that bad, why haven’t his colleagues on the Hill drawn some of the same conclusions. Or is it only because he controls so much power that they fear of losing choice committee assignments and a number of perks that fatten their paychecks? 

One veteran reporter in Albany thinks that the governor —who could easily force a change in the Assembly leadership — would not even consider asking Silver to step down. Such a dramatic move could result in a bloodbath, as the reporter said, since Silver has not made any provisions for a successor. That’s just the way the speaker likes it.

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MARK THE CALENDAR: The Niagara Military Affairs Council will hold its annual meeting and board election at 5 p.m. June 19 at the Heritage Center at the Niagara Air Reserve Station. NIMAC Chairman Merrell Lane will review the group’s activities during the past year. He notes that due to security measures at the base people planning to attend need to submit their name, date of birth and driver’s license. E-mail to INFO@NIMAC.ORG or call the NIMAC office a 283-4008.

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IN THE PARK: “Senior Night” will be observed Tuesday at Sal Maglie Stadium when the Niagara Power is host to the Geneva Twins. Free coffee for anyone 65 years and older.

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HELPING HANDS DEPT.: The popular Niagara Cup Classic, a major fundraiser for Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center, attracted 165 golfers to the Niagara Falls Country Club Tuesday. Hospital public relations director Patrick Bradley said that since the tourney was first held in 1992, it has generated more than $1 million for programs and equipment at the medical center.

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QUICKIE QUIZ: Answer to Thursday question: When J.N. Adams Co. closed its Falls Street store, Ambassador Leather Goods leased the building before moving its operations to Phoenix, Ariz.

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SIGN OF THE TIMES: In front of a Youngstown church: “In the beginning, God created. ... Stop in and see how it ends.”

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DESIGNED FOR DANGER:  The high grass and the plantings along the median on John Daly Boulevard, between Rainbow Boulevard and Niagara Street, have put motorists at risk. For anyone driving on Daly Boulevard, it’s like putting your life on the line, whether you’re trying to turn left into Falls Street or left into the Seneca Niagara Casino parking area. Due to the weeds and overgrowth, it’s virtually impossible to spot any approaching vehicles in the other lanes.

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QUICKIE QUIZ: Answer to Thursday question: When J.N. Adams Co. closed its Falls Street store, Ambassador Leather Goods leased the building before moving its operations to Phoenix, Ariz.

Contact reporter Don Glynn at 282-2311, ext. 2246.