I had an opportunity to speak with attorney Scott Cannon last week. He represents Trathen Land Company, LLC in its law suit against us, the "City of Buffalo." Frequent readers of my blog know that I've been tracking the Perrysburg Deal since it first appeared as a speck on the local radar screen in December 2004.
It's pretty much the talk of the town, 40 miles away in Perrysburg, NY the site of the former tuberculosis hospital and developmental center known as JN Adam, by the locals.
In spring of 1993, New York State closed the facility and the city of Buffalo had a ten year window under New York State law to do something with the place. Buffalo didn't do anything until this past Spring, when Common Council President David Franczyk and a gang of Merry Pranksters decided to "save the Perrysburg Forest."
The problem is the "City of Buffalo" has no legal standing in the matter any longer. Our elected and annointed have failed us again and continue to hold the people of Perrysburg, NY hostage. Kind of reminds me of some rural Vermont wisdom about trying to close the barn door after the cows got away. They had 3650 days to close the barn door. And I believe that David Franczyk was in office for most of that time...
- Trathen Land Company, motion for Summary Judgement (full text)
- Supporting Affidavit - Cindy Lauer, Perrysburg Budget Manager (full text)
Yet my own research suggests that former NYS Comptroller H. Carl McCall (yes, the same one who is on "our" very own "control board") recognized in 1999 that JN Adam actually closed in 1994. This link will take you to his Comptroller's Report which audited "surplus mental health facilities" across NYS. It's called, "Office of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities: Developmental Center Closure Plan Progress, Report 98-s-47." Scroll down to page 7 and see that the place closed in 1994. I first started linking to that report back in February when I explained the "transparent process" NYS uses to sell surplus property.
See the relevant motion paper here asking for summary judgement and a quick resolution to this debacle. Cattaragus County Supreme Court Judge Himelein will hear this matter on August 18, 2005 in Little Valley, NY. "Our" own lawyers, led by Michael Risman have already tried unsuccessfully to have the venue moved to Erie County. "Our" motion was denied last month very quickly and the matter will be heard in Cattaragus County. I'll be there...
Unless our very own David Franczyk desires to squander additional resources from our Law Department and continue to hold the people of Perrysburg hostage by filing an appeal, you can most probably expect the legal equivalent of "Fuck You" in the judge's decision next month. This will be good news for the people of Perrysburg and allow us to re-focus on that thing over on Forest Avenue...a few architectural and historic treasures on the city's east-side...rather than the trees down in Perrysburg.
I'd like to file a "friend of the court letter" in this matter, in support of the sale to Trathen. If you would like to see that language and sign with me, let me know. No e-mails please, if I don't know you.
Meanwhile please let Common Council President David Franzcyk know your position. He can be reached at:
1315 City Hall 14201 tel. 851-4138
858 Fillmore Avenue 14212 tel. 847-6109