Niagara Falls Mayor Paul A. Dyster sent a letter dated October 13 2015 to city employees belonging to the United Steelworkers Union (USW) and, as the saying goes, “It was a real doozy!”
The letter runs the gamut from chest thumping to bargaining to begging.
Never in the history of local politics have we seen anything that can hold a candle to the disturbing missive issued by two-term Dyster.
The mayor pleads in the first paragraph, “I am writing to ask for your support for a third term as Mayor of the City of Niagara Falls. You’ve had time to judge whether I’m right for the job. Just give me a fair chance.”
In the second paragraph he has the cheek to put the following on paper, “I hope you agree that these last 8 years have been a good time for members of the USW. No one has been laid off…You’ve received numerous pay increases…I know many of you had the chance to buy homes, get new cars or finance college education for your kids because of the stable employment my administration provided.”
Nine lines into the letter he states, “I believe in you. Without spying on you…I’ve tried to show my support…I’m proud to be your leader.”
It gets good, delusional, but really good in the fifth paragraph, “I challenge anyone to find a single instance in 8 years – even when I have been under severe political attack myself on TV, talk radio or in the hateful local tabloid – where I threw you under the bus to save myself. I stuck up for you every time.”
All this writer can say is, wow. For the past 8 years, whenever there’s a budget shortfall or expenditure problem, His Honor faithfully goes to the “personnel costs and health insurance are causing all of our problems” card. The mayor’s been demonizing the workforce (police and fire aside) since day one and he doesn’t see his actions as tossing employees under the bus.
The Dyster administration has distinguished itself as the most non-transparent, most wasteful, most insulting to the residents (72nd Street anyone…or how about rats, cats and crime?) of any administration in memory. The trash program, frozen water lines, rising crime, a $50 million courthouse and a $44 million train station stand as a testament to the inadequacy and questionable actions of Dyster’s city hall.
Vince Anello said on his radio show, October 20, that the Dyster administration has labeled him as a troublemaker for circulating the USW letter. It’s indeed a mystery as to how Anello could be accused as being an insurgent for sharing what Dyster had already mailed to hundreds of city employees. We suspect it wasn’t Anello’s circulating the letter that tormented the mayor it was the outrageous tone of the letter, when viewed in the glaring light of day that angered His Honor.
We’re amazed that this letter could cause the mayor discomfort, but he’s not discomforted by his city’s $7.6 million deficit, $63 million debt, empty casino cash account, the perennial budget shortfall closed with casino cash, $1.4 million unaccounted for as discovered by the NYS Comptroller, a shuttered Underground Railroad Interpretive Center, more than $1 million for legal consultants, frozen water lines and much more.
The mayor closed his now legendary USW campaign letter with this humdinger of a paragraph: “We have come too far to go back to the bad old days. I’m a straight shooter, not a glad-hander. I stick to the facts and do my job. I hope you’ll look back on my record, compare it to my opponent’s, and use your vote to help me move this city forward for the next four years.”
To this we say, yes, we have certainly come a long way in the last 8 years. From in the black to in the red. From being a potential contender in the economic development world to being a laughingstock where we pay people to live here, can’t figure out how to collect trash and – in spite of the casino cash windfall – can’t pay the bills.
Thou Shall Not Hate: This "hateful local tabloid" is pleased to present Mayor Paul Dyster's letter to city employees in its entirety.