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OCT 22 - OCT 29, 2015

The Expert Voice for Protecting Our City's Bones

OCT 22, 2015

Kenny Tompkins Candidate for City Council

Niagara Falls’ infrastructure is what connects the dots and holds our city together. It’s our streets, our sidewalks, our street lighting, and even the trees line our pathways. It’s like the bones of our city. If they are weak, our city is not protected.

We need to take better care of our city’s bones, our infrastructure.

I’ve worked for HW Bryk & Sons Plumbing as an operations manager for eight years. I’ve been in the plumbing industry serving this city in a multitude of capacities for close to thirty years. This has given me a unique perspective on the condition of our city’s infrastructure. I can tell you from a professional standpoint that we have some issues that need to be dealt with now.

Throughout this city, you’ll find pockets of rather deep impressions in our city’s streets, some which have recently been repaved. They might be covered orange traffic cones or more elaborate barricades. Here’s the deal. Those are not potholes. They are actually sink holes. This indicates that the infrastructure is deteriorating underneath. If it continues, it will cause even more disastrous problems.

As a council member, you can be sure I will be a voice of expertise and reason when it comes to ensuring our city’s infrastructure is stabilized and repaired. Not only does this deterioration range from inconvenience to danger for residents, but it continues to send the message that this city is in disrepair. Not what we want prospective homeowners, businesses, or visitors to think.

I will make it my mission as your council representative to fight for the following in order to repair our streets:

1)    Better engagement/cooperation from the Water Board in repairing these serious infrastructure problems. Our sewer taxes are specifically for maintaining the sewer lines and what surrounds them. It’s time for entities to work together for residents.

2)     A dedicated fund to maintain and repair streets and “the bones” of our city. This should not be a matter of seeing if we have money available to repair our infrastructure. This should be an absolute given. Again this is what our taxes should be covering.

3)    A proper review of contracts and bids in order to ensure that the work is adequately planned for so that jobs are done RIGHT the FIRST TIME. I’m sick and tired of paying for jobs to be done two or three times due to improper planning or not having the right resources. This is an imperative that we must follow immediately.

It’s not just our streets that need repair. Throughout this city, we have dilapidated sidewalks in the sections of town where residents rely primarily on walking as their main source of transportation. These need to be maintained and repaired so that our residents can walk safely and easily.

While we have a forestry team, our city’s plan for trimming and pruning trees needs to be more aggressive, too. As I’ve walked through the city, and talked with residents, I’ve heard multiple stories about calls placed two or three times to city hall to report issues that have gone ignored for months on end. This is not representative of an efficient government. I will make it my mission to work with the mayor and others to identify a better process so that residents don’t have to be concerned about property damage from dead branches that come down during a storm or crime issues that arise from poorly lit streets.

I will fight to ensure that our city’s budget prioritizes the needs of maintaining and rebuilding our city’s “bones,” especially over redundant positions and perks. We cannot afford to continue to give minimal support to that which holds our city up. We need to continually be proactive in ensuring our city’s infrastructure is stable and viable.

This is not an additional expense. This is a real investment, one that will pay dividends by creating a more attractive and welcoming city for potential businesses and homeowners. Building our infrastructure will ensure GROWTH.

Vote for me, Ken Tompkins, for Niagara Falls City Council on November 3. I will fight for a stronger city.






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