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Artvoice Weekly Edition » Issue v10n30 (07/28/2011) » Section: Week in Review

Fracking Up Our Roadways

Last Monday, a website called published a leaked draft study by the New York State Department of Transportation that suggested that the permitting of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas in New York could have dveastating consequences to state roadways. From the executive summary:

Langworthy Paid Twice?

We try not to trade in other people’s reporting, but we were struck by a piece posted on Politico Tuesday by Maggie Haberman. Examining the $3.2 million in expenditures by the Jane Corwin campaign for Congress, Haberman notes that a firm called Lincoln Political Strategies was paid $17,000 for polling services. Lincoln is co-owned by former Niagara County Republican Party chairman Henry Wojtaszek and current Erie County Republican Party chairman Nick Langworthy. Wojtaszek is also a partner in a firm called JRK Consulting, which received another $40,000 for polling.

Meanwhile, at Democratic HQ

Erie County Democratic Party chairman Len Lenihan, whose name has formerly included the modifier “departing,” maybe isn’t going anywhere after all. Word has been spreading that Lenihan has reconsidered leaving his post for a position overseeing county races statewide. His decision is precipitated by the fast unraveling peace deal between rival Democratic faction in Erie County, brokered by the state party’s executive director, Charlie King. Lenihan’s departure was part of that deal, but other aspects of the deal—Mayor Byron Brown’s support for Maria Whyte’s bid for Erie County Clerk and Mark Poloncarz’s bid for Erie County Executive, for example—have failed to materialize. Then there’s a series of primaries mounted against incumbent members of Common Council by rival factions—exactly the sort of infighting that King’s peace deal was intended to prevent.

Meet the New Bosses

We found ourselves at the bar of a progressive little restaurant on Delaware Avenue Tuesday evening, chatting with a small circle of the sort of young progressives you’d expect to find there. That day, Governor Andrew Cuomo had come to speak at Roswell Park about his new regional economic development councils, which will compete for as much as $1 billion in state funding based on comprehenisive economic development plans submitted by each council, and to name the members of Western New York’s councils.

Scorecard: The Week's Winners and Losers

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