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Artvoice Weekly Edition » Issue v11n5 (02/02/2012) » Section: Week in Review

Deaf Ears in the Chambers

It’s about 1:50pm on Tuesday afternoon when the NFTA entourage walks calmly into the chambers of Buffalo’s Common Council, led by executive director Kim Minkel and chairman Henry Sloma. They stand at the top, virtually silent, like the new kids at school. The chambers are sparsely filled, maybe 20 people, five of whom are media. Another five are from the neighboring Occupy Buffalo camp.

Amherst IDA Strikes Again

The Town of Amherst Industrial Development Agency received a well-earned round of criticism last August when it decided to award the Prime Wines Group $500,000 to relocate their outrageously successful Premier Liquor and Wines outlet from their longtime home on Delaware Avenue in Tonawanda. The idea that one town could essentially bribe a lucrative business with tax credits to remove itself from the neighboring town’s tax lists and set up shop on one the busiest commercial strips in the Buffalo suburbs became a glitzy and appalling example of an IDA system run amok. At the time, the lone dissenter on the Amherst IDA board, Robert Ciesielski, told the Buffalo News, “I think this is probably the worst use of IDA incentives that I’ve seen in a while.”

Buffalo Philharmonic Chorus Hits Sour Note

Two weeks ago, the board of directors of the Buffalo Philharmonic Chorus announced that it had declined to renew the contract of its acclaimed musical director, Dr. Doreen Rao. The board has also declined to offer a specific reason for dismissing Rao, except to acknowledge that it was not about money or about her performance as artistic director. From a statement issued this week by board vice president Andrea Copley:

Scorecard: The Week's Winners & Losers

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