Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Dunlavey Bitch Slaps Erie County

This really doesn't seem good for Erie County. We're talking $5 million per year that the County has already committed to projects like the already controversial runway extension. I guess the County has other sources of revenue, but I'm assuming taxpayers will end up making up the difference at some point.

Here's two quotes from the article that explain Dunlavey's ruling:

1. "In his ruling, Dunlavey criticized the county for ignoring the costs that Summit and the contiguous townships must bear for traffic; sewers; fire, rescue and other emergency services; and infrastructure costs related to the racetrack and casino.

"He wrote that the county, if it is not careful, might 'kill the golden goose' (the casino)' by refusing to award the required restricted funds."

2. "
'The specific use of the word 'shall' indicates that the Legislature did not intend the broad discretion the county is actively seeking, but instead intended to have grants awarded to the municipalities affected by the establishment of a licensed gaming facility,' Dunlavey wrote.

"Dunlavey said the county's 'novel interpretation' suggested that County Council 'deliberately chose certain parts of the Gaming Act to benefit the county's plans,' such as the use of restricted money for the runway extension project."

Dynamics of the Ruling

To tell you the truth, this ruling by Dunlavey caught me off guard. Most of the info. I've gotten on this matter has come from the Erie Times-News, and the Times seems to have been squarely backing the County. Shows you what the liberal media knows.

Dunlavey is a former Gitmo torture guru, and from what I can tell from his interviews in the Times, is a cowboy. I think the boys in Summit share this disposition. So, I retrospect, I guess it's really not the surprising that Dunlavey sided with them.

I guess the biggest surprise should be that I did not see this coming - kind of like the whole George Bush presidency. No matter how educated a semi-city folk like me tries to make himself, them damn rednecks will creep up on you and get you when you let your guard down.




Stan Langerhaus said...

Ralph, I followed this story with amusement since the beginning. I never understood the basis of the County's assertion. Doesn't the term "restricted" sort of tip you off that the money cannot be used for any purpose? But I am certain that the County and and its counsel will not be deterred and will quickly file an appeal. After all, this is Erie we are talking about, and once the local leaders get a wild hair up their ass, there is no stopping them. Especially when you are going to have acerbic commentators from the Times egging them on.


Ralph said...

I assumed an appeal would be the next order of business as well, but today's story in the paper made no mention of it...

Stan Langerhaus said...

Interesting read in the ETN today. Both the editorial staff and Pat Howard indicate they are in favor of appealing the judge's decision.

Ralph said...

The Pat Howard column provided some insights that I hadn't put together. He really raked the Summit guys over the goals, as the Times has been doing for a few years now, and seemed to be justified in doing so. He was also careful to point out that he though Dunlavey made the right call in the eyes of the law. Finally, he said there's a contingency that if all the valid infrastructure costs are covered, then the money can go to economic development projects. That part I had never heard before...Anyhow, it sounds like the county may get a chance to use some of this money on the airport project after all, but is also sounds like it's going to be a legal clusterfuck trying to get everything cleared. Great news for attorneys I guess...