SALAMANCA, NY – The city will receive $4.7 million from New York State to strengthen public safety, Rep. Tom Reed said Thursday, The monies come from revenue generated by the Seneca Allegany Casino.
“This will mean quicker and safer responses to emergencies for our citizens,” Salamanca Fire Chief Nicholas Bocharski told TAPinto Greater Olean. “It also means we won’t need to rely on our neighbors for manpower. For nine years, our neighboring towns have carried us. Some of that pressure will be off of them now.”
Bocharski and Salamanca Mayor Michael Smith took part in a conference call with Reed and reporters on Sept. 4 to urge Cuomo to deliver $15 million in revenue from the Seneca Allegany Casino that has been due to the city for more than two years.
“As we said all along, New York State was ready to help Salamanca as we wait for the Seneca Nation to fulfill its obligation as determined by the arbitration panel and as such we have approved a $4.7 million advance to the city to help ensure continuity of services," Freeman Klopott, press officer in the state's Division of the Budget, said in a statement provided to TAPinto Greater Olean. "We just wish Congressman Reed would spend as much time helping us get the Seneca Nation to pay the quarter-billion dollars they owe as he does serving as their favorite lackey.”
Reed said the $4.7 million will allow the city to hire two new firefighters and fully staff two ambulances to improve the city’s response to emergency situations.
“It makes me feel safer about my firefighters," Bocharski said. "They risk a lot to make sure people in this town are safe. ... It’s not perfect, but this improves the situation. We can at least try to stay within standard operating guidelines now. We can be more efficient.”
Editor's Note: This story was updated to include comments from the New York State Division of Budget.
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