Investigations

Exposés, reports
and analysis.

Outrages & Insights

Muckraking blog
by Jim Heaney

GreenPost

Environmental blog
by Dan Telvock

Tom Toles

Editorial cartoons
and commentary

Jun
26

Apathy, Democratic HQ winners in primary

Back in January, this looked to be a dynamic election cycle for Buffalo Democrats.  There were two long-time incumbents vacating their seats on the city’s Common Council and two more leaving the Erie County Legislature, creating the potential for wide-open races.  That doesn’t happen often. In response, a host of candidates signaled their intention to […]

Jun
19

Lynne Dixon’s misleading push poll

If you follow local politics, and bless your heart if you do, you might have heard about a poll showing incumbent Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz in a statistical tie with his challenger, Erie County Legislator Lynne Dixon. The top-line conclusion of the poll, which was commissioned by Dixon’s campaign: Of the 1,325 respondents, 42 […]

May
30

Troubling signs from Buffalo’s comptroller

Well, she went ahead and did it. There was no good reason to do it, but she did it anyway. Interim Buffalo Comptroller Barbara Miller-Williams has issued an amendment to her own office’s critical assessment of Mayor Byron Brown’s projected 2019-2020 budget. The initial comptroller’s response was released on May 10, the deadline for the […]

May
20

City Hall’s looming fiscal reckoning

A malfunctioning fire alarm rang shrill and unrelenting on the 13th floor of City Hall last Thursday morning, contributing to an hour-and-a-half delay of the Common Council’s special session to adopt its amendments to Mayor Byron Brown’s proposed 2019-2020 budget. Maybe the universe was trying to tell the Common Council something about that budget. If […]

May
10

Mayor Brown’s risky budget assumptions

There is little fat in Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown’s proposed 2019-2020 budget, as befits a city where, despite aspirational talk of a renaissance, population is stagnant and job growth and real wages trail national averages. However, that word aspirational also applies to some projected revenue streams on which Brown’s budget relies. Other words and phrases come […]

Apr
30

A bad week for female candidates in Buffalo

State Supreme Court Judge Tracey Bannister on Monday expressed “some regret” in upholding the disqualification of three candidates for Buffalo Common Council, based on what she called a “material” and “substantive” defect in the form of their nominating petitions.   Indeed, there is much to regret in this imbroglio, from its beginning to its conclusion. […]

Apr
24

Zellner’s conflict of interest

When Erie County Democratic Committee Chairman Jeremy Zellner got himself appointed the Democratic commissioner to the Erie County Board of Elections in 2015, many protested that he was willingly courting potential conflicts of interest. Four annual election cycles later, those potential conflicts have become quite real and painfully evident. In the first stage of this […]