Exposés, reports
and analysis.

Outrages & Insights

Muckraking blog
by Jim Heaney


Environmental blog
by Dan Telvock

Tom Toles

Editorial cartoons
and commentary


First impressions of Brown’s budget

Mayor Byron Brown’s proposed city budget is awash in federal pandemic relief funds. It’s bolstered by the restoration of long withheld Seneca casino money. And, on top of those windfalls, Brown has proposed a property tax hike for only the second time since he took office in 2006. The city needs all the money it […]


School violence not limited to McKinley

District officials have taken steps to address violence in Buffalo schools since a February  shooting and stabbing at McKinley High School left a student hospitalized. Violence in and around schools isn’t limited to fights between students. There have been reports in the news of students attacking their teachers and administrators. Parents have been involved, too, […]


Billboard boosts Buffalo superintendent

Buffalo schools have started campaigning for their interim superintendent, Tonja Williams, with a publicly funded billboard. The billboard recently popped up at the intersection of Michigan and Genesee streets, broadcasting Williams’ smiling face and a quote from her:  “It’s a new day for the Buffalo Public Schools. Ensuring safety & educational excellence.” It’s part of […]


Lucrative no-bid deal for Brown donor

For the last three years, Buffalo’s comptroller has been asking Mayor Byron Brown’s administration to justify a $1 million, no-bid contract awarded to developer William Huntress.  Comptroller Barbara Miller-Williams’s office has twice audited the current lease for the city’s records storage facility, given to Huntress’s Acquest Development in 2018.  Both times, according to the comptroller, […]


Buffalo schools shedding administrators

There’s an exodus of sorts from the ranks of Buffalo school administrators. It started in January when Myra Burden, who earned $145,000 as chief of technology, resigned after only two years. She led the district through a rocky period, including the switch to remote learning due to the pandemic and a ransomware attack that hindered […]


Brown cited for election law violations

Last August, Peter Rizzo sent the state elections board a detailed analysis alleging Mayor Byron Brown had violated a number of campaign finance laws. First, Rizzo wrote, the mayor’s campaign failed to identify the individual owners of limited liability corporations, as required by state law. Rizzo identified “more than 100 campaign contributions from limited liability […]


Cash severance pay tops $300,000

Buffalo schools, and the taxpayers who fund the district, are paying Kriner Cash more than $300,000 to go away. Cash resigned under pressure as superintendent Wednesday night. He’s been criticized of late for his frequent absences from the district, his handling of numerous issues related to the pandemic and a spike in violence in city […]


City Hall light on lawyers

Newly appointed Corporation Counsel Cavette Chambers began her tenure as the city’s chief lawyer by asking for more money to pay outside firms to represent the city in court. On Feb. 17, Chambers emailed a formal request for the law department’s $3.2 million budget to be topped up with an extra $300,000 for “outside counsel, […]