Investigations

Exposés, reports
and analysis.

Outrages & Insights

Muckraking blog
by Jim Heaney

GreenPost

Environmental blog
by Dan Telvock

Tom Toles

Editorial cartoons
and commentary

Jul
23

A critical voice on OTB board?

The Erie County Legislature has appointed a prolific Democratic donor as its representative to the Western Regional Off-Track Betting Corp.  Francis Warthling was approved in a unanimous vote Thursday to replace Beverly Mazur, who served in the role for ten years. His appointment follows nearly 18 months of controversy at OTB, including ongoing federal and […]

Jul
20

Police misconduct costing Buffalo millions

 A cop shooting and paralyzing a teenage driver.  A police tow truck driver running a red light and slamming into a passenger car. A cell block attendant ramming a handcuffed detainee’s face into a door at Central Booking. The incidents all led to lawsuits against the City of Buffalo and its police department, and […]

Jul
14

Furloughs at OTB despite federal aid

Western Regional Off-Track Betting Corp. has furloughed two-thirds of its workforce after accepting more than $3 million from the federal government intended to keep employees working during the pandemic. The Batavia-based OTB has been forced to shutter most of its operations since March. Its casino at Batavia Downs, the largest source of revenue, is closed […]

Jun
19

Gambini: Senecas & COVID-19 on WBEN

The Seneca Nation of Indians has weathered the pandemic, but faces an uncertain economic future because of its impact on the tribe’s casino and hospitality business. Casino-related revenues account for nearly three-quarters of the nation’s budget. Phil Gambini discusses his recent story with NewsRadio 930 WBEN.  

Jun
18

COVID-19: Senecas face economic uncertainty

As reopenings across the country begin, the impacts of COVID-19 continue to threaten the economies of Native American governments, including the Seneca Nation here in Western New York. Many tribes rely on casinos and other Native-owned businesses to fund services and capital improvements, but how soon those enterprises bounce back is uncertain. Of particular concern […]

May
08

Gambini radio interviews on OTB story

Earlier this week, Phil Gambini reported that the Western Regional Off Track Betting Corp. has secured $3.2 million in federal funding intended to help small business weather the COVID-19 pandemic. The story also detailed how OTB chief Henry Wojtaszek has doubled his salary since starting with the organization, despite its uneven financial performance and ongoing […]

May
06

OTB lands $3.2M intended for small business

The Western Regional Off Track Betting Corp. is not to be mistaken for a small business. It’s a state-created public benefit corporation, owned by 15 counties and two cities, and charged with running legalized betting operations in western and central New York. It shares its profits with those local governments and the State of New […]

May
05

Gillibrand, Higgins call out ICE

U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and U.S. Rep. Brian Higgins want federal scrutiny of the way Immigrations and Customs Enforcement treats immigrants held at its detention center in Batavia. Investigative Post reported last week that ICE routinely released detainees without regard for their well-being, dropping them off at a local gas station and bus stop without […]