Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

January 16, 2014

City youth director injured in fall

BY JOE OLENICK joe.olenick@lockportjournal.com
Lockport Union-Sun & Journal

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — Discussion about reorganizing the city’s youth and recreation department got a little more complicated Wednesday, when the Common Council was informed department director Melissa Junke was injured in a fall.

According to 3rd Ward Alderwoman Kathryn Fogle, Junke slipped on an unsalted sidewalk in front of the Youth Bureau office on Willow Street. She was taken to Eastern Niagara Hospital in Lockport and released.

But, Junke still had numbness in her arm, hand and foot, Fogle told the Common Council.

Mayor Michael W. Tucker said Junke is doing some administrative work from home. She has to go back to a doctor and surgery is possible, Tucker said.

For now, the Youth Bureau is manned by one person during the day, which isn’t much of a workload according to Tucker. In the evenings, two people are working for the department’s after school program. 

Common Council President Anne E. McCaffrey said the council was discussing reorganizing the department. But what’ll happen next largely depends what happens with Junke.

”We don’t know when she’ll be back,” Tucker said. “It’s in flux, we don’t know anything yet.”

In other city business:

• A resolution was withdrawn Wednesday night that would’ve called for a public hearing concerning a special use permit for Lafarge North America’s quarry expansion on Hinman Road.

City officials are waiting on a report from Norm Allen, city director of engineering and public works, which will tell whether or not the blasting at the quarry will affect the city’s water supply line. The line runs along Hinman.

Lafarge officials told the city planning board last week the company needed to expand its quarry in order to stay in business. Planning board members made a recommendation to the Common Council to allow the permit so Lafarge could mine 9.1 acres of a 15-acre parcel it bought six years ago.

The expansion, which is at what is still officially called Redlands Quarry, even though Lafarge acquired the business several years ago, is near a 162-foot-wide strip on the edge of the quarry that the Town of Lockport allowed Lafarge to mine in December 2012.

Lafarge is seeking permission from the Town of Lockport to expand to the south side of Hinman, where Lafarge has bought property in recent years.

• Council members voted to accept a proposal from the Bonandio Group for professional auditing services. The Williamsville firm will be paid $24,000 to audit city finances in 2014.

The city had bid out for the services, receiving two proposals. Drescher & Malecki of Buffalo was the other firm that sent a proposal, but their offer was $2,250 more, McCaffrey said.

Contact reporter Joe Olenick at 439-9222, ext. 6241 or follow him on Twitter @joeolenick.