Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

January 26, 2013

OUR VIEW: Cheers and Jeers

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — Jeers: It’s winter and the roads aren’t always going to be perfect; we understand that. However, certain standards must be met and on Wednesday in the City of Lockport, they weren’t met. After an overnight snowfall, many of the city’s primary roads were still slick at 11 a.m. and even at 2 p.m. We can understand this being the case on a secondary or tertiary street, but when you’re slipping through an intersection on High Street at 11 a.m. — near a 20 mph school zone no less — something’s amiss.

Cheers: There’s plenty of action afoot in the canal district, with Canal Street the feature player. The Lockport Locks Heritage Distirct Committtee is moving forward with plans to create gateway exhibits on the street as part of an “interpretive” plan to tell the story of the canal and its historic Flight of Five. Speaking of which, restoration could begin this summer, with a finish date sometime in 2014. Throw in some national television exposure for the Lockport Caves tour and an ice cream shop moving in, and it all adds up to positive energy in the district.

Jeers: Communication Breakdown. It’s not only the name of a Led Zeppelin song, but it’s also what led to some 150 people who received parking tickets being fined above and beyond the cost. Last July the police department suggested raising parking fines by $10. City councilmembers agreed, but then never took up a formal vote. Yet, new tickets listing the higher fines were issued starting Jan. 1. Oops. Making matters worse, the council passed the new fees on Jan. 16 and thought it could make the fines retroactive to Jan. 1. Nope. Couldn’t legally do that, councilmembers were told. People who were overcharged must contact the city to get their money back, not the other way around even though it was the city’s fault. Strike three.

Cheers: A man got punched in a tavern last weekend and an anonymous businessman put up a $1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the suspect. That’s not something you see every day. From what we gathered, the assault began on the street and when the victim walked into the bar, his assailant followed him in. Crime on the street is bad enough but taking a personal matter into a place of business — and a good business, at that — crosses a second line. Kudos to the businessman for making an example out of the suspect.