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US Soccer: Seattle Sounders defeat Portland Timbers

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

In Seattle, on Sunday, Seattle Sounders FC beat the Portland Timbers 1–0 in the Cascadia Cup battle. Stefan Frei notched his fourth shutout this season while Clint Dempsey scored the winning goal in the 77th minute with an assist from Andy Rose. Seattle is now 1–0 in the cup while Portland falls to 0–2.

Portland almost scored minutes later when sub Fanendo Adi rattled the crossbar in the 81st minute. The Timbers also led the Sounders in shots with 11–10. Seattle was glad to have points before hitting the road. Head Coach Sigi Schmid added “We’ve got 13 points now in seven games, so we’re happy with that and we want to come back from these three road games with as many as possible.”

The total crowd on Sunday was tallied at 41,451. Seattle now stands at 4-2-1 with Portland struggling at 2-3-3. Portland hosts the Vancouver Whitecaps next weekend and Seattle travels to face New York City FC.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=US_Soccer:_Seattle_Sounders_defeat_Portland_Timbers&oldid=4318334”

Ingrid Newkirk, co-founder of PETA, on animal rights and the film about her life

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Last night HBO premiered I Am An Animal: The Story of Ingrid Newkirk and PETA. Since its inception, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has made headlines and raised eyebrows. They are almost single-handedly responsible for the movement against animal testing and their efforts have raised the suffering animals experience in a broad spectrum of consumer goods production and food processing into a cause célèbre.

PETA first made headlines in the Silver Spring monkeys case, when Alex Pacheco, then a student at George Washington University, volunteered at a lab run by Edward Taub, who was testing neuroplasticity on live monkeys. Taub had cut sensory ganglia that supplied nerves to the monkeys’ fingers, hands, arms, legs; with some of the monkeys, he had severed the entire spinal column. He then tried to force the monkeys to use their limbs by exposing them to persistent electric shock, prolonged physical restraint of an intact arm or leg, and by withholding food. With footage obtained by Pacheco, Taub was convicted of six counts of animal cruelty—largely as a result of the monkeys’ reported living conditions—making them “the most famous lab animals in history,” according to psychiatrist Norman Doidge. Taub’s conviction was later overturned on appeal and the monkeys were eventually euthanized.

PETA was born.

In the subsequent decades they ran the Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty against Europe’s largest animal-testing facility (footage showed staff punching beagle puppies in the face, shouting at them, and simulating sex acts while taking blood samples); against Covance, the United State’s largest importer of primates for laboratory research (evidence was found that they were dissecting monkeys at its Vienna, Virginia laboratory while the animals were still alive); against General Motors for using live animals in crash tests; against L’Oreal for testing cosmetics on animals; against the use of fur for fashion and fur farms; against Smithfield Foods for torturing Butterball turkeys; and against fast food chains, most recently against KFC through the launch of their website kentuckyfriedcruelty.com.

They have launched campaigns and engaged in stunts that are designed for media attention. In 1996, PETA activists famously threw a dead raccoon onto the table of Anna Wintour, the fur supporting editor-in-chief of Vogue, while she was dining at the Four Seasons in New York, and left bloody paw prints and the words “Fur Hag” on the steps of her home. They ran a campaign entitled Holocaust on your Plate that consisted of eight 60-square-foot panels, each juxtaposing images of the Holocaust with images of factory farming. Photographs of concentration camp inmates in wooden bunks were shown next to photographs of caged chickens, and piled bodies of Holocaust victims next to a pile of pig carcasses. In 2003 in Jerusalem, after a donkey was loaded with explosives and blown up in a terrorist attack, Newkirk sent a letter to then-PLO leader Yasser Arafat to keep animals out of the conflict. As the film shows, they also took over Jean-Paul Gaultier‘s Paris boutique and smeared blood on the windows to protest his use of fur in his clothing.

The group’s tactics have been criticized. Co-founder Pacheco, who is no longer with PETA, called them “stupid human tricks.” Some feminists criticize their campaigns featuring the Lettuce Ladies and “I’d Rather Go Naked Than Wear Fur” ads as objectifying women. Of their Holocaust on a Plate campaign, Anti-Defamation League Chairman Abraham Foxman said “The effort by PETA to compare the deliberate systematic murder of millions of Jews to the issue of animal rights is abhorrent.” (Newkirk later issued an apology for any hurt it caused). Perhaps most controversial amongst politicians, the public and even other animal rights organizations is PETA’s refusal to condemn the actions of the Animal Liberation Front, which in January 2005 was named as a terrorist threat by the United States Department of Homeland Security.

David Shankbone attended the pre-release screening of I Am An Animal at HBO’s offices in New York City on November 12, and the following day he sat down with Ingrid Newkirk to discuss her perspectives on PETA, animal rights, her responses to criticism lodged against her and to discuss her on-going life’s work to raise human awareness of animal suffering. Below is her interview.

This exclusive interview features first-hand journalism by a Wikinews reporter. See the collaboration page for more details.
Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=Ingrid_Newkirk,_co-founder_of_PETA,_on_animal_rights_and_the_film_about_her_life&oldid=4618871”

Eurovision ’73 winner Anne Marie David discusses her four-decade career and the Contest, past and present

Monday, February 16, 2009

In the 1970s, she was one of the most popular female vocalists in France, and became well-known internationally. Anne Marie David, from Arles in the south of France, parlayed her initial success from playing Mary Magdalene in the French production of Jesus Christ Superstar into taking home the “grand prix” at the Eurovision Song Contest in 1973. Her winning song, “Tu te reconnaîtras” (You will recognize yourself), became a Europe-wide hit that spring.

At the height of her popularity, David perfomed world tours, and even lived abroad in Turkey for a time. In 1979, she tried once again to win the Eurovision, and placed a respectable third. Her song “Je suis l’enfant soleil” (I’m a child of the sun) became similarly popular across France and in the Francophone nations.

As time went on, however, her place in the French music scene became less certain. Touring the world had taken a personal toll, and David decided to retire from music completely in 1987. However, with the help of her fan base, she was coaxed out of retirement in 2003 and is returning to a part of her life that she tried to leave, but never left her. Celebrating four decades in the music scene, David is looking forward to adventurous new projects and a newfound zest for life.

Anne Marie David corresponded with Wikinews’ Mike Halterman about her eventful career, her personal anecdotes regarding living abroad, her successes in past Eurovision contests and her grievances with the way the show is produced today. This is the second in a series of interviews with past Eurovision contestants, which will be published sporadically in the lead-up to mid-May’s next contest in Moscow.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=Eurovision_%2773_winner_Anne_Marie_David_discusses_her_four-decade_career_and_the_Contest,_past_and_present&oldid=1408431”

U.S. automaker GM plans to close 1,100 dealerships

Friday, May 15, 2009

American automobile manufacturer General Motors (GM) announced plans Friday to shut down about 1,100 of its dealerships, in an effort to evade bankruptcy and lower its expenditures.

GM’s move comes a day after Chrysler, another U.S. car maker, released a list of 789 dealerships that it was closing. Unlike Chrylser, GM will not publicly announce the dealerships that it intends to shut down. Instead, dealerships whose franchises won’t be renewed after October of next year will receive a private letter telling them of the decision.

At the moment, GM has 6,246 dealers in the U.S. It intends to reduce that number to 3,605 by the end of 2010. GM said the dealerships that were to be closed are “underperforming and very small sales volume U.S. dealers.”

“They’re dealerships that are in most cases hurting, losing money, and in danger of going out of business anyway,” said GM’s sales, service, and marketing vice president in a telephone conference. “It’s a move that people could argue should have been taken years ago but this leadership team had no choice but to do it today.”

The dealers that are to be closed represent 18% of the firm’s dealership network, but only 7% of GM’s 2008 revenue.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=U.S._automaker_GM_plans_to_close_1,100_dealerships&oldid=822206”

Digital security researchers publicly reveal vulnerability in WPA2 WiFi protocol

Thursday, October 19, 2017

On Monday, digital security researchers Mathy Vanhoef and Frank Piessens of Belgium’s KU Leuven university publicly disclosed a security vulnerability in the WPA2 Wi-Fi (wireless local-area networking) protocol, which they called KRACK (for Key Reinstallation Attack). Their study claimed KRACK affects every modern device using Wi-Fi; it can be fixed by a software update, researchers said.

Vanhoef wrote, “Attackers can use this novel attack technique to read information that was previously assumed to be safely encrypted. This can be abused to steal sensitive information such as credit card numbers, passwords, chat messages, emails, photos and so on.” Vanhoef notified vendors about the flaw in July, including UNIX-like operating system OpenBSD. “If your device supports Wi-Fi, it is most likely affected. […] In general, any data or information that the victim transmits can be decrypted”, he wrote.

The study papers, which were submitted for review on May 19, were kept in confidence allowing companies to fix the security flaw. The United States-based Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT) informed vendors on August 28. The Wi-Fi Alliance said it “could be resolved through a straightforward software update.” OpenBSD released their software patch on August 30.

Exploring the flaw which affected every device the researchers had tested, National Cyber Security Centre of the UK said “the attacker would have to be physically close to the target”. But due to this flaw, an attacker can send malware or ransomware on the websites, Vanhoef claimed.

Linux-based operating systems including Android v6.0 and higher are especially affected by this flaw, while Windows and iOS are not as vulnerable as Android by this flaw as they do not fully implement WPA2.

Microsoft reportedly has released security patches for Windows 7, 8, 8.1 and 10. Google said Android operating systems would receive the updates in the software update scheduled to be made available on November 6. Apple has implemented the patch in the beta versions of their operating system iOS, macOS, tvOS and watchOS, however it is yet to roll out patches for stable operating systems.

WPA2 protocol has been used for more than a decade, and has been compulsory for Wi-Fi since 2006. KRACK would also affect various home appliances which can be controlled over Wi-Fi, within the so-called “Internet of things”. Andrew Martin from Oxford University said, “We can be sure a lot of these devices won’t be patched[…] Whether that matters for this attack or only for some future attack is yet to be seen.”

The study and its findings are scheduled for presentation at the ACM (Association for Computing Machinery) Computer and Communications Security conference on November 1.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=Digital_security_researchers_publicly_reveal_vulnerability_in_WPA2_WiFi_protocol&oldid=4576756”

Nearly 25% of Iceland’s voters petition for veto of Icesave bill

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Nearly a quarter of Iceland’s voters have signed a petition calling for President Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson to veto the bill passed last week to pay €3.8 billion to the United Kingdom and The Netherlands to compensate depositors impacted when the Icesave online bank collapsed in 2008.

“I consider it to be a reasonable demand that the economic burden placed on the current and future generations of Icelanders, in the form of a state guarantee for Icesave payments to the UK and Dutch governments, be subject to a national referendum,” says the petition.

The petition also demands a referendum be held; any bill not signed by the President must do so under the country’s constitution. This constitutional clause has only once been invoked since the country’s independence from Denmark in 1944. Ólafur challenged a media reform bill in 2004 which the parliament passed by a margin of only two votes. The bill which would have forced the breakup of Baugur Group due to a mix of media and business interests.

The group collecting signatures and who handed over the petition to the President, InDefence, called the bill a “huge risk” for Iceland’s economic future. “All projections based on realistic assumptions […] showed without doubt that Iceland would be unable to meet the payments stipulated by the Icesave loan agreements as set out in the disputed legislation,” it announced in a statement.

Organiser Magnus Arni Skulason made the comparison between repaying the debt and financing Iceland’s health service. “We were able to represent our arguments to the president, and also on the occasion we handed over a petition to ask the president to reject the current Icesave bill,” he said to the BBC. “The interest rate on the Icesave agreement for Iceland is like running the National Health Service of Iceland for six months.”

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Magnus expressed preference for the previous legislation from the Icelandic government in August last year. That would have seen the interest paid limited and a time-limit on the period for payment where any outstanding amount would be written off after fifteen years.

Icelandic Prime Minister Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir and her coalition government threatened to resign if the bill was not passed by parliament. It did so by a slim three vote majority: 33 in favour, 30 against. One junior minister has already resigned over the matter.

Icesave was the online service offered by the Landsbanki bank and proposed high interest rates to investors. When it collapsed in October 2008 it had its accounts frozen and had to be rescued, losing 320,000 British and Dutch investors their savings. They were compensated in part by their own governments, which in turn looked to the Icelandic goverment to recompense them. In addition to the Landsbanki, the Glitnir and Kaupthing banks also had to be rescued by the Icelandic government.

The €3.8 billion, to be repaid in installments starting in 2017 over eight years, represents 40% of Iceland’s gross domestic product. Repayment of the debt is an important factor in the country’s application to join the European Union.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=Nearly_25%25_of_Iceland%27s_voters_petition_for_veto_of_Icesave_bill&oldid=2715854”

Witnesses expose big corruption scheme of the Brazilian ruling party

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

São Paulo, Brazil — Several witnesses are denouncing the government of President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva and the ruling Workers’ Party (PT). Below are some of the main denunciations and witnesses.

In May, the Brazilian deputy Roberto Jefferson was involved in an alleged corruption scheme that involved the Brazilian Postal Service. Jefferson said that he was unfairly being abandoned and sacrificed. In addition he said that he would not take the fall alone.

On June 6, Roberto Jefferson told the Brazilian newspaper Folha de São Paulo that the rulingWorkers’ Party (PT) has been paying Brazilian deputies 30 thousand Brazilian Reais (USD 12 thousand) each, every month, in return for support. Jefferson later confirmed to a Congressional special commission what he had previously stated to the newspaper. Also he added that he had informed the Minister José Dirceu about the payments and that no action was taken. Dirceu denied Jefferson’s allegations.

According to Jefferson the payments only stopped after he informed the President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. He also said that the Minister José Dirceu should leave the government, otherwise President Lula would get involved. Two days later, the Minister José Dirceu announced his resignation from his post.

Jefferson denied involvement in the Brazilian Postal Service scandal. Jefferson told the commission that the Brazilian Agency of Intelligence (Abin) was controlled by the former Brazilian Minister of Civil Affairs José Dirceu and it recorded the tape which shows the former Brazilian Postal Service Chief Maurício Marinho during a supposed bribery negotiation with a businessman.

However Jefferson admitted that he received R$ 4 million from the Workers’ Party (PT). According to Jefferson, during a meeting with him and the PTB treasurer Émerson Palmieri, the Workers’ Party treasurer Delúbio Soares and the Workers’ Party President José Genoíno, they decided that PTB should received R$ 20 million. Jefferson said he received only R$ 4 million and the money was delivered by the businessman Marcos Valério Fernandes de Souza, owner of publicity enterprises.

On June 14, Fernanda Karina Ramos Somaggio denounced his former boss Marcos Valério and told the Brazilian magazine “IstoÉ – Dinheiro” that she saw suitcases full of money leaving the enterprise during the time she worked for him as secretary (IstoÉ article). Also she said that Marcos Valério encountered Workers’ Party members several times, including Delúbio Soares. On June 15, the secretary denied everything what she said to “IstoÉ – Dinheiro” to police. However, on June 20, Karina Somaggio said that she lied to the police because she and her family were threatened. In a new testimony to the Brazilian police, Karina Somaggio confirmed the interview to the magazine and the accusations against her former boss, Marcos Valério. Karina Somaggio is now under police protection.

Marcos Valério denied the allegations of Karina Somaggio. He has initiated court proceedings against his former secretary.

Some days later the magazine “IstoÉ” revealed documents from the Council for Control of Financial Activities (Coaf). According to the documents around R$ 20.9 millions left SMP&B and DNA enterprises, which belong to Marcos Valério (IstoÉ article). The Coaf is a Brazilian public agency which monitors irregular financial activities. The enterprises of Marcos Valério have millionaire contracts with the Brazilian government.

On June 21 and 22, parliamentarians listened to the former Brazilian Postal Service Chief Maurício Marinho, accused of involvement in the Brazilian Postal Service scandal. At first Marinho refused talking about any illegality in the Brazilian Postal Service. However, on June 22, after his lawyers admitted that he was not telling the whole truth and that they would leave him, Marinho demanded protection for himself and his family, then started to talk. He said the Workers’ Party general-secretary Sílvio Pereira and the Minister Luiz Gushiken had some influence in the Brazilian Postal Service. He said that the biggest Brazilian Postal Service contracts should be investigated and he mentioned big contracts to the Brazilian bank Bradesco.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=Witnesses_expose_big_corruption_scheme_of_the_Brazilian_ruling_party&oldid=1110209”

Gastric bypass surgery performed by remote control

Sunday, August 21, 2005

A robotic system at Stanford Medical Center was used to perform a laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery successfully with a theoretically similar rate of complications to that seen in standard operations. However, as there were only 10 people in the experimental group (and another 10 in the control group), this is not a statistically significant sample.

If this surgical procedure is as successful in large-scale studies, it may lead the way for the use of robotic surgery in even more delicate procedures, such as heart surgery. Note that this is not a fully automated system, as a human doctor controls the operation via remote control. Laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery is a treatment for obesity.

There were concerns that doctors, in the future, might only be trained in the remote control procedure. Ronald G. Latimer, M.D., of Santa Barbara, CA, warned “The fact that surgeons may have to open the patient or might actually need to revert to standard laparoscopic techniques demands that this basic training be a requirement before a robot is purchased. Robots do malfunction, so a backup system is imperative. We should not be seduced to buy this instrument to train surgeons if they are not able to do the primary operations themselves.”

There are precedents for just such a problem occurring. A previous “new technology”, the electrocardiogram (ECG), has lead to a lack of basic education on the older technology, the stethoscope. As a result, many heart conditions now go undiagnosed, especially in children and others who rarely undergo an ECG procedure.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=Gastric_bypass_surgery_performed_by_remote_control&oldid=4331525”

KKE: Interview with the Greek Communist Party

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Wikinews reporter Iain Macdonald has performed an interview with Dr Isabella Margara, a London-based member of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE). In the interview Margara sets out the communist response to current events in Greece as well as discussing the viability of a communist economy for the nation. She also hit back at Petros Tzomakas, a member of another Greek far-left party which criticised KKE in a previous interview.

The interview comes amid tensions in cash-strapped Greece, where the government is introducing controversial austerity measures to try to ease the nation’s debt-problem. An international rescue package has been prepared by European Union member states and the International Monetary Fund – should Greece require a bailout; protests have been held against government attempts to manage the economic situation.

Retrieved from “https://en.wikinews.org/w/index.php?title=KKE:_Interview_with_the_Greek_Communist_Party&oldid=4568134”

Buffalo, N.Y. hotel proposal threatened by possible lawsuit

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Buffalo, New York — The property at 605 Forest in Buffalo was the center of attention at last night’s public meeting held at the offices of Forever Elmwood on Elmwood Avenue in Buffalo. Eva Hassett, Vice President of Savarino Construction Services Corporation, confirmed last night that the company will be seeking a variance for the 605 Forest property. Originally, both the 605 and 607 Forest Avenue properties were going to have variances placed on them. As it stands, 607 Forest will not be directly affected by the proposal, should it go forward. Both 605 and 607 are currently occupied by residents.

During Monday night’s meeting, Pano Georgiadis, owner of 605 Forest and owner of Pano’s Resuraunt at 1081 Elmwood Avenue in Buffalo, threatened to “sue” Savarino Construction if they tried to obtain a variance on his property to build the Elmwood Village Hotel.

The Elmwood Village Hotel is a proposal by Savarino Construction that would be placed on the corner of Forest and Elmwood in Buffalo. In order for the project to move forward, at least five buildings (1119-1121 Elmwood) which include both residences and businesses will have to be demolished. The hotel was designed by architect Karl Frizlen of the Frizlen Group. Although the properties are “under contract,” according to Hassett, it is unclear whether Savarino Construction owns the properties. Hans Mobius, a resident of Clarence, New York and former Buffalo Mayoral candidate, is still believed to own them.

Currently, none of the properties is zoned for a hotel.

A freelance journalist writing for Wikinews asked Hassett what kind of zoning permit they [Savarino] would be applying for and, if 605 Forest is included, what zone that would be.

Buffalo, N.Y. Hotel Proposal Controversy
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Original Story
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“There is a ‘special development plan’ in front of the council, which changes only one thing about the zoning. It allows one permitted use for just a hotel. The rest of the zoning remains as it is under the current Elmwood Business District zoning. 605 and 607 Forest are not required for the project. They are not part of the footprint for the project. Let me answer this question again. This is on the record, in council: 605 needs to be rezoned in order to facilitate the project because of the sideyard requirement. Anything in C-2 is excluded besides the hotel. So we’ve taken the C-2 and included the hotel as a permitted use, and excluded everything else and everything else remains the same.”

However, during the February 28 Common Council meeting, Hassett was quoted as saying that the two properties were “off the agenda.”

“Now Karl said, at the last meeting, that they will build this hotel right on the borderline [property line]. If a wall forty-five to fifty feet high goes next to this house, of course it’s not right. You really have to go with whatever the city code says, so you have to get back as many feet as the city code says,” said Georgiadis.

“If you try to get a variance to change the code, I will sue you. This is my home, number one,” added Georgiadis. “First of all I think we are all wasting our time here, you [Savarino], have already made up your mind, but if you go against city code, and you try to do the most rooms with a minimal amount of parking, again, I will sue you. If you build a hotel, in my idea its going to fail. It’s doomed, ok. [If] it’s going to be a home for the disabled, for the homeless, for recovery people, but that’s another story. Then how is it going to be when we say, well I told you so? You will be over and done with. Its very hard to take a four story building [hotel] down.”

Georgiadis stated last night that he was against the proposal and signed a petition to stop it, jokingly saying, “this isn’t a paper to sign to build the hotel, is it? Don’t make me sign the wrong thing.”

Joseph Golombeck, district councilman, was at Monday’s public meeting and said, “we also did request this and the reason we are doing this as a special business district is so that it has to be this specific plan. They [Savarino] can’t go halfway through it and in six months decide that [the hotel] it’s going to be three floors. They can’t decide it’s going to be five floors. It has to be, per law, exactly what it is that they brought to us [the public] so far, and then ultimately to the City of Buffalo Common Council when it’s approved. So if it gets approved, it has to be this specific, exact project. They couldn’t make it fifty parking spots, they couldn’t make it thirty. It has to be specifically what they have right here.”

A man who lives on Granger Street in Buffalo attended the meeting, speaking in favor of the hotel development. He claimed, “There are a lot of low property values. Hopefully if we embrace development, our property values, for those of us who have property, will go up. There are a lot of people unfortunately, who are working hard, that do not get a chance to come to these meetings. I myself was at work and wasn’t able to go to the last two meetings. I express that we appreciate that you [Savarino] invest in the City of Buffalo and for what you hope, because I do not think Savarino is into losing money. These people are not in business to be losing money here. They are hoping for the success of this [the hotel] more than any one of us. They are hoping that the property values in this area will go up more than any one of us, because it will benefit them [the residents and business owners], more than any one of us. I want this city to develop. I don’t think anybody else is here understanding that we’re looking for development in this city, we are looking for the city to get better. The councilman here is not interested in Buffalo failing.”

Evelyn Bencinich, resident of Granger Street, would have the hotel directly behind her home, if it were to be built.

“What about construction [time]? Is that just for the exterior, the nine months? Or does that include the interior? Is there going to be blasting through bedrock? Is there property protection for damage? Are you [Savarino and the Frizlen Group] responsible?”, asked Bencinich.

According to Frizlen, there is a layer of solid bedrock at least 30 feet from the surface of the land saying, “we anticipate that the bedrock is at least thirty feet down.” He also admitted that “we haven’t done any soil sporrings,” but did say “the bedrock is somewhere in between twenty-five and thirty feet [down], we don’t need to go that deep. So blasting is most likely out of it [the question].”

“Personally, I can only speak from the city side, but a few years ago we rebuilt Vulcan Street, in the northwest corner of Buffalo, and there were a couple of properties that were damaged and they [the owners] were able to file a claim against the company that did the work and they won in each case. It was the same thing with a school that was built on Military Road. There were a couple of problems with foundations on a couple of properties, and they weren’t sure if caused by the school or not, but the insurance company ended up paying them,” answered Golombeck.

“I would assume that Savarino is insured with someone. So if there is a problem with anything that happens to your properties, what I would recommend is that anybody that lives on Granger Place, if this does go through, that you get pictures taken of your basement and of your foundations, because God forbid if there is a problem, you want to have an[sic] before and after [picture]. You don’t want to come afterwards and there’s a crack in there [foundation] and you have no way of proving that it happened,” added Golombeck.

According to Golombeck, the properties that Mobius owns have been “in housing court on several occasions, but has a date of April 11, 2006 that he is going back [to court] for these properties. So it is in housing court and I wouldn’t know Mr. Mobius if he walked in this room right now,” stated Golombeck.

“I’ve gone after him on numerous occasions and everytime he gets out of housing court with a slap on the wrist. If I am a conspiracy theorist and say that there is a lot more going on than meets the eye. I can only get him into housing court. Once he’s in housing court, the judge rules on it. Now I don’t mean to take any shots at previous administrations, but I am hoping with the new administration, being in here, that the inspections department is going to be a much better department than it has been for the previous several years.”

The city’s Planning Board on March 14, 2006, agreed to send the Elmwood Village Hotel proposal back to the Common Council so that it may “be opened back up to discussion from the public.”

On March 2, 2006 the Common Council sent the proposal “to committee” for further discussion and also requesting that the public be “engaged further.”

During that meeting, Justin Azzeralla, Executive Director for Forwever Elmwood, said that the organization “supports the hotel project.”

Also on March 2, the planning board agreed to table, or postpone, any decision on the hotel proposal for at least thirty days, also citing the need for the public to be “more engaged.”

The Common Council is expected to meet on March 21, 2006 at 2:00pm local time where they may approve or deny the proposal.

According to The Buffalo News, at least six Common Council members support the hotel project and are pledging to vote to approve it at the meeting on Tuesday, March 21.

However, the city’s Planning Board will get the final say on the project.

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