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LaFalce Says Control Board Must Do More Than Cut

By Eileen Buckley

Buffalo, NY – A former congressman says he has some concerns of a control board for the City of Buffalo.

John LaFalce, who was once the ranking minority member of the House financial services committee in Washington, says a control board for the city could be helpful if it is structure properly. LaFalce says if the board has the power to "act affirmatively" and extend beyond Buffalo -- it would help resolve the city's fiscal problems.

"Right now, as I envision the control board, it can probably do little more than say no to future pay raises and exhort those with powers such as the County Legislature and County Executive to do things with respect to the city of Buffalo," LaFalce said.

LaFalce says in order for the the control board to accomplish its goals, it needs a combination of powers.

"You can't just say cut back on expenditures and personnel," LaFalce said. "You also have to provide additional bridging revenue. You have to have a consolidation of services with the county."

Many others are also weighing in with their concerns of a future control board.

Citizen Action says a board for Buffalo must come with cash. The organization says it doesn't make sense to create the over site board if it can not provide finanical help. Citizen Action suggests the state provide a portion of $700 million it will receive in fiscal relief from the federal government so Buffalo is able to stop tax hikes and cuts to key services.