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Call for secret Peace Bridge documents to be revealed

WBFO News file photo

The Buffalo Common Council could weigh in Tuesday afternoon on secret talks federal officials reportedly had about removing truck traffic from the Peace Bridge.

In the summer of 2012, according to The Buffalo News, the General Services Administration talked with several other federal agencies about barring trucks from the Peace Bridge. The goal was to improve the health of West Side residents by reducing pollution from idling diesel engines. But the idea died quickly. 

Credit WBFO News file photo
No Idling Zone signs were placed near Peace Bridge Plaza in 2012 under a 'no idling' policy at the on an effort to improve air quality.

Niagara District  Common Council member David Rivera said he will introduce a resolution Tuesday calling on the federal agencies to turn over their secret documents.

Rivera said whether alternatives are feasible or not, local elected leaders should know what the conclusions are, and why the talks ended so abruptly.

"At least it could be part of the broader discussion. I mean if they're telling us...there's no way we can move truck traffic over to Queenston-Lewiston because of all these obstacles and we've considered it...at least we know. We can be part of that discussion," said Rivera.

Also at Tuesday's council session, North District Common Council member Joseph Golombek plans to resubmit a resolution calling on the federal government to investigate the environmental reviews done for the Peace Bridge improvement project.

"Because the problem is in my opinion that we just simply, in the City of Buffalo, do not have the expertise, especially medically and scientifically, to find out if in fact all the different agencies that have been involved with the bridge have done what they're supposed to do. I think that we've been stonewalled in many regards. We've had questions that were asked that were never truly answered. Things have been done secretively. And, I think things have been done illegally breaking federal laws," said Golombek.

Lawmakers meet at 2 p.m. Tuesday in Common Council Chambers at City Hall.