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DEC 09 - DEC 17, 2014

Dyster's Disappearing Budget Demands Explanation

December 09, 2014

In 1926 Agatha Christie disappeared for ten days, 27 days less than Mayor Paul A. Dyster’s missing budget.

The Paul Dyster "missing for 37 days" 2015 city budget has to go down as one of the most famous disappearance-reappearance cases in history, perhaps rivaled in curiosity only by the legendary disappearance-reappearance of famous British mystery author Agatha Christie in 1926.

Ms. Christie vanished in the English countryside and eventually reappeared 10 days later with exciting new plots for additional novels.

When Dyster and his budget re-emerged into view his budget was none the better, and actually quite worse, than when it went missing 37 days previous.

For the month of October until his eventual 30-minute budget delivery address at city hall on Friday, Nov. 7, the mayor inexplicably withheld his 2015 proposed budget from the residents and media.

Dyster, in doing so, violated the city charter, put the city council behind the proverbial eight ball, did damage to the city's financial reputation, and engaged in a level of mayoral chicanery perhaps never before seen in Niagara Falls government.

Exactly why did Mayor Dyster play hide and seek with the budget?

And, why has he not, to this day, provided a reasonably believable explanation for his actions?

The mayor has yet to prove that his holding the budget for over a month longer than allowed by the city charter was necessary in any way, shape or form.

The budget simply faded from sight – from his desk – on Oct. 1 and didn't reappear until Nov. 7.

Interestingly enough when his budget did reappear. it did so only three days after Election Day in which the voters chose a governor and local state senator with Andrew Cuomo and Johnny Destino running for those offices.

We suspect that the timing of Dyster's budget release hinged upon the election cycle and not what was good for Niagara Falls.


It's quite likely that Mayor Dyster pulled a political stunt by playing "now you see it now you don't" with the peoples' budget plan because it contained a healthy tax hike for homeowners and businesses ,tax hikes that would certainly not have played well for Cuomo and Destino prior to Election Day.

While the mayor owes the residents an honest and transparent explanation as to his budget gamesmanship, the Reporter isn't holding its breath waiting for him to come clean.

Dyster is the mayor of the city and the de facto head of the Niagara County Democratic Party. He's not the Prince of Niagara Falls, at least not yet.

He must explain his actions and not just explain them away.

While the recent financial history of Niagara Falls demonstrates that the city's budget process is no stranger to budgetary drama, the road to the 2015 municipal budget has been a shameful and cynical display of non-transparency and outright deception.

The residents have been forced to watch as the "floating deficit" soared to nearly $10 million and then inexplicably fell to $4.5 million, then $4 million and is presently rumored to be "as low as $2.5 million" depending on who is doing the talking.

In short, what is going on here?

A city cannot do business like this.

The residents deserve better than a smoke and mirrors, curiously rising-falling deficit.

Dyster owes a precise explanation as to why he withheld the 2015 Niagara Falls Municipal Budget for 37 days.

Until he provides a sincere, believable explanation we have to assume the worst in political gamesmanship has taken place.

Artist representation of Mayor Paul A. Dyster failing to deliver the legally required budget. “I’m as transparent as hell,” the Mayor said. Yeah, we know!






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Phone: (716) 284-5595

Publisher and Editor in Chief: Frank Parlato
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