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WBEN NewsRadio 930>Audio & Video on Demand>>Kathy Mecca- Peace Bridge Plans

Kathy Mecca- Peace Bridge Plans

Feb 16, 2014|

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Time to talk politics it's hard line on news radio nine. NB. And what do we can this stock politics in this segment we're going to be looking ahead. To something actually happens. In about a week a week from tomorrow actually. It's called pre clearance at the peace bridges the latest in what has -- And is where we talk politics political Tug -- war for years and years over expansion of the peace bridge. You had of course for awhile the Tug of war between the Canadian side in the US side with Governor Cuomo stepping in and and saying listen we need -- we need to advance things now. Or -- will basically -- support of four from the peace -- And then in a longer view even have the Tug of war between the neighborhood groups and those who want peace bridge expansion. It's that part that we're going to be talking about today and we are going to be looking ahead to next Monday a week from tomorrow. When they start up pilot project pre clearance. The idea there is to station US border agents on the other side of the border. Have and expect inspection area there. Which keeps the traffic moving quicker you would think may be it would keep some of the trucks out in the neighborhood certainly deal with some of the exhaust and environmental issues. The neighborhood activists have been raising. But that's not necessarily the case let's bring in Kathleen Mecca she's with the Columbus park neighborhood groups he's been fighting some of the peace project for instance for. Oh gosh -- many a year now way. Yes at least 25 good morning -- Good morning thanks very glad you're here. Talk to me about this pre clearance idea on the surface I could look at it and say -- That's something the neighborhood would like but you have some data and some information actually from the bridge officials themselves. That safe from your perspective it might not make much of a difference. Marat and asked -- that that community. Met with the general manager from the cup that they -- authority I'd just over a little we could at. About a week -- just maybe a little more than match. And after he described the process and this is the process pre inspection. We asked well what was the Spanish at. To improving the quality of life and -- -- night and he said the non and then we -- court. The most important question and that is or how will it improve our air quality. And a response to that was it wants to. And they have exactly the problem. With all of these very clever. Programs pre inspection being one of many. Over the 25 years that I been involved in -- and I can just take you briefly days it's true a little history. Before you do I wanna I -- probe that just a little further if if the exhaust that's spewing out is the plaza that's not in your neighborhood. How does that end up not being a good thing. Well of course they have only half. -- Not all that the trucks will be pre clear. So it just some of the truck won't they have just two dedicated -- and Canada for pre clearance -- well. A majority of the truck traffic is going to have to be -- true. What they say is if all of the paperwork is -- -- and at the -- and moan and start -- that and they won't have to be inspected. I'm real excited supporter I finance the theory theory hard to tell me. Felt we have -- twofold problem that there and the limited amount inspection it's going to be dedicated to pre clank. A majority of the trucks are either going to have to come through with the US plant and peachtree creek here and play. Come all and the second half that they had in regardless of how many are pre cleared. In Canada what the -- lack oracle true. Heat issue is not about moving truck traffic. Heat issue is about the attacks and the concentration taxes and these -- soft and -- we are. This kind of clever trick come plan. Because. Who -- idling truck congestion. Moving truck along faster. He's going to improve efficiency. And not improve air quality. Is not a matter -- -- It's a political opinion. Or anything opinion to. Just meet the goals of the public feature -- Gotten. Truck traffic but if he had the -- we snack related. To improving air quality and to stop making people think that is meant. -- you're saying that pre clearance of politicians have. Put the environmental debate into the pre clearance debate just 22 to advance it. Well I don't even know. If it's if it's in a canyon and that finance accounting can be considered environmental -- -- below pattern very very clear. Federal and state law. -- -- -- It's the public Bridget -- he can't determine. And perhaps along with the government agencies. And certainly politicians like congressman -- They had the national environmental protection. Absolutely. Required. Getting each night and start pre inspection. Have to be conducted before a pilot project began snapping up to date time president -- executive order which is 12114. And also the department of homeland security's own environmental cleaning program directed. Yet -- community was killed by the EPA if you heating which -- a full. Environmental review would not be done until the pilot Patrick the codec which could be around the year 2017. So how parents brought me or government officials or elected officials like congressman -- and senator Schumer general. You're an illegal legally able speak no evil because that means and to ignore the you have to operate about the -- And more from prima. Kathy -- is here she represented neighbors around the peace bridge the Columbus park neighborhood association. The group that has been fighting in many ways because of the environmental effects that come down on the neighborhood because of peace -- traffic. 8030930s. And number if you'd like to join us we will be taking calls before this hour is done. Kathy cut off earlier when he was talking about the history give me that broader sweep now if you can't. How can help the first final pool want one of the things to -- he didn't mention. At this public meeting community meetings and one of the things that our congressmen our senators. Don't mention and in this meeting at contention. I'm with a little bit taking -- Google's effort and I did. And -- have like a pre inspection and a pilot project operated in June 2013. That lasted for only six months. Now they look at the track crossing between British -- state of Washington stepped up at that apparently truck and I think. And why not let this thing after because they actually promote the traffic. Well. In 2003. The PDAs fat well if we lose the whole global company you less positive Canadian content we're going to improve. Efficiency. And reduce congestion. Well in 2004 they effect while we've got -- can -- can crap on we needed new branch. And 2007. That while we don't need no bridge that we need -- man affair. Content expansion and the healing fine. Never mind that they -- -- -- Over 62 acres and fort Erie county located speaker platinum mile high interest as it happened. That required taking over a hundred homes displacing hundreds of people. Demolishing I think he's black that this can sit and home. All and picking up front and city streets. With that project with a hand in 2012. Because the community raised environmental review but can parents. So now -- can fast forward to 2014. And now we officially have any. Pilot. Pre inspection program once again. All of these projects in 200320042007. Now in 2014. Not one -- environmental. Impact study would ever completed and there are refunding. Because they can't. Harmful impact of diesel -- -- and the fourth pound and truck and date here this neighborhood. Poor school and daycare. And the community and environmental justice. How can you know. We learn more environmentally you attack and settle what do we do we have to one point clever tricks. -- -- What then would be a better option would you advocate for. A different bridge someplace else -- this one being maybe just cars going off their vacation homes crystal beach that kind of thing. What -- actually know gave in 1927. This bridge was built. Only for passenger -- if it was never intended. To be. The commercial passage right. Right until May have to -- men and of course it was in ninety. And that I think here for forty years continental had been here for several generations. They have when people started becoming an all it took until 2000. Will attack in the past fat and -- spangler. Studies. Air quality at the peak reached that we -- became educated and aware of what was making affect. There are a lot of solutions. But the first thing that the public particularly our elected officials. And our government both federal and state governments have to do -- -- in knowing the medical science. They have to start ignoring the health expert. All they have to look at accumulating. It. Impact. All of these projects not just peace healing. -- where they've -- the remodeling of the commercial. Pan -- building and the conference. -- or pre inspection. But don't let the people on hand. And felt would get any State's Supreme Court ruling in 2000. But you can't fragment. All of these projects that violates the law you have to do them and he single unit. Any project and about the peace spinach. In out and around doesn't matter. They have to be evaluated. In one final environmental impact study and one cumulative. Impacts. And that's why would be our lives at stake holders who had tickets could support. The expansion want Tripoli and they act. That was related -- Yeah brouhaha. Over this group of for the -- official that -- in Washington. And pockets of 2012. They know what the lie and this was the General Services Administration. That the organization. Can't. Customs and Border Protection Homeland Security filed under. And they met with. -- Other. Agency. And. And that that was when they began to float the idea of moving the traffic to Lewiston. All right take a break and I think we're getting a little so a bit of we can certainly do that here. Kathy Mecca is here she's with the Columbus park neighborhood association -- a group that is -- with a group rather that has been fighting for. Passionate some twenty years may be about expansion of either the peace bridge over the plaza. Of one of the bedrock. Points of her argument is the environmental effects on the neighborhood. As much in the neighborhood because more trucks equals more exhaust 8030930s. The number. Kathy tell me what happens now what would you like to see if if if this bridge was built for cars way back -- and and if commercial traffic has reached the point now where it is vastly expanded beyond that. Do we then therefore have to talk about. A new bridge someplace else where Scott impacting the neighborhood is that the ultimate maybe not the practical maybe not the easy. Maybe that the achievable solution but. What would that work. Absolutely that would work and I think that the only people who really -- can make that determination. In our head of government that's what they're empowered to do that general services administration and the federal highway. The EPA. Policy work and -- Customs and Border Protection. They say that they don't hand the power to make such -- depression but and -- They do there's no question. That the lot is on the books. There's executive orders in the box is their own environmental planning. Howell that that they have the power to do this. And they can only another bridge that's that's not just -- but let's take a look at the existing infrastructure that we already had. We have four crime things. And one record. -- The federal government already know -- I'm debt to lift increased ten -- thing. Can be expand and and they all from known -- what is happening to residents here. I'm Bob -- went. It's not going to happen. To reference analysts and greens and. But abuse said today could do this were talking about a binational group. How much power does the US to say though I have to say without self creating new bridge. Well let's ask another question. What right. Do the United States. And and Canada had. To continue point Maine and from children. And jeopardizing their health and future generations of children. I think when you look at it and -- totality. We're at the fabric civilized society were humane society. Where compassionate and tiny. Apparently. There is there have to be the political well. To use logic and reason. Because people who children think. And it is not the right thing to do it and it is. I don't know it appears to our elected officials. And government officials that they have the path of least resistance and I think that it. It's shameful. That they think that he's being children that it left and implicated. And working and other alternative. To practice in commercial truck. And infrastructure. Would have to be. Brit I developed new infrastructure would have to keep -- But it did take a look at how much money hundreds of millions accounted. I often made well over 300 million -- has already been stand and left twenty and I two years. Com inequality futile attempt. To keep -- coming to the wrong. -- -- in the wrong place. And so if we would've impacted all of that money and looking at better alternatives. We wouldn't hand a solution. By now and we would be healthy to me and we would be growing. Trade between the United States and Canada. For a viable solutions -- But there have to beat the political round. Even current legislative. The encampment council has recently demonstrate an unprecedented level of leadership. In holding our federal government accountable. Fort. Handing her doing inadequate environmentally -- Determined Catholic -- to -- the central time I think as we know that was a big story about. Washington official. I'm looking at one time around me and also Lewiston right. Right content import common council as the first step in their investigation. TSA is illegal environmental -- -- say to comply. With president Obama's. Environmental justice agenda which. Is an executive order. 1289. -- that was issued and here we have government agencies. They had report directly to the pregnant United States. Ignoring. The president's executive order so our own tournament council now and on this Tuesday. Is going to be getting very eighteenth become council. Because that councilman until the running back will be putting any resolution before the council. If the people who were at central high potential. -- our our traffic is starting to back up again at poppy on hold again -- late we're late for our news break on the other side will begin to take some of those phone calls are starting trickle into. It's hard line on news radio 930 WB and good morning this today -- we are talking about the peace bridge. Kathy Mecca is here she's with the Columbus park neighborhood association. And I am I love long time regular listeners they're beginning to figure the show out they realized right as this news break was opening ever ending rather. That it would be the time to jump on the phones 8030930s. Number caddie let's go right to the phones are starting to back up like traffic and a peace bridge. If you have any questions or comments about what she's saying we'd love to have you aboard. Her basic argument is that we need either a different bridge or a different place for commercial traffic. Because of the health effects on the neighborhood. She also argues that peace bridge plaza expansion even pre clearance which -- kicks off week from tomorrow is not necessarily the answer. Matt in buffalo thanks for waiting you're on the air. I -- I was wondering why the local officials who represented neighborhood haven't really. All stood up to -- and the neighborhood against the most corrupt and public health threat in the city in particular. David Rivera on the comic how old are Rabbani and they -- and congressman buying big in. What people really turned their backs -- concerns and I was and I. They you know they might not realize that the lake effect win the peace bridge don't exist that would. And that the geography at the peace bridge exacerbate. The -- -- I -- because the carcinogen -- picked -- and -- very very deep into the city much further into the -- I think anybody realized that. Neighborhoods like outlook village Alan how are very much impacted in addition. There -- areas like Columbus park and I was wondering why you think you know well maybe your perception is different I was wondering if there. You know there are any elected official about their like Joseph Cologne back and others will really you know standing up for the paper. All right. I imagine -- and stick with me -- -- -- I imagine the argument that they would make on the other side and I'm not them I'm guessing here. Is the broader economic game. That the traffic is already there that these patterns are there. That this region needs this and therefore well yeah and I know it's not really defensible but. Yet people have to suffer there's a broader gain at least the makes it worthwhile do you really see that rationale. I certainty that rationale because politicians who blindly out there. -- illogical political rhetoric for so long. That they you know someone like buying it and can say well we don't build that bridge and we're gonna lose the Buffalo Bills we're gonna lose the paper that we don't build that bridge. And it's so ridiculous the claim. That you know I wonder what his motivation. -- why you know why would somebody say something so you know -- technological like we're not talking about how. Hendrick cars of course we want passenger car but he's -- we want to Canadian coming here we are talking about where -- where we can put the truck where. They help impact is going to you know people can mitigate it -- not putting it through the most densely populated. Part of our region. Kathie jump on annually -- Well -- is absolutely right I can improve on anything he -- and an -- repeat what I said before. This is the United States of America not the united territory that the -- I can I think what Matt is saying and stand. That day has come that there could be the political world this Fannie and enough is enough. David and Kerry let let's bring in another we -- again got a bunch backing up David in Perry's prayer of thanks for waiting high. Thank -- He of being a good solution is -- -- yet he's saying is armed it's a beautifully groped can be ruined by this these trucks. Very international real bridge laid down the road here. Much more efficient way to move so well that you -- but there was this global warming and all the news in -- stop this nonsense would be diesel. Individual truck. All right kept -- is is that far enough away from your neighborhood is that an industrial enough region. That if they put a new bridge where the railroad Tressel is now. That they'd be mitigating or solving some of the environmental issues you raise. I appreciate what the old fat and the end gap hitter group. Of course we now in the late and in the early checkout is purchased property there. But he environmental. Impact. Studies that we know without. Showed that the late -- this -- lake wind that pushed their vehicle Exxon into the white -- community would push that people like god. Into the -- -- community and offer the black black community and vary -- -- could be used as well. So from your perspective. Moving all the traffic to. On new span where there where the railroad is just wouldn't work. I'm not an engineer but they found what I have read. I don't think that's the solution I don't think shifting the burden to another community is the solution and they -- why the federal government. In Washington America officials that Mac. They lose you know that the geographic conditions can lift and -- and were bright. It wouldn't hurt the environment. And it wouldn't hurt people because geographically. It's it's set up very very different from me. And then that community. Get it down wind off Lake -- -- and cream stand -- a bridge that's it's 250 feet about eight very swift moving river gorge there's no wake lands. To push that he did not intensely populated region. And open you know infrastructure was developed I'm talking traffic routes. I'm certainly not the Grand Island bridges but new infrastructure went to about. We wouldn't be talking baptists today. All right let's bring in Nelson from Holland thanks for calling. -- good more and a my columnists and look at the is that number one or you don't hear any forward thinking. Knowing what transition mr. complete throughout their estates of many of these trucks. In this next generation's going to be in LPG. An extra -- trucks that mitigates -- problem there's an actual argument. And that's all been about mormons to Lewiston which centers were not so much of Africa through it and that creates a very static situation for air movement. Any current. But my my children -- Brian -- and that those people are forward and tremendously. -- is -- good as queen city. The and in the next ten years -- so hopefully. I think the whole argument are people on the table that OPG. Netbook gets compared to a source for renewed restructure which concerned about all right so let's say thank you. Thanks for calling Kathy will will scientific progress eventually make diesel fumes moved. Well -- I just threat as very important study that was just released by the and I age. Hand these are two world renowned scientists. That study the natural gas. And -- clean engines for both the truck and come off funny if it industry. And your conclusion like that there will always be animation. Have toxic fumes. -- and they are opinions not mine but in the opinion finance. Cleaner engines natural gas if not the answer when you are putting. The disproportionate amount of truck traffic and a daily basis through densely populated. Area and the other thing that I didn't hear from the collar. Why is. Deport people when that word community. Felt police think I can running that trucks are going to be equipped with newer engines. If not gonna work helped leasing network still no guarantee it's a lot it can't be enforced. So they had -- not in immediate solution. To. To prevent. Children from getting sick or adults -- getting -- Meet the Press comes your way at twelve -- enough time between now -- with -- one more call before the break in a couple after. John in Rochester it's your turn -- They can't -- I am sympathetic view I think had I been in situations similar to that well I got all I can actually question -- If you know there are a lot of blood danger is if -- -- even today. Why would you put your children at risk to yourself at risk and not move in and handle the problem from different location your query. The people in their neighborhood -- no problem. Probably economically in Abu but I would say a majority of whom could well why would you put your selves they're risking your kids terrorists. Let me add something else the scenario especially if they took your home for a plaza. When they throw money at you to move anyway. App you're both absolutely right I think those are very important questions. They throw around a lot of money and a lot of people and they -- can't divide and conquer. But there were some people. Who knew that they had a -- for Belichick couldn't speak and I was one of them and I just -- tell. Your college aunt. Com I suffered from breast cancer breast cancer is a wanna be epidemics here it's one could be -- number it can't just kept kept things from. Leukemia. Neurological disorders. I'm one of nine women just got my black with cancer and I was fortunate not to because there. Where a lot of my friends and neighbors. -- now and I feel that I was given a second chance to do something right and I had. The resources and the opportunity. To speak out for those -- -- -- and that has been my choice not to move. There are 22000. People -- -- top Q right now okay. I am struggling because I had to heavily used medication for add up and severely asthmatic. I'm one out of 22000. People. You can't move. -- entire district. You can't move the community that we here. It was pretty civil war before bridge was even built for the community older. And then the but you can -- the track and debt is the most logical thing to do it. We got to take another break we'll be back on the other side if you're on hold stay right there more to come Kathy Mecca is with the Columbus neighborhood association. We're talking about. The peace average more activists its heartland news radio 930 WB. It's hard line on news radio 930 WB yen about a twelve minutes left here before we go to Meet the Press. We are talking today about the peace -- and a little bit about the environmental issues there something similar on a national scale coming up with Meet the Press. They're going to have a debate and discussion about climate change you can also hear Mitt Romney talk about the state of the Republican Party and the Scioscia Olympics all of that coming your way. In about -- when we have -- six minutes back to the phones though enough time to squeeze in. At least couple more callers Kathy Mecca is here. From the Columbus park neighborhood association. She's talking about no expansion of the peace bridge plaza because of the health effects on the residents there. Elizabeth thanks for waiting so long you're on the -- now hi. Yeah it's your turn -- Hi I have a couple questions and I I actually can put it like happy to talk about. One is on the island in the neighborhood. He had for the previous caller I just want to know that should not -- -- -- so easy to pack up and -- I -- for I was six generations that it was in the community. I love my community I love this city of -- about my neighbors. He had been that would be very hard to replicate -- I don't think. We didn't know that we would be poison idea of talks until -- -- the last couple here. That's long term and I want to make I would like to ask you to speak about how -- -- increase capacity to bridge. How old -- -- -- it actually causes more traffic to come -- and secondly -- could not account as I can make is. We wouldn't be having this conversation. As we were talking about this subject or we wouldn't -- Italian people -- camp. You -- to move because structure coming through the year. So -- I think that people need to look at this community as a community who love well well want to stay here. He had that we shouldn't just try to disperse people people want capacity increased as they could go deeper into the community that you have to have. The next two blocks over the next Xbox. Not Catholic it's because an elaborate on that I would appreciate. All right -- we got a lot of others to squeeze and quickly address that. I'm the well -- absolutely I hit the nail on the head and she's referring to a 2012. I national study that was done and it -- exactly -- acts and -- but I haven't -- inning at a program case. Bet you can find all of these -- -- Q relieve congestion and improve efficiency. But if you build it stable calm and -- com until they absolutely maxed out what you've built. And this vicious cycle have to repeat itself. And in buffalo let's let's bring -- more and Kathy let's bring in Linda in buffalo now hi. Oh how I think black. -- I didn't speak to that the gentleman who was talking about moving and it's my understanding that while the debate has been going on market rich. Actually built. Low income housing projects just -- -- on the 190 get out of the peace bridge. So those people who obviously Hanna moved our inhaling the fumes -- 3000 trucks that date because that 190 between LA Quinn. And the projects. I'm also I did learn all shook -- -- It's my understanding why something like 90% of those trucks are not serving less -- New York we don't have those manufacturers and -- Most of the truck. Are going somewhere else we get -- in their field. We're not getting any of their profits -- passenger vehicles we profit trump so if we get the track farther away. We could get a lot more passenger vehicles in here to buyers' favorite tickets and shopper -- -- and to all the other things they like to do over here. I did when he if you can't see why she thinks the federal agencies and state agencies are ignoring not only those points but the environmental laws. I'm in and just sort of inflicting that directly to consider moving the truck. All right Kathy do you think there's a reason why there road going against what you say. Well I think that it is. The old. Proctor -- -- power money and politics. At it's much more expedient. For advocates said the expansion to play. Politic and perhaps -- about the health of children. I don't think -- talk shows the place where were ever gonna resolve this sort of thing. And I didn't hear a lot today that we haven't heard before you you gave great insight you great gave depth. You certainly talk about pre clearance and that was something that I was -- wouldn't necessarily impact the neighborhood or change things for the good of the neighborhood. But by and large if we pull back and look at this entire 25 year debate. I I got and the program and asked what changes where do we go from here. It's great to see here and talk and I understand everything that he said but. What's gonna happen next. What's going to happen next and -- the community is going to find a way to reach. The highest level. The government and that is to bring up to the White House to be environmental council. I'm environmental quality and the EPA and demand. And environmentally view and to bring all of these agencies. Are looking elected officials in the dying and that is the purpose of -- come on back. Resolution he has to on the table. And you know. Shakespeare -- implement something's rotten in the state of Denmark well I say. Some things Latin in this state Nittany -- there was -- cover up in Washington. In August of two. 2012. And any p.'s high level -- Obama appointee. -- and to the environmental review of the web site. And I think we absolutely have to go forth when investigation it's important if that this kind of nonsense. All right Kathy we we are out of time. We are out of time thank you for all of your insight good discussion today it's news radio 930 WB and.

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