Buffalo Common Council Summary: Week of July 10, 2023

Date: July 14, 2023

Written by Hannah Gabelnick, edited by Caitlin Crowell

Each week, PPG summarizes important takeaways from the major Buffalo Common Council meetings. We also include information from council meetings related to our Community Agenda items.

This week's summary includes the caucus meeting and the regular meeting. We abbreviate “Council Member” as CM, "Council President" as CP, and "Majority Leader" as ML.

This week’s caucus meeting included a discussion of Braymiller Market’s request for over $562,000 in funding. CP Pridgen and ML Rivera emphasized the importance of equity for small businesses and said that the item will be going back to the finance committee.

During this week’s regular meeting, the council adopted a resolution advocating for American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding to go to small businesses throughout the city, not just to Braymiller. The resolution asks Mayor Brown and the Office of Strategic Planning (OSP) to allocate $62,506 per council district for small businesses. This would total $562,558 in small business funds – the same amount of funding Braymiller Market is requesting. The resolution states that Braymiller could apply along with the rest of the small businesses to that pot of funds. Resolutions like this are non-binding, so the council is simply making an official ask of the administration to create this funding scheme.

The council approved the 2023-2024 Annual Action Plan from OSP. This plan outlines how the city will spend its federal housing dollars. CM Wyatt emphasized the need for OSP to provide the council with promised information on demolitions.

The council also approved the receipt of $446,781 from the U.S. Dept of Justice. These funds are intended to reimburse the city and other entities for expenses related to the May 14, 2022 massacre at Tops. The Buffalo Police Dept will receive over $360,000 of these funds, while the remainder will go to the Buffalo Fire Dept, the Erie County Sheriff, and the NFTA.