40 Years Ago, Dec. 19, 1973
Rockefeller resignation announced
Gov. Nelson A. Rockefeller announced today he will resign as governor after 15 years of service in that office, and relinquish administration of state government to Lt. Gov. Malcolm Wilson, who will be sworn in as governor.
Declaring to a crowded press conference that "We are living in critical times," and that, "I have great faith in our country and I am optimistic about the future," the governor added: "But we can't take that future for granted. Therefore, after long and careful consideration, I have concluded that I can render a greater public service to the people of New York and to the nation by devoting myself to the work of two bipartisan national commissions."
He identified these as the Commission of Critical Choices for Americans, and the National Commission on Water Quality, both of which he heads as chairman. ...
30 Years Ago, Dec. 16, 1983
Firemen stand guard during phone blackout
Grand Island volunteer firemen were ready for any emergency Monday while telephone lines between the Island and the mainland went out of order.
Fire Chief Peter McMahon said crews were stationed at the main truck house and stations on Stony Point and Baseline roads during the "blackout," which may have been caused by the line across the river being disrupted by flooding that plagued Tonawanda.
Inasmuch as the fire company's connection with the Tonawanda fire company, which handles Island alarms and sets off sirens, is a local 773 number, Grand Island has little to worry about. Nevertheless, to assure complete protection for the town, firemen manned all three stations during the mainland emergency.
20 Years Ago, Dec. 17, 1993
Bridge users appeal for EZ-Pass option
At long last, Grand Island and area officials had an opportunity to voice disapproval of the EZ-Pass toll system unless commuter toll books are restored to use as a bridge crossing option.
Arranged by Assemblyman Sam Hoyt and chaired by Grand Island Citizens Committee Chairman Peter A. McMahon, the meeting with Thruway Executive Director John H. Shafer in the Holiday Inn was a three-hour session dominated by protests against the 50-cent toll that will replace the use of commuter books unless motorists use the EZ-Pass method to cross the bridges.
(Assemblyman Joseph T.) Pillittere, who represents Niagara County, said his constituents also want the toll books continued.
"I represent 120,000 people who cross Grand Island," he said. "It's not only people on Grand Island but people in Niagara County who are being penalized. It costs a fortune."
10 Years Ago, Dec. 19, 2003
Coyote reduction program announced
County Legislator Chuck Swanick and Town Supervisor Peter McMahon held a press conference last Monday at Grand Island Town Hall to announce a new program to reduce the coyote population on the Island.
Swanick announced $8,000 in county funding to provide town residents with a hotline number to record complaints, as well as to establish an extensive tracking system of the overly aggressive coyotes, efforts which could someday result in their complete removal from the Island. The funding will also be used to hire two professional New York state-licensed trappers residing on the Island.