NY Gov. Cuomo, left, presents symbolic check to appreciative Niagara Falls Mayor Paul Dyster
SALAMANCA, NY - Back in August, Governor Andrew Cuomo made a whirlwind tour through three Western New York communities to personally deliver casino revenues that had been withheld by Seneca Nation leaders during a dispute with New York State. That money became available after a settlement was reached between the parties in June.
Turns out those big ceremonial checks actually can't be cashed after all. As of Thursday, the City of Salamanca was still awaiting its share of the settlement. A total of $34.5 million was to be disbursed for the Salamanca area.
At last, the gears of the bureaucracy have caught up to the rhetoric. City leaders were told that they would be receiving $20.4 million from the settlement, with an additional $5.9 million going to Cattaraugus County, on Friday via an electronic transfer. Those funds should be in city coffers by Monday.
The reason the combined total doesn't add up to the promised $34.5 million? The state had already forwarded $7.5 million to the city as an interest-free loan while the casino money was still in limbo.