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Buffalo Casino on Fulton Street on Hold

Seneca Nation president Barry Snyder and Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown's negotiations blew up on Thursday, August 3, 2006. It seems the two are going separate ways from a casino deal. The questions whether good intentions are good enough remains a question unanswered.

Snyder said, "I thought we had a handshake deal."

"I cannot sign off on a handshake, I insist on having it in writing," Brown responded.

The agreement between Snyder and Brown is that about Seneca's not turning more of Buffalo into sovereign territory beyond the nine acres they already own for a casino. And the agreement included providing hiring goals for local residents, women and minorities.

Mayor Brown would want the agreement to be in writing. This proposition of Brown points it out as "intentions" of the Senecas. And to put them under the category of "Covenants" which are legally enforceable. He says, "We want it in writing that's legally enforceable."

Buffalo won't sell Fulton Street to the Senecas unless it guarantees limiting land acquisition for Senecas and setting up local and minority hiring goal.

Brown plans to reopen Fulton Street if Senecas will not buy it.

Without a signed agreement, the Seneca won't provide any financial assistance to the state which they had promised. As of the moment there is already a written contract according to the casino spokesman. He added, "The City is on its own."

Brown on the other hand won't sign a contract if it's not a good deal. He said, "It's worth it to me and my administration not to enter into a bad deal and then have people come back in a year or two years or three years and say that Byron Brown and his administration, they gave away the store, they should have gotten a good deal. They should have gotten guarantees. They should have gotten it in writing. And they didn't do it and shame on them. I'm not going to have that happen."

What will happen next is up to the Senacas. Brown would put it this way, "They have every right to do what they want on the land that they own."

 
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