DUNKIRK: Tensions rise with council

After nearly three years of smooth sailing, gridlock has hit Dunkirk Common Council. A pair of resolutions, one dealing with a potential employee and another on the purchase of a neighboring building, faced a tabling by a 3-2 margin.

Third Ward Councilman Shaun Heenan, who is a candidate for city mayor, has allies in Andrew Woloszyn, councilman at-large, and Don Williams Jr., First Ward councilman, on the two issues. All three are right to ask questions, especially on buying a building.

From this corner, our view is simple: government does not belong in the real-estate business. Whatever it purchases comes off the tax rolls. That’s not just the sentiment for the city of Dunkirk, but every municipality.

As for the misclassified employee issue, Wendy Spinuzza is seeking a $150,000 settlement, Dunkirk lawmakers may want to settle. If she was taking orders from the city and had an office in the building over the last 14 years, she is likely to be more of an employee than an independent contractor.

As Williams, a staunch union man who never backed down from a good labor battle, must know: this is New York state. The benefit of the doubt will always go to the worker.