Binghamton City Council Business Meeting Report – 2.28.24

This is a summary of legislation voted on at the 2/28/24 Binghamton City Council Business Meeting. I’ll be using the second half of these Business Meeting recaps to highlight some recent city government press releases, which are mostly printed word for word with no scrutiny or contrasting viewpoints by local news outlets. Journalism as a whole in the US is being bought and squeezed by Wall Street, with newsrooms closing left and right, so I understand these writers are underpaid, overworked, inexperienced, and mostly just trying to move to a bigger market. The system is not conducive to quality journalism. That being said, the mayor studied journalism and worked as a social media strategist, the last mayor worked at WBNG, and the current deputy mayor worked at the Press & Sun Bulletin. They may not know how to govern, but they definitely know how to manipulate the media to make it seem like they do. 

Jared and his WBNG friends at Parade Day

There is now (temporarily) one Republican on city council 

Video: City Council Business Meeting 2024.02.28



Approval of Appointments

  1. Planning Commission
  2. Commission for the Conservation of the Environment

Public Hearing

  1.  Public Hearing regarding RL24-13 “An Ordinance authorizing various capital improvements in and for the City, stating the maximum cost thereof is $11,937,500, appropriating said amount for such purpose and authorizing the issuance of bonds in the City in the principal amount not to exceed $11,937,500 to finance said appropriation”

Notes: Arguments were made by community members that the city was taking on too much debt and also that the mayor should be required to institute a 5-year capital improvement plan instead of just borrowing into a giant slush fund.

Set Public Hearings

  • The City will hold a Public Hearing during the Wednesday 3/13 Business Meeting regarding RL24-42, the proposed law to stiffen penalties for off-road vehicles on city streets.

Public Comment

  • This week’s public comments were mostly centered around the genocide happening in Palestine. There hasn’t been a ceasefire resolution submitted to the City Council yet (you can submit one here), so the discussion was mostly hypothetical and led by Veterans for Peace and Citizen Action on the anti-genocide side and the Binghamton University Zionist Organization on the pro-genocide side.
    • Notes:  The October 7th attacks were an uprising against an Apartheid state. The hostages taken by Hamas are vastly outnumbered by the Palestinians being held in Israeli prisons without trial. The already flimsy narrative that widespread sexual violence was perpetrated by Hamas is increasingly being called into question, especially by leaks from the New York Times. The killing of 1,000 Israelis does not justify the murder and forced starvation of tens of thousands of Palestinians. BUZO is using the same dehumanizing colonial logic that led to the murder of hundreds of thousands of Afghan and Iraqi civilians after 9/11. 

First Reading Legislation

Introductory Ordinance O24-06: An Ordinance authorizing various capital improvements in and for the City, stating the maximum cost thereof is $11,937,500, appropriating said amount for such purpose and authorizing the issuance of bonds in the City in the principle amount not to exceed $11,937,500 to finance said appropriation 

Vote: Approved 6-1 (Porter dissenting)

Note: This is part of the 2024 budget which was proposed by the mayor and approved by the previous city council. Current city council could have amended the bond ordinance but chose not to.

Introductory Resolution R24-08: A Resolution authorizing the Mayor to accept a grant for $250,000 from CREST for a pumper fire truck

Vote: Approved 7-0

Introductory Ordinance O24-09: An Ordinance to amend the 2023 General Fund Budget to account for various over budget line items at year end

Vote: Approved 6-1 (Porter dissenting)

Introductory Resolution R24-12: A Resolution authorizing the Rumble Ponies to conduct fireworks displays in 2024

Vote: Approved 7-0

Introductory Resolution R24-13 A Resolution authorizing the Mayor to enter into a supplemental agreement with Fisher Associates for Ross Park Recreational Trail Design

Vote: Approved 7-0

Recent Press Releases:

Binghamton Mayor says housing crisis is contributing to increase people squatting

  • “The mayor said the number of people squatting has grown exponentially over the years.” This is a clear pattern with Jared Kraham: sweeping quantifiable statements not backed up by any data. If squatters are everywhere why can’t WBNG find one to interview? Then we get expert analysis from two random people walking down the street. The mayor notes that many vacant properties were owned by Isaac Anzaroot, who has become a convenient scapegoat. Anzaroot was a symptom of the city’s failure to enforce code and was portrayed as such by local activists. Anzaroot, and all the other slumlords who are still active, have taken advantage of a broken system perpetuated by the mayor and his allies. 

Kraham proposes law to crackdown on illegal off-road vehicles on city streets

  • “We’ve talked to Syracuse Police,” Kraham said to 12 News. “They’ve impounded many vehicles under this process, and it really has curbed the use of these vehicles.” When Kraham presented this new law to the city council, he didn’t have any data to support this claim and didn’t even cite this anecdotal evidence. Why would you say this to WBNG but not to the legislative body you’re pitching to? 

Salvation Army of Binghamton to move into new building in city

  • The 200 Foot Rule – In NY state, you can’t sell liquor within 200 feet of a church, which I believe is why South Washington Street bars like Craft and Cafe Oasis (RIP) would only sell beer and wine.
  • First look inside Stadium 138 – Binghamton
    • Rich David opens a bar on South Washington St and at almost the exact same time, the Salvation Army is promised $100k in ARPA money by Jared Kraham to move to the west side. All the bars on that street can now start serving liquor since there won’t be a church nearby. Just a coincidence I guess.
Scroll to Top