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Thu., Sep. 3
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Wachs responds


To The Editor:

Dear Courier Observer and Massena residents:

I was delighted to read that Supervisor Gray shares my desire and commitment to welcome Dick’s Sporting Goods to Massena.

I have been privileged to work with Supervisor Gray, Mayor Hidy and their administration as well as those administrations which have preceded them during these past 27 years of my ownership of the Harte Haven Shopping Center.

I have never maligned the character or intentions of any public servant and I will not begin to do so now.

As to Supervisor Gray’s suggestion that I have a “penchant for exaggeration and bloviation” I have always tried to look at things positively and will therefore try to take Joseph’s statements in a positive light.

I am unashamed at the way I have expressed the benefits of locating retail establishments in Massena to the many prospective tenants I have reached out to over the years.

Has it been easy? Quite to the contrary. It’s been an incredible challenge.

That said I am proud that the Harte Haven Shopping Center is operating at a 100 percent level of occupancy and I hope that the residents of Massena are pleased with this as well.

Are there further capital improvements to make? Of course there are as the shopping center was built in 1957!!

Even the “iconic” Massena Arena which was built in 1975 will be in need of capital improvements over time to protect and ensure it’s future viability and well being.

As to Supervisor Gray’s suggestion that the Harte Haven Shopping Center is not paying it’s “fair share of taxes” this sounds exactly like what is being asked of Massena’s residents and with all due respect a suggestion that I find reprehensible.

Where I hope Supervisor Gray and I are in agreement is in our mutually held desire to create jobs and bring new business to Massena.

It is not for Supervisor Gray nor myself to determine the value of the land next to the Massena Arena as this is not Joseph’s nor my expertise.

Hopefully an independent appraiser has been hired by Massena to take this next step and this is not simply being talked about by Supervisor Gray and Mayor Hidy.

Does anyone in Massena really believe Mr. Gray when he states publicly that “I don’t believe Mr. Wachs is truly in contact with Dick’s Sporting Goods”?!?!?!? “Child-Like”?!?! Again with no disrespect intended I will not dignify these comments with a response.

If Supervisor Gray and Massena’s Mayor Hidy truly “want it to be very clear that we would welcome them (Dick’s) to our community and would take any practical step to help them locate here” than authorize the appraisal and do what you have stated will be the next step in this process.


Michael Wachs

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