Whether one views the commitment of $600,000,000 of scarce state tax dollars to subsidize the building and maintaining of a new football stadium for the Buffalo Bills to be an investment in the future of Western New York, or a waste of money which could be far better spent on rebuilding the state’s crumbling infrastructure, we can all agree that the Bills’ owners should meet us half way on the deal. But in at least one instance, it appears that the Pegulas have been stiffing the taxpayers, as well as one of New York’s leading industries.
Case in point. Just before Christmas I was shopping in a local liquor store when I ran across a display of Buffalo Bills wines. Looking over a bottle I was more than-a-little-surprised to see that the wine being sold under the logo of a team profiting handsomely from the largess of New Yorkers (voluntarily or not) was not from the Finger Lakes, but rather was a product of California!
The wines in question can be seen locally, and on many web sites such as the following:
The expression “in vino, veritas” (in wine, there is truth) is apt in this situation. I’ve contacted my state representatives asking, 1) whether the members of the legislature were aware of this lack of support of New York by the Pegulas prior to the state’s approval of the Bill’s subsidization package, 2) if so, was part of the deal with the Bills a requirement that they drop their connection to and endorsement of, out-of-state wines, and 3) if not, what does the legislature propose to do about rectifying the situation?
I strongly encourage other New Yorkers to ask their representatives these same questions so that hopefully we can get to the truth of the matter.
Michael J. Nighan
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