U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer made an interesting - and fairly socialistic - point last week at the news conference.
In urging the company to adhere to the payment in lieu of taxes (PILOT) agreement, Schumer stated the company made $200 million in profits the previous year. While not begrudging the ability of the company to make money, Schumer stated NRG has the obvious ability to pay what they would owe in the coming years.
This is exactly where government gets into trouble.
Combined, the city of Dunkirk and the school district are a machine. More than $61 million went to these entities in 2012 - all from taxpayer funding.
It would be admirable, especially with the NRG situation, if district and city workers would also step up for taxpayers by announcing they will not be seeking wage increases in the coming years due to the NRG uncertainty.
Almost miserly, in the city government and school district, union workers have been silent in regard to this crisis. According to seethroughny.com, more than $9 million of the $22 million city of Dunkirk budget is in salaries, which equates to 41 percent. In the schools, $19.1 million of the $39 million goes to salaries, or 49 percent of the budget.
Whatever happens with NRG, residents here deserve some relief. Staying with the Schumer concept, since union city workers earn $28.1 million from taxpayer funding - in a county where the median income is more than $36,000 - it is obvious those workers have the ability to earn a little bit less.
So, the big question: will city workers be part of the solution?