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Mayor Palmieri Very Optimistic About Coming Economic Development, But Says Negative, Racist Comments On UPD Facebook Page Are Unacceptable –

Kristine Bellino, WIBX

Utica Mayor Rob Palmieri says he’s very optimistic about what’s to come in Utica.

Joining WIBX First News with Keeler in the Morning on Thursday, the mayor touched on several issues that are positive for the city, and said the will soon be a solution to the negativity surrounding the police department’s facebook page, which ultimately led to the page being taken down last month.

UPD Facebook Page

  • Page was very successful, and anytime you have success, you should look at it and retool it to make it better. There were alot of comments that don’t ‘represent the warmth’ of the city of Utica – racist and negative comments, he said. It was quite frankly not acceptable in my eyes and in the eyes of Police Chief Mark Williams.
  • The city had hired an IT specialist to come in to try to develop a solution. **WIBX has learned that a ‘government page’ on facebook can’t block comments from being posted, apparently there are different regulations for private, fan, business and government pages
  • Mayor thinks the people making negative posts on the UPD facebook page are likely the same people who say nasty things on Topix.com. ”They must hate themselves,” Palmieri said.
  • Indicates there would be news on a new page, or social media outlet for the police department in the next few days

Good News – Economic Development in Utica

  • There’s no question, economic development has been stagnant nationally. It’s getting a little bit better in Utica, he said.
  • Bass Pro Shop – target date was July, but that’s been pushed back a bit, but said more retailers would be coming soon as well. Bass Pro Shop will be located Riverside Center, near Wal-mart
  • News on Harbor Point coming soon, including results of request for proposal (RFP) for the best possible use of the area. Then public comments will follow and later another RFP to find a developer.
  • Moe’s – Another Moe’s restaurant is planning to locate in North Utica
  • Downtown Utica – two new businesses expect to open soon on the Busy Corner area of downtown.
  • Bossert site news coming later today.
  • Tony and Frank Christiano are working on opening a Pizzeria and sports bar in downtown as well.

What Utica has to offer

  • There’s no better place to come to open a business than this area
  • We have our problems, our poverty, but we’re very giving
  • Utica is three hours from New York City and three hours from Buffalo, he said. (Although, you’ll need a heavy foot to make those destinations in 3 hours)
  • Utica has a zoo, ski chalet, the Stanley, Munson Williams Proctor Arts Institute, great golf courses and parks
  • AHL possibly coming is great news because, whether it comes or not, ”they were looking at our market place and I’m very, very optimistic about it.”

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