BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - Western New Yorkers furious about tax increases are joining anationwide protest known as the Tea Party.
It started with the ranting of Rick Santelli, a business newsanalyst on CNBC, who called for a taxpayer's rebellion.
Santelli said, "We're thinking of having a "Chicago Tea Party."I'm going to start organizing in July. You capitalists that want toshow up at Lake Michigan, I'm going to start organizing."
Now, in dozens of cities, including Buffalo, angry taxpayers arestaging tea party protests against excessive government spendingand taxes, and waste.
Taxpayer activist Jill Sinclair said, "We'd love to unite thingslike Wake Up America, Grassfire.org, and Free New York and allthose splinter groups that are out there to have one collectivevoice."
"This is what our lawsuit's all about" added Taxpayer activistRoy Scherrer.
One group called Free New York has sued the state of New York toput an end to what it calls "corporate welfare," or government cashgrants to private corporations.
James Ostrowski of Free New York said, "A bunch of us have suedNew York State to basically get two billion dollars back for thetaxpayer. We're waiting for a decision."
The tea party movement has recruited the owner of Club W inBuffalo.
"Sidewalk cafe license, it's $397.80 per year" said Club W ownerChris Wahl.
Wahl has to pay the city so his patrons can stand on his patio,another tax so people can dance at his bar, an arcade tax so theycan put quarters in a pool table, and restaurant tax for the use ofice and fruit he puts in drinks.
Wahl said, "Basically, our tax money is paying a committee tosit in City Hall and think well what commonly happens in a bar?Dancing, okay. Let's make a license that they have to buy so thecity can get that businesses money. It's out of control."
About 40 protests were staged across the country, many targetingthe stimulus plan with the aim of getting more Conservativeselected to Congress.
Buffalo Police have arrested 26-year-old Nicholas Finnegan of South Buffalo and charged him with pushing Russ Ross to his death.
Buffalo police homicide detectives are investigating a fatal shooting that occurred early Saturday morning.
Police say there were 32 burglaries, 20 in Albion, five in Medina, four in Oakfield and three in the City of Lockport.
The Niagara County Sheriff's responded to Saunders Settlement Road near Comstock in Cambria Friday night after receiving a tip about a suspected meth lab.
Volunteers at Buffalo’s Salvation Army created holiday cards and gift bags for the seniors at the Golden Age Center.
Call 4 Action looked into claims this week that members of BJ's Wholesale Club were paying too much on sales tax on some deeply discounted items.