Frank Parlato Jr.
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Frank Parlato JR.

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Frank Parlato Jr. shows how an investigative journalist proceeds to uncover corruption- in this case in the tourism industry in Niagara Falls surrounding the monopoly granted to the Maid of the Mist boat tour in the lower Niagara pool just under the falls.
Parlato’s work was published in the Niagara Falls Reporter….

Nov 18, 2008: A tale of two developers and two mayors
an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

Former Mayor Vince Anello was indicted two weeks ago because, allegedly, he took a “secret” gift of $40,000 from Smokin’ Joe Anderson, then championed Anderson’s development plans in downtown Niagara Falls.
The U.S. attorney charged Anello and Anderson of “scheming to deprive” city taxpayers of “the intangible right of the honest services from a public official,” a felony.
Anderson pleaded guilty. Anello maintains his actions were in the best interests of Niagara Falls.

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Dec 02 , 2008: Coincidences, or secret planning between Dyster and developer Glynn?

You’d have to accept a lot of events as coincidences to believe James Glynn and Mayor Paul Dyster, along with various New York state officials, have not secretly planned for the further enrichment of the Glynn family interests, which already owns the Maid of the Mist Steamboat Co.
Coincidentally or not, the conversion of much of downtown Niagara Falls is being done to benefit, it appears, mainly Glynn, who has now become City Hall’s most favored developer.

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an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

 

Jan 27, 2009: Glynns may lose Canadian Maid of the Mist lease
an article published by Frank Parlato Jr


Since publication of an expose by the Niagara Falls Reporter on the secretive methods that Niagara (Ont.) Parks Commissioners used to renew the dock lease for the Maid of the Mist Steamboat Co., a growing number of Canadians are calling for the lease to be sent back for competitive bidding.

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Feb 03 , 2009: Canadian Integrity Commission investigation intensifies

Alcatraz Media, one of the largest sellers of tours and tourist services in the world, has filed an ethics complaint with the Ontario Integrity Commission (IC) against the Niagara Parks Commission (NPC) over their handling of the Maid of the Mist dock lease renewal in the Niagara Provincial Park.

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an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

 

Feb 10, 2009: Growing chorus of critics demands, send Maid of the Mist lease back for competitive bidding
an article published by Frank Parlato Jr


Since publication of an expose by the Niagara Falls Reporter on the secretive methods that Niagara (Ont.) Parks Commissioners used to renew the dock lease for the Maid of the Mist Steamboat Co., a growing number of Canadians are calling for the lease to be sent back for competitive bidding.

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Feb 17 , 2009: Company files ethics complaint against Commission in Maid of the mist scandal

Alcatraz Media, one of the largest sellers of tours and tourist services in the world, has filed an ethics complaint with the Ontario Integrity Commission (IC) against the Niagara Parks Commission (NPC) over their handling of the Maid of the Mist dock lease renewal in the Niagara Provincial Park.

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an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

 

Mar 03, 2009: Lawsuit sheds light on secretive Niagara Parks Commission
an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

A lawsuit filed in Ontario Superior Court last week seeks to nullify the 25-year lease agreement between the Niagara Parks Commission (NPC) and the Maid of the Mist Steamboat Company Ltd., a move that could cost the tour boat operator as much as $400 million over the life of the contract. The Maid of the Mist is a private corporation owned entirely by the family of James Glynn of Lewiston.

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Mar 10 , 2009: Maid of the Mist comes up with new excuse; dutiful cub reporter writes what he's told

The lease to operate the Maid of the Mist boat service, launched from publicly owned docks in Niagara Falls, Ont., will likely be put out for competitive bidding, numerous Canadian government sources told the Niagara Falls Reporter this week.
This means the 38-year monopoly enjoyed by the present Maid of the Mist boat operator, James Glynn, may soon end.

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an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

 

Mar 17, 2009: Secret Maid of the Mist lease rent goes down, not up!
an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

The only question now, perhaps, is why?
The process that led to the secret 25-year renewal of James Glynn's Maid of the Mist lease with the Niagara Parks Commission (NPC) also led, amazingly, to a reduction in his rent.
The secret lease, renewed on April 18, 2008, dropped Glynn's lease payments from a flat 15 percent of sales to a "sliding scale" lease that reduces the percentage of rent as Glynn makes more money.

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Mar 24 , 2009: Members of Parliament demanding open bid on Maid of the Mist lease

The lease to operate the Maid of the Mist boat service, launched from publicly owned docks in Niagara Falls, Ont., will likely be put out for competitive bidding, numerous Canadian government sources told the Niagara Falls Reporter this week.
This means the 38-year monopoly enjoyed by the present Maid of the Mist boat operator, James Glynn, may soon end.

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an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

 

Mar 24, 2009: Canadian troubles could hurt Glynn's standing on the U.S. side, Windsor says
an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

Just for the record, the Maid of the Mist Steamboat Co. pays the Niagara Parks Commission 15 percent of gross receipts on its boat tours in the Niagara Falls Provincial Park in Ontario, and 10 percent or less on the New York side. The New York lease was secretly renewed in 2002 for 40 years, and is the longest lease agreement ever given by state parks.

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Apr 07 , 2009: Glynn's New York lease has state actually paying him to run boats

A copy of the secret 2002 lease agreement between the New York State Parks Commission and the Maid of the Mist Corp. shows that the state is essentially paying Maid of the Mist owner James Glynn for the privilege of using its docks to run his popular boat ride. .

The landlord is paying the tenant, in other words.

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an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

Apr 21, 2009: With layoffs and budget shortfalls, why did they lower Glynn's rent?
an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

Curious.
What made men fight to cut Jim Glynn's rent for his Maid of the Mist on the Canadian side of the border?
Public men who represent, or are supposed to represent, the people -- they cut his rent rather than raised it.
One of the men who fought hard to lower Glynn's rent for his boat tours on the lower Niagara is Jim Williams, chairman of the Niagara Parks Commission (NPC).

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May 05 , 2009: Injustice and Glynn's N.Y. lease

In a way you might say it exemplifies everything that's wrong with NEW YORK state government.
The New York State Parks are having their budgets cut.
Some parks will have a shorter season in 2009, and more New York parks, including the Niagara Falls State park, will have reduced services because of the state's financial woes.

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an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

Jun 16, 2009: In spite of silence, secret Glynn Canadian lease remains unsigned
an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

Silence is golden — at least for Maid of the Mist owner James Glynn.
In spite of the fact that the Niagara Falls Reporter exposed the rather shocking truth that Glynn had his rent secretly reduced, at the public’s expense — nothing happened.
Just silence.
Glynn has two leases, by the way, on public land, for boat docks, one in New York, one in Ontario, which gives him the exclusive right to conduct boat tours in the lower Niagara, just below the falls.

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Jun 30 , 2009: Maid of the Mist lease awaits rent reduction as Ontario parks fall into decline

Preserve our Parks (POP), the powerful citizens' activist group in Niagara Falls, Ont., is taking their case to the city council this week.

Their claim: Maid of the Mist owner, James Glynn, and the Niagara Parks Commission are hurting the famed Niagara Parks.

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an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

Jul 28, 2009: Famed park run solely for the benefit of one man
an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

It's a big story we broke in April. A giant story.
So far met with -- silence.
The story: The landlord is paying the tenant rent.
You can read it yourself -- the lease where the landlord pays the tenant -- the 56-page Maid of the Mist lease between the NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation and Lewiston businessman James Glynn - ...

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Sep 15 , 2009: Glynn's tower is for the birds

Lord bless them.

On a plaque outside the Niagara Falls State Park's Observation Deck, they speak of birds.
Of saving birds.
Of how and why they rebuilt the observation deck in 2003.
With birds in mind.

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an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

Oct 13, 2009: Amid half truths and bald lies, it's up to Parliament
an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

Of course, for readers of the Reporter, the secretive doings of park officials on both sides of the Niagara, meant to favor Lewiston businessman James Glynn, are well known.
In New York, parks officials gave Glynn what may one day be iconic of 21st-century corruption -- the sweetest of leases -- where the public pays Glynn, the tenant, for his right to use public docks to operate his lucrative Maid of the Mist boat rides.

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Nov 03 , 2009: Maid of the Mist lease ordered reopened

After a year and a half of the Niagara Falls Reporter pounding out stories, Ontario's tourism minister Monique Smith last week ordered the Niagara Parks Commission (NPC) to put the Canadian concession lease for the Maid of the Mist -- presently held by Lewiston businessman James Glynn -- out to bid.

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an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

Dec 01, 2009: Glynn's house of cards collapses with Canadian report, U.S. lawsuit
an article published by Frank Parlato Jr


Maid of the Mist owner Jimmy Glynn got smacked with a double whammy last week, with the release of a secret investigative report in Ontario and a massive lawsuit in New York state that may serve to undo the stranglehold he's held on Niagara Falls tour boat operations for the past 38 years.

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Dec 22 , 2009: In wake of Glynn scandal, NPC Chairman resigns as American Glynn snatches Canada's Maid of the Mist name

Another strange chapter.

The chairman of the Niagara Parks Commission (NPC), James Williams, resigned recently amid the growing scandal surrounding Lewiston businessman James Glynn's Maid of the Mist Canadian boat tour lease.

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an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

Jan 26 , 2010: Katzman 'the Kat' bodes ill for fairness in Niagara Parks Commission - Glynn bidding
an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

Happy sailing. That's what they say.

In the wake of the Niagara Falls Reporter's expose, Niagara Parks Commission (NPC) Chairman Jim Williams resigned late last year in protest over the decision to put the Maid of the Mist out to bid. Then in January, Tourism Minister Monique Smith asked to be transferred. Perhaps she had had enough controversy over the Maid of the Mist.

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Feb 02, 2010: Glynn the competitor hopes to scare competition away


James Glynn of the Maid of the Mist boat tours is probably batting under .200 just now. And he's not being a good sport about it, either.

For 39 years, Glynn held an exclusive lease on public land, never having to face competition for the right to operate boat tours at the base of the Falls.

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an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

Feb 23, 2010: A reasonable apprehension of bias toward Glynn in upcoming Maid lease bid
an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

As boat tour companies across North America wait for the Request For Proposals from the Niagara Parks Commission (NPC) -- granting them the go-ahead to bid on the Maid of the Mist boat tour lease -- several issues of fairness are causing concern.

All of these find Lewiston businessman James V. Glynn smack in the middle.

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Mar 02, 2010: Absent Glynn-bias, competitive bidding may take Maid of the mist tours better in Canada

For somehow they always seem to negotiate a sweetheart deal with an American businessman, James V. Glynn.
For decades, the Ontario-controlled Niagara Parks Commission (NPC) has leased the public's boat docks in the lower Niagara just below the falls at a cheaper price than what the public should get.
They have done it for Glynn.

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an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

 

Mar 16, 2010: An investigation into Glynn's N.Y. maid lease is warranted
an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

As readers know, James Glynn pays no rent for his Maid of the Mist boat tours in the Niagara Falls State Park.
He makes millions and pays nothing.
In fact the taxpayers pay him.
Meanwhile, ironically, the New York's State parks system, with its 213 parks and historic sites, is facing funding cuts that will likely result in the first budget-related closures in its 125-year history.

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Mar 30, 2010: Disney entering Maid of the Mist fray as contract competition grows fierce

The list of 13 bidders now standing in line to take over the concession to operate sightseeing boats below Niagara Falls from public docks on the Ontario side of the river reads like a who's who of international tourism superstars.
And two independent sources with direct knowledge of the bidding process told the Niagara Falls Reporter last week that Disney Cruise Lines, a subsidiary of one of the richest and most renowned entertainment companies on earth, is the early favorite in a field containing any number of household names.

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an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

 

July 06, 2010: USA Niagara flops on Italian pavers for Glynn
an article published by Frank Parlato Jr

You know, it's just not fair to Jimmy Glynn.

You know the guy.

He runs the Maid of the Mist boat tours and, some say, City Hall.

Mayor Paul Dyster's largest campaign contributor.

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December 14, 2010: Sweeping changes at NPC may impact Maid lease

Two years ago, the Niagara Falls Reporter started digging into secret lease arrangements between the Niagara Parks Commission (NPC) of Ontario and Lewiston businessman James Glynn for his Maid of the Mist boat tours.

A lot has changed since then.

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January 18, 2011: Bidders revealed in Canadian competition for Maid of the Mist

The Niagara Falls Reporter's expose on the secret dealings surrounding the Maid of the Mist boat tour lease at the Niagara Parks Commission (NPC) in Ontario was instrumental in leading the minister of Tourism to order the NPC to put that lease out to bid. Subsequently, most of the NPC commissioners were fired.

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February 22, 2011: Has James Glynn's ship sunk?

After 40 years, it finally may be over for Maid of the Mist boat tour operator James. V. Glynn of Lewiston, N.Y.

The multimillionaire's fortunes sank like the Titanic following an expose on his secretive dealings with the Niagara Parks Commission (NPC) published in the Niagara Falls Reporter.

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