Nov 20, 2004

Rochester unveils ferry plan

The City of Rochester, N.Y., has unveiled a plan to buy the high speed ferry Spirit of Ontario and operate it between Rochester and Toronto, Canada, via a newly created "Rochester Port and Ferry Authority."

You can see the plan here. A key element of the City proposal would be to issue $40 million in bonds to buy the vessel. It has been tied up since September 7, when operator Canadian American Transportation Systems (CATS) closed the service, saying it was bleeding money.

CATS doesn't seem to be very happy with the City plan. Last night, local TV station WROC quoted CATS President Cornel Martin as saying "We're outraged. We're outraged. This is an outrage."

"We have worked in good faith with the city and the lenders to try to put this ferry back into service," Martin is quoted as saying. "The city has basically, after all of their criticism of CATS management and our abilities to run this ferry, they've taken our very plan, put it on city letterhead and put it on the internet as their plan. That is outrageous..They are trying to steal our ferry."

We'll have more details in our next FERRIES & FAST CRAFT NEWS

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