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NIAGARA NEWS BRIEFS

Council approval sought on courthouse contract

NIAGARA FALLS -- Mayor Vince Anello said Thursday he will call for a special meeting of the City Council next week to approve a construction contract for a planned courthouse and police facility.

Anello said he was satisfied with the agreement after negotiations Thursday and will not ask for additional changes.

Attorneys for the city and the developer, a team led by Ciminelli Development Co. and Largo Real Estate Developers, have been in discussions for more than two weeks over the contract, which is needed to begin construction on the $45.1 million building on north Main Street.

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Town Board tightens sex offender restrictions

LOCKPORT -- The Town Board on Wednesday unanimously passed a law barring registered sex offenders from coming within 500 feet of any school, playground, park or day care center in the town.

Sex offenders will be able to enter the 500-foot zone if they are passing through "solely for the purpose of employment, shopping, or attending appointments, or traveling from one point to another," the law says, but they may not enter the premises where groups of children are for any reason.

The penalty for violating the law is up to a year in jail, a $1,000 fine, or both. The state sex offender Web site lists 10 Level 2 or Level 3 sex offenders with home addresses in the Town of Lockport, not counting those in the Niagara County Jail.

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Libertarian Party forms Niagara County chapter

LOCKPORT -- Radio talk show host Scott Leffler has been named temporary chairman of the new Niagara County Libertarian Party, he announced Wednesday.

Leffler, who calls himself a "reformed Democrat," said the state Libertarian Party authorized formation of the Niagara County chapter Sunday.

The chapter has set up a Web site, www.niagaralp.org, which includes a link to a 10-question quiz that visitors can use to discern their political beliefs.

"I believe that many Niagara County residents are Libertarians but don't know it," Leffler said.

Leffler, host of "Dialog" on WLVL-AM in Lockport, is planning to call a convention in January or February to elect party officers.

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