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LOCAL NEWS BRIEFS

>House approves Lee bill to curb printing costs

WASHINGTON -- The House on Tuesday unanimously approved a bill by Rep. Chris Lee, R-Amherst, that ends a long-standing congressional practice that forces the unnecessary printing of countless pieces of legislation -- at a cost to taxpayers of $7 million a year.

Lee's bill ends a tradition whereby the Government Printing Office delivers to every lawmaker multiple copies of every piece of legislation that he or she has introduced or co-sponsored at the bill's introduction.

That meant the government last year printed nearly 2.8 million copies of legislation for congressional offices -- in an era when every bill is posted online.

Lee called his legislation "a common-sense way for Congress to catch up with the private sector, which continues to move to become paperless as a means to improve efficiency, clean up our environment, and cut costs."

Some 399 lawmakers from both parties supported Lee's legislation, while 35 lawmakers did not vote. All of Western New York's House members supported it.

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>Bus donated so firefighters can attend Pittsburgh services

The funeral for Jarrett Eleam, the firefighter from the Big Tree Fire Company in Hamburg who died Jan. 12 following a company training exercise, will be held at 11 a.m. Friday in Ebenezer Baptist Church, Pittsburgh.

Niagara Scenic Bus Co. of Hamburg has donated a bus to take members of the Hamburg fire company to the wake Thursday evening and funeral Friday. Eleam, 26, is the first member in the 74-year history of Big Tree to die in the line of duty.

A Western New York memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. Jan. 29 in the auditorium of Frontier Central High School auditorium, 4432 Bayview Road.

A memorial fund has been set up in Eleam's name. Donations can be sent to the Big Tree Volunteer Fire Company, C/O Jarrett Eleam Memorial Fund, 4307 South Park Ave., Blasdell, 14219. Donations also can be made through the fire company's website at www.bigtreevfc.com. Portions of the proceeds will benefit the Big Tree Fire Company and Upstate New York Transplant Services.

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>DiTullio named supervisor of courts in six counties

Erie County Judge Sheila A. DiTullio, one of Western New York's most active criminal court judges, is taking on additional unpaid duties as state court officials have named her supervisory judge for all criminal courts in six of the eight counties in the state's Buffalo-based Eighth Judicial District.

DiTullio, a top prosecutor in the Erie County District Attorney's office before she assumed the county court bench in January 1996, is taking over supervision of the criminal courts in Erie, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Genesee, Allegany and Wyoming counties.

State court spokesman David Bookstaver said State Supreme Court Justice Richard C. Kloch Sr., who has had the full burden of the eight county criminal courts since 2003, will continue to supervise the criminal courts of Niagara and Orleans counties from his Lockport court chambers. Bookstaver said there is no additional pay for the two judges.

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