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NIAGARA NEWS BRIEFS

Those not registered to vote in referendum face deadline

NIAGARA FALLS -- Any Niagara Falls resident who is not already registered must register today to be eligible to vote in the Niagara Falls School District referendum on borrowing up to $130 million to pay for renovations or additions to 11 school buildings and improvements to athletic fields and playgrounds.

Residents who meet the normal requirements for voting and who will have lived in the Niagara Falls School District for at least 30 days before the Feb. 15 referendum may register from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. today in Niagara Falls High School, 4455 Porter Road. School district clerk Ruthel D. Dumas said anyone under age 21 must present ID such as a birth certificate or driver's license to register.

Anyone already registered as a voter with the Niagara County Board of Elections or with the School District is not required to register again.

Voting will be from noon to 9 p.m. Feb. 15 in all 39 city election districts. Voters will go to the same polling places where they vote in general elections.

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Program seeks families to host young visitors

ASSE International Student Exchange Program is seeking host families for boys and girls from countries around the world.

The students are 15 to 18 years old and will arrive shortly before the next high school year or semester, returning home at the end of the school year or semester.

Each ASSE student has good English skills, is fully insured, brings his or her own personal spending money and expects to bear a share of household responsibilities, as well as be included in normal family activities and lifestyles, ASSE officials said.

Host families may select the youngster from extensive student applications, family photos and biographical essays.

To become a host family or for information about ASSE and its programs, call the state ASSE coordinator at 235-0562 or (800) 677-2773 or e-mail

melanieasseeast@roadrunner.com.

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Physicians group becomes Catholic Medical Partners

The Catholic Independent Practice Association, the area's largest network of independent practicing physicians, has changed its name to Catholic Medical Partners.

Established in 1996 as CIPA, the initial focus of the organization was to integrate the efforts of five physician-hospital organizations.

The network includes nearly 900 physicians, the Catholic Health hospital system in the Buffalo area and Mount St. Mary's Hospital in Lewiston.

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State Farm Bureau given $9,800 grant from Verizon

Verizon Communications has granted the New York Farm Bureau $9,800 for a program to teach students about technology in agriculture.

Sandra Prokop, director of the Farm Bureau's Foundation for Agricultural Education, said the foundation will post technological videos on topics such as farm robotics and lesson plans pitched to elementary-age students on its website within about six months.

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