Aaron Besecker - The Buffalo News

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Aaron Besecker

Aaron Besecker is a breaking news and criminal justice reporter for The Buffalo News. He has been a News staff reporter since '07.


After 10 months of debate, seven local governments and school districts reached a tentative agreement Thursday with the State Power Authority on procedures for spending $3 million annually on Niagara River Greenway projects.During a committee meeting in the Niagara County Center for Economic Development, the Niagara Power Coalition and the Power Authority conditionally app…

Voters in Medina picked a 28-year-old native as their new mayor Tuesday, as residents of three Orleans County villages went to the polls.Adam M. Tabelski defeated incumbent Clayton G. Ehrenreich III for the two-year seat by a vote of 616-330.Tabelski, who served a two-year term as village trustee starting in April 2005, said he has always had an interest in government and …

The Niagara River Greenway Commission on Tuesday endorsed three proposed projects in Niagara Falls, including a summer youth program and plans to improve two parks along the Niagara River.With the commission's decision, made during its meeting at Beaver Island State Park, project proponents become eligible to receive funding from relicensing settlements with the State Powe…

When Western New York gets a windy winter, the crews of the William H. Latham get busy.For part of this winter, the boat has operated in "all hands on deck" mode as it tackles its responsibility to chisel out the water intakes of the Niagara Power Project.This season, chunks of heavy "lake ice," often more than a dozen feet thick, helped create the worst ice jams on the Ni…

His love affair with language has lasted a lifetime.Eugene G. Miller, a former English and German professor at Niagara County Community College, the University at Buffalo, Kent State University and Hobart and William Smith Colleges, has written a collection of critical essays analyzing the works of authors including Hemingway, Melville and D.H. Lawrence."Essays on German, …

Attorneys for Mark Zito have withdrawn lawsuits against the individual entities of the Niagara Power Coalition, although the group as a whole remains squarely within Zito's bull's-eye.Zito's lead attorney, Steven M. Cohen of Lorenzo & Cohen in Buffalo, believes the legal tactic will put the group members on the hook to cover costs without any help from their insurance comp…

The City of North Tonawanda can evict the owners of eight boathouses near the Niagara River, City Court Judge William R. Lewis ruled Friday.The city wants to demolish the Bond Street structures and establish a one-acre park.Lewis rejected the seven legal arguments raised by the boathouse owners, finding that each had violated at least one element of the lease with the city…

The fight over a planned Wal-Mart Supercenter again took center stage during a public hearing Tuesday evening.About 150 people filled the auditorium in Grant Elementary School and heard supporters and opponents debate the project's impact, including the effects of the planned retail development on neighborhood traffic.A residents group opposing the development -- planned n…

The mayor's proposal for the city to run a marina at the site of the former Niagara River Yacht Club didn't receive much fanfare from the Common Council on Tuesday.Mayor Lawrence V. Soos' estimate that the city could make a profit of more than $30,000 if it ran the River Road Marina this summer was inflated, said Common Council President Brett M. Sommer.At the same time, P…

A member of the administration of Mayor Lawrence V. Soos is representing someone in a personal injury lawsuit against the City of North Tonawanda that is technically still open.Jeffrey N. Mis, the mayor's administrative assistant and former elected city attorney, has a court date next week for a client who was injured during a softball game at a city-owned field in 2003. P…

The Common Council on Tuesday adopted a procedure for professional service contracts it believes will help city officials better monitor the spending of department heads.Under a resolution passed unanimously, requests to hire a firm providing professional services, like engineering or consulting, must come before the mayor and the Council during a regular Council meeting.A…

Ten months after the Niagara Power Coalition named a treasurer required under new state guidelines, the person appointed to handle the books for the group with a shaky financial reputation has yet to be handed responsibility.John J. Baird Jr., a Wheatfield resident and former official with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, was appointed unanimously to th…

Seven local black leaders gathered Thursday afternoon in Niagara County Community College for a panel discussion on African-American participation in local politics.The event, which featured municipal, county and state officials, was believed to be the first of its kind in Niagara County, said Arthur Taylor, an associate professor of communications and theater at NCCC, and…

A benefit will be held Saturday for the family of a 3-year-old boy who suffers from a rare seizure disorder.The event, called "Antonio's Gala," will benefit the family of Antonio C. Tallarico. It will run from 2 to 7 p.m. at Niagara Active Hose Company, 6010 Lockport Road.Tickets are available both in advance and at the door for $20. A spaghetti dinner and basket auction w…

The Common Council on Tuesday tentatively agreed to add nearly half a million dollars in spending for capital projects this year.The add-ons to the city's capital budget, approved in September, include $250,000 for a roof for the Norman Keller Building at 500 Wheatfield St., and $196,000 more for a water line replacement along Payne Avenue between Walck Road and Meadow Dri…