Joseph Popiolkowski - The Buffalo News

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Joseph Popiolkowski

Joseph Popiolkowski is a reporter for The Buffalo News covering Buffalo's inner suburbs, including the towns of Tonawanda, Cheektowaga and West Seneca.


Amherst

Amherst's newest local landmark has impressive lineage. The house at 895 North Forest Road was inspired by Fallingwater, Frank Lloyd Wright's masterpiece in Pennsylvania completed in 1937. And it was designed by Sebastian Tauriello, an architect who acquired the Wright-designed Darwin Martin House in Buffalo in 1955 and is widely credited with saving it from the wreckin…

Crews are on the scene of a reported water main break on Maple Road in Amherst. The break was reported just after 4 p.m. on Maple Road between Ayer and Bauman roads. Repairs are expected to begin at about 7:30 p.m., once two medical offices in the vicinity have closed, according to Sean Dwyer, a spokesman for the Erie County Water Authority. The repairs are expected …

The Town of Amherst has been awarded $65,000 for improvements on the Erie Canalway Trail, state officials said. The grant will fund improvements on the trail along Tonawanda Creek from Sweet Home Road to New Road, the state Canal Corporation said in a news release. The grant is part of $1 million in canal-related grants announced last week for municipalities and nonp…

Amherst

The Solarize Amherst campaign resulted in the installation of 59 new roof-mounted solar arrays totaling 1,283 panels on residences in the town, officials said. The campaign from May through September was the first in the region and offered discounted solar installations and a waiver of the town's electric permit fee. The average system cost is $7,285 and will create …

The chairman of the Amherst Republican Committee is resigning Dec. 31 after five years in the role, the party announced Wednesday. Carl Balmas on Jan. 1 will assume a new role with the Erie County Republican Committee as vice chairman for towns, according to a news release. Balmas, an Army veteran, was first elected chairman of the town committee in 2012. Joe Heins, …

Local News

Harsh winter weather conditions along Lake Ontario have forced a Kansas City woman to abandon her attempt to break a world record in paddling. Traci Lynn Martin, 50, sought to break the Guinness world record for longest nonstop solo trip on a surf ski in a calendar year by paddling around all five Great Lakes. Since March, she circumnavigated lakes Huron, Superior and M…

Amherst's next supervisor is looking for volunteers to serve on over 30 boards and committees in the town. Amherst residents with diverse backgrounds and experience are encouraged to apply, Supervisor-elect Brian J. Kulpa said. The town's boards and committees are chaired by Town Board members based on their individual interests and familiarity with specific subject …

Amherst

Before Barry A. Weinstein joined the Amherst Town Board in 2008, its meetings had a reputation as contentious free-for-alls that would carry on until well after midnight. “My patients would come in the office in those days and tell me they were watching the Town Board on TV for entertainment value,” said Weinstein, a retired family physician. At his first meeting as …

Amherst

Government meetings are typically good viewing, if you need a sleep aid. Not so Monday in the Village of Williamsville when the board held its meeting in a "Late Night" talk show format, complete with a monologue by Mayor Brian J. Kulpa and a live band. Kulpa is preparing to depart village government to become Amherst town supervisor and had always promised that he w…

Amherst

A planned feature of the new playground in Amherst's Billy Wilson Park will be a nod to the park's original name, and put to rest an old controversy. The Town Board on Monday agreed to name the "sensory center" after Margaret Bernath and Louise Kindel. The center is described as an area geared toward kids on the autism spectrum and may include a water feature, musical i…

Cheektowaga

A $24.3 million capital project, including new turf athletic fields and improvements at three schools, was approved Tuesday by voters in the Maryvale School District. A new multipurpose turf field at the stadium, along with turf softball and baseball infields and a fifth tennis court, are among new amenities approved for the district in Cheektowaga. In addition, the …

The Williamsville Central School District is studying the elimination of class rank for all its high schoolers. The School Board in September agreed to end class rank in its three high schools for incoming freshmen and all subsequent classes. But since then, district officials said they've heard from numerous students and parents who support eliminating it now for all g…

Amherst officials will await the results of a traffic study before restricting left turns at a potentially dangerous intersection. The Town Board on Monday night was prepared to consider asking the state Department of Transportation to restrict left turns from Shoreline Parkway onto Millersport Highway. But the board agreed to allow residents of the Dockside Village …

Amherst

Williamsville teachers have a new contract that includes salary raises – but also an increase of their contributions to health insurance. The School Board Tuesday unanimously approved the four-year pact, the result of 11 months of talks and 17 meetings between negotiating teams for the district and Williamsville Teachers Association. "This is a fiscally responsible c…

Amherst

Williamsville trustees are expected to appoint Deputy Mayor Daniel DeLano as the village's next mayor as Mayor Brian J. Kulpa prepares to take over as Amherst town supervisor. Kulpa will be sworn in Dec. 28 and village trustees are expected to appoint DeLano to succeed him at a special meeting likely to be held Dec. 29, officials said. The board also indicated they h…