Nancy A. Fischer, The Buffalo News
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Nancy A. Fischer

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A lifelong resident of Western New York and reporter for the Buffalo News for over 20 years covering Erie County Northtowns

Kenmore East High School will present its spring musical, "Once On This Island," at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, March 30-April 1, at the school, 350 Fries Road. The acclaimed Broadway musical was the winner of the 1995 Laurence Olivier Award for Best Musical and is based on the book "My Love, My Love," also known as "The Peasant Girl," by Rosa Guy. Inspi…

The Town of Clarence has joined other communities in adopting a solar code that restricts commercial and residential ground-mounted solar systems. The code was adopted after an eight-month moratorium. The law only applies to ground-mounted solar systems, said Jonathan Bleuer, assistant director of community development. He said there are no projects in the wings, but…

For hundreds of young women in Western New York, the Gowns for Prom program is all about the dress. Each year, Colvin Cleaners collects thousands of donated dresses and displays and distributes them free to high school girls April 4-6 on the stage at Shea's Performing Arts Center. The dresses chosen by the girls are professionally altered, dry cleaned and delivered …

The Town of Tonawanda and Rotary Club of Kenmore will hold their 34th annual Easter egg hunt for children beginning at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, April 8, inside the Lincoln Arena, 1200 Parker Boulevard. The free indoor event regularly draws about 500 children. Participants must be  Kenmore or Town of Tonawanda residents, aged 2 to 10. "This is a community favorite," said…

The City of Tonawanda's $1.25 million Niawanda Park Pavilion along the picturesque Niagara River is a popular spot for private event rentals on weekends, but the city is discussing ways to make the site more profitable, including hiring a private management team. The enclosed waterfront pavilion is booked through 2018 on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. But it remains un…

The North Tonawanda School Board is considering cutting six teachers and an administrator and raising taxes by 1.48 percent after it rejected creating a 3 percent utility tax to balance its budget. The utility tax on cellphone bills and gas and electric bills for residents and businesses in the North Tonawanda zip code had been discussed by the board for the past few m…

A newly formed group – WNY for Grand Island Toll Barrier Removal – has attracted 3,100 Facebook followers in less than a month and just reached its first goal: To garner 1,000 signatures on an online petition calling for Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo to "tear down the tolls." The next goal will be to raise that to 10,000 signatures, which co-chairman Brian R. Michel of…

The City of Tonawanda Common Council on Tuesday approved contracts with four volunteer fire companies that help protect the city. The fire companies contracted are Delaware Hose No. 2 and Niagara Hose Company No. 3, both located in 74 Wheeler St., and Union Hook and Ladder Company No. 1 and National Hose Company No. 1, both located at 44 William St. The Council agree…

Reassessment teams are set to head out into the City of Tonawanda in April, according to City Assessor Judy Tafelski. The full assessment of approximately 6,000 properties is expected to be completed by May 2018, she said. The city last year was at 98 percent of full market value, but that rate has dropped in the past year to 90 percent. Tafelski said a reassessment …

A public forum will be hosted by the newly formed WNY for Grand Island Toll Barrier Removal group at 6 p.m. Wednesday at the Global Tourism Institute at 225 Old Falls St., Niagara Falls. The group launched a new effort earlier this month to put pressure on Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo to remove the 90-year-old toll barriers on the Grand Island bridges that can back up traffic…

City of Tonawanda Common Council members expect to hear about the city's planned reassessment of properties, a proposed tax break for an apartment complex and plans to close part of Young Street to vehicle traffic during a meeting tonight. City Assessor Judy Trafelski will update the Council on plans for a citywide reassessment. Mayor Rick Davis said the city has been r…

A businessman says he's put on hold a proposed waterfront development because City of Tonawanda Mayor Rick Davis delayed the project for two years and cursed at him twice while tossing him out of his City Hall office. Davis admitted Monday he did swear at Michael Hacikyan, but not until after the developer released a profanity-laced tirade at him. And Davis said he has …

B.J. Stasio has cerebral palsy and is in a motorized wheelchair. He depends on specialized public transportation to get him from his job in West Seneca back to his home in North Buffalo. That ride home on Thursday took him 3 1/2 hours after he said the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority's Paratransit service "forgot to stop" at the Southgate Plaza, leaving him wa…

It was over a year ago, at the end of October in 2015, when Grand Island residents Nicole Gerber and David Reilly found leghold coyote traps on public land near their posted property. After seven months of often-heated discussions, the Grand Island Town Board eventually adopted a local law,  a compromise that severely limits trapping on public land to a few restricted …