Huge crowds of raucous progressives and quieter conservatives overwhelmed Rep. Tom Reed's town hall meetings in Ashville and Cherry Creek Saturday morning, with the progressives repeatedly interrupting and shouting down the congressman's comments as he tried to defend Republican plans to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. The crowd in Ashville, in Chautauqua Co…

Huge crowds of raucous progressives and quieter conservatives overwhelmed Rep. Tom Reed's town hall meetings in Ashville and Cherry Creek Saturday morning, with the progressives repeatedly interrupting and shouting down the congressman's comments as he tried to defend Republican plans to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. The crowd in Ashville, in Chautauqua Co…

Mayor Byron W. Brown's annual State of the City address, his 11th, had a lot in common with his 10th. It also resembled his ninth. The mayor first recounted what he viewed as key accomplishments of the past year -- and then outlined his plans for the coming one. But then, at the end of his speech Friday, the three-term mayor offered a bit of a tease that deviated fro…

“Elysium” is the way ancient Greeks described a piece of heaven. Let me explain: For you, it is like hearing guitarist Ana Vidovic play “Cavatina.” My Elysium was a bar hidden on Pearl Street in Buffalo, just behind what then was the Art Moderne W.T. Grant department store at Main and Huron streets. The place was called Jew Murphy’s Omega Steel Bar and Gril…

WASHINGTON – Rep. Tom Reed can expect to face some strong resistance at his four town hall meetings in the Southern Tier this weekend. But it sure won't be spontaneous. In fact, a group called "Indivisible of New York's 23rd District" – which is connected to a national movement organized by former Democratic congressional aides – has published a two-page "pla…

There was a time not long ago when political transition automatically sparked civil war among Erie County Democrats. But when Democratic Elections Commissioner Len Lenihan revealed on Monday he would end his 40-year run in politics, the story was relegated to a back page of The Buffalo News. Ditto for the companion announcement that Democratic Chairman Jeremy Zellner wo…

WASHINGTON – Rep. Tom Reed came away from a White House meeting Thursday reassured that there's nothing more to the issue that recently led to the firing of President Trump's national security adviser: contacts between the Trump team and Russian officials. "I am very confident after talking to the president personally and candidly that there's just nothing there on th…

More security machines at City Hall X-ray machines are now being used as part of the beefed-up security in City Hall. So purses, briefcases and other items are now going through the machine, rather than being subjected to hand and visual checks by security officers. That's in addition to metal detectors visitors already pass through to get into the building. As…

NIAGARA FALLS – Republicans Robert D. Pascoal and Samuel F. Archie announced Wednesday that they intend to run for seats on the Niagara Falls City Council in this fall's election. Pascoal, who lost in the GOP mayoral primary in 2015, is president of the Landlords Association of Greater Niagara and serves on the city Zoning Board of Appeals. "I want to be there …

WASHINGTON – After a year spent defending Donald Trump on the cable news networks, Rep. Chris Collins of Clarence finally hit the big time this week. Stephen Colbert and Trevor Noah mocked Collins on their Tuesday night shows for his appearance earlier in the day on CNN. Harsher still, Colbert – and Buffalo-born actress Christine Baranski – did something unusua…

Lots of red ties on the all-male Buffalo Common Council Tuesday in recognition of Valentine's Day. But one of the nine members seemed to take the holiday a little more to heart. In addition to his red tie, this lawmaker wore red socks. Can you guess whose red socks are in this picture? Hint: He's from the University District. Answer: Councilman Rasheed Wyat…

Rep. Chris Collins refuses to hold town hall meetings with constituents. As a result, he's got his name up in lights. Two electronic billboards – one in Hamburg, one near the I-90/I-190 intersection – now ask the question: "Where's Chris Collins? WNY would like a word...Host a town hall meeting, Mr. Collins." The billboards will goad Collins for a full week …

LOCKPORT - Lockport attorney Patrick M. Balkin has announced he will run for a Niagara County Family Court judgeship in this fall's election. Balkin has been an attorney for 33 years, mostly in private practice in Lockport. Since 2004, Balkin has been a part-time attorney for the Niagara County Social Services Department, representing the county in Family Court and …

Lots of love in city clerk's office It's going to be a busy Valentine's Day in the City Clerk's office, which has 10 weddings scheduled for today. City Hall weddings aren't usually performed on Tuesdays. They are done on Wednesdays and Thursdays. But Deputy City Clerk Tianna Marks said she decided to make an exception to accommodate the Valentine's Day requests. …

In the wake of Monday night's resignation of Michael Flynn as national security adviser, Rep. Chris Collins said on CNN Tuesday morning "it's just time to move on." Flynn had contacts with the Russian ambassador to the United States before Trump took office, raising questions about his connections to Russia. Collins said while he has no personal knowledge about wha…