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Upstate New Yorkers answered with a resounding "No" when they were polled earlier this month on whether they think they're financially better off than they were four years ago. More than half of the upstate residents - 51 percent to be precise - polled by the Siena Research Institute said they were not better off financially than they were in October 2008. J…

ROCHESTER – Eastman Kodak Co. said Wednesday that it has asked a U.S. Bankruptcy Court judge to allow it to end retiree medical and some other benefits at the end of the year as part of its restructuring. The company said that it reached an agreement with the court-appointed committee of retirees to pay a total of $650 million in claims and $7.5 million in cash into a fu…

Catholic Health System said Thursday it will build a $46 million, six-story headquarters in Buffalo, consolidating 700 employes in eight scattered locations into one building at the gateway to downtown off the Kensington Expressway.The region’s second-largest hospital system will be housed in a 140,000-square-foot Administrative and Regional Training Center at 144 Genese…

Soaring sales of its equipment to protect buildings and bridges from earthquake and wind damage helped push Taylor Devices’ first-quarter profits up by 49 percent, the North Tonawanda shock absorber manufacturer said Thursday. The big jump in profits was fueled by a 60 percent surge in the company’s sales, especially for projects in both the United States and the Far E…

Longtime activist Matthew Lee does not favor bank mergers, and he uses the public comment required by regulators to express his views. Lee, leader of Bronx-based Inner City Press/Fair Finance Watch, has opposed every bank merger in the past two decades. His latest target is the M&T purchase of Hudson CityBancorp in New Jersey. Lee says the banks have poor records for&#…

A portion of one of the public canals being constructed at Canalside will be used to provide a shaded, tree-lined walkway with seating near the water.The change to the East Canal, which will run roughly between Main and Washington streets, came after public suggestions for more covered, green and "fun space," said Thomas P. Dee, president of Erie Canal Harbor Development C…

Consumers in the Buffalo Niagara region are in a little less of a buying mood.Local consumers, who during the spring indicated they were more interested in making major purchases than they’ve been since the spring of 2007, lost a bit of that spending urge over the summer, according to a quarterly survey of consumer confidence released Wednesday by the Siena Research Inst…

Thirty-five homes, businesses and other institutions that have added energy-efficient features or rely on energy produced from sustainable sources will be on display during a public tour Saturday in the Buffalo area.The 17th annual Solar & Green Buildings Open House Tour will highlight “green” building features and residential and commercial properties that use solar o…

The second TEDxBuffalo event occupied the Montante Center at Canisius College on Tuesday, inspiring the 100 seleted participants. The brainstorming event featured speakers who have done interesting things and, the theory goes, hearing about them and talking about them will inspire others to try new things themselves. Rules required that only 100 people could attend, …

A Buffalo developer and a trio of demolition and salvage specialists are teaming up for a new $15 million loft apartment complex along the Buffalo River, but local preservationists want to block their plan to knock down the former Erie Freight House on the site.Savarino Companies and FFZ Holdings – a partnership of three Frontier Industrial Corp. executives – intend to…

Speakers from a range of backgrounds sought to inspire an audience of 100 at the second TEDxBuffalo conference at Canisius College on Tuesday.They included:• A “citizen astronomer” whose photo of the sun taken through a telescope in an Elmwood Village backyard won him unexpected attention across cyberspace.• A landscape architect who encouraged a group of children …

Continuing their downward trend, bankruptcy filings in Western New York plunged in September, hitting the fifth-lowest monthly tally since at least 2003 and possibly the lowest “normalized” level, according to new court data.A total of 389 new cases were filed in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of New York last month, a 35.5 percent drop from 603 cases a…

Holiday Valley has been ranked the 6th best ski resort in the Eastern U.S. in the annual Ski Magazine survey. It's an amazing recognition considering the quality of eastern skiing, like the front-four at Stowe the expanse of Killington Mountain and the steep of Jay Peak. But a successful ski resort has to be much more than just 'steep and de…

DETROIT – Now hiring in Detroit: scads of software developers and programmers.General Motors is moving past layoffs and the Motor City’s rusty, low-tech image. It’s setting out on its own to develop software and invent the most- advanced gizmos for your car.The nation’s biggest automaker plans to hire up to 10,000 computer professionals in the next three to five ye…

Government-backed small-business lending locally took a big tumble during the last fiscal year, plunging 28 percent in dollars and 24 percent in the number of loans, after special fee waivers and other federal incentives expired.According to the latest figures from the U.S. Small Business Administration, 29 institutions made 609 loans totaling $98.09 million in Buffalo and…