Erie County will spend more money in 2017 than ever before cracking down on property owners who repeatedly fail to pay their county taxes. And that money will enable the county to pursue foreclosures against more delinquent property tax payers, overall, than it has in the past 15 years. That's one of the highlights of a $1.72 billion county budget unanimously approved T…

OLAF FUB SEZ: According to sportswriter Heywood Broun, born on this date in 1896, “The tragedy of life is not that man loses but that he almost wins.” . . . BAD IS GOOD – The Lancaster Regional Players production of “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever,” a comedy in which a group of misfit children take over the roles in a church holiday program, continues this wee…

Air quality in the Tonawandas has significantly improved over the last eight years as levels of certain pollutants continue to fall, state environmental officials announced Tuesday. The state Department of Environmental Conservation's Tonawanda Air Quality Study ended in mid-2008, but the DEC continues to operate two air quality monitors -- on Grand Island Boulevard and…

LOCKPORT - Voters in the Lockport City School district approved a $28.66 million package of capital projects Tuesday, with half of the money targeted for improvements to academic facilities and building maintenance, and the other half for new or upgraded sports facilities. The vote was 1,594 to 385. The project will have no impact on property taxes, district official…

WILSON — The SPCA of Niagara seized dozens of snakes, birds and other animals from a Wilson home Tuesday evening, charging it was a case of alleged animal cruelty, but the residents denied the allegations. Robyn Dawe, 59, of Beebe Road, said her daughter Maria Dawe, 21, once operated an exotic animal business, and that's why there were so many animals in the house. …

NIAGARA FALLS – A 12-year-old Niagara Falls boy was taken for treatment after he was hit by a car on 25th Street Tuesday night, according to Niagara Falls police officials. The boy was taken to Niagara Falls Medical Center by his family, and then was being transferred to Women and Children's Hospital in Buffalo, according to police. The boy was struck by a light-co…

LOCKPORT — The Niagara County Legislature on Tuesday endorsed Rep. Chris Collins' bill that would in effect block a proposed local wind power project. The Legislature is concerned that the presence of wind turbines proposed for sites in the towns of Somerset and Yates, some 25 miles from the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station, would interfere with operations there and …

The Niagara Falls Illumination Board flipped the switch to turn on the new $4 million LED lighting the Falls, Thursday, Dec. 1, 2016.…

University at Buffalo chemistry professor Joseph A. Gardella Jr. has been appointed to serve a three-year term on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Science Advisory Board. Gardella, an expert in environmental analytical chemistry, has been highly involved in identifying and quantifying pollutants in the environment, especially in Western New York. His te…

Buffalo Police reported that a body was found in the field behind a gas station in the 600 block of Tonawanda Street in the Riverside section of Buffalo just before 3 p.m. Tuesday. Michael J. DeGeorge, spokesman for the department, said an autopsy will be performed to determine the cause of death. No details were released about the body. DeGeorge said homicide detective…

A semi-trailer ran into a school bus on French Road at Yvette Drive in Cheektowaga about 4:03 p.m. Tuesday, according to authorities. Cheektowaga police reported there were school children on the bus at the time. No one needed treatment for injuries after the crash, according to Cheektowaga police. The road was cleared by about 7 p.m., authorities said.…

LOCKPORT – A Niagara Falls man pleaded guilty Tuesday to burglarizing a bottle redemption center in Lockport on Aug. 12. Kenneth D. Robinson, 42, of Elmwood Avenue in the Falls, was admitted to the judicial diversion program of court-supervised drug treatment by Niagara County Judge Sara Sheldon. She said Robinson risks a seven-year prison sentence if he fails in that…

LOCKPORT – A Town of Lockport man pleaded not guilty Tuesday to an indictment accusing him of beating his 5-week-old daughter on April 16. David R. Barnes, 33, of Chestnut Ridge Road, is charged with second-degree assault and reckless assault of a child. Assistant District Attorney Robert A. Zucco said the girl suffered a compression fracture of the spine, two skul…

NIAGARA FALLS -- The first Amtrak train and its load of about 35 passengers arrived at the new $43 million train station here just after 10:30 a.m. Tuesday. Most of the travelers, including a large contingent from the United Kingdom, were a bit confused as they were greeted by applause, cameras and curious onlookers. And while some called the new station beautiful, t…

LEWISTON  -- George Osborne, retired president of Artpark and Company, has been appointed the new chairman of the executive board of the Historic Lewiston Jazz Festival, celebrating its 16th year next Aug. 25-26. Other appointees to the executive board include: Carol Calato, of Calato Manufacturing, first vice chair; Margaret Toohey, of the Lewiston Insurance Agency, t…

Eight times in two years, Lorrie A. Clemo was a finalist to be president of a college or university. SUNY Potsdam considered her in 2014, as did Minot State University in North Dakota. She was one of four finalists for the top job at SUNY Brockport in 2015 and one of two finalists this past May to be president of Edinboro University in Pennsylvania. In hindsight, Clemo …