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The seven-member Orchard Park School Board will be facing a vacancy.

Board member Vicki Jefferis, who has been chairwoman of several of the district's facilities groups and has been closely involved with the district's $84 million proposal for a new high school, announced this week that her family will be moving.

Jefferis said the situation is due to circumstances beyond her control. She was unopposed when she won election to the board in May 2000 for a three-year term.

She emphasized that she is not yet resigning her board seat and plans to continue her work on the board as long as possible.

She was first appointed to the School Board in July 1999 to fill the last year of the term vacated by board member Ben Keller, who resigned. Her term on the board was to expire in 2003.

Capital spending limit to be considered

Erie County legislators will consider a measure that would call on County Executive Joel A. Giambra to establish a cap on annual capital spending by the county.

Legislator Lynn M. Marinelli, D-Town of Tonawanda, is sponsoring the measure because requests for capital funding in the county are upwards of $150 million for 2002.

"Under the former administration, there was a self-imposed cap of up to $30 million per year," said Marinelli, who serves on the county's Development Coordination Board and Capital Projects Committee. "It is very difficult to make recommendations on capital projects without having a cap on what the county can afford to spend."

Marinelli said keeping a lid on capital spending is especially important after three consecutive years of property-tax cuts in Erie County. She said she has detailed her proposals in a letter to Giambra. At least eight legislators have signed on as co-sponsors of the resolution.

Counselors group plans College Night

The Southern Erie County Counselors Association will hold College Night at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the Hafner Recreation Center of Hilbert College in Hamburg.

Sponsored by several Southtowns high schools and Erie 2 Board of Cooperative Educational Services, the event will make available information about some 115 participating colleges throughout New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and New England.

Financial aid workshops will also be held at 7:40 p.m. in the Campus Center. For information, contact a local high school guidance counselor or call Kathleen Parker, Hilbert admissions counselor, at 649-7900, Ext. 212.

Diocese group honoring 11 for service

Eleven people will be honored for outstanding service at 5:30 p.m. today during the fifth annual Top Hat Award Dinner sponsored by the Buffalo Catholic Diocesan Council of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul in Hearthstone Manor, Depew.

Receiving the Ozanam Medal will be:

Gerard Ashby of Sacred Heart Church, Niagara Falls; Harold Box of SS. Peter & Paul Church, Williamsville; Paul Ehrenreich of St. Benedict's Church, Eggertsville; Richard Fildes of St. John Vianney Church, Orchard Park; Catherine Hickey of St. Andrew's Church, Town of Tonawanda.

Kenneth Martin of St. Gregory the Great Church, Amherst; John Reed of Infant of Prague Church, Cheektowaga; Donald Shasel of Immaculate Conception Church, Eden; Charles Stuart of St. Timothy's Church, Town of Tonawanda; Caroline Washburn of St. Charles Church, Niagara Falls; and John Wood of Holy Cross Church, Buffalo.

A special Top Hat Award for outstanding service by a non-Vincentian will be presented to Fleet Boston Corp. Team Fleet, a volunteer group, has given the St. Vincent de Paul Society nearly 2,400 hours of work on 30 projects.

Hawk Creek to release 4 barn owls

Hawk Creek Wildlife Center of East Aurora will release four barn owls bred in captivity Saturday at 6 p.m. at Knox State Park in East Aurora. The barn owl is Western New York's rarest bird of prey.

A tour of the barns on the Knox Estate will begin shortly after the release and continue until 8 p.m. Admission is $1.

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