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LOCAL NEWS BRIEFS

Grant not as much as city had requested

LOCKPORT -- Community Development Director William J. Evert said Friday he is not sure how much the city's economic development plans will be scaled back because the city didn't receive as much money as it sought from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's Small Cities program.

Lockport applied for $650,000 but was approved for a $500,000 grant. The money is passed through the Governor's Office of Small Cities in Albany.

The city planned a rent subsidy program for new downtown business tenants, help for stores in the new Ulrich City Centre on the Main Street South Block and a subsidy of up to $2 a square foot for businesses renting other vacant space.

The city also had hoped to hire a full-time downtown marketing coordinator. Evert said he expects the terms of the grant will dictate what it can be used for, but the city hasn't been told yet.

Other HUD grants announced by Reynolds included $399,604 for North Tonawanda and $367,233 for Cambria.

North Tonawanda plans to reconstruct Tremont Street, including new water and sewer lines to alleviate yard and basement flooding for as many as 1,200 nearby residents. Cambria will use its grant for new water mains and connections on Unicorn, Eagle and Fairview drives.

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'Ida B.' is nominated for Quills Award

A former Lockport resident and new children's book author is a finalist for a national award that puts her in the company of authors of books such as "Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince" and "A Series of Unfortunate Events, Book 11: The Grim Grotto."

Katherine Hannigan, author of "Ida B. and Her Plans to Maximize Fun, Avoid Disaster and (Possibly) Save the World," is one of four authors in the middle school chapter book category in the new Quills Awards.

The awards are given based on a popular vote. Those who would like to vote may go online to www.quillsvote.com and vote for "Ida B." in both the children chapter/middle grade category and/or book of the year category. One vote is allowed per e-mail in each category.

Hannigan, who lives in Iowa, grew up in Lockport, where her parents, Marion and Charles Hannigan, still live.

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Adventure show finale spotlights Falls casino

NIAGARA FALLS, Ont. -- Niagara Fallsview Casino Resort was the final destination Saturday for filming on the Canadian race adventure show "Bell City Chase."

Grand finale winners Rob Campbell and Neil Bosch, members of Team Edmonton, were the first to navigate their way through crowds of patrons visiting the casino resort Saturday afternoon.

"Bell City Chase" chose the City of Niagara Falls, including various locations inside Niagara Fallsview Casino Resort, to film the final two National Championship episodes of the series, which a casino spokesman said will air to an audience of 1.4 million Canadians on the Prime and Global networks beginning Nov. 12.

"Bell City Chase" is an urban adventure contest that requires two-person teams to exhibit teamwork, resourcefulness, determination and the ability to make decisions on the fly as they search for "Chase Points," which were scattered throughout Niagara.

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