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LOCAL NEWS BRIEFS

Hearing set April 10 on law restricting sex offenders

The Town of Hamburg is the latest community to propose restricting where convicted child sex offenders can live.

The Town Board has scheduled a public hearing at 7 p.m. April 10 on the proposed local law, which carries penalties of a maximum $1,500 fine and 15 days in jail for each offense.

In addition to prohibiting a registered child sex offender from living within 1,500 feet of a school, park, playground or day care center, the proposal adds teen or community centers, dance halls and skating rinks.

"We wanted to go the extra mile to protect teenagers as well as younger children by identifying places where teenagers are likely to congregate," Councilwoman Kathleen C. Hochul said Wednesday.

The proposal would pertain to anyone convicted of a sex offense involving a child 16 or younger.

Those already living within the 1,500-foot limit when the law is enacted would be allowed to stay in their homes.

Hamburg, including the Village of Hamburg and Blasdell, has 12 registered sex offenders, including five at level 3, considered the most likely to commit offenses again, according to town police.

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Flynn begins tenure as area U.S. attorney

Terrance P. Flynn began work Wednesday as U.S. attorney for Western New York.

The U.S. Justice Department said the Buffalo lawyer was sworn in as U.S. attorney this week after being confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

President Bush nominated Flynn for the job last December, after Michael A. Battle accepted a Washington position as Justice Department liaison with its U.S. attorneys nationwide.

Flynn, 42, is an alumnus of the University of Notre Dame and the University at Buffalo Law School. Before his appointment, he was a Buffalo trial attorney specializing in medical malpractice, product liability and other civil matters.

"It is truly an honor to be selected by President Bush to serve the citizens of this 17-county district," Flynn said.

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Schumer urges state to release casino funds

Sen. Charles E. Schumer, D-N.Y., called on state officials Wednesday to release the Seneca Niagara Casino funds that are meant to be shared with the City of Niagara Falls so the money can be used for redevelopment.

Schumer urged Gov. George E. Pataki to sign a memorandum of understanding on sharing the revenue, which will be used to fund the airport, hospital, schools, housing and tourism in Niagara Falls. Revenue sharing with the city was promised under the compact that allowed the Senecas to build the casino.

"Now is the time to make revenue sharing a reality, ensuring considerable local control over which projects receive funding," Schumer said. "The Niagara Falls community has substantial community and economic development plans in place that depend on this promised casino revenue."

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