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LOCAL NEWS BRIEFS

Renovations completed at four travel plazas

Renovations are complete at four local travel plazas along the Thruway.

Thruway Authority Executive Director Michael R. Fleischer said the changes include the addition of fast-food restaurants and Wi-Fi technology "to enable customers to have a more enjoyable and productive trip on the Thruway."

Renovations were begun in September. The improved locations include the Seneca Travel Plaza, westbound between Canandaigua and Rochester; Scottsville Travel Plaza, just east of the Route 390 interchange; Pembroke Travel Plaza, east of the Pembroke-Medina interchange; and the Clarence Travel Plaza, westbound, just prior to the Depew interchange.

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Event planned to raise funds for City Honors

City Honors is hosting its annual auction April 20. The event will feature raffles, a silent auction and a 50-50 draw. Free deserts will be served. The auction begins at 6:30 p.m. at the school, located at 186 E. North St.

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Annual bike auction earns record amount

The Buffalo Police Department's annual bike auction on April 1 pulled in the highest amount in the city's history -- $10,674.

Capt. Mark Antonio said about 300 people showed up for the auction at police headquarters and purchased a total of 260 lost and stolen bicycles. Most sold for about $40 each; the highest bid was $165, while the cheapest was $4.

"We were shocked when we added the money up," said Antonio, who oversees the department's property office and coordinated the bike auction. "The last couple years we made about $2,000 and $5,000."

Antonio said the proceeds are going to the city's general fund.

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Judge to rule on release of Power Coalition audit

A State Supreme Court judge in Buffalo could decide Wednesday whether to allow a state audit on the finances of the Niagara Power Coalition to be released to the public.

Mark S. Zito, the former executive director of the entity, recently filed an injunction against the state Comptroller's Office to block the report from being released.

A spokeswoman for the comptroller's office confirmed the audit won't be released before the court date to hear Zito's complaint.

Zito said last week that he was never given a chance to comment on the audit, which was requested by the coalition after a local accounting firm reported that Zito was overpaid and may have misreported some of his income.

The Niagara Power Coalition comprises Niagara County, the City of Niagara Falls, the towns of Niagara and Lewiston, and the Lewiston-Porter, Niagara-Wheatfield and Niagara Falls school districts.

Zito also plans to sue the coalition for a bonus he said he was promised for brokering a Niagara Power Project relicensing deal with the New York Power Authority estimated to be worth between $146 million to $1.2 billion over 50 years.

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