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NIAGARA NEWS BRIEFS

>Zoning Board OKs variance to purchase building

LOCKPORT -- The town Zoning Board of Appeals cleared the way Tuesday for a business to purchase the building in which it has been operating for two years, as it granted a variance to AFP Group.

The fire alarm and security system inspection company intends to buy a 9,000-square-foot building at 6746 Akron Road, part of the defunct Franbilt property, from First Niagara Bank, which foreclosed on Franbilt's mortgage two years ago.

Owner Joe Hahn said he's paying $180,000 for the property, which he's been leasing since before Franbilt went under.
Town officials decided the company needed a variance because it stores some materials for security systems. They deemed it a warehouse, which isn't permitted in a general business zone. Hahn said the bank wouldn't sell the building unless he received either a variance or a special use permit.

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>City's Meals on Wheels looking for volunteers

NORTH TONAWANDA -- The city's Meals on Wheels is looking for help.

Joy Welch, Meals on Wheels coordinator, said she is looking for volunteers to prepare and deliver meals.

Delivery workers, both drivers and servers, help between 10:45 a.m. and 12:15 p.m. The office needs assistance Mondays through Fridays. Kitchen help is needed from 8 to 11:30 a.m.

Call the office at 693-1663 for more information. The office and food-preparation site is at 100 Ridge Road.

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>Baseball league signups set Saturday, Sunday

LOCKPORT -- Signups for this season's An-Jo Baseball League will be held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the Tops Market on South Transit Road.
The league is open to children whose ages are 4 to 11 as of May 1. Saturday morning instructional T-ball for ages 4 to 6 starts May 30, and summer baseball for ages 7 to 11 begins June 30, with games on Tuesdays and Thursdays. A free New Era cap will be given to all children signing up this weekend. New Ear Cap Co. is now sponsoring the league.

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>Court date set in case against Wal-Mart building

LOCKPORT -- Oral arguments in the appeal of a lawsuit aimed at blocking construction of a Wal-Mart supercenter here are scheduled for April 3 in the Appellate Division of State Supreme Court, Rochester.

"Everything's ready," Town Attorney Daniel E. Seaman said. "That should be a hard-and-fast date."

A decision would be expected within 30 days after the arguments, Seaman said.

Lockport Smart Growth, a citizen group, is challenging the legality of the town's approvals for the Wal-Mart, to be built at the Lockport Mall site on South Transit Road. Smart Growth lost last year before State Supreme Court Justice Richard C. Kloch Sr., and filed an appeal.

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