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LOCAL NEWS BRIEFS

WNY clerks seek a share of online DMV proceeds

County clerks in Western New York Wednesday urged the State Legislature to allow auto bureaus to keep a percentage of the online Department of Motor Vehicles transactions.

In letters sent to legislators, the clerks urged passage of two bills that would share the revenue.

Previously, envelopes mailed out with vehicle registration renewals were printed with local auto bureau addresses on them, which allowed the counties to recoup 12.7 percent of that revenue. Now, millions of dollars are being directed exclusively to the state, shortchanging local taxpayers.

"We are simply asking for the ability to retain the same 12.7 percent of revenue with online business that we get with in-person transactions and [to] be allowed to compete fairly by offering Internet transactions through the clerk's Web site, as well," Erie County Clerk Kathy Hochul said.

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Erin Brockovich to speak at academic festival

Environmental activist Erin Brockovich will speak at 7:30 p.m. April 22 in the Wick Center on the Daemen College campus, 4380 Main St., Snyder.

Her talk, "Moral Choices and Environmental Justice," will serve as the keynote address to the 2010 Daemen College Academic Festival.

The event is free and open to the public.

Brockovich became a household name after her story of an unknown legal researcher who won the largest medical settlement in U.S. history was made into a Hollywood movie starring Julia Roberts. Brockovich continues to be involved in environmental projects worldwide and is working on legal cases in California, Texas, Florida, Michigan, Illinois and Missouri.

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