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LOCAL NEWS BRIEFS

>New procedures adopted on workers' compensation

Erie County Executive Chris Collins will begin a new safeguard involving county employees on workers' compensation. Starting with the July 8 pay period, county employees out of work because of injuries will be expected to come retrieve their paychecks from their supervisors.

The employees will be asked if they can at least perform light duties, for their departments or elsewhere in county government, explained Grant Loomis, a Collins spokesman. The policy will affect about 300 employees countywide, even those assigned to departments not controlled by the county executive, Loomis said.

The new policy provides a waiver for workers whose injuries are so severe they cannot travel. Waivers will be granted on a case-by-case basis.

"Workers' compensation costs for the county are about $11 million. We feel we need to get a better handle on that going forward," Loomis said. "We are certainly not trying to complicate things for anyone. But the county executive feels that since people are receiving their full paychecks, which are supported by tax dollars, the county has an obligation to get people back to work as soon as possible."

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>Work scheduled Tuesday on Oak Street Thruway ramp

The Oak Street ramp to the northbound Niagara Thruway in downtown Buffalo will close for several hours Tuesday for maintenance work.

The ramp will be closed from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. to enable crews to work on an existing light pole, according to the state Thruway Authority. During that time, detour signs will direct northbound motorists to the Hamburg Street on-ramp, which can be reached via Seneca Street.

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>Harding Joyce elected to head conservancy board

Anne Harding Joyce was elected to a two-year term as chairwoman of the Olmsted Parks Conservancy board of trustees at the conservancy's annual meeting recently in Marcy Casino in Delaware Park.

A member of the conservancy board since 2005, she serves on the boards of Goodwill Industries and the Amherst Central Alumni Association and on the Niagara River Greenway's Buffalo and Erie County Standing Committee.

Other officers elected include: vice chairmen, Florence D. Johnson and Gary L. Mucci; treasurer, J. Joseph "Jerry" Castiglia; secretary, Kevin Kelly; and trustees, Richard Cummings, Clarke E. Eaton Jr., Philip C. Kadet and Edward F. Walsh Jr.

Elected to serve new three-year terms as trustees were Castiglia, Florence Johnson, Victor Rice and Herb Siegel.

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>Penn Dixie center offers day sessions in July, August

Science Adventure Day Camp will take place this summer at the Penn Dixie Paleontological and Outdoor Education Center in Hamburg.

There will be three sessions in July and August for campers 8 to 12 years old. They will explore geology, fossils, astronomy, weather, ecology and rocketry.

For information, leave your name and mailing address at 627-4560 or visit the Web site at www.penndixie.org.