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Amherst limits drugstore ban

The Amherst Town Board on Monday changed the rezoning conditions for a $1.8 million Key Bank being located at Hopkins and Klein roads.

The corner was the site of a former Mobil gas station and had at one time been considered as the site for a large drugstore, but met with strong neighborhood objections.

The board had previously approved rezoning from a motor service designation to a neighborhood business designation to allow the bank to be built, on the condition that the property never be developed as a big-box drugstore.

Key Bank later objected to the condition, however, so on Monday the board limited the drugstore ban to five years from the time the bank is built.

Council Member Mark Manna said it's his intention to have the board adopt a new town law that would ban big-box drug stores from locating in neighborhood business zones.

In other news, the board:

*Unanimously approved a resolution by Council Member Guy Marlette to abolish lifetime health insurance for all nonunion employees who were, or will be, hired or promoted after Sept. 1 of this year.

*Approved a resolution by Manna to consider comparable alternative fuel or hybrid vehicles for future town purchases.

*Referred a lawsuit by the Amherst Employees Association union to the town attorney. The union represents employees in the Engineering Department and is accusing the town of failing to promote employees who they say continue to do work in higher job classifications without commensurate pay.

*Approved the addition of a new code enforcement officer for the Building Department in response to concerns from Eggertsville residents regarding neighborhood property neglect. The additional code enforcement officer, anticipated in the 2011 budget, will earn $46,472.

*Accepted a $1.29 million state grant to address sewage overflows in the Snyder area, and approved a 15 percent town match of about $227,250.

*Approved the promotion of four appraisers and technicians in the Assessors Office.

e-mail: stan@buffnews.com

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