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>Bianchi and Kane named to key leadership roles

BATAVIA -- Western Regional Off-Track Betting Corp. will have two longtime associates in key leadership roles.

Ralph D. Bianchi, Monroe County's representative on the 17-member board, for the past eight years, is the new chairman. He succeeds Genesee County's Richard E. Siebert, who declined to seek a second term.

Richard D. Kane, vice president of operations and racing, is the new president and chief operating officer. On March 1, he succeeds Martin C. Basinait who is retiring after leading WROTB for many yars. He is credited with the purchase and conversion of Batavia Downs into a casino as well as reviving night harness racing at the historic track.

The appointments were announced during a WROTB board meeting late last week.


>Trustees set the stage for $3.9 million project

The Holland School Board approved a capital project bond resolution last week that will allow bids to be opened Thursday on the $3.9 million project.

Superintendent Dennis Johnson said contracts should be awarded by mid-February.

The district is hoping to accelerate the process, he said, so that the portion of the project aimed at asbestos removal can be conducted in April during the school's spring break. The primary focus of the project, approved by voters in May, is to upgrade the steam system at the high school, renovate the fire alarm systems and remove asbestos.


>Snowsnake competition set to unfold Feb. 12 and 13

SALAMANCA -- A competition to determine who can throw a snowsnake the farthest, at speeds that can reach more than 100 mph along a quarter-mile track, will be held Feb. 12 and 13 at the former Erie Railroad yards on North Main Street.

Beginning at 11 a.m. daily, competitors will participate in what is a traditional Native American men's winter game to sharpen hunting skills.

Teams travel between territories to compete. The snowsnake is a wooden stick that is 6 feet long. Contact the Salamanca Area Chamber of Commerce at (716) 945-2034 or


>Town of Aurora, state agree on park maintenance plan

Cross-country skiers and snowshoe enthusiasts can continue to enjoy the winter wonder of the 633-acre Knox Farm State Park in Aurora.

The town and state reached agreement last week on a basic maintenance arrangement, including plowing to keep the park's main entrance and exit open and the parking lot plowed.

The state officially closed the park at the end of last year, amid a fiscal crisis, but has allowed the public to use the park for walking, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.

Aurora Supervisor Jolene M. Jeffe said the town will handle daily plowing maintenance, sharing responsibility with the village, through April 30. Proper insurance coverage is in place, she added.