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LOCAL NEWS BRIEFS

GCC will help develop achievement system

BATAVIA -- Genesee Community College has been named as one of 40 community colleges nationwide that will help develop a new system of measuring student and college achievement.

The schools will work with the American Association of Community Colleges in creating its Voluntary Framework of Accountability program, which is redesigning the way colleges measure and report their achievements.

GCC and the other schools will test early versions of the VFA system during the coming year.

If tests are successful, the VFA system will be available for general use by community, junior and technical colleges in 2012.

"Many traditional measures of institutional and student success don't work well for community colleges," GCC President Stuart Steiner said.

"We are very pleased to work in developing measures that clearly and accurately illustrate how community colleges perform."

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Fire district receives $139,413 federal grant

The Kenilworth Fire District 2 in the Town of Tonawanda has received a federal grant totaling more than $139,000 to replace outdated breathing apparatus with state-of-the-art equipment.

The $139,413 grant was announced by Sen. Charles E. Schumer, who helped establish a funding program for local governments and fire departments to help defray the rising costs of equipment and fire prevention.

The grants, which are administered by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, are awarded on a competitive basis to the applicants that most closely address the program's priorities and demonstrate financial need.

The funds can be used for training, equipment, personal protective equipment, wellness and fitness, and modifications to fire stations and facilities.

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Meckler takes position at Jaeckle Fleischmann

Lawrence M. Meckler, who recently retired as the executive director of the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority, began a new job Monday as an "of counsel" attorney for the Jaeckle Fleischmann and Mugel law firm.

Meckler, 58, retired from the NFTA on Dec. 31 after a 34-year career that included a stint as general counsel before assuming the top post in 1996.

"I think I can be an asset to the firm, and I think they feel the same about me," Meckler said. "It's a perfect fit for me."

Meckler said he expects to specialize in land development, labor relations, human resources and contracts for the firm, as well as lobbying in Washington and Albany.

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Hoyt will participate in online chat Friday

Assemblyman Sam Hoyt, D-Buffalo, will participate in a live and online chat on buffalonews.com at 3 p.m. Friday.

Readers will have the chance to ask questions of the veteran lawmaker, who was first elected to the Assembly in 1992.

His district covers Grand Island and a section of northwest Buffalo.

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