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NIAGARA NEWS BRIEFS

Possibility of more aid subject of Dyster-Kessel talks

NIAGARA FALLS -- Mayor Paul A. Dyster met privately with Richard M. Kessel, president and chief executive of the New York Power Authority, on Wednesday to discuss the potential of aid to the city.

Dyster said Kessel "remains optimistic" that a deal can be worked out but called the issue "complicated." Niagara County has been fighting for more aid for the county and its communities.

"He's going to put his full effort into completing the steps that need to be completed," Dyster said of Kessel.

The mayor said the Power Authority's representatives would focus more on the potential of aid after July 4.

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Granite, marble dealer gets approval for new location

LOCKPORT -- International Stone Gallery has received final town approval to open a new location at 6251 S. Transit Road, in the former Hadsell Tire store.

The town Zoning Board of Appeals approved a variance for the granite and marble dealer's plan Tuesday; it had won the approval of the Planning Board last week.

Chief Building Inspector Brian M. Belson said the Zoning Board also approved a variance for an addition to the north side of the Heinrich Chevrolet showroom, 5775 S. Transit Road. The car dealer's expansion is tentatively scheduled to appear on the July Planning Board agenda, Belson said.

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$160,031 targets restoration of state park wildlife habitat

LEWISTON -- The Buffalo Audubon Society will receive a $160,031 grant to restore at least 35 acres of wildlife habitat for breeding and migrating birds in Joseph Davis State Park, Rep. Louise M. Slaughter, D-Fairport, announced Tuesday.

The 320-acre park, near the bank of the Lower Niagara River between Lewiston and Youngstown, provides a large, relatively underdeveloped habitat for wildlife.

"There used to be more than 150 acres of habitat on Joseph Davis State Park, but it has fallen victim to invasive species and other causes leading to almost half of the land to be degraded," Slaughter said. "The grant announced today will restore at least 35 acres of this lost habitat, helping to ensure that the sights and sounds of local wildlife are around for generations to come."

The grant was awarded as part of the Great Lakes Watershed Habitat and Species Restoration Administrative Grants Programs administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

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Board mulls personnel cuts due to contingency budget

A special meeting of the Lackawanna Board of Education will be held at 6:30 p.m. today in the Superintendent's Conference Room 202 of the McKinley Administration Building, 245 South Shore Blvd., Lackawanna.

The board will discuss personnel cuts following the June 21 defeat of a proposed $45.1 million budget -- the second time residents voted down a spending plan for 2011-12.