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NIAGARA NEWS BRIEFS

> LOCKPORT SCHOOLS

High traffic area near school is safety concern for board

LOCKPORT -- The Lockport School Board is investigating whether the safety of some students at North Park Junior High is in jeopardy because they must walk through high traffic areas of the city to get to school every day.

Current board policy provides busing services only to students who live further than 1 1/2 miles from the school, which begins housing seventh and eighth grades this year.

Officials identified the area of that buffer southeast of Transit Road and North Grant Street as one that may qualify for an exception to that policy under state law. If it contains a certain number of features that the state deems safety concerns -- such as railroad crossings, bridges or streets with no sidewalks -- the board may choose to declare the area a "safety zone" and implement busing services.

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> NIAGARA COUNTY

Refuse Disposal District plans lower taxes, spending

LOCKPORT -- The 2012 Niagara County Refuse Disposal District budget will show a decrease in both spending and taxes, district director Richard P. Pope said this week.

Pope said the proposed $2 million spending plan is $226,000 less than this year's budget. The largest cuts are in equipment purchases and legal and consultant services.

The amount to be raised by taxes has been reduced by about $16,000. "We believe there will be a tax rate reduction, once we get the figures back from Real Property [Services], of about a penny per thousand [dollars of assessed valuation]," Pope said.

The Refuse District's taxes are included on county property tax bills, except in the towns of Cambria, Wilson, Newfane and Niagara, which never joined the district.

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> LOCKPORT

City to begin offering recycling of electronics

LOCKPORT -- The city intends to offer recycling of electronic equipment, such as computers and TV sets, when it begins its privatized garbage collection and recycling system this fall.

Dawn M. Timm, Niagara County environmental coordinator, said that a free drop-off facility for electronics is to be placed at the Youth and Recreation Department headquarters in Altro Park on Willow Street.

The city will be paid 5 to 6 cents per pound, depending on the volume of material dropped off.

Timm said the service will bring Lockport into compliance with an expected state ban on disposing of electronics in regular trash.

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> EAST AMHERST

'It's Still Summer' bash will benefit area veterans

An East Amherst concert will offer live music and fun in an effort to raise money for WNY Heroes, a local nonprofit group that helps area veterans.

The event will take place from 2 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. today at Sweet Melody's Authentic Italian Gelateria, 8485 Transit Road. Local artists Speedy Parker and The Informers will be playing blues and rock concerts, and gifts and prizes will be given away. Admission to the "It's Still Summer Veterans Bash" is $5.

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