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LOCAL NEWS BRIEFS

Grant will put focus on Great Lakes

A federal grant of nearly $170,000 has been awarded to the Buffalo area that will allow more than 300 teachers the chance to teach their students about the Great Lakes.

Funded by the Environmental Protection Agency, the grant will sponsor a series of "Great Lakes Academics" that will allow local teachers to get training on pollution in waterways in the area, including the Buffalo River, the Niagara River and 18-Mile Creek.

Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper, which will help organize the disbursement of the grant, hopes that current cleanup efforts -- like the ongoing dredging of the Buffalo River -- will help teach students about the cost of pollution.

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Improved lighting sought for City Hall's lobby

City Hall's dimly lit lobby might see a new light soon.

Ellicott Council Member Darius G. Pridgen introduced a proposal this week calling for a study of how the lobby area may be brightened.

In his resolution, Pridgen wrote that improved lighting would help illuminate murals and architecture and add to visitors' safety, while noting that any new lighting must not damage the artwork.

The lighting should provide "a bright space that is safe, welcoming and appropriate for this historic landmark and the guests who enter it daily," the resolution reads.

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National leaders to take part in forum on fighting AIDS

A forum featuring national leaders in the effort to combat AIDS/HIV will be held for area lawmakers and community organizations on Friday in the Community Action Organization of Erie County's Masten Resource Center, 1423 Fillmore Ave.

Individuals working in community- or faith-based organizations are invited to participate in a policy forum from 9 a.m. to noon. Area lawmakers or their representatives are invited to a legislative panel discussion from noon to 2 p.m.

The forum is sponsored by the Buffalo affiliate of the National Black Leadership Advisory Commission on AIDS and the CAO.

Athena Moore, director of public policy for the national commission, and the Rev. G. Sampson-Lee, a member of the commission's Policy Council, will lay out the policy and legislative directions being pursued to address the AIDS crisis.

The free forum includes a continental breakfast. To register, contact the CAO's Linda Williams at 881-5150, Ext. 4410, or by email at ldwilliams@caoec.org.

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HOME gets $28,000 grant to support housing center

Housing Opportunities Made Equal has received a $28,000 grant from the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo to support its Community Housing Center. In the past 12 years, the center has helped more than 3,500 families overcome discrimination and find rental housing.

The center's future was in doubt due to the loss of one of its funding sources, but the grant, along with grants from the Josephine Goodyear Foundation and HSBC Bank USA, will keep it afloat.