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LOCAL NEWS BRIEFS

Sheriff's Santa Program assists 26 families

LITTLE VALLEY -- The eighth annual Cattaraugus County Sheriff's Office Santa Program provided for 26 families this holiday season, said Deputy Brian Keis, program director.

Partnering agencies raise funds and refer less-fortunate county families to the program. Students and staff from Salamanca Middle School were elves and wrapped gifts as well as holding a food drive.

The program will hold fundraising events throughout next year. To contribute, contact Sheriff Timothy Whitcomb at 938-9191, Ext. 2247, or Keis at Ext. 2899.

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Indiana can't confirm cash offer to Unifrax

NIAGARA FALLS -- Assemblyman John D. Ceretto said Wednesday that a Freedom of Information request he sent to Indiana didn't confirm New York State officials' story that they had to give a Niagara Falls company money to keep it from moving to the Hoosier State.

Ceretto, R-Lewiston, is unhappy that Empire State Development Corp. gave Unifrax $700,000 in October to move its headquarters, and 96 jobs, from Niagara Falls to the Town of Tonawanda.

He said the Indiana Economic Development Corp. responded to his request for information by saying it has "no records containing the terms of a final offer of public financial resources to Unifrax."

"This is not a small issue to me, or to Niagara Falls, and at the end of the day we need to get to the bottom of this issue," Ceretto wrote in a letter to Empire State Development President and CEO Kenneth Adams.

Unifrax makes high-temperature insulation products.

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'Lil Family Ball Drop will be held Saturday

WILSON -- The 'Lil Family Ball Drop is slated for 7 to 9 p.m. Saturday at Wilson Fire Company No. 1, 250 Young St.

This free event is sponsored by the Wilson Business and Professional Association. It features music by DJ eMJay and singalong with the mic, hats, noise-makers and balloons.

Food and beverages are available for purchase from area businesses. Festivities take place inside the fire hall, but the ball drop takes place in the parking lot at 9 p.m.

The adults return for the official New Year's Eve ball drop at the same site at midnight, a longtime Wilson tradition.

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One World Tribe to head Three Kings Day event

Music lovers in Western New York may want to celebrate Three Kings Day this year with a little world beat sound and dance -- and they will have the opportunity at Albright-Knox Art Gallery, 1285 Elmwood Ave.

The music and dance group One World Tribe will present a free concert at the Elmwood Avenue gallery from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Jan. 6.

The concert is a collaboration between the art gallery and Young Audiences of Western New York, a nonprofit arts organization that promotes the arts and culturals in school-age populations in the region.