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LOCAL NEWS BRIEFS

Time Warner Cable, MSG finalize agreement

It's official.

Time Warner Cable and MSG Media formally finalized the verbal agreement announced Friday and put it in writing, the cable company announced Monday.

Terms of the agreement were still not disclosed.

Officials with MSG, the regional sports network that has the exclusive rights to telecast Buffalo Sabres hockey games, said it was "pleased to announce that late Friday night the companies finalized a multiyear agreement."

Neither they nor Time Warner officials would not disclose the terms of the agreement.

The tentative agreement returned Sabres hockey to the airwaves for Time Warner subscribers in time for Friday night's shootout loss to Montreal. Time Warner customers will be able to watch tonight's game against the New York Islanders in the comfort of their homes.

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Water Authority to start flushing of mains early

The Erie County Water Authority will start its annual water-main flushing program earlier than usual this year.

Work gets under way today in the towns of Newstead, Alden, Marilla, Aurora and Orchard Park.

The flushing program, which normally begins in April, is starting early because of limited snowfall and above-normal temperatures. The program is a routine systematic flushing of all dead-end mains in the authority's distribution system, designed to improve water quality and service delivery.

Main flushing will be done Monday through Thursday and continue until fall, weather permitting. Customers who live in areas where the main flushing occurs may experience low pressure and discolored water. These conditions are temporary and will subside after the flushing is completed, Water Authority officials said.

If discoloration occurs, customers should run the cold water tap at the lowest point of their residence or business for a few minutes or until the water runs clear. Clothing should not be laundered if water is discolored, or staining could result. Water quality is not affected and is safe to drink during flushing. Customers with questions can call the authority at 684-0900.

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Squeaky Wheel gets $13,000 Baird grant

Squeaky Wheel received a $13,000 grant from the Cameron and Jane Baird Foundation to support techARTS for Girls, a computer literacy program for girls ages 9 to 14 that's designed to encourage girls' interest and confidence in technology through the arts.

The funds will be used to purchase portable iPads, allowing training that isn't limited by the availability of computers at the teaching site.

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Medical Center purchases robotic surgery system

NIAGARA FALLS -- Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center announced Monday that it has purchased a $1.7 million robotic surgery system.

The da Vinci Si unit is to be used by specially trained surgeons in minimally invasive operations, starting March 8.