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LOCAL NEWS BRIEFS

Brockovitch criticizes handling of toxic spill

Environmental activist Erin Brockovitch said Thursday that federal officials "dropped the ball" in dealing with a 1971 train wreck that spilled toxic chemicals in Le Roy. Brockovitch investigated the spill recently as a possible cause of a mysterious illness that has stricken 18 Le Roy teens.

In a harshly critical statement, Brockovitch declared that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency did not know that 235 barrels of the industrial solvent trichloroethene (TCE) were still sitting 40 years later at the site of the derailment, 3 1/2 miles from Le Roy Central High School.

"The EPA clearly dropped the ball on the largest TCE Superfund site in the country," Brockovitch said, "and their press release today is a feeble attempt to gloss over their abject failure in Le Roy. The Lehigh Valley Railroad derailment in 1971 was not a small event -- it was a massive spill and the EPA had a responsibility to ensure that the polluter clean up the site, and remove the drums within 30 days of being filled. That never happened. We actually alerted the EPA that the rotting barrels were still there in Le Roy. They had no idea."

The barrels are being removed this week and taken to a Maryland waste dump.

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Workshop set for businesses on Defense Logistics bidding

LITTLE VALLEY -- The Cattaraugus County Procurement Technical Assistance Center will present a workshop on the Defense Logistics Agency Internet bid board system in two sessions Monday at the County Center, 303 Court St.

The Defense Logistics Agency is the U.S. Department of Defense's largest support agency, providing worldwide logistics support to America's military services and several civilian agencies and foreign countries.

The workshops held from 9 to 11 a.m. and 1 to 3 p.m. in the Emergency Services Conference Room in the basement of the County Center. They will provide information about how the agency buys, how to submit a proposal and related matters.

The county program provides one-on-one consulting and training to assist businesses with marketing goods or services to governments. All businesses located in Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua and Wyoming counties are eligible for the services. Due to federal funding, no business is turned away, program sponsors said.

For more information visit www.ccptac.org, or call program manager Joe Williams at 938-2331.

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New Era designs caps to aid Roswell Park research

A series of three specially designed New Era caps have been introduced to benefit research and patient support programs at Roswell Park Cancer Institute.

The caps -- entitled Believe, Your Cancer Cure and Courage -- are priced at $17.99 and are available atwww.NewEraCap.com.

"Finding a cancer cure is a cause that is very important to New Era," says company CEO Christopher Koch. "Our designers worked hard to create a collection that is not only empowering, but also brings hope to those battling cancer and their families."