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Jury awards North Tonawanda Elks $2.2 million in lawsuit over fire

The North Tonawanda Elks Lodge was awarded $2.2 million this week by a State Supreme Court jury in Lockport after a three-week trial to determine damages from a fire that destroyed the Elks building eight hours after a new natural gas boiler was installed.

The Elks sued Reimer Heating and Air Conditioning of the Town of Tonawanda after the Dec. 10, 2011, blaze in the 90-year-old building at 21 Main St., North Tonawanda. Court papers said that Reimer's attorneys admitted the company was responsible for the fire, which started in the room where a Reimer crew placed the boiler on a wooden floor.

The jury award of $3.65 million plus interest for the building, its contents and demolition costs was reduced because of depreciation and insurance payments the Elks received.

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