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Robert J. McCarthy

Robert McCarthy joined The Buffalo News in 1982 and has been political reporter since 1992. A native of Schenectady, he graduated from St. Bonaventure University.


Some of Buffalo's transit police officers are complaining that their job description should carry an additional title -- chauffeur.Besides patrolling the subway or Greater Buffalo International Airport, they say their job also involves driving Alfred H. Savage, executive director of the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority.Some NFTA police also say they have chau…

Shooters faces a good chance of losing its NFTA lease because the waterfront restaurant's owners apparently will miss a June 1 deadline to build and operate an adjacent marina, NFTA officials said today.Several Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority officials said they are pessimistic about Lakefront Pier Restaurant Inc.'s ability to develop the Seaway Piers site i…

Three Western New York communities were awarded funds from the state Department of Economic Development to develop facilities and programs related to the Erie Canal.State officials were unavailable to comment on the grants, but the leaders of the town and city of Tonawanda and the City of Lockport were ecstatic about receiving a total of $34,000 instate money to enhan…

State Department of Transportation officials confirmed today that the first stage of the area's triple whammy for commuters begins March 1 when the outbound lanes of the Skyway will close until about November.In explaining details of the Skyway closing, officials said it will be followed by the closing of the outbound Kensington Expressway on March 15 and then partial…

Fewer travelers used Greater Buffalo International Airport last year than at any point since 1982, according to statistics just released by airport officials.Robert A. Stone, Buffalo International's general manager, said the airport reported a 7.1 percent drop in passenger totals in 1989 to the third-lowest total of the 1980s.About 3.3 million passengers landed and de…

NFTA revives idea of closing garage in FallsA proposal to close the NFTA's Niagara Falls bus garage resurfaced today at the agency's budget review session.Commissioner James M. Wadsworth said he thinks the plan that caused bitter divisions among NFTA commissioners last year should be reviewed because of the projected savings of up to $750,000 per year."If we are looking …

A proposal to close the NFTA's Niagara Falls bus garage resurfaced today at the agency's budget review session.Commissioner James M. Wadsworth said he thinks the plan that caused bitter divisions among NFTA commissioners last year should be reviewed because of the projected savings of up to $750,000 per year."If we are looking at this budget in a close way, we ought t…

The owner of a popular Allentown night spot testified today that State Liquor Authority charges of serving beer to minors were fabricated by people with a vendetta against his establishment.Bennet Kell, owner of Mulligan's Brick Bar on Allen Street, told an SLA hearing that he believes an Allentown woman who claimed she was served beer as a minor last April 8 was neve…

Close associates of Buffalo transit chief Alfred H. Savage are urging him to turn down an offer to lead the Chicago Transit Authority and to remain in Western New York.But those same associates acknowledged Wednesday they will not block Savage's departure if he is offered the job and decides he wants to head the nation's second largest transit system -- even if it mea…

Developer Paul L. Snyder has run into another roadblock in his efforts to continue his parking operations near Greater Buffalo International Airport.The Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority's board of commissioners today again tabled an agreement reached between Snyder and authority staff to allow Snyder's Airpark Inc. vehicles to shuttle parking customers on and…

Buffalo transit chief Alfred H. Savage said Tuesday he has received no offer from the Chicago Transit Authority after his Monday interview for the agency's top post, but Chicago sources still list him as a leading candidate."I don't have an offer, nor have I made them a proposal," Savage said.But several sources say Savage is one of three finalists and made strong imp…

Buffalo transit chief Alfred H. Savage was interviewed by Chicago Transit Authority officials Monday and is one of three finalists to lead the agency, according to a member of the agency's board of directors.Milton Holzman, a labor leader serving on the authority's board, said Savage made a favorable impression during his visit."I like him. I'm very impressed with him…

Ask the gang on the No. 5 Niagara in front of Hutchinson Central Technical High School about their rickety, old Metro bus, and they don't hesitate to yell back their answer."We want a new one," they reply together.That's a feeling shared by many people who ride the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority's aging fleet of 427 buses, as well as those who supervise and…

They've become easy targets in recent years -- the agencies everyone blames for those exasperating Peace Bridge backups.From motorists to truckers to government officials, Customs and Immigration seem to take the heat for problems at the Peace Bridge."A new bridge isn't the answer; they have to open up more booths," said one Canadian truck driver this week as he waite…

Mulligan's Brick Bar, the popular Allentown night spot, is once again in trouble with the State Liquor Authority.Owner Bennet Kell appeared before an SLA administrative law judge today to answer charges that a Mulligan's bouncer assaulted a patron and that a minor was served beer. Both incidents are alleged to have occurred last April.Testimony by defense witnesses in…