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Erie County

A local chief financial officer and engineer with no political background, no history of campaign contributions and no history of prior public employment applied to be the new executive director for the Erie County Water Authority. And in a departure from past practice, commissioners gave him the job. H. John Mye III, an Amherst resident, was the only local candidate…

Buffalo

A troubled Delaware Avenue nursing home has boarded up its doors after transferring the last of its residents to other facilities in the city, according to the facility’s state-appointed receiver. The closing of Emerald South Nursing and Rehabilitation Center on Wednesday came four weeks earlier than the projected Jan. 31 closing, according to an official with Grand Hea…

Business

A state senator from Niagara County announced Thursday he is proposing a package of bills to protect nursing home residents and improve the care they receive in facilities across the state. State Sen. Rob Ortt, R-North Tonawanda, said that, while he was prompted into action by a series of stories published by The Buffalo News about abuses at local nursing homes, the bil…

Buffalo

How can you find out if a nursing home in New York State is good or bad? There are a number of ways. There is a lot of information about New York's 619 nursing homes on the state Department of Health website and the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services' Nursing Home Compare website at medicare.gov/NursingHomeCompare. Each website provides details on how…

Erie County

Julie Marinaro sympathizes with Nicholas H. Belsito, the Bills fan who was roughed up when arrested outside New Era Field last December. Like Belsito, Marinaro was charged with a crime after disrespecting Erie County Sheriff's Deputy Kenneth P. Achtyl. He stopped her vehicle in Chestnut Ridge Park in 2014, then arrested her in front of her children and a nanny when t…

Buffalo

The call from the hospital jolted Henry Kostrzewa's sister. Erie County Medical Center was going to discharge the 52-year-old disabled welder and she needed to help him pick a nursing home. The clock was ticking. Kostrzewa had been informed he could end up personally responsible for his hospital bills because he had been "medically cleared" to move into a nursing hom…

Business

A lender for a Town of Tonawanda apartment complex whose owner is at the center of a federal mortgage fraud investigation wants to foreclose on the property after an auditor determined it also received false information. SteepRock Capital, in court documents, called loans for Raintree Island Apartments "toxic" because of the criminal case and accused the owners of provi…

Watchdog

It’s what you don’t see, smell or hear that separates Elderwood at Lancaster from poorly run nursing homes. There are no pungent odors from incontinence that often are a telltale sign in low-rated nursing homes. The air smells clean. The floors shine. There is no undercurrent of tension. At short-staffed nursing homes, conversations between staff and residents someti…

Buffalo

Patricia Myers suspected the staff at the Buffalo nursing home was not feeding her bedridden husband. When she shaved him, he sometimes tried to eat the shaving cream. "Are you hungry?" she asked. Paralyzed from a degenerative neurological disease, Larry K. Myers managed to yell one of the few words he could still speak: "Yeah!" His wife said she complained rep…

Buffalo

Understaffing is a common problem in many of the worst-rated nursing homes in Western New York. Residents in these facilities often must wait long periods to be taken to the bathroom, have their diapers changed or receive assistance in being fed, according to their relatives. A proposed state bill would require nursing homes and hospitals to maintain specific minimum…

Buffalo

New York State gave licenses to operate at least 10 Buffalo area nursing homes in the last decade to new owners who had been fined for providing poor care to residents at other nursing homes. Advocates for nursing home residents say the state must do more to prevent nursing home owners providing low-quality care from buying more long-term care facilities. "It is a re…

Buffalo

A monitor attached to Jameir Benn’s toe should have alerted staff in a Buffalo nursing home that he had stopped breathing. But on that February 2015 evening, only one worker in HighPointe on Michigan's pediatric unit was wearing a pager, and he did not respond to the urgent alert. When a nurse returned to Jameir’s room more than an hour later, the 16-month-old boy had c…

Watchdog

A deceased former Buffalo Diocese priest is accused of pointing a gun at the head of a teenage boy he was molesting in the mid-1980s. The sexual abuses are alleged to have happened after Buffalo Diocese officials were told the Rev. Michael R. Freeman had molested other boys and young men, but kept him in ministry. Freeman was serving as associate pastor at St. Mary p…

Business

Death came suddenly for Arturo Bucci. The 85-year-old retired machinist was in his motorized wheelchair when it toppled more than 12 feet down a creek embankment. The spill left him face down in the water outside an East Aurora nursing home. For Donna Bantle, death came more slowly. Her daughter noticed a large, ugly bedsore on Bantle’s back when she was a resident at A…