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Few would dispute that this has been one of the worst winters in memory. Exception given to the Blizzard of ’77, of course, which will forever stand on its own.The bitter weather has affected everyone, but those residents along Buffalo Creek in West Seneca have been especially hard hit. An estimated 70 homes and more than two dozen vehicles suffered damage when an ice jam …

The proposed Transparent Airfares Act of 2014 should more properly be called the Murky Airfares Act. The bill, introduced this month in Congress, would allow airlines to mislead the public by advertising airfares without including the hefty taxes and fees.Consumer advocates complain that allowing the fees and taxes to be listed separately, later in the ticket selection pro…

Editorials

Here’s the latest from Buffalo’s bewildered school superintendent. Speaking late Thursday about a personnel matter, Pamela C. Brown, apparently with a straight face, observed that, “It has come to our attention that there are two individuals whose certifications are in question. Until those questions are resolved, I, as the superintendent, have determined that it is in the…

Editorials

Maybe the Buffalo School Board is learning something. At its meeting Wednesday night it backed away from an unexpected and frustrating plan to hang students out to dry. Again.Parents and students of the former Pinnacle Charter School had been promised that students would be kept together next school year in one of two new facilities that would open this fall as schools in …

Following the delayed recall of 1.6 million compact cars by General Motors Co., it has fallen to new Chief Executive Officer Mary Barra to quell public anxiety. So far, she’s doing a fair job.But that should not absolve the automaker of the need to come clean following revelations of complaints dating back to 2001 that a faulty ignition switch on some models could stop the…

Parents who allow their children to skip Common Core standardized testing are doing them a disservice.The tests have no bearing on a student’s grades, but it does help measure progress. Isn’t that something parents should want to know? Apparently, not all.As a recent News story outlined, more parents are pulling their children out of testing as a form of protest against wh…

Editorials

Welcome, visitors, to Buffalo, to spring and, perhaps, to a bit of snow. You’ve come to our city in its season of change. Yes, that means that soon enough there will be flowers and green grass and leafing trees, and after this winter, we can’t wait for it. But that’s not the change we’re talking about. You’re in Buffalo in the time of its rebirth. We’re glad to share it wi…

The Niagara County Sheriff’s Office has taken a bite out of welfare fraud, and for that taxpayers should be thankful.As reported in The News, Niagara County taxpayers saved more than $600,000 in overpayments in 2013. Then the department added a second welfare fraud investigator, which would easily pay for itself. Officials say adding a third would do the same.The county sh…

Editorials

Those who pine for the days when Congress could actually work – hold hearings, negotiate, bridge differences and act – have something to smile about today. In the Senate, because of the leadership of a New York Democrat and a Tennessee Republican, the Senate did those very things, breaking with a destructive pattern that has gripped Washington for years.With the prodding o…

What investigators know about the disappearance of Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 seems to change by the minute, as Malaysian leaders offer “facts” that are superseded by newer “facts.” But the fundamental fact is that the loss of the Boeing 777 represents an urgent matter with potentially disastrous implications. The search for the plane needs to be an all-out effort with …

Editorials

Hamburg School Board members continue to behave badly while seeming to ignore issues that are holding the district of 3,700 students back.It’s time for them to grow up.That’s pretty much what state Education Commissioner John B. King Jr. said in rejecting a petition to remove two Hamburg Central School Board members. King’s unusual public scolding came in a written decisio…

Editorials

The word carries negative connotations. When a neighborhood is “gentrified,” the immediate image is of people being forced out of their homes as values rise and taxes become unaffordable.The truth is, that can – and does – happen, but it’s a part of a larger truth, which is that virtually all events are double-edged swords. The other edge of this sword is that gentrificati…

In the end, the Legislature acted wisely. Despite the furor over the Common Core learning standards, despite a flawed system for appointing members of the state Board of Regents, despite the teachers unions’ manufactured nausea over evaluations, lawmakers last week reappointed all three Regents who wanted another term. The Regent who withdrew at the 11th hour was replaced.…

When the Valley Journals of Riverton, Utah, a suburb of Salt Lake City, wanted to know the time of the town’s 2012 Easter egg hunt, they couldn’t find out. The city barred the parks official from speaking to reporters without permission, and nothing, not even the Second Coming, would pry that information loose.What Valley Journals Managing Editor Linda Petersen experienced…

“I will also hold myself as president to a new standard of openness. … Let me say it as simply as I can: Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency.”– Barack Obama, January 2009…Well, not so much. President Obama not only has not lived up to his Inauguration Day pledge, he sets a poor example right in the White House, which seeks to control…