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WASHINGTON – House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made clear Sunday that one of Rep. Brian Higgins' top priorities – a massive infusion of federal funding to rebuild America – is one of her top priorities, too. Pelosi spoke at a National Governors Association event with New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo. The two longtime politicians made no mention of the top Washington issues of las…

Who would ever expect it? The 27th Congressional District commanding statewide – maybe national – attention in 2020? The eight-county swath formerly represented by Chris Collins remains deep red turf – no muss, no fuss for the GOP. But Collins’ legal troubles opened the doors to a parade of Republicans eager to succeed him, and a free-for-all that can only delight Democ…

Local News

ALBANY – State lawmakers, upset about what they say are inhumane conditions at commercial dog and cat breeding operations, have devised a plan of attack: go after the middleman. It turns out, though, that consumers are largely ahead of them. The lawmakers’ targets – pet shops – have become a fading source for those wanting to purchase dogs and cats. Animal lovers …

Local News

Buffalo area supporters of Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders are holding a fundraising concert Sunday evening at Milkie's Elmwood Lounge, 522 Elmwood Ave. Local musicians Laura Kerrigan, Justin DeCarlo and Michael Farrow are scheduled to perform. The show starts at 6 p.m. The fundraiser comes on the heels of  the Vermont senator's strong showing in …

Buffalo

From Ange Coniglio's earliest West Side memories, Canada never felt like another country. Born in 1936, he grew up at West Avenue and Breckenridge Street, his front door a few minutes away from the Niagara River and the childhood pull of all the mysteries on the other side. He was only 7 when his dad was killed by a hit-and-run driver at West Ferry and Niagara streets. …

Crime

Sherman Price looked confused about what was going on as he sat handcuffed in Cheektowaga Town Court on Wednesday. He wasn't the only one. In a new era of criminal justice reform in New York where people arrested on misdemeanors and low-level felonies are supposed to be freed on appearance tickets, he was about to get sent to jail. The 44-year-old man was arrested…

Local News

WASHINGTON — Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Friday tried pinning New York's trusted travel debacle on Rep. Tom Reed and one of his Republican colleagues from Long Island. But Reed, a Corning Republican, was having none of it. Kenneth T. Cuccinelli, the acting deputy secretary of Homeland Security, got the tussle started a day earlier when he referenced Reed and Rep. Lee Zel…

Local News

WASHINGTON – The governor of New York says the Trump administration is engaging in "extortion" by blocking state residents from enrolling in federal trusted traveler programs. The federal government says New York state is endangering public safety by blocking Department of Homeland Security officials from seeing state driving records. And according to customs agents,…

Local News

New York State plans to sue the federal government in hopes of reversing the Department of Homeland Security policy blocking New Yorkers from applying for or renewing their memberships in trusted traveler programs, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced Friday. "We believe this was arbitrary and capricious," Cuomo said at a press event in New York City. "We believe it's illegal…

Local News

A slow-moving disaster is set to unfold along the U.S.-Canadian border in the wake of a new Trump administration policy that will, over five years, block all New Yorkers from using trusted traveler programs that have eased cross-border journeys for years. At least that's what people who know the border well think. "It's literally a killer for the border," Ron Rienas,…

Erie County

Erie County Democrats are backing John J. Flynn for the District Attorney's Office – again. The executive committee of the county's Democratic Party endorsed Flynn on Thursday, according to a release from the organization. The decision of Democratic leaders repeated support for Flynn, a UB Law School graduate, that had previously been given in his prior election. …

Local News

Presidential campaigns beckon in New Hampshire this weekend, and much of Western New York’s Democratic establishment is answering the call. Local supporters of Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders and other presidential candidates are heading east for the nation’s most intense current politics as Democrats compete in the New Hampshire primary for the right to fac…

Local News

The Trump administration changed the rules for cross-border travel late Wednesday when it stopped taking applications from New Yorkers for trusted traveler programs such as NEXUS and Global Entry. But the new Department of Homeland Security policy also left plenty of questions to be answered. Here's a look at some of those key questions and what we know about the answer…

Local News

ALBANY – State officials are standing behind a provision in the state’s Green Light law that has led the federal government to restrict “trusted traveler” programs nearly 200,000 New Yorkers use when traveling internationally. The federal decision to block new enrollment, as well as re-enrollment, in Global Entry, NEXUS and other programs designed to more efficiently mo…

Crime

A self-proclaimed Lockport white supremacist said he defied Cheektowaga police after they charged him with littering for tossing Racial Nationalist Party of America literature onto lawns and driveways. Karl Hand said he was so upset over the ticket that he returned to Cheektowaga, before his trial last November, and distributed more of the literature. "I called it my…