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The Lancaster and Niagara Falls school districts both fell short on planning for emergency situations, according to an audit released today by the State Comptroller’s Office. The comptroller urged both districts to augment their safety plan documentation process. In addition, Niagara Falls was told to identify a chief emergency officer. “Our plans and policies are so…

Local News

ALBANY – There was urgency in late January when lawmakers at the state Capitol pushed through a package of gun restrictions. It was a dire month for mass shootings around the nation, so Democrats in the Assembly and Senate moved swiftly to crack down on devices that make guns unload rounds more quickly, add new background check restrictions, block teachers and others fr…

Local News

ALBANY – Officials with cash-strapped Niagara Falls were gleeful when Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced that the state would advance the city $12.3 million to help it avoid a red ink budget during an ongoing casino revenue sharing dispute between the state and the Seneca Nation of Indians. Ten months later, an initial flow of that promise – $5 million – has just been trans…

Buffalo

It was the day Errington Renaud Jr. had been looking forward to for months, the start of a weeklong vacation in the Adirondacks with his girlfriend and her family. With the 22-year-old from Buffalo, his girlfriend and her sister in one car and her parents in another, they left Buffalo Saturday morning and headed for the mountains. But near Oneida, on the New York Sta…

Business

State health inspectors cited the Jennie B. Richmond Chaffee Nursing Home in Springville for causing “actual harm” by providing substandard care to a resident who died shortly after he was taken to a hospital emergency room last spring. The Department of Health did not say the nursing home caused the unidentified patient’s death, but it indicated there were delays in ca…

Local News

ALBANY – New York has become the first state in the nation to ban the declawing of cats, a route taken by some people to stop their cats from destroying furniture. The measure, which passed in June in both houses at the State Capitol, was signed into law Monday by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo. Its provisions took effect immediately on Monday. Though opposed by a veterinarian…

Local News

Western New Yorkers who drive on the 407, the cashless toll road that runs through Ontario near Toronto, get a bill later if they don't pay what they owe electronically. So what happens when Canadians drive through the cashless tolls at the Grand Island bridges without paying? Nothing. That's why some people on this side of the border – including those who fought …

Local News

A Grand Island man suspected in a string of burglaries and break-ins here four years ago was indicted Thursday by a grand jury for two 2018 bank robberies. Timothy L. Mulvey, 32, is charged with robbing the Northwest Savings Bank on Grand Island on June 27, 2018, and an M&T Bank in Niagara Falls on July 11, 2018, the U.S. Attorney's Office in Buffalo said. In both c…

Local News

A Buffalo man accused of fraudulently using someone else's identity for about 35 years has admitted to illegally collecting nearly $300,000 in disability payments over that time. Marvin Tucker, 74, pleaded guilty to felony grand larceny and misdemeanor offering a false instrument for filing, Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn said in a statement. Tucker's sc…

Local News

A man convicted in the 1980 murder of a Rockland County teenager will live in Buffalo following his release on parole, a move that angered two local lawmakers. Richard LaBarbera and another man were sentenced to 25 years to life for attacking 16-year-old Paula Bohovesky, who prosecutors say was sexually assaulted, beaten and fatally stabbed while walking home from a job…

Local News

ALBANY — The Seneca Nation is making preparations to open three sports betting lounges at its casinos in Western New York. But a key question remains: When? A day after a commercial casino in Schenectady became the first in the state to begin offering in-person sports betting to its patrons, the Seneca Nation on Wednesday — unlike two other New York tribes with gambl…

Local News

ALBANY – Signaling the controversy surrounding the bill, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo chose a Manhattan office building – instead of a farm upstate or on Long Island – to sign a law Wednesday providing expansive new employment rights for farm workers. The bill has been hailed by unions and Democrats in the Legislature for giving farm workers certain rights that have been long p…

Local News

ALBANY – It's an old Albany story: The greater one’s influence over the affairs of the New York State government, the greater one's ability to raise campaign cash from people and groups looking for access. But, seldom is the story so breathtakingly told in one fell swoop as witnessed during the first six months of 2019 with the flipping of State Senate control from Repu…

Local News

ALBANY – Legislation to raise the purchase age for tobacco and electronic cigarette products from 18 to 21 years old was signed into law Tuesday by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo. It takes effect in 120 days. The measure was given final approval in April in the Legislature with the urging of an unusual assortment of health and tobacco industry groups. They argued it will reduce s…

Education

State Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia, the former Sweet Home teacher who would go on to become New York’s top educator four years ago during a turbulent time for public schools, dropped a big surprise Monday when she announced she will resign in August. Elia, 70, made the announcement at a Board of Regents meeting in Albany, after submitting her letter of resignat…