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July 22, 2018

Corning GlassBarge fires up N.T. on tour of Erie Canal

Residents of the Twin Cities on Wednesday stepped onto a barge on the Erie Canal and learned about the art and science of glass and its role in the history of New York State.

“In 1868, the Brooklyn Flint Glass Company relocated to Corning N.Y., via the New York Waterways, and evolved into the company that is today known as Corning Inc.

To honor the 150th anniversary of this journey, the Corning Museum of Glass launched GlassBarge—a 30’ x 80’ canal barge equipped with its patented all-electric glassmaking equipment— in Brooklyn Bridge Park on May 17.

GlassBarge travelled north on the Hudson, then westward along the [...]

 
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February 28, 2018

What the Town of Wheatfield just did, the entire county should be doing, too

A casual observer might not have called it triumphal or even worthy of comment, but for governmental observers and watchdogs several important things took place Monday at Wheatfield’s town board meeting.

Department heads: Paul Siegmann of the Highway Department, Rich Donner of Water & Sewer, Mike Klock (above photo) from inspection, Assessor Bridget Grawe. Nearly all of them were present Monday.

But that’s not the new part. For some time now, Wheatfield has been leading the county’s major municipalities in having department heads speak regularly at council meetings.

This time, though, instead of remaining [...]

 
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February 13, 2017

Mumblers, whisperers need to turn up the volume at municipal meetings

It’s the most basic level of transparency.

If you’re an elected city councillor, department head, other city official or member of the community and have something to say at a governmental public meeting, it stands to reason we — the people — need to hear it.

I cover city council and town board meetings in Niagara Falls, Lockport, Wheatfield and North Tonawanda, and I can tell you this is something that afflicts all of them to one degree or another.

Of course, I hold the last group — members of the community — least accountable because they are generally not professionals when it comes to communication nor do we really [...]

 
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August 18, 2016

Grand Island Tolls-removal law missing the point

Don’t think of them as bridges. Think of it as just another part of the I-190. How else are you going to get from Buffalo to Niagara Falls relatively quickly without driving through residential areas?

If the effort to remove the Grand Island tolls stumbles yet again, it might be because the proposed law doesn’t accurately describe what the tolls inflict on the Buffalo-Niagara region.

Traveling from Buffalo to Niagara Falls using the I-190 there is simply no other reasonable way to get from there to here without crossing Grand Island.

The vast majority of motorists traversing either of the Grand Island [...]

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