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Tim Horton's facing backlash in Ontario over minimum wage cutbacks

Trouble is brewing for iconic Canadian coffee and doughnut chain Tim Horton’s. It’s over Ontario’s increase to the minimum wage. The chain has become the target of a public and labor backlash in the fight against the wage increase.

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Albany, NY – The State Legislature has approved a multi-billion-dollar health care plan for New York. In part, the legislation is designed to boost salaries for nurses, home health care aides and others in the health care industry. It will be partially financed by another increase in the state's cigarette tax.

Governor Pataki and legislative leaders announced they had reached a bipartisan agreement on the plan Tuesday just as the union representing health care workers was holding a rally in Albany in support of it.

Buffalo, NY – The Erie County Industrial Development Agency has made permanent the interim appointments of its two leaders. The action was taken Wednesday at the agency's monthly board meeting.

Thomas Kucharski will serve as the agency's president and James Allen as its executive director.

Buffalo, NY – Members of the Buffalo firefighters union received important information this week from their colleagues in Rochester. It basically warns against the implementation of a "Quint/Midi" fire apparatus system in Buffalo.

Buffalo Firefighters Local 282 president Anthony Hynes shared a letter with WBFO News that he received Monday from the president of the Rochester firefighters union.

Buffalo, NY – Adelphia has selected the nationally-recognized architectural firm of Hellmuth Obata & Kassabaum, or HOK, to design its waterfront office complex. Wendel Duchscherer of Amherst will serve as the local partner.

Adelphia CEO Tim Rigas says he envisions a 20 to 25 story building. Various Adelphia offices as well as its Empire Sports cable network will be housed there. It's estimated as many as 1,000 employees will work in the complex.

Buffalo, NY – An update was provided Tuesday on initiatives established to create job growth and new investment in the region. The Buffalo Niagara Partnership released a second quarterly report on Buffalo Niagara NOW.

Albany, NY – Legislative leaders and Governor Pataki say they have a deal on a multi-billion dollar health care plan. In part, the legislation is designed to boost salaries for health care workers.

The plan is expected to be approved by the State Senate and Assembly by the end of the day Tuesday.

Buffalo, NY – Buffalo Mayor Anthony Masiello is planning more employee layoffs to close part of the remaining $7 million gap in this year's city budget.

Masiello is not disclosing the number of layoffs he's planning. But they would affect temporary and provisional employees in Buffalo, many of whom work in the city's public works, parks and streets departments.

The city laid off 75 employees in November.

Buffalo, NY – I live in the Parkside neighborhood of Buffalo, where there have been recent news reports of house break-ins. The Parkside Community Association suggested that a dog may be the best burglar prevention device. My kids really want a dog. I’m not so sure. When I was young, my next door neighbors had a dog...

Buffalo, NY – The Alleyway Theatre Company got a belated Christmas present. The company was recently awarded a $50,000 grant from the New York State Council on the Arts for renovations of its new Upper West Arts Center on Richmond Avenue.

Buffalo Philharmonic Welcomes Flutist Carol Wincenc

Buffalo, NY – A native Western New Yorker returns to perform and make a recording with the Buffalo Philharmonic. Good morning. I'm Bill Raffel with Music Notes.

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NPR News

Keith Jackson was one of sports' great voices, and one of its most popular play-by-play announcers. He was considered the voice of college football by several generations or watchers.

Jackson died Friday. He was 89.

He began calling college football games for ABC Sports when it acquired the broadcast rights for NCAA football in 1966.

He also worked NFL and NBA games, World Series, Winter and Summer Olympics and auto racing. For the job, he traveled to 31 countries for ABC's Wide World of Sports.

Dolores O'Riordan of the Irish rock band The Cranberries died on Monday at 46. The vocalist became internationally known in '90s with her band's hits such as "Linger," "Dreams" and "Zombie." Jim Sullivan a former, longtime music critic for The Boston Globe, remembers her life, music and legacy.

In and around the coastal community of Montecito, the death toll from mudslides has climbed to 20 people, as search and rescue operations continue. Cleaning up and re-opening the 101 freeway, a vital corridor for the state, cannot move forward until the lifesaving mission has ended. The new tragedy adds new layers of uncertainty to families and businesses that were already facing long recovery from last month’s wildfires.

States are crafting new Medicaid policies, now that the feds have said they can require people to work in order to qualify for coverage.  That will likely mean more customer churn, people moving in and out of Medicaid programs as their employment status changes, or they learn to comply with new mandatory premiums. That means patients’ treatment could be interrupted, leading to more costs as they catch up on care when they qualify again. And that insurers could have a harder time predicting their costs or measuring their success.

The Childrens Health Insurance Program is healthcare for kids whose parents make too much to qualify for Medicaid, but not enough to afford private healthcare. If Congress doesn't reauthorize it, the program starts to run out of funding on Friday, leaving up to nine million children without coverage. Doctors are urging parents to fill all prescriptions, and to plan their budgets for new, additional costs.

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Heritage Moments

Ilyas Ahmed/AMISOM

Heritage Moments: From a cubicle on Swan Street to the presidency of Somalia

Three world leaders have called Western New York their home. The first two, the American presidents Millard Fillmore and Grover Cleveland, are well known to people living in the region. The third is less celebrated here.

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