Business/Economy

The WBFO Business & Economy News Desk is funded by The M&T Charitable Foundation.

NYS Governor's Office

With the passage of the state budget, lawmakers have approved the Buffalo Billion II, the second wave of Gov. Andrew Cuomo's economic development plan for Western New York.  The $400 million in state dollars will help boost some high-profile projects. But there are those who believe the program's lack of transparency makes it vulnerable to corruption.


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Buffalo's Common Council is cracking down on bad delis. If owners don't cooperate with residents, they might lose their city licenses.

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A Buffalo charter school hopes it will get the green light  Monday evening to move forward with an $11 million expansion project on its North Buffalo campus.


Darien Lake

A Missouri-based Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) called EPR Properties has announced the purchase of Darien Lake Theme and Waterpark Resort.

Chris Caya/WBFO News

Faced with changing church-going habits, some houses of worship are branching out to maintain their presence in the community. Some are renting space, while others are tackling economic development. 

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Five local Payless stores will be closing, as the shoe chain is the latest to chafe financially because of the continuing consumer shift from in-store shopping to online retailing.

Terrace at Delaware Park eatery opens in Marcy Casino

Mar 31, 2017
Michael Mroziak, WBFO

A new privately-run restaurant and bar is open for business inside the Marcy Casino in Buffalo's Delaware Park. The restaurant's partners, along with the mayor and leader of the Olmsted park system's administration gathered to celebrate the public-private partnership.


U.S. Embassy & Consulates in Canada

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne says she hopes New York State legislators will vote against Buy American provisions in their budget and warns that if they do not, she will consider "all options" in response.

Michael Mroziak, WBFO

Guests at one downtown Buffalo hotel may now find some of their room service requests fulfilled by a short, silver butler who doesn't work for tips. The Westin Buffalo on Thursday formally introduced what managers say is the first robot butler to be utilized in any hotel in New York State.


While Governor Andrew Cuomo has hailed his administration's multi-billion dollar economic development investment in Upstate New York, the number of jobs produced by the effort sits well below national averages. That's part of the findings from a series of reports led by Investigative Post. Editor Jim Heaney discussed the series with WBFO.


Wegmans

There are some changes in the executive ranks at Wegmans.

AAA of Western & Central New York

If you’re planning to embark on a road trip this summer, be prepared to pay more at the pump.

rendering from BNHT Architects

A vacant building in a struggling area will be getting a makeover, after approval from the city Planning Board. The $5 million project at Jewett Avenue and Halbert looks to build upon the successful development of the nearby Tri-Main Center.


New York plans to boost broadband infrastructure

Mar 24, 2017

The New York is looking to bridge the digital divide by bringing broadband access to every household in the Empire State by the end of next year. It would be the first state in the country to pull that off. Many poor and rural areas lack broadband. 

Click the audio player above to hear the full story.

Karen DeWitt

Proponents of raising taxes on New York’s wealthiest say they have a new impetus to increase the state’s revenue — the continued bad news from Washington about deep federal cuts to health care and other areas.


WBFO's Mike Desmond

Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz is blasting the effects of proposed Trump Administration budget cuts on county spending and programs, from helping kids with lead poisoning to checking summer water quality at beaches. He calls the cuts "cold-hearted callousness" because of their effect on the average citizen.

Google Maps

Niagara Falls city government wants to make it a little easier for arriving tourists to get to some prime tourist attractions.

U.S. Embassy & Consulates in Canada

Two Ontario cabinet ministers are heading to New York Tuesday to urge legislators to exempt Canada from a Buy American policy it plans to introduce.

Mike Desmond/WBFO News

The state treasury has  $14.5 billion of someone else's money, potentially your money. State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli is trying to give it back.


via National Public Radio

The Internal Revenue Service is extending deadlines to file business income tax returns for small businesses affected by wind and snow storms in the state.

NBA's D-League partners with Gatorade

Mar 14, 2017
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Andy Uhler

The NBA Developmental League won’t be called the D-League next season. It’s going to be the “G” league, because Gatorade bought the naming rights. The NBA hopes Gatorade will throw its brand behind marketing and that more people will watch.

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Sam Beard

Journalists in search of supporters of the far right Dutch politician Geert Wilders gravitate toward the small lakeside town of Volendam, northeast of Amsterdam. The town, once a major fishing port and now a flourishing tourist attraction, is a Wilders stronghold.

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Kai Ryssdal

Tom Scocca has made it his personal mission to bring truth to the internet when it comes to caramelizing onions. Frustrated by recipes grossly understating the amount of time necessary for onions to turn brown and soft in a pan, he wrote a blog post for Slate in 2012 to correct the record.

Who wins and loses under the GOP’s health care proposal?

Mar 14, 2017
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Kim Adams and D Gorenstein

Nearly 24 million people will lose their health insurance coverage under the House GOP plan to replace Obamacare, the Congressional Budget Office has estimated. Republicans have defended the plan, with House Speaker Paul Ryan arguing that it’s about “giving people more choices and better access to a plan they want and can afford.” So who exactly would benefit from this reform?

For the sixth time since 2000, the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament comes to Buffalo this week. The experience has helped tourism officials better plan for the crush of visitors, says Jim Fink of Business First. During WBFO's Press Pass, Fink talks about the tournament and the many development projects that are emerging in some long-forgotten parts of Buffalo.


The Netherlands' Donald Trump?

Mar 14, 2017
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Sam Beard

First there was Brexit. Then there was Trump's presidential victory. Where next for the populist, anti-establishment wave that was in full flood last year? Has it petered out or is it about to wash up on mainland Europe? The first test will be this Wednesday when the Dutch hold a general election, and all eyes will be on one of the front-runners, Geert Wilders, leader of a far-right, anti-Islam, anti-immigration and anti-European Union party.

“I support Geert, and so do many of my parishioners," Pastor Henk-Jan Prosman told Marketplace.

David Kelly, chief global strategist at JPMorgan Funds, joins us to discuss the economic impact of the GOP's new health care proposal and how seasonal changes can affect the government's monthly jobs report. Next, we'll look at a new survey that finds 40 percent of colleges and universities have seen a drop in international applicants, and then explore the economic factors driving the upcoming Dutch election. 

For a while now, universities and colleges have been concerned about international applicants and whether they’d be scared off by the politics surrounding immigration to the U.S. Now we have some signs those fears are founded. A new survey of about 250 schools finds about 40 percent of them have seen international applicant numbers drop this year. 

Click the audio player above to hear the full story. 

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Andy Uhler

Puerto Rico's financial oversight board was a central part of last year’s PROMESA bill, a law passed in the U.S. Congress that allowed the commonwealth to avoid defaulting on billions of dollars in bond payments for a time. The board's revised plan, announced Monday, calls for austerity measures and big cuts in public spending.

03/14/17: Going from a science lab to Capitol Hill

Mar 14, 2017
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Marketplace

Intel is entering the self-driving game by purchasing chipmaker Mobileye for $15 billion. Johana Bhuiyan of Recode explains why big companies are acquiring other businesses, instead of creating their own products. Next, we'll talk about Uber's court loss in London over a requirement that all drivers have to take an English-language test. And finally, we'll look at why the nonprofit 314 Action wants to helping scientists run for office.

 

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