Highlights

by ANGELICA A. MORRISON

Mother of deceased holding center inmate India Cummings speaks out

Officials continue to examine the death of 27-year-old India Cummings, who had been in the Erie County Holding Center. A state medical review board says her death should be ruled a homicide, because of neglect. And the New York Attorney General has been asked to take the case, and says they’ll have an answer in a few weeks. Meanwhile, Cummings mother says she is waiting for justice.

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A Salute to The Fantasticks, and a review of Flyin' West at Studio Arena

Buffalo, NY – WBFO's Theatre Talk for 1/18/02:
Jim and Tony say farewell to The Fantasticks and review Flyin' West at Buffalo's Studio Arena Theatre.

Buffalo, NY – From Afghanistan to Zimbabwe and 186 points in between! It's the world from A to Z in an exhibit currently running at the Burchfield Penney Art Center. The Common Ground World Project, created by Buffalo born artist Neil Tetkowski, brings new meaning to the word international, by literally merging samples of earth from every corner of the world.

Buffalo, NY – The number of people out of work continues to climb in Buffalo-Niagara.

The State Labor Department is out with its monthly jobless numbers. In Buffalo-Niagara, the unemployment rate rose three-tenths of a point to 5.5 percent in December. Labor Analyst John Slenker says Buffalo, like the rest of the nation, is suffering from the recession. But he said it's not as severe as the last one ten years ago.

just buffalo literary center

Pulitzer-Prize winning Poet Lucille Clifton talks about her work in advance of a visit to Buffalo

Buffalo, NY – Buffalo and Erie County have received $1.35 million in federal funding to begin work toward a future regional water delivery.

Lackawanna, NY – Even beyond death, Father Nelson Baker will be helping children in Western New York. Lackawanna's Padre of the Poor - and candidate for sainthood - is the basis of a new educational program from the Catholic Diocese of Buffalo.

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.

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Love Canal 40 Years Later

Stories from the WBFO newsroom on the 40th anniversary of Love Canal

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NPR News

(Global Edition) From the BBC World Service … Greece exits its third bailout today, but not everyone is celebrating 10 years after a financial crisis brought the country to its knees. Then, in Venezuela, inflation could reach 1 million percent by the end of the year as residents deal with sky-high inflation and economic hardship. Today, the country is taking five zeros off its currency in an effort to alleviate some of the pain. Afterwards, efforts to reduce plastic pollution are underway in many parts of the globe, but in Australia, some groups have been experiencing bag rage.

Few Chinese citizens have credit cards or any sort of credit history. But the country has started incorporating more credit into its economy and culture, and the government is working on a way to measure creditworthiness for both businesses and individuals. Its plan? A social credit score. The idea is akin to the American FICO system in that it's a financial record of whether you paid your bills or traffic tickets.

Few Chinese citizens have credit cards or any sort of credit history. But the country has started incorporating more credit into its economy and culture, and the government is working on a way to measure creditworthiness for both businesses and individuals. Its plan? A social credit score. The idea is akin to the American FICO system in that it's a financial record of whether you paid your bills or traffic tickets.

Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson is accusing tech behemoth Facebook of engaging in housing discrimination, according to a complaint filed on Friday.

In it, HUD says the social media giant allows landlords and home sellers access to advertising tools that limit which prospective buyers or tenants can view certain online ads based on race, religion, sex, disability and other characteristics.

Michael Doody remembers some things about his Columbus, Ohio neighborhood in the 1990s:

"Gunshots, helicopters, thefts, smashed out windows, burglaries, robberies, assaults and murders."

In addition to the crime, roughly 50 percent of the children were living in poverty in this area, known as Southern Orchards.

During the mid-20th century, construction of an interstate through the middle of the community separated many of the neighborhood's majority black residents from job opportunities in downtown Columbus.

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Heritage Moments

Photo from “Review of Reviews and World’s Work,” 1890

Heritage Moments: Frederick Law Olmsted and the stroll that saved Niagara

Niagara Falls in the 1800s was an industrialist’s dreamland and a huckster’s paradise. Cheap waterpower abounded­ — all you had to do was build a channel to divert a small portion of the mighty Niagara past your mill, and you were all set. And an enterprising “entrepreneur” need only buy a small parcel of land with a view, erect a tall fence and charge visitors from far and wide exorbitant fees to get a glimpse of the thunderous cataract — the Eighth Wonder of the World, once you paid enough to see it.

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A Facebook Live panel discussion

Part of WBFO's Mental Health Initiative

Great Lakes Today on WBFO is funded in part by a grant from The Joy Family Foundation.