Brian Higgins

House approves naming federal courthouse for Jackson

Jul 24, 2012
File photo

The House of Representatives has voted in favor of Buffalo's new Federal Courthouse for Robert H. Jackson, highlighting one of the more remarkable legal careers in the nation's history.

The measure now goes to the Senate, which is expected to follow suit.

Jackson was educated in Chautauqua County schools in Frewsburg and Jamestown and practiced law in Buffalo. Though he never graduated from law school, Franklin Roosevelt appointed Jackson as U.S. Attorney General in 1940 and later named him to the Supreme Court.

Bills block NFL's new blackout policy

Jul 13, 2012

The Buffalo Bills will buck a new league trend by continuing to mandate that Ralph Wilson Stadium be sold out before allowing the region to watch broadcasts of home games.

The NFL is now allowing its franchises to follow an eased blackout policy requiring at least 85 percent of stadium seats to be sold to lift the blackout. But the Bills say the change doesn't make financial sense for the small-market team.

Officials push for pre-screening at Peace Bridge

Jul 9, 2012
File Photo / WBFO News

A decision on whether the Peace Bridge will be the site of a pilot program for easing congestion at northern border crossings could be announced in about 60 days. 

In a written statement, U.S. Senator Charles Schumer said Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano is "on board with the plan."  Governor Andrew Cuomo is also urging Napolitano to choose the Peace Bridge.  

WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

Blackouts may be a thing of the past for television-viewing fans of the Buffalo Bills. A local congressman and two fan groups applauded the news in front of Ralph Wilson Stadium Monday.

The Wall Street Journal reports that team owners have agreed that games could be televised in local markets if only 85-percent of the seats are filled.

Improvements coming to Allen Street neighborhood

Jun 26, 2012
Chris Caya WBFO/AM 970

The push is on to spruce-up the neighborhood where the new University at Buffalo medical school will be opening in about four years.  

The area is being called the 'Western Gateway' to the Buffalo-Niagara Medical Campus. With construction of the new medical school expected to get underway soon,  Rep. Brian Higgins, Mayor Byron Brown and other leaders are working to build support for the Allen Street Improvement Project. 

BNMC President and CEO Matt Enstice says the campus's workforce will double to about 17,000 when the Medical School opens in 2016. 

WBFO File Photo

Mayor Brown's surprising call for a delay in razing seven vacant houses on Busti Avenue to make way for the proposed construction of an expanded Peace Bridge Plaza is raising eyebrows.

Word that plans are proceeding for construction of a new international bridge linking Detroit and Windsor, Ontario has prompted Congressman Brian Higgins to call for an immediate end to all the hemming and hawing
that has been part of the Peace Bridge expansion issue for two decades.

The democrat from South Buffalo told reporters Monday the region cannot stand for any more delays.

File Photo / WBFO/AM 970 News

State Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and Representative Brian Higgins together announced new legislation that will assist the founding of small businesses.

The Small Business Tax Extenders Act will provide limitations for taxing capital gains, raise levels for writing off expenditures for permits, equipment and other necessary expenses, and restructure the process for claiming business credits.

The initiative is expected to greatly assist businesses owned by women.

Congressman Brian Higgins stopped in during the NFTA Board of Commissioners meeting Monday.  

Higgins has been relentless of late in his push  to have the NFTA relinquish title of the property now known as the Outer Harbor.

His push continued at Monday's   Commissioners meeting.
"We have an agency that has money; we have an agency that has a singular focus," said Higgins in a  reference to the Erie Canal Harbor Development Corporation.

Later, NFTA Board Chair Howard Zemsky warmly welcomed the Congressman.

Congressman Brian Higgins and two members of the Western New York State Legislature delegation have sent a strongly-worded letter to the NFTA, calling on the Authority to relinquish control of the Outer Harbor.

Meeting with reporters on the windswept boardwalk by Gallagher Beach Friday, Higgins, State Senator Timothy Kennedy, and State Assemblyman Sean Ryan appealed to the NFTA to turn the title of 300 acres of prime waterfront real estate over to the Erie Canal Harbor Development Corporation, an agency whose sole mission is waterfront development. 

William Street mail center to remain open

May 10, 2012

Buffalo's William Street mail processing facility will remain open for at least three more years, according to Senator Charles Schumer.  Schumer says Postmaster General Patrick Donohoe informed him of the news this week. 

Under a cost-cutting reorganization plan, the Postal Service wanted to shift processing work to a similar facility in Rochester, eliminating 700 local jobs and ending overnight local delivery. Mail sent locally would have been processed in the Rochester facility and then sent back to Buffalo.

Higgins looks to boost infrastructure spending

Apr 9, 2012
WBFO News file photo

With much of the Washington debate focused on cutting the national debt, Congressman Brian Higgins will try to buck that trend later this month by introducing a transportation bill with a price tag exceeding $one trillion.

The five-year plan dubbed the "Nation Building Here at Home Act" would use federal dollars to help re-build roads, bridges and airports across the country.

According to the the Buffalo News, Higgins admits the spending plan faces difficult political circumstances, but argues it's needed to reverse a crumbling national infrastructure.

WBFO News file photo

Western New York Congressman Brian Higgins is accusing the United States Postal Service of hiding results of a study it conducted on changing delivery standards and closing some processing centers.

Higgins appeared on the House floor Wednesday saying the Postal Service is keeping the results a secret.  Higgins told his colleagues he learned that the study indicates the Postal Service would actually lose $5 billion.

WBFO News photos by Mike Desmond

With temperatures in the seventies, over 100,000 lined Delaware Avenue yesterday for the annual St. Patrick's parade.

The crowds attracted politicians who followed the time-honored tradition of marching in the event.

"Everybody's Irish on St.Patrick's Day. It's a day where families celebrate the great Irish heritage in this community," said Congressman Brian Higgins.

"That's why Mario Williams (the newest Buffalo Bill) is here. He knows it. It's no coincidence they signed him right around St. Patrick's Day."

Hochul will not challenge Higgins

Mar 13, 2012

Congresswoman Kathy Hochul put an end to speculation Monday by announcing that she would not present a primary challenge to fellow Democrat Brian Higgins if a new legislative map placed them inside the same district.

The possibility emerged as state officials continue to hammer out new Congressional districts, a mandatory process which complies to the most recent Census figures.

Hochul says she will pursue Western New York's other Congressional seat.

Higgins helps honor servicemen from World War II

Nov 12, 2011
WBFO News photo by Steven Jagord /

A ceremony honoring the nation's veterans was attended by Congressman Brian Higgins Friday afternoon at Canisius College.

Members of the military who served in World War II were specially recognized for their heroism and valor. Three surviving servicemen from the war were acknowledged by the congressman for the importance of their sacrifice.