Buffalo Common Council

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Buffalo Common Council members approved mandatory sexual harassment training for themselves and their staffs and mandatory training for new council members.

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By a unanimous vote, Rev. Darius Pridgen has been elected president of the Buffalo Common Council.

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The year's end brings an anticipated new look for 2014. Among the rumored moves are possible new directions for Mayor Byron Brown and Congressman Brian Higgins.

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The City of Buffalo's recommended 2014 capital budget, unveiled Friday by Mayor Byron Brown, spends nearly $23 million on everything from parks to polar bears.

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Downtown Buffalo visitors are likely familiar with the line of cars bearing signs for bail bonds parking in front of Buffalo City Court. The Common Council voted Tuesday to bar parking along that stretch of Delaware Avenue.

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Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown is providing assistance to help city schools retain their music programs.

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There's a house on McKinley Parkway in South Buffalo with neighbors cutting the grass because they can't get any action from a Michigan bank which owns the property and won't sell. 

Pridgen proposes training for crime stoppers

Jul 22, 2013
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In the wake of the Trayvon Martin case, Buffalo Common Council Member Darius Pridgen wants to make sure neighborhood watch groups and block clubs know how to handle certain situations. The Ellicott District lawmaker is calling for a formal training program.  

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The Buffalo Common Council is using its bully pulpit to try and derail Erie Community College's plan to expand in Amherst. 

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Buffalo has a budget for the fiscal year starting July 1 with council members making only small changes to Mayor Byron Brown's proposed spending plan.

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Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown says his $482.5 million budget for the fiscal year starting July 1 is slightly less than the current year while making some investments in city services.

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The historic Trico Plant No. 1 on the edge of downtown Buffalo won't be designated a local landmark. The Common Council deadlocked in a 4-4 vote Tuesday.

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The push is on to save a large piece of Buffalo's industrial heritage. Preservationists are urging city lawmakers to give the Trico building landmark status.

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The full Common Council will vote on landmarking downtown Buffalo's Trico complex after coming out of committee without a recommendation.


Buffalo's array of food trucks received another year Tuesday as Common Council members approved new licenses and lower fees.

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We should know by the end of the day what the future holds for food trucks that want to operate within city limits. The Buffalo Common Council is expected to vote on a 'Mobile Food Vendor Ordinance' during a special session Tuesday afternoon.

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The fate of the Trico complex in downtown Buffalo is up to the Common Council after the city's Preservation Board voted Thursday to make it a local landmark.

WBFO News by photo Mike Desmond

The first phase of what is likely to be a long fight over a proposed scrap metal recycling operation near Hertel and Military ended Tuesday when the Buffalo Common Council voted against it.  WBFO'S Mike Desmond reports the issue is now off to the courts.

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The Hollywood movie 'Draft Day' starring actor Kevin Costner will be filmed in Cleveland, not Buffalo. Filmmakers made the decision based on the costs associated with shooting in Western New York.

WBFO News by photo Mike Desmond

Changes are being made to ensure that property owners in the City of Buffalo will be better informed about how their tax dollars are being spent.

WBFO News by photo Mike Desmond

The Buffalo Common Council's Legislation Committee on Tuesday approved requests for two new sidewalk cafes along Hertel Avenue. The committee also cleared the way for construction of a restaurant and apartment on Bailey Avenue. 

City lawmakers are taking steps to crack down on so-called "problem stores" in Buffalo.

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Buffalo City Comptroller Mark Schroeder says he will be doing an audit of the street lighting program, at the request of the Common Council.

Former Buffalo councilman David Rutecki dies

Nov 21, 2012

Former Buffalo common councilmember and community leader David Rutecki has passed away. Rutecki died of a stroke overnight in New York City. 

Discussion begins on dealing with stray city cats

Oct 10, 2012
WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

What to do about the city's growing cat population was discussed Tuesday during a public hearing at City Hall.

Elliccott District Common Council member Darius Pridgen sought to clarify his proposal to license cats. Pridgen stressed that his resolution is simply to deal with the stray cat population, not to put any limits on the number of cats per household.

"We have been having a problem with people not wanting to pick up the cats, because some agencies say they don't know who they belong too," said Pridgen.

WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

Some downtown bar owners are claiming they're losing thousands of dollars with the end to a commingling ordinance experiment. 

Eighteen to 20 year olds were allowed, over the last six months, to attend bars along the Chippewa strip every Thursday night.  That ruled hit its sunset last Thursday. 

Ellicott District Common Council member Darius Pridgen, who sponsored the ordinance, spoke out at a Common Council committee meeting Tuesday. 

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Food dominated yesterday's Common Council Legislation Committee.

For all kinds of legal reasons, food and restaurants wind up before the Council.
That can include licenses or variances or many of the other myriad aspects of city government.

A major local developer wants to push a video store out of one Elmwood building and replace it with a Panera's; another store worries that a Panera's across the street will hurt business.

WBFO News photo by Chris Caya

Former Common Council member Brian Davis was sentenced to one year and one day in jail Wednesday for stealing money that was intended to benefit organizations in his council district.

Davis learned his sentence in an appearance before Federal Judge William Skretny.

"I totally accept responsibility" said Davis outside the courthouse to reporters. "I'm truly sorry, I apologize and I only aspired to be the best Ellciott District Council member that the city of Buffalo has ever seen."

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Governor Cuomo may be pushing hard for expansion work on the U-S end of the Peace Bridge, but the Common Council may not be ready to go along.

The current plan for bridge expansion calls for a much larger plaza on the Buffalo end.

The hope is that most Customs work will take place in Fort Erie before a truck gets on the bridge, easing the need for the far larger plaza Homeland Security wanted.

Working together, Albany and the Peace Bridge Authority plan to buy a segment of Busti Avenue to gain access to the now-closed Episcopal Church Home the state is buying.

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Common Council Majority Leader Demone Smith is proposing job applications in the City of Buffalo eliminate any questions regarding criminal records.

The move reflects what many other cities have already undertaken in an effort to put qualified applicants before employers. The move would still allow these questions to be asked during interviews.

Smith's proposal would apply to city government posts, government vendors and many other jobs in the city.