WBFO Business & Economy Desk

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

The New York Power Authority has approved four economic development awards it said will spur $356 million in private capital investments across Western New York, with the creation of 583 jobs.

Mike Desmond / WBFO News

There was a sense of hope, steamy breathing and gradually rising noise as Buffalo Bills fans began to fill a blocked-off area of Chippewa Street in downtown Buffalo Sunday evening. Fans were willing to brave the cooling temperatures to support the Bills and Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs.

Michael Mroziak, WBFO

Two establishments within Buffalo's Chippewa District have the go-ahead to host outdoor "Party on the Patio" events during Sunday evening's AFC Championship game between the Buffalo Bills and Kansas City Chiefs.

Santora's Pizza Pub & Grill

Restaurants in Erie County gained a key victory in court for their effort to welcome back dine-in guests. 

Santora's Pizza Pub & Grill

A group of over 70 area restaurants will head back to State Supreme Court Friday in hopes of reversing the governor’s executive orders which have shuttered the doors to customers. 

  

Lasertron

Attorneys for local restaurants and the state could not come to an agreement in court Monday, so they will be back at it again on Friday. The two sides are arguing over the latest COVID-19 restrictions mandated by New York.

Town of Eden

Every house in the Town of Eden is near an internet line and all but a few are connected. This is especially in the age of COVID, to ensure students can learn remotely. But as Eden negotiates a new franchise agreement with cable provider Spectrum, the town's supervisor  says improvements can be made.

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Employment in the Buffalo area is improving a little bit, although that’s from a very low base this spring when the COVID-19 pandemic hammered the job market.

Eileen Buckley / WBFO News

The minimum wage is now higher in Western New York. And for some who earn tips as part of their income, there are changes in their employers' tip credits.

While many people working within New York State have had paid sick time available to them, others were not guaranteed that benefit until the New York Paid Sick Leave Law was signed into effect last year. Upon the start of the new year, workers may now begin using hours collected since the end of September.

The Erie County Back to Business Grant Program has issued its final report regarding direct financial assistance from the federal CARES Act through the county and 43 North.

TechBuffalo.org

A new training program called the WNY Tech Skills Initiative is looking for area residents interested in boosting their digital skills—especially those who lost jobs or work hours due to the coronavirus pandemic.

WBFO File Photo

General Motors is making another large investment in its Tonawanda Engine Plant.

Google Maps

The former Protocol Restaurant in Williamsville will pay $90,000 and take other steps to settle a sexual harassment lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Rosina Foods

The state Department of Environmental Conservation said Rosina Foods has completed brownfield clean-up at its Clinton Street location in West Seneca. This paves the way for construction of a new $58-million-dollar food manufacturing plant on the 10-acre site.

Google Maps

Three local businesses are among 36 bars and restaurants across New York State that have had their liquor license suspended because of COVID-19 violations.

New York state is operating under a new set of metrics to determine pandemic-related shutdowns. But some, including restaurant owners, are finding Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s new criteria difficult to decipher, and worry it will mean more eateries will soon be out of business.

Acquest Development

Some Grand Island residents are gearing up for another fight, as a new business is looking at the site abandoned by Amazon in August because of opposition.

Karen Dewitt / WBFO Albany Correspondent

Restaurants in New York are facing a dire winter, now that cold weather has ended most outdoor dining and Gov. Andrew Cuomo has placed further restrictions on indoor dining as COVID-19 rates rise.

One of those restaurants is the Savoy Taproom in Albany, which has been in business since 1936. It was known as Justin’s for many years and has long been a gathering place for some state lawmakers, their staff and lobbyists. That was back when the Senate and Assembly used to actually meet in person, before the pandemic.

GoFundMe

Athletes Unleashed Inc., the Orchard Park gym that was recently fined $15,000 for violating COVID-19 restrictions, has filed a lawsuit against Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Department of Health.

WBFO Photo/Ryan Zunner

Already reeling from a shift in shopping trends, Western New York's shopping malls have been hearing the death knell for quite a while before COVID-19 changed, well, everything.  Shuttered anchor stores litter the landscape. 

"But there should be a new dawn for retail in Western New York' says Burt Flickinger, retail consultant with The Strategic Resource Group consulting firm in New York City.

Nam Y. Huh / Associated Press

When the economy fell apart under the COVID-19 lockdown in Spring, all the weaknesses of the state's unemployment system became apparent. It buckled and fixing that was a big job.

National Federation of Independent Businesses

As the coronavirus infection rate climbed higher in New York State, new microcluster zones were announced this week in New York and some existing ones were intensified. A business group is asking Gov. Andrew Cuomo to stick to that approach of limited closures, saying they won’t survive a complete economic shutdown.

Local Honey Beauty Hive Instagram / Local Honey Beauty Hive

Salons in the state-designated COVID microcluster Orange Zone in Erie County are among personal care businesses whose doors will be closed Friday morning. For at least one local business, it’s lead to booming demand and an uncertain future.

Visit Buffalo Niagara

Developer Carl Paladino and his Ellicott Development own a lot of residential, retail and office property in the traditional downtown shopping district of Buffalo and is forecasting a bad shopping season.

Small Business Revolution

It’s finally here. Season 5 of “Small Business Revolution” will kick off Tuesday evening with the Village of Fredonia in the spotlight.

File Photo / WBFO News

With the bar and restaurant business struggling in the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Buffalo is moving to continue a major assistance program started when the economy fell apart this spring.

Michael Mroziak, WBFO

A Western New York native who worked two decades writing and producing numerous Hollywood-based television shows is leading an effort to construct a production facility on a 27-acre plot in Buffalo's Riverbend area.

Erie County Department of Health

Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz is warning schools that if they don't enforce mask rules in their buildings, they are potentially in danger of being shut down.

The Poloncarz administration has announced a new grant program called Erie County Back to Business, funded with $20 million from the federal CARES Act.

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