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Scorecard: The Week's Winners and Losers

The Week's Winners & Losers

New Names

First Niagara continued its absorption of the role HSBC Bank once played in our lives, acquiring the naming rights to the former HSBC Arena on Aug. 25 and replacing an awkward and tarnished acronym with officially the coolest arena name in sports. Everyone, say hello to the “F’n Center.”

Elderly Stickups

A 75-year-old West Seneca man appeared before a Buffalo court on Aug. 26 to face charges of robbing the Fountain Plaza M&T Bank. Rookie mistake: hitting the bank where he regularly does business and being recognized by the employees. I’m going to chalk this one up to age over experience.

Crimes of Fashion

A Massachusetts man arrested on Aug. 28 for stealing a golf cart from a Batavia course and driving while intoxicated was initially reported to have been joyriding dressed as a clown. Turns out, he wasn’t. But if your colorful golf attire is mistaken for clown gear, you’re clearly doing something wrong.

Cost of Living Increases

Mayor Byron Brown announced on Aug. 30 that he supports a request by developer Mark Croce to spend $5.3 million in public funds to help rehab the crumbling Statler Towers. Sounds like a reasonable figure to pour down the typical rathole of patronage and graft to fix a pretty serious eyesore.

Acts of God

Despite a declared state of emergency and NYC residents buying up all the bottled water and guns they could before Hurricane Irene struck on Aug. 29, the much-hyped storm mostly failed to live up to dreadful expectations. Still, it gives us yet another reason to appreciate our sleepy neck of the woods, disaster-wise.

By the numbers...


Trillion cubic feet of undiscovered natural gas lying in the Marcellus Shale, according to a new estimate by the US Geological Survey. This updated figure represents a 79.5 percent decrease over previous projections by the US Energy Department, which recently claimed upwards of 410 trillion cubic feet of gas was available.


Same-sex households in Buffalo, according to newly released housing data from the 2010 US Census. Of the 30 largest places in New York, Buffalo ranked 18th with 8.7 same-sex couples per 1,000 households. Other notables included Ithaca (14.3 per 1,000), Albany (13.2), Rochester (11.4), New York (10.6), and Niagara Falls (6.5).


Million dollar contingency fund held by Buffalo Public Schools that is set to be drained in order to re-hire an unknown number of the 117 teachers and 150 aides who were laid off earlier this year. The district currently faces budget shortfalls over the next three years of $36.8, $45.8, and $60.8 million respectively.

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