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Western New York, August 2003

Business Expansions

New this Month

Seneca Niagara Casino (Niagara County) On July 28, the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority agreed to sell its Niagara Falls bus terminal to the Seneca Niagara Falls Gaming Corp. The sale should clear the way for about $150 million in development by the Seneca casino putting hundreds of construction workers to work in Niagara Falls through 2004. A $24 million parking garage has been planned for the terminal land, along with a $120 million 450-room luxury hotel directly east of the present casino.

Casinos (Erie County) The Seneca Nation of Indians announced on August 15 that it has eliminated Buffalo from consideration and have chosen Cheektowaga for the site of its second casino. The nation has not settled on an exact location, but will decide by the end of the month.

HSBC Mortgage Corp. (Erie County) plans to fill about 200 current job openings in its Depew center. The positions range from telephone service representatives to underwriters, marketing analysts and senior operations managers.

One Beacon Insurance (Erie County) will add nearly 130 jobs in the region as it expands the amount of space it leases in Amherst. The Boston-based company already employs about 300 people in the region.

A.C. Moore (Erie County), a new arts and crafts company, will open stores in Amherst and the Town of Hamburg in early September. The stores will employ 60 people.

National Vacuum Corp. (Niagara County) will create 60 new jobs with an $825,000 expansion of its Niagara Falls plant. This expansion brings the current workforce to more than 220 employees.

Ascension Industries (Niagara County), manufacturer of precision machine tools for the aerospace and automotive industries, will invest $603,000 in its North Tonawanda factory and create 50 new jobs. The expansion will increase the company workforce to more than 110 employees.

UPDATE: Bioinformatics (Erie County) Construction is scheduled to begin in September on a $24 million structural biology center for Hauptman-Woodward Medical Research Institute in Buffalo. The building is part of a 400,000-square foot research complex including the University at Buffalo Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and the Roswell Park Cancer Institute Center for Genetics and Pharmacology. The complex will employ 550 people.

CertainTeed (Erie County) is finalizing plans to construct a building materials plant in Buffalo, relocating from Cheektowaga. The factory would retain 160 local jobs and create several new positions. The new site should be completed by fall 2004.

Business Contractions

New this Month

MRC Bearings (Chautauqua County) plans to wind down operations at its Jamestown plant over several years. The 140 jobs at the company will be eliminated through attrition and by transferring some of the positions to the company’s facility in Falconer.

AmeriCorps (Erie County) will be looking for people to sign petitions to save the national service organization. The local group will see its workforce go from 450 to 60 if the proposed cuts in funding by the federal government are enacted.

Labor Disputes

New this Month

Verizon (Erie County) 1,000 Buffalo-area workers whose contract expired August 2 have agreed to stay on the job until further notice as negotiations continues. The move averted the strike that union leaders had threatened.

UPDATE: Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. (Erie & Niagara Counties) and the United Steelworkers of America agreed to a tentative three-year contract on August 20 after five months of negotiation. The contract is awaiting a vote by union members before it can be ratified.

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