Investigations

Exposés, reports
and analysis.

Outrages & Insights

Muckraking blog
by Jim Heaney

GreenPost

Environmental blog
by Dan Telvock

Tom Toles

Editorial cartoons
and commentary

May
09

Faulty logic behind refusal to release inmates

Updated at 10:40 a.m. The argument prosecutors, and sometimes judges, make is that few inmates have tested positive for COVID-19, so it’s safe to keep them incarcerated. Authorities, however, are not testing many inmates, so they don’t know how healthy they really are. As a result, relatively few prisoners held in Erie County jails or […]

Apr
06

COVID-19 threat not spurring many jail releases

Although local jails are potential incubators for the spread of COVID-19, authorities are moving slowly, some not at all, to release inmates being held on low-level charges and parole violations, or who are at high risk of contracting the deadly virus. Only 10 of 89 parolees being held in Erie and Niagara county jails for […]

Mar
31

Buffalo News downsizing comes quick

Well, that didn’t take long. Lee Enterprises took ownership of The Buffalo News just a couple of weeks ago and wham — the paper on Tuesday announced furloughs and layoffs. To be fair, the loss of advertising due to fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic was no doubt the driving force behind the decision, which I’m […]

Mar
27

Sheriff Howard OK with release of prisoners

 Updated: 6:02 p.m. While he has no authority to release people held in his jails, Erie County Sheriff Tim Howard said he has no objection to others using their powers to do so. “As sheriff, it is not in my authority to grant the early release or to remove the bail requirements that have […]

Mar
24

Push on to release some county prisoners

Updated: 6:30 p.m. Nearly 600 men and women are incarcerated in close quarters in Erie County’s two jails, at risk of catching the deadly COVID-19 virus. More than half are being held on bail, yet to be found guilty of a crime. Others are jailed on parole violations or serving sentences of up to one […]

Mar
12

Erie County ousting its OTB representative

The Erie County Legislature wants to replace its representative on the governing board of the embattled Western Regional Off Track Betting Corp.  The Legislature’s Democratic majority announced its intention through a media advisory issued March 5 and is soliciting resumes from applicants. Lawmakers plan to interview candidates April 9. Erie County’s current appointee, Beverly Mazur, […]

Jan
10

Our local politicians are getting worse

The November local elections are behind us and the national chaos of 2020 is right around the corner. (Like winter, it can’t end soon enough.) This seems like a good time to take stock of our elected officials in Western New York. But first, allow me to hold my nose. I’ve been reporting in this […]

Aug
06

Comptrollers behaving badly, Part 2

On June 21, Erie County Comptroller Stefan Mychajliw issued an invitation to Department of Motor Vehicles employees across the state: If you disagree with the new “Green Light” law, under which New York State will soon issue driver’s licenses to undocumented immigrants, and you suspect such a person is applying for a license, call or […]