REPAIR SHOP EXPLOSION
1 killed in explosion in NY auto repair shop
BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) - Police say the owner of a western New York auto repair shop has been killed in an explosion at the shop.
The Buffalo News identifies the victim as 56-year-old Stephen Pawlowski of the town of Tonawanda.
The explosion happened Friday at Steve's Auto Service in Buffalo.
A co-worker tells the newspaper that he and the owner were working on a car's fuel pump when the worker left to answer the phone. He then heard the owner yell "Fire!"
He says the garage burst into flames.
NY's Dolan thinks pope will meet with abuse vics
NEW YORK (AP) - New York's Cardinal Timothy Dolan says he anticipates Pope Francis will meet with sex abuse victims.
Dolan tells David Gregory in an interview taped Friday for NBC News' "Meet the Press" that he's met with victims, most bishops and pastors have, too, and the pope "probably will" also.
Pope Francis has come under criticism for doing too little after announcing a commission of experts to study best practices on protecting children three months ago.
Dolan says in the interview the church needs to do more on the issue. But he says child sex abuse is a societal and cultural problem and the church shouldn't be singled out.
When asked his view on openly gay Missouri football star Michael Sam, Dolan says "Bravo."
Dolan's full interview will air Sunday, March 9.
2 men are sentenced for running bogus 9/11 charity
TOMS RIVER, N.J. (AP) - A judge in New Jersey has sentenced two men for operating a bogus 9/11 charity in which they sold T-shirts with the logos of the New York City police and fire departments out of a custom-painted pickup truck.
The judge ordered 67-year-old Mark Niemczyk (NIHM'-chek) of Tinton Falls to serve five years of probation. And 42-year-old Thomas Scalgione of Manahawkin was sentenced to six months in county jail for violating parole and one year of probation.
The men had pleaded guilty earlier this year to theft by deception.
Prosecutors say the men falsely claimed the proceeds from the sales would benefit the families of 9/11 victims.
As a condition of probation, the men must pay more than $120,000 in fines and investigative costs.
NY GOVERNOR'S RACE
GOP candidate Astorino tried pot in college
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob Astorino says he smoked a couple of joints in college - but that was last time he had marijuana.
The Westchester County Executive was asked by a reporter if he ever tried marijuana Friday during a campaign stop in Albany. The question has become commonplace for political candidates and Astorino just kicked off his campaign Thursday.
Astorino also says he would possibly be open to legal medical marijuana in New York state if it were strictly controlled.
Astorino says New York is losing jobs and residents under Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo's leadership. He says 400,000 New Yorkers have fled the state in search of a better business climate and lower taxes.
Schenectady paper hires Pulitzer editorials winner
SCHENECTADY, N.Y. (AP) - The 2009 winner of the Pulitzer Prize for editorial writing is joining an upstate New York newspaper, returning to journalism after a stint in public relations.
The Daily Gazette of Schenectady reports that Mark Mahoney will take over as editorial page editor at the end of the month. He replaces Art Clayman, a veteran of 37 years at the newspaper who is retiring.
Mahoney worked 23 years at the Glens Falls Post-Star, winning the Pulitzer for a series of editorials about secrecy in local government. He left the newspaper in 2011 for a job as associate director of media services and public affairs at the New York State Bar Association.
Starting as a staff reporter at the Post-Star, Mahoney was city editor, regional editor and an editorial writer before becoming editorial page editor.
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