I agree with a previous poster. If they are taking so long to get applications reviewed, it probably means they give a good look at each application, at least that's what I'm hoping.
WNY winters are pretty freakin' cold, but it's all relative. Winter where I am in Japan is sissy compared to Rochester/Buffalo, but as far as I'm concerned, despite my 10 WNY winters... it's cold. So if you're worried about the cold/snow, you'll get used to it. The only thing that may be hard is that it lasts from late October to April... Otherwise, it's not too bad. At least there's a healthy amount of snow to go along with the cold.