Chautauqua County officials are beginning the task of assessing the damage caused by the recent flash floods that have hit both the south and north ends of the county. County Executive Vince Horrigan says county Emergency Services Director Julius Leone will be meeting with local officials to begin crunching the numbers. Horrigan says they will be looking at the damage from Wednesday's flash flooding in the Jamestown area as well as the storm damage in Gowanda and Silver Creek... and, other nearby communities in making their application. Debris damage in Chautauqua Lake and flooded basements will also be considered.
The Chautauqua Lake Association is deploying two of it's crews on the lake over the next several days to collect floating debris from the flooding that occured in the wake of this week's severe thunderstorms. CLA President Doug Conroe tells us the association's executive committee met late Wednesday... and, authorized having two harvesters... two transports and barges for this major undertaking. Conroe says one crew will be deployed in the lake’s South Basin... while the other crew will go to the North. He adds says lake users are urged to use caution over the next several days because there is "tons of debris" -- including trees, limbs and shrubs in the lake.
A Busti man has been arrested for allegedly having sexual contact with a 3-year-old child. Lakewood-Busti Police say they concluded an investigation by arresting 32 year-old Daniel Alger earlier this week. Details of the investigation were not released... but, Alger is charged with first-degree sexual abuse... second-degree Aggravated sexual abuse... and, two counts of endangering the welfare of a child. He was arraigned in Busti Town Court... and, sent to the county jail where he posted 10-thousand dollars bail.
A regional search for the best candidate available to fill the Chautauqua County Industrial Development Agency's top position led to a man who lives and works here. County Executive Vince Horrigan says he is convinced that Kevin Sanvidge is that person. The two-month search involved a number of organizations including Empire State Development and the Western New York Regional Economic Development Council staff. Horrigan likes his management experience with the former Cliffstar Corporation and Al Tech. He says his experience in the food processing industry is a plus. County Legislature Minority Leader Keith Ahlstrom says he likes the choice of the Fredonia man... who has a wide variety of experience that also includes banking and manufacturing. Sanvidge will have to hit the ground running. He will take over the duties from Bill Daly who is retiring at the end of the month. Sanvidge is expected to begin work on Tuesday.
Carriage House workers and union officials held a community rally yesterday in Fredonia calling on the parent company to be fair about next year's closing of Carriage House. SEIU Local-#266 President Tom Dickerson says the rally was held in Barker Common. Dickerson says they wanted to send a message to ConAgra Foods. Dickerson says the idea started with the labor union at Carriage House... and, expanded out to include the Central Labor Council in Jamestown... and, others. ConAgra announced earlier this year that is planning to close both the Dunkirk and Fredonia plants by early 2015. More than 400 jobs are in jeopardy as a result of the scheduled closings.
A first-ever Chautauqua Tech Wars and Science Olympiad held a Jamestown Community College by the Manufacturer's Association of the Southern Tier was a big success. Those are the feelings of MAST Executive Director Todd Tranum... who says they were hoping to have 300 to 400 middle and high school students take part. As it was... Tranum says about 350 students from around the county took part. Tranum says the program took the "tech tours" of businesses they do with an interactive program. Tranum says the program "seeks to engage our county's youth to consider a career in a Science, Technology, Engineering and Math -- or STEM -- related field." He called the inaugural event a "great kick-off" to many more. In addition to MAST and the county's Chamber of Commerce... the Tech Wars and Science Olympiad was put on by the local "Dream It -- Do It" Western New York program... the Chautauqua County Education Coalition... the local schools, and the county's Tech and Science teachers.
Gasoline prices in the Jamestown-area gas are holding steady as we head into the long Memorial Day Holiday weekend. The Triple-A's Fuel Gauge reports that prices stayed about the same this week at 3-dollars-84 cents a gallon. Nationally... as the nation approaches the official start of the summer driving season, drivers continue to see prices moving a little bit lower at the pump. Triple-A says this week's national average price for regular, unleaded gasoline is 3-dollars-64 cents per gallon... and, has remained relatively unchanged over the past seven days. However... the Fuel Gauge reports political tensions between Russia and the Ukraine are keeping global markets on edge.