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WJTN News Headlines


Two Jamestown men have been arrested for allegedly being found in possession of a large amount of "crack" cocaine during a drug raid on the city's northside.  City police... along with the State Police C-NET Team... executed a search warrant last Friday afternoon at 9 East 15th Street.  Officers arrested 37 year-old Clarence Smith... and, 29 year-old Darren Mushat (Mew-shat)... who both lived at the residence.  In addition to the "crack" cocaine... police say they also found drug paraphernalia, and cash during the raid.  Officers say Mushat is charged with two Felony counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance.... while Smith faces one count.  Both were arraigned on one count each of criminally using drug paraphernalia... and, sent to the county jail without bail.

 

Governor Cuomo is warning employers that they can face fines, charges and civil or even criminal punishment for failing to comply with the state's minimum wage laws.  The 8-dollar minimum went into effect on December 31st... and, will increase to 8-dollars-75 cents at the end of the year... and, 9-dollars at the end of 2015.  Cuomo said last Friday that 374 cases have been opened based on complaints from employees about minimum wage and overtime violations.  Workers looking to file a complaint or a business in need of assistance should call 1-800-469-7365.

 

A significant reduction in two expense lines have allowed Lakewood Mayor David Wordelmann to propose a budget that doesn't include a tax increase for the first time in three years.  In addition... Wordelmann says the tax rate would fall 5-cents per thousand assessed value in his proposed 2014-2015, 3.35-million dollar spending plan. The budget goes before the Village Board for the first time tonight.  He says the reasons there is no tax increase is their state pension contribution isn't skyrocketing like it has the past few years.  Wordelmann says the other reduction is because some significant debt is coming off the village books. At the same time... Wordelmann says they're still seeing upward pressures on the budget.  He says the biggest increase in the proposal is an added 24-thousand dollars in Health Insurance premiums... due to the new Affordable Care Act.  He adds they're also seeing increases in their liability insurance... and, in Workers Compensation rates.  Wordelmann says the tax levy in the spending plan is up 244-dollars.  A public hearing on the budget will be held on April 14th.  The village board must adopt a final spending plan by May 1st.

 

Lawmakers met with Governor Cuomo late last Friday in the latest push for a bill that would open state financial aid to students in the country illegally.  Supporters of the Dream Act met with Cuomo for nearly an hour on Friday and came away encouraged they have his support as budget talks continue.   Assemblyman Felix Ortiz, a Brooklyn Democrat who attended the meeting, says that the Senate and Assembly must come to agreement on how to pay for the initiative without using taxpayer money.  That condition was set by Senate Republicans. 

 

Governor Andrew Cuomo says that the new Office for New Americans assisted more than 34-thousand immigrants during its first year.  Launched last March... the office's ``Opportunity Centers'' helped with naturalization, federal immigration law and policy information as well as business development training.  There are 27 centers across New York.  They are supported by a team of lawyers specializing in immigration and naturalization.  Cuomo's announcement late last week came on the first day of last weekend's 'Somos El Futur' conference organized by Hispanic legislators in Albany.

 

The story of a crime of passion that claimed the life of Clymer School Superintendent Keith Reed, Junior was told to a national audience last Friday night.  NBC Dateline's Dennis Murphy narrated the hour-long program. NBC interviewed both Chautauqua County Sheriff Joe Gerace and District Attorney David Foley extensively for the program.  Foley talked about the door to door interviews... during which one neighbor said they heard three gunshots in September of 2012.  Gerace talked about the crime scene... and, the fact it appeared Reed was set up.
Dateline followed the timeline of the discovery of Keith Reed's cell phone on a bridge scaffolding in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania... and, Gerace receiving a call from Mary Taglianetti.  It was her phone call that implicated her estranged husband, Anthony, in Reed's murder.  County Public Defender Ned Barone, who represented Taglianetti, was also interviewed.  Taglianetti was recently sentenced to 25 years to life in prison for second-degree murder in the case.

 

A Canadian man faces drug charges after U-S border agents say he tried to smuggle five pounds of methamphetamine across the border from Niagara Falls.  Customs and Border Protection officials say 21-year-old Karone Johnson of Thorold, Ontario was taken into custody at the Rainbow Bridge late last week while leaving the American side of the falls.  Customs officials say Johnson was the subject of a random inspection at the bridge when officers noticed the screws of a speaker box in his car appeared to have been tampered with.

 

The state Department of Transportation has extended the public comment period on plans for high-speed rail service between New York City and Upstate New York. The comment period was originally supposed to end today. Officials have received about 250 comments and held six public hearings across the state that attracted more than 500 people.  Transportation Commissioner Joan McDonald says comments will be accepted through April 30.
The state's draft environmental impact statement lays out five alternatives for higher speed passenger rail service along the 463-mile Empire Corridor, from New York City to Niagara Falls. Comments may be submitted through the DOT's website or emailed to empirecorridor(at)dot.ny.gov.

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