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Local News Headlines

WJTN News Headlines


It was "an opportunity that I could not pass-up."  That from the newest member of the Jamestown City Council... who has announced that she is resigning her seat as of next Monday.  Third-Ward Councilwoman Tamara Dickey says she "sincerely regrets" that she is resigning... but, adds she's received a consulting promotion for a new health care company that has purchased two hospitals out-of-town. Dickey was elected last November to replace former Democrat Councilman Michael Taylor... who moved out of the area.  She adds she was also disappointed that she wasn't able to use her financial skills on city council.  Dickey was named earlier this year to the council's Public Works Committee.  Dickery says she looks forward to working with her successor in Ward-3.  The city charter says the replacement must be from the same politicial party as the out-going seat holder.  Names from Ward-3 candidates would be provided to Mayor Sam Teresi.  He then submits a final name to the City Council for their review... and, approval. 

 

The city of Jamestown will be hard pressed to bring in the current year's spending plan under the approximately 33-million dollars budgeted.  That from City Comptroller Joe Bellitto... who tells city lawmakers that "not much had changed" from their 6-month report.  In his 9-month financial report... Bellitto said he's hoping that revenues forecasted from payment-in-lieu of tax agreements with the Board of Public Utilities will come in as projected.
Bellitto says another area of concern is overtime spending -- especially for the Department of Public Works -- going into the final two months of the year.  If there's an early start to Winter... that could drive that number up.  Bellitto says the other concern they have is regarding health insurance costs... which he says were over budget by 8-percent at mid-year.  He says that number is now 11-percent higher... and, adds he also expects that part of the budget to be over by 100-thousand to 250-thousand dollars.  Another concern... says Bellitto... is over the amount of money they will have to pay to the state's retirement fund.

 

Ellicott town officials are mourning the loss of a "very dedicated" board member who passed following a short battle with Cancer.  Town Councilman Rob Heintzelman died last Thursday at the age of 52 in his West Ellicott home.  Town Supervisor Cecil Miller says Heintzelman was a 10-year board member who always kept an eye on the town's fiscal affairs.  Miller says Heintzelman was well-schooled in finance and bookkeeping. The town board met last night... but, Miller says the panel won't be deciding on a replacement for a while yet.  With the November elections coming up in less than two weeks... a special election won't be held until next year.  Miller says the board will make an appointment in the near future.  Heintzelman served on the board for 10 years... and, represented the second-ward -- which is mainly the West Ellicott area.

 

A Stockton man escaped serious injury Monday night after he swerved to miss a deer... and, his car slammed into a tree head-on in the town of Stockton.  Sheriff's officers were called to the scene of a one-car accident about 7:30 PM... and, found the driver, 19 year-old Robert Keech, was southbound on Cemetery Road... and, allegedly swerved to miss the deer.  Keech told deputies his car veered off the road, through an open field, before hitting the tree.  Officers say Keech was taken to Brook's Memorial Hospital for treatment.  He was ticketed for not wearing a seat belt.

 

Ground has been broken on the newest Senior Housing project in the Jamestown-area... this one on the eastern end of the town of Busti.  The property has been cleared... and, structural work on the new Fairway Pointe Senior Village will soon be underway.  County, and Busti Town officials joined representatives from Calamar Construction and Development for the ground-breaking at 21-23 Southwestern Drive... just northeast of Southwestern Central School.  Calamar's director of Leasing, and Lifestyle... Tina Partridge-Vinocur... says they're excited to have the project underway. Vinocur says Calamar... which is based out of Wheatfield, New York... felt the location was ideal for a Senior living facility... which will overlook the Sunset Valley Golf Course.  She adds their research also showed a need for more moderate-income housing.  Vinocur says Fairway Pointe will be a three-story structure... with units priced about 900 to one-thousand dollars a month.  She says it will include a number of amenties... including washers and dryers in each room... and, a community room.  Vinocur says they expect to be up and running in about a year.  To find out more about pre-leasing... call 1-855-357-7755... or go on-line to Calamar-dot-COM.

 

New York's attorney general is warning consumers about scammers preying on Ebola fears with fundraising scams claiming to benefit victims... and, dubious offers of so-called preparedness kits that claim to contain preventive medicines.  A-G Eric Schneiderman says there is no approved vaccine.  He says scammers are ``shamefully exploiting'' heightened concerns since a few cases have been documented in the U.S. following an outbreak earlier this year in Africa.  The U.S. Centers for Disease Control says Ebola isn't contagious until symptoms appear... and, isn't spread through the air.

 

Maintenance work on a bridge on Route 60 in the north county has begun... and, the state Department of Transporation says traffic will be restricted because of it.  DOT Regional Spokeswoman Susan Surdej (Sir-day) says the span over Canadaway Creek in the town of Promfret is being repaired and cleaned up.  With that... Surdej says there will be lane closures between Spoden and Shumla Roads.  She says traffic will be one-lane... and, controlled by temporary traffic signals.  Work is expected to last for about three weeks.

 

The state agriculture department has granted 17.6-million dollars to protect more than 64-hundred acres of farmland across New York state... ensuring the land will remain agricultural and won't be developed.  Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Monday that the funds will help preserve 21 farms in 12 counties, bringing the total acreage under the farmland protection program to approximately 59,000 acres.

News Update for Tues., Oct. 21, 2014


Dickey resigning from City Council effective October 24...

The newest member of the Jamestown City Council has announced that she is resigning her seat as of next Monday.  Third-Ward Councilwoman Tamara Dickey confirmed for WJTN News this afternoon that she is stepping down, effective Oct. 24.  In an e-mail to city lawmakers, Dickey says she "sincerely regrets" that she is resigning... but, adds she has a career opportunity she can't turn down.  She further stated in the e-mail that she and her husband will "continue to support and pray for you and all of the Jamestown Council Leaders."  Dickery also said she looks forward to working with her successor in Ward-Three.  As the rules are understood, the city's Republican Committee would have to chose someone for Mayor Sam Teresi to nominate to fill that seat until a special election could be held.


Dolce says city lawmakers looking for ways to help city departments that aren't getting any more money in 2015 budget plan...

City lawmakers have begun their review of Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi's proposed, $34.7-million budget for next year.  Spending plans for Public Works, Parks and Recreation, and Youth Services were dissected during the City Council's work session last night.  DPW Director Jeff Lehman discussed the need to replace about $2.7-million dollars worth of DPW equipment.  However... that's not in the budget proposal.  Council Finance Committee Chairman Tony Dolce says any replacement would likely be done either borrowing, or using excess contingency funds.  Dolce adds they're also looking at how Youth Services gets it's funding.   Currently... the money for the department still comes from the state... but now is "passed through" the county.  He says the entire spending plan is a good start... but, adds there's always room for improvement because there is a 2.35-percent tax increase.  However... he says it is under the 2-percent property tax cap.  If the budget remains that way... city taxpayers would receive a rebate check from the state for the added taxes. 

 

Miller says late Ellicott Councilman, Rob Heintzelman, will "be missed...."

Ellicott town officials are mourning the loss of a long-term board member who passed away last week following a battle with Cancer.  Town Councilman Rob Heintzelman died last Thursday at the age of 52 in his West Ellicott home.  Town Supervisor Cecil Miller says Heintzelman was a "very dedicated" public servant who always kept an eye on the town's fiscal affairs.  Miller says Heintzelman was well-schooled in finance and bookkeeping... and, was always "great" to have around at budget time.  The town board met last night... but, Miller says the panel won't be deciding on a replacement for a while yet.  With the November elections coming up in less than two weeks... a special election won't be held until next year.

WJTN News Headlines


City lawmakers have begun their review of Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi's proposed, 34.7-million dollar budget for next year.  Spending plans for Public Works, Parks and Recreation, and Youth Services were dissected during the City Council's work session last night.  DPW Director Jeff Lehman discussed the need to replace about 2.7-million dollars worth of DPW equipment.  However... that's not in the budget proposal.  Council Finance Committee Chairman Tony Dolce says any replacement would likely be done either borrowing, or using excess contingency funds.  Dolce adds they're also looking at how Youth Services gets it's funding. Dolce says money for the department still comes from the state... but now is "passed through" the county.  He says the entire spending plan is a good start... but, adds there's always room for improvement because there is a 2.35-percent tax increase.  However... he says it is under the 2-percent property tax cap.  If the budget remains that way... city taxpayers would receive a rebate check from the state for the added taxes.  City lawmakers will review the two biggest parts of the budget... police and fire... next week.

 

A Jamestown man has been arrested for allegedly threatening a his girlfriend... then police... with with a high-powered rifle last weekend.  City police were initially called to the scene of a domestic violence incident just after 2 AM Saturday at 417 James Avenue.  On arrival... officers were told that the woman was inside the house with a disgruntled man who was threatening her... and, said he would shoot responding police 'on sight.'  Officers say she told 9-1-1 dispatchers that her boyfriend, 60 year-old Douglas Smith, had a rifle within his grasp.  The woman was able to leave the house... and, was taken to a safe location.  After a brief standoff... Smith surrendered outside of his residence... and, he was arrested.  During the investigation, it was found that Smith was a convicted felon and that he was in the possession of several firearms.  Officers did secure the weapons, and found one of the rifles to be fully-loaded.  Smith was arraigned on charges of third-and fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon... and sent to the county jail without bail.

 


Two teenaged girls were hurt -- one seriously -- when they were hit by a car on Jamestown's Washington Street on the city's westside.  Jamestown Police say officers were called to the scene -- at the intersection with West Eighth Street -- shortly before 1 PM Sunday.  Police say the vehicle was southbound on Washington when it struck the girls... ages 13 and 16... as they tried to cross the street away from the crosswalk.  Police say the driver of the Volkswagon Jetta was not able to stop in time... and, hit both.  The 13 year-old, from Jamestown, was flown by Starflight Helicopter to Women and Children's Hospital in Buffalo... while the 16 year-old, whose from Lakewood, was treated at WCA Hospital... and, later released.  City police ask anyone with information about the incident to contact them at 483-7537.

 


The Chautauqua County League of Women Voters will be holding Meet the Candidates events in both the north and county county this week.  The first will be tonight in Jamestown... while the second will be in Fredonia Thursday.  The League's Minda Rae Amiran says the candidates running for Family Court Judge... and, the State Assembly will be on hand.  However... only one of the candidates running for Sheriff will be there.  Amiran says they had invited both incumbant Democrat Joe Gerace, and Republican challenger Russ Payne to the forums.  Amiran says Payne initially turned down their invitation... then said he would debate... then again declined.
Amiran says their rules allow for one of the two candidates to appear in a "local race."  The League will hold forums in Jamestown tonight at 7 PM at the Robert H. Jackson Center... and, Thursday night at Fredonia Village Hall.  Both events are open to the public.

 

The Republican candidate running for Lieutenant Governor in New York has received the official backing of Chautauqua County's Congressman.  Corning Republican Tom Reed says he has gotten to know Chemung County Sheriff Chris Moss... who has been the Central New York county's top-cop since 2005... very well.  Reed says he became a good friend of Democrat Lieutenant Governor candidate Kathy Hochul when Hochul was in Congress.  However... he feels Moss is the better candidate... and, they share many of the same values. Moss says he appreciates Reed's support... especially regarding his opposition of New York's SAFE Act.  While the SAFE Act is not a major campaign issue to many people... Moss believes it will bring out a block of voters that often doesn't vote in large numbers -- and those are hunters.  He feels that will create a large voter turnout on election day.  Moss says New York already had the most stringent gun regulations in the country in place prior to the SAFE Act's enactment... and, he feels it does nothing more than penalize law-abiding gun owners.

 

The Republican candidate for governor says entire planeloads of passengers should be turned away in New York if anyone aboard is traveling from the West African nations plagued with Ebola.  Rob Astorino said on a telephone news conference Monday that even American citizens -- for example, a tourist returning from Paris -- should not be allowed to disembark.  Astorino, the Westchester County executive, says Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo should order the state health commissioner to ``close those gates at the airport.''  Cuomo said earlier Monday that the federal government should consider a ban on flights to New York from the three West African nations.

 

A new political commercial is critical of the two Republican's at the top of the state-wide ticket for not releasing five-year financial statements.  The Democrat-backed ad says Gubernatorial candidate Rob Astorino has released one year... but, Chris Moss has released no financial information.  Moss says the commercial is making financial disclosure an issue because his Democratic counterpart... Kathy Hochul... has turned down doing any debates.
Moss says he has nothing to hide... adding his financial information is out there... and, was obtained by Hochul's campaign team.  He says he's made about 90-thousand dollars a year for each of the past five years... and, he has received no outside income.  Moss says his campaign asked Hochul's campaign for three debates... but, was turned down on each request.  The only debate among candidates at the top of the Republican and Democrat tickets will be between Governor Cuomo and Astorino later this month in Buffalo.

 

New York students will have more ways to earn a high school diploma under a change approved by state education leaders.  Right now... students must pass five Regents exams to graduate -- one each in English, science and math and two in history.  The plan approved by the Board of Regents yesterday would let students replace one of the history exams with a comparable exam in their chosen career field.

WJTN News Headlines


City lawmakers have begun their review of Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi's proposed, 34.7-million dollar budget for next year.  Spending plans for Public Works, Parks and Recreation, and Youth Services were dissected during the City Council's work session last night.  DPW Director Jeff Lehman discussed the need to replace about 2.7-million dollars worth of DPW equipment.  However... that's not in the budget proposal.  Council Finance Committee Chairman Tony Dolce says any replacement would likely be done either borrowing, or using excess contingency funds.  Dolce adds they're also looking at how Youth Services gets it's funding. Dolce says money for the department still comes from the state... but now is "passed through" the county.  He says the entire spending plan is a good start... but, adds there's always room for improvement because there is a 2.35-percent tax increase.  However... he says it is under the 2-percent property tax cap.  If the budget remains that way... city taxpayers would receive a rebate check from the state for the added taxes.  City lawmakers will review the two biggest parts of the budget... police and fire... next week.

 

A Jamestown man has been arrested for allegedly threatening a his girlfriend... then police... with with a high-powered rifle last weekend.  City police were initially called to the scene of a domestic violence incident just after 2 AM Saturday at 417 James Avenue.  On arrival... officers were told that the woman was inside the house with a disgruntled man who was threatening her... and, said he would shoot responding police 'on sight.'  Officers say she told 9-1-1 dispatchers that her boyfriend, 60 year-old Douglas Smith, had a rifle within his grasp.  The woman was able to leave the house... and, was taken to a safe location.  After a brief standoff... Smith surrendered outside of his residence... and, he was arrested.  During the investigation, it was found that Smith was a convicted felon and that he was in the possession of several firearms.  Officers did secure the weapons, and found one of the rifles to be fully-loaded.  Smith was arraigned on charges of third-and fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon... and sent to the county jail without bail.

 


Two teenaged girls were hurt -- one seriously -- when they were hit by a car on Jamestown's Washington Street on the city's westside.  Jamestown Police say officers were called to the scene -- at the intersection with West Eighth Street -- shortly before 1 PM Sunday.  Police say the vehicle was southbound on Washington when it struck the girls... ages 13 and 16... as they tried to cross the street away from the crosswalk.  Police say the driver of the Volkswagon Jetta was not able to stop in time... and, hit both.  The 13 year-old, from Jamestown, was flown by Starflight Helicopter to Women and Children's Hospital in Buffalo... while the 16 year-old, whose from Lakewood, was treated at WCA Hospital... and, later released.  City police ask anyone with information about the incident to contact them at 483-7537.

 


The Chautauqua County League of Women Voters will be holding Meet the Candidates events in both the north and county county this week.  The first will be tonight in Jamestown... while the second will be in Fredonia Thursday.  The League's Minda Rae Amiran says the candidates running for Family Court Judge... and, the State Assembly will be on hand.  However... only one of the candidates running for Sheriff will be there.  Amiran says they had invited both incumbant Democrat Joe Gerace, and Republican challenger Russ Payne to the forums.  Amiran says Payne initially turned down their invitation... then said he would debate... then again declined.
Amiran says their rules allow for one of the two candidates to appear in a "local race."  The League will hold forums in Jamestown tonight at 7 PM at the Robert H. Jackson Center... and, Thursday night at Fredonia Village Hall.  Both events are open to the public.

 

The Republican candidate running for Lieutenant Governor in New York has received the official backing of Chautauqua County's Congressman.  Corning Republican Tom Reed says he has gotten to know Chemung County Sheriff Chris Moss... who has been the Central New York county's top-cop since 2005... very well.  Reed says he became a good friend of Democrat Lieutenant Governor candidate Kathy Hochul when Hochul was in Congress.  However... he feels Moss is the better candidate... and, they share many of the same values. Moss says he appreciates Reed's support... especially regarding his opposition of New York's SAFE Act.  While the SAFE Act is not a major campaign issue to many people... Moss believes it will bring out a block of voters that often doesn't vote in large numbers -- and those are hunters.  He feels that will create a large voter turnout on election day.  Moss says New York already had the most stringent gun regulations in the country in place prior to the SAFE Act's enactment... and, he feels it does nothing more than penalize law-abiding gun owners.

 

The Republican candidate for governor says entire planeloads of passengers should be turned away in New York if anyone aboard is traveling from the West African nations plagued with Ebola.  Rob Astorino said on a telephone news conference Monday that even American citizens -- for example, a tourist returning from Paris -- should not be allowed to disembark.  Astorino, the Westchester County executive, says Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo should order the state health commissioner to ``close those gates at the airport.''  Cuomo said earlier Monday that the federal government should consider a ban on flights to New York from the three West African nations.

 

A new political commercial is critical of the two Republican's at the top of the state-wide ticket for not releasing five-year financial statements.  The Democrat-backed ad says Gubernatorial candidate Rob Astorino has released one year... but, Chris Moss has released no financial information.  Moss says the commercial is making financial disclosure an issue because his Democratic counterpart... Kathy Hochul... has turned down doing any debates.
Moss says he has nothing to hide... adding his financial information is out there... and, was obtained by Hochul's campaign team.  He says he's made about 90-thousand dollars a year for each of the past five years... and, he has received no outside income.  Moss says his campaign asked Hochul's campaign for three debates... but, was turned down on each request.  The only debate among candidates at the top of the Republican and Democrat tickets will be between Governor Cuomo and Astorino later this month in Buffalo.

 

New York students will have more ways to earn a high school diploma under a change approved by state education leaders.  Right now... students must pass five Regents exams to graduate -- one each in English, science and math and two in history.  The plan approved by the Board of Regents yesterday would let students replace one of the history exams with a comparable exam in their chosen career field.

News Update for Mon., Oct. 20, 2014


Two teens struck by car sent to hospital... one with serious injuries...

Two teenaged girls were hurt -- one seriously -- after they were struck by a car on Jamestown's westside early yesterday afternoon.  City police were called to the scene at Washington and West Eighth Streets... where they found the vehicle was southbound on Washington Street... and, had the green light at the intersection... shortly before 1 p.m.  Officers say the girls... a 13 year-old from Jamestown, and a 16 year-old from Lakewood... were not in the crosswalk... but, began walking across Washington.  Police say the driver of the Volkswagon Jetta was not able to stop in time... and, hit both.  The 13 year-old was flown by Starflight Helicopter to Women and Children's Hospital in Buffalo... while the 16 year-old was treated at WCA Hospital... and, later released.  City police ask anyone with information about the incident to contact them at 483-7537.


City man arrested for allegedly threatening girlfriend, police with loaded rifle...

A Jamestown man has been arrested for allegedly threatening a his girlfriend... then police... with with a high-powered rifle last weekend.  City police were initially called to the scene of a domestic violence incident just after 2 a.m. Saturday at 417 James Ave.  On arrival... officers were told that the woman was inside the house with a disgruntled man who was threatening her... and, said he would shoot responding police 'on sight.'  Officers say she told 9-1-1 dispatchers that her boyfriend, 60 year-old Douglas Smith, had a rifle within his grasp.  The woman was able to leave the house... and, was taken to a safe location.  After a brief standoff... Smith surrendered outside of his residence... and, he was arrested.  During the investigation, it was found that Smith was a convicted felon and that he was in the possession of several firearms.  Officers did secure the weapons, and found one of the rifles to be fully-loaded.  Smith was arraigned on charges of third-and fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon... and sent to the county jail without bail.


Reed throws support to GOP Lt. Gov. candidate Moss...

The Republican candidate running for Lieutenant Governor in New York has received the official backing of Chautauqua County's Congressman.  Corning Republican Tom Reed says he has gotten to know Chemung County Sheriff Chris Moss... who has been the Central New York county's top-cop since 2005... very well.  Reed says he became a good friend of Democrat Lieutenant Governor candidate Kathy Hochul when Hochul was in Congress.  However... he feels Moss is the better candidate... and, they share many of the same values.  Reed says that's creating job opportunities, and supporting Second Amendment rights.  Moss says he appreciates Reed's support... especially regarding his opposition of New York's SAFE Act.  While the SAFE Act is not a major campaign issue to many people... Moss believes it will bring out a block of voters that often doesn't vote in large numbers -- hunters.  He feels that will create a large voter turnout on election day. 

 

News Update for Fri., Oct. 17, 2014


Schuyler reiterates that Chautauqua County is prepared for Ebola -- if it shows up here...

While an outbreak is very unlikely here... Chautauqua County health officials say we’re prepared if a suspected case of Ebola comes up in our emergency response... or health care systems.  That from County Health and Human Services Director Christine Schuyler... who says her department has been working with the state Health Department... law enforcement, local hospitals and physicians to ensure they are ready if a suspected Ebola case is discovered.  Schuyler says "we have done a tremendous amount of planning, have established protocols and are fortunate to have such dynamic working relationships already in place.  We will continue to work with all of our partners and make adjustments as necessary in the weeks and months to come in order to best protect Chautauqua County residents."  Schuyler says health care providers have been instructed to ask about recent travel to West Africa and to assess symptoms, which include fever, severe headache, vomiting, diarrhea and unexplained bleeding and bruising.  The patient is to be isolated and lab tests ordered. The samples would then be rushed to Albany, where state epidemiologists would test for the Ebola virus.  The health department also has been in contact with hospitals in the County to make sure they have the capacity and proper facilities to isolate infected patients appropriately.  For more information, log on to www.cdc.gov. or www.health.ny.gov. or call the County’s Department of Health & Human Services, Public Health Division at 1-866-604-6789.


County's Audit and Control Committee approves budget amendments that cut executives proposal by 11-cents per $1,000...

It appears that Chautauqua County government is on target for approving an approximately $228-million, 2015 budget for 2015 that includes a slight tax rate decrease.  That after the county legislature's Audit and Control Committee Thursday approved amendments to County Executive Vince Horrigan's spending plan that total about $770,000.  Committee Chairman John Runkle says there was only very brief discussion on the changes... which were approved unanimously.  Runkle says the changes are producing a 2-cents per $1,000 full value tax rate cut.  Runkle says the amendment cuts the full value tax rate in the County Executive's proposal by about 11-cents.  He says most of his fellow lawmakers support the cut... for two reasons.  He says the fact there's a tax cut is number one... and, the second is because they aren't touching any more of the county's undesignated fund balance.  Horrigan urged lawmakers to not use any more of the fund balance for 2015.


Milanov named as new Music Dir. for Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra...

After a four-year search... Chautauqua Institution has a new Symphony Orchestra Music Director known for his "bold programming."  Chautauqua's Associate Director of Programming Deborah Sunya Moore says Rossen Milanov will become the symphony's ninth director during the 2015 season.  Moore says Milanov will also serve as principal conductor... and, artistic director.  She says he's well-known to Chautauquans... having been a visiting director three times in the past.  Moore says Milanov is a native of Bulgaria... and, is 49 years-old.  She says the main search for a new Music Director was held this past year... with an eight-member committee put together.  Moore says they had an "incredible list" of well-qualified people.

WJTN News Headlines


Six people face drug charges after two seperate raids in Jamestown Thursday afternoon.  The Jamestown Metro Drug Task Force executed two search warrants.  The first was just after 3:30pm  at 165 Barrett where Swat Team Members arrested 46 year old Torry Knight of Jamestown, and 31 year old Ervin Mitchell and 18 year old Rayquan Brooks both of Buffalo after allegedly finding 1 ounce of crack cocaine packaged for sale.  Three more people were arrested in a second raid just after 4pm at 108 Crescent Street after Swat officers allegedly found more than one ounce of crack cocaine and a loaded rifle. 32 year old Ollie Alford of Buffalo, and 24 year old Laura Dubois and 45 year old Lawrence Gary of Jamestown were arrested. All 6 face Criminal Posession of a controlled substance charges, with Alford and Gary facing additional Criminal Posession of a weapon charges because both are convicted felons.  All are being held in the city jail for arraignment. The Jamestown Metro Drug Task Force is made up of members from the Jamestown and Ellicott Police Deparments.  They ask anyone who may have information on illegal drug sales to contact their anonymous tip line at 483-8477.

 

Governor Andrew Cuomo says the state is ready for Ebola.  Cuomo says eight hospitals across the state are especially prepared with go-to teams who've been drilled in anti-Ebola protocols.  Cuomo told a news conference that, starting Monday, medical experts will be dispatched to hospitals to make sure they have the needed equipment and training for possible Ebola cases.

 

Some 200 unionized workers at RHI Monofrax remain on strike after this week's meeting held to try and address contract issues that led workers to strike at the plant more than two weeks ago.  And... some other unions will be joining workers for a rally in front of the plant at 2 PM today.  A member of the National Conference of Firemen and Oiler's Local-#266 says there was no real head-way made this week on the issue of skyrocketing insurance premiums for employees.  The strike began at Midnight, September 29th.  Wages and benefits have also been an issue during contract negotiations.

 

The Chautauqua County Legislature's main financial panel has approved having the county's Industrial Development Agency buy one of the two Carriage House facilities to market for new use.  That from the chairman of the legislature's Audit and Control Committee... who says the panel unanimously approved having the county buy 2-million dollars in bonds for the IDA to purchase ConAgra's Dunkirk plant on Talcott Street.  Runkle says the purchase would take place later in the year... and, take full effect once the plant is closed. Runkle agrees that the county is "speculating" that someone will ultimately purchase the building.  However... there is precident where the county has purchased industrial buildings in the past... then been able to find a buyer.  That's been the case with the former Sysco facility in Falconer... and, Maplevale Farms in the Clymer area.  The Carriage House facilities in both Dunkirk and Fredonia are scheduled to close at the end of the year as ConAgra moves those operations to Kentucky.  The move will put about 425 employees out of work.

 

Efforts to re-use blighted and foreclosed on properties in Chautauqua County have received a 1.3-million dollar boost from New York state.  The state Attorney General's office announced late yesterday that the county's Landbank Corporation received this latest grant from the Land Bank Community Revitalization Initiative.  County Landbank Corporation Board Chairman Peter Lombardi says they're pleased to have received the grant... which he says will allow them to demolish and re-use residential and, mixed-use properties. Lombardi says -- with the county's first grant -- this brings the amount of state funding to get the local program up and running -- totals about 2.8-million dollars.  With that first round... he says they were able to contract with communities to survey or demolish 80 structures... 40 in Jamestown.  Lombardi adds that... for every dollar that those communities invest in demolition... the landbank will match it.  A home on East First Street was recently demolished under the program... and, a number of others are having asbestos surveys.  The contract with Dunkirk was just recently signed to deal with 20 such properties in the north county city.

 

A city man is jailed without bail for allegedly threatening people early yesterday morning with a knife at two different homes in the downtown area.  Jamestown Police were called to the first location at 235 Fulton Street shortly after 4 AM on a report of a man allegedly threatening to stab or slash another person.  Officers were initially given a description of a male suspect, and that of a woman who was with him.  While checking the area... police say they were called to another incident at 30 Franklin Street... where the man allegedly had kicked-in the door... and, threatened people in the neighborhood.  After getting further descriptions... officers found 22 year-old Charles Monroe, and the woman, nearby.  But... police say she was not found to be an accomplice.  Monroe was arraigned on charges including two counts of second-degree menacing... criminal mischief... and, aggravated Family Offense... and, sent to the county lock-up.

 

An argument over a fishing area led to the assault of one person this past Tuesday on Keller Road in the town of Busti.  Lakewood-Busti Police say they were called to the scene about 5:30 PM... and, their investigation showed that 80 year-old Burdette Gifford, and his 47 year-old son, Matthew, allegedly struck the man with a shovel.  Matthew Gifford was arraigned, and sent to the County Jail with bail to be set on a third-degree assault charge.  Burdette Gifford was arraigned on the assault and second-degree harassment charges... and, was issued an appearance ticket for Busti Town Court.

 

Will an agreement be reached by later this month on a North County Water District?  The Chautauqua County Water Agency will hold its next meeting later this month, the first such gathering of agency members since May 8th when they agreed on a general concept for the project that included both the city of Dunkirk... and, village of Fredonia.  County Executive Vince Horrigan says talks are continuing and he remains hopeful that an agreement can be reached. However... Dunkirk Mayor A.J. Dolce doesn't seem as optimistic about an agreement being worked out any time soon.  Dolce addressed the issue during his budget announcement on Tuesday... adding, though, that those discussions are continuing.  The Chautauqua County Water Agency is scheduled to meet on October 30th at the Fredonia Incubator on Central Avenue in Dunkirk.  Horrigan hopes to have a draft resolution in time for the meeting. 

 

A Rochester television station says its interview with Governor Cuomo was abruptly cancelled when the station said it wanted to ask him about more than his new memoir.  WHAM-TV reports that the publishers of Cuomo's book arranged the interview for Wednesday night.  A Cuomo aide later called, asking the station to only ask questions about the memoir.  When the station refused, the interview was cancelled.  State Assignment Manager Brian Houseman says the station wanted to ask Cuomo about other issues... such as hydraulic fracturing for natural gas.

WJTN News Headlines


There's great news for motorists in downtown Jamestown... or outsiders who travel through the city.  Mayor Sam Teresi announced just before Noon Wednesday that West 5th Street, from Fairmount Avenue to Washington Street, has been reopened... and, traffic is again moving over it.  Many people questioned why the project... which began in early Summer... took such a long time to complete.  Public Works Director Jeff Lehman says it was a complete rebuild... and, adds it was "considerably larger" than a typical rebuilding project. Lehman earlier said the project was hampered by our at times wet, and cool Summer.  However... he says the weather the past month was "great..." and, helped them "button up" the project.  Lehman says the final top-coat of asphalt was put over the street Tuesday... and, the remaining work on the cross street intersections was completed by late Wednesday.

 

Chautauqua County's top health official says there's no need for panic locally over what's happening nationally... or internationally regarding the Ebola virus.  However... Health and Human Services Director Christine Schuyler says people do need to keep aware of what's happening as health officials deal with the virus and it's spread.  First... Schuyler says keep track of the travels of anyone you know... especially any international travel because there are people from local churches who go on mission trips. Schuyler also emphasizes that Ebola is not an "airborne" virus, but, is "infectious to the touch..." meaning there needs to be direct contact to contract it.  That direct contact can be broken skin... or, eyes ears nose or mouth has to come in contact with someone showing symptoms.  That's when it's spread.  Schuyler says the county has been receiving guidance from the New York State Health Department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention regarding the international outbreak... and, now four cases in the U-S.

 

A second Dallas nurse who became infected with the Ebola virus while caring for a dying patient took a Frontier Airlines flight from Cleveland, Ohio, to Dallas-Fort Worth this past Mnday.  NBC News reports that's just one day before she reported developing symptoms of infection, according to U.S., and airline officials Wednesday.  The U-S Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)... and, the airline said they are reaching out to all 132 passengers who were aboard the flight.

 

While being vigilant about Ebola and the Enterovirus... Christine Schuyler says people should also make sure they are practicing prevention as we head towards the colder weather months.  That means -- first of all -- getting your Flu shot.  Schuyler says those are now available at local doctor's offices, and pharmacies. Schuyler says Enfluenza is a "vaccine-preventable disease."  Others include Pertussus... or Whooping Couch.  Another shot that's available is for Pneumonia. 

 

Gasoline prices in the Jamestown-area... and, nationally... have fallen about 9-cents a gallon for regular, unleaded this week.   The Triple-A's Fuel Gauge Report says the average price locally was based on 17 service stations.  The Fuel Gauge reports the price had dropped from 3-dollars-61.1 cents last week to 3--51.7 this week.  One station... earlier in the week... had a price of 3-dollars-47 cents.  Gas was just under 3--70 a gallon at this time last year.  Nationally... the average price for regular, unleaded gasoline has fallen for 19 straight days... reaching today’s price of 3-dollars-19 cents per gallon.  The average price is down in every state and Washington, D.C., in both week-over-week and month-over-month comparisons.  Drivers in six states are paying an average price below three dollars per gallon to refuel their vehicles.  The Triple-A says low demand combined with abundant supply has kept downward pressure on global oil prices.  The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries -- or OPEC -- members are scheduled to meet at the end of November and will reportedly not hold an emergency meeting before then based on current prices, which has supported the bearish sentiment for crude oil.

 

Dunkirk Mayor A-J Dolce has released his proposed 2015 budget.  The proposed spending plan totals just over 22.3-million dollars -- which is up about 293-thousand dollars from the 2014 budget.  However... Dolce says the city tax rate will remain unchanged.  He says they were able to hold the line because of cost savings. But... Dolce says the budget calls for a hike in water bills... city payers will see their bills increase by about 4-dollars per month and out-of-city ratepayers are slated for a 7-dollar per month increase.  No change is being proposed for sewer rates. 

 

All kidding aside... New York now has an official state snack, and it is yogurt.  Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a bill into law Wednesday that gives the dairy product official distinction as the state snack.  The idea of making yogurt the state's official snack came from a 4th-grade class from western New York.  But... lawmakers have taken some heat for the proposal after the state Senate's 45-minute debate on the bill was mocked by David Letterman and Jon Stewart.  New York is the nation's top yogurt producer, making 741 million pounds of the dairy product last year, well above the 591 million produced by second-place California.  Cuomo has called New York the nation's ``yogurt capital.''

WJTN News Headlines


There's great news for motorists in downtown Jamestown... or outsiders who travel through the city.  Mayor Sam Teresi announced just before Noon Wednesday that West 5th Street, from Fairmount Avenue to Washington Street, has been reopened... and, traffic is again moving over it.  Many people questioned why the project... which began in early Summer... took such a long time to complete.  Public Works Director Jeff Lehman says it was a complete rebuild... and, adds it was "considerably larger" than a typical rebuilding project. Lehman earlier said the project was hampered by our at times wet, and cool Summer.  However... he says the weather the past month was "great..." and, helped them "button up" the project.  Lehman says the final top-coat of asphalt was put over the street Tuesday... and, the remaining work on the cross street intersections was completed by late Wednesday.

 

Chautauqua County's top health official says there's no need for panic locally over what's happening nationally... or internationally regarding the Ebola virus.  However... Health and Human Services Director Christine Schuyler says people do need to keep aware of what's happening as health officials deal with the virus and it's spread.  First... Schuyler says keep track of the travels of anyone you know... especially any international travel because there are people from local churches who go on mission trips. Schuyler also emphasizes that Ebola is not an "airborne" virus, but, is "infectious to the touch..." meaning there needs to be direct contact to contract it.  That direct contact can be broken skin... or, eyes ears nose or mouth has to come in contact with someone showing symptoms.  That's when it's spread.  Schuyler says the county has been receiving guidance from the New York State Health Department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention regarding the international outbreak... and, now four cases in the U-S.

 

A second Dallas nurse who became infected with the Ebola virus while caring for a dying patient took a Frontier Airlines flight from Cleveland, Ohio, to Dallas-Fort Worth this past Mnday.  NBC News reports that's just one day before she reported developing symptoms of infection, according to U.S., and airline officials Wednesday.  The U-S Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)... and, the airline said they are reaching out to all 132 passengers who were aboard the flight.

 

While being vigilant about Ebola and the Enterovirus... Christine Schuyler says people should also make sure they are practicing prevention as we head towards the colder weather months.  That means -- first of all -- getting your Flu shot.  Schuyler says those are now available at local doctor's offices, and pharmacies. Schuyler says Enfluenza is a "vaccine-preventable disease."  Others include Pertussus... or Whooping Couch.  Another shot that's available is for Pneumonia. 

 

Gasoline prices in the Jamestown-area... and, nationally... have fallen about 9-cents a gallon for regular, unleaded this week.   The Triple-A's Fuel Gauge Report says the average price locally was based on 17 service stations.  The Fuel Gauge reports the price had dropped from 3-dollars-61.1 cents last week to 3--51.7 this week.  One station... earlier in the week... had a price of 3-dollars-47 cents.  Gas was just under 3--70 a gallon at this time last year.  Nationally... the average price for regular, unleaded gasoline has fallen for 19 straight days... reaching today’s price of 3-dollars-19 cents per gallon.  The average price is down in every state and Washington, D.C., in both week-over-week and month-over-month comparisons.  Drivers in six states are paying an average price below three dollars per gallon to refuel their vehicles.  The Triple-A says low demand combined with abundant supply has kept downward pressure on global oil prices.  The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries -- or OPEC -- members are scheduled to meet at the end of November and will reportedly not hold an emergency meeting before then based on current prices, which has supported the bearish sentiment for crude oil.

 

Dunkirk Mayor A-J Dolce has released his proposed 2015 budget.  The proposed spending plan totals just over 22.3-million dollars -- which is up about 293-thousand dollars from the 2014 budget.  However... Dolce says the city tax rate will remain unchanged.  He says they were able to hold the line because of cost savings. But... Dolce says the budget calls for a hike in water bills... city payers will see their bills increase by about 4-dollars per month and out-of-city ratepayers are slated for a 7-dollar per month increase.  No change is being proposed for sewer rates. 

 

All kidding aside... New York now has an official state snack, and it is yogurt.  Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a bill into law Wednesday that gives the dairy product official distinction as the state snack.  The idea of making yogurt the state's official snack came from a 4th-grade class from western New York.  But... lawmakers have taken some heat for the proposal after the state Senate's 45-minute debate on the bill was mocked by David Letterman and Jon Stewart.  New York is the nation's top yogurt producer, making 741 million pounds of the dairy product last year, well above the 591 million produced by second-place California.  Cuomo has called New York the nation's ``yogurt capital.''

News Update for Wed., Oct. 15, 2014


County's Health and Human Services Dir. urges residents to know about Ebola Virus, not panic...

There is no reason to panic.  However... the top health official in Chautauqua County says residents need to be aware of what's happening with nationally and internationally with the Ebola virus.  County Health and Human Services Director Christine Schuyler says people should know the facts about Ebola as health care professionals and officials deal with it.  First... Schuyler says keep track of the travels of anyone you know... especially any international travel because there are people from local churches who go on mission trips to regions such as West Africa.  She adds also know how it's spread... and, that is by direct contact with an infected person.  Schuyler says people also have to be showing symptoms in order for Ebola to spread.  Initially... those are similar to the cold... with a fever, and headache or stomach ache.


Second Dallas nurse now being treated for Ebola after flying from Cleveland to Dallas-Forth Worth Monday...

Ater speaking with us... we learned a second Dallas nurse who became infected with the Ebola virus while caring for a dying patient took a Frontier Airlines flight from Cleveland, Ohio, to Dallas-Fort Worth on Oct. 13.  NBC News reports that's just one day before she reported developing symptoms of infection, according to U.S., and airline officials Wednesday.  The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention... and, the airline said they are reaching out to all 132 passengers who were aboard the flight.


West 5th Street reopened after lengthy project between Fairmount Ave., and Washington St....

Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi has announced that West 5th Street, from Fairmount Avenue to Washington Street, has been reopened... and, traffic is flowing.  The city's Department of Public Works did a complete reconstruction of the street this Summer.  Teresi says DPW crews put the final topcoat on the roadway yesterday.... and, the remaining work on the cross street intersections is being completed today.

 

WJTN News Headlines


A woman is dead following a train accident in the town of Portland. WGRZ news reports that  According to State Police, Phyllis Poloncarz, 68, was hit by an oncoming train just after 5pm on Tuesday. The accident happened Tuesday near Onthank Road in the Town of Portland.  Authorities are continuing to investigate the accident.

 

Jamestown police say the man accused of robbing the CVS Store in Brooklyn Square... and, has been charged in two others... was apparently stealing money to feed a drug habit.  That from City Police Captain Bob Samuelson... who says they charged 31 year-old Angel Vargas-Mendoza with the robberies at the 7-11 stores on East Second and Allen Streets last August.  Vargas-Mendoza was pulled from the Chadakoin River late last Sunday night after allegedly holding up the CVS Store by pulling a knife on the cashier. Police were able to make quick work of arresting Vargas-Mendoza after being called to the scene about 10:30 PM.  Officers met a citizen witness and the Store Manager at the scene.  Officers were told Vargas-Mendoza had run off towards the Chadakoin River after fleeing the store with a small amount of cash.  Samuelson says... while cant' devuldge what Mendoza has said to them... there is enough evidence to charge him with all three robberies.  A knife was also brandished in the 7-11 robberies... but, no one was hurt in any of the three incidents.  Vargas-Mendoza now faces three counts of first-degree robbery.

 

The problem of drug-related crime... and, the need for coordinating law enforcement efforts between local, state and federal agencies was the focus of a forum in Olean.  Local Congressman Tom Reed co-hosted the roundtable with Indiana representative Susan Brooks Monday.  Reed says local health care professionals... and, law enforcement, and, elected officials... took part in the roundtable discussion.  The Corning Republican says they had a "candid conversation" about the on-going Heroin epidemic here... and, across the region. Reed says last month's federal designation of Chautauqua County as a "High-Intensity Drug Trafficking Area" is critical to providing the county with the resources it needs to combat high-level Heroin trafficking... and, coordinate efforts to reduce the demand for drugs.  He says holding the roundtable in Olean was key because the drug trade knows no boundaries.  Reed says the drug epidemic is part of the reason he has co-sponsored an effort to reinstrate the School Resource Officer program in local schools.  He believes getting the federal program back up and running will help deter school students from trying drugs. 

 

A decision by the most recent head coaches for Track and Field at Jamestown High School to step down has left a popular, long-time assistant without a team... and, several student-athletes upset.  It has also upset a number of parents... who say Ron Graham should be allowed to continue coaching in some capacity as he has for about three decades in the area.  School officials say -- by contract -- the coaching positions must be filled first by a teacher who is qualified.  At last night's school board meeting... parent Raven Mason said at least some of the coaches told them they were fired over the issue of uniforms. However... School Superintendent Tim Mains says that's not the case.  Mains says he received a petition signed by a number of students calling for Graham to be hired as head coach.  But... he says if a qualified member of the Jamestown Teacher's Association applies for a coaching position... they must be considered first.  Graham is not a teacher.  Mains says a woman with 13 years experience coaching track and field in Randolph... but, teaches in Jamestown... applied for the head coaching position -- and, got it.  In his conversations with Graham... Mains says he got the impression that he was not interested in an assistant's position again.

 

It'll be an early start to the fourth-day of the Davide Coggins double-murder trial in Chautauqua County Court today.  District Attorney David Foley says court will resume at 9 AM instead of the usual 9:30.  Foley says there are no witnesses on the stand at this time.  Late last week... Sheriff's Department Lieutenant Vincent Gerace spent over a day on the stand before his testimony concluded.  Coggins and three other men from the Elmira-area are accused in the torture-murders of 66 year-old Gordon Skinner, and his 59 year-old wife, Joyce.

 

Union officials will reportedly meet with management at RHI Monofrax today to address contract issues that led workers to strike at the plant two weeks ago.  The Post-Journal reports a member of the National Conference of Firemen and Oiler's Local-#266 said the major focus will be on skyrocketing insurance premiums for employees.  Congressman Tom Reed has helped Monofrax obtain two U-S Department of Energy contracts... and, says he remains "very optimistic" the two sides will work out their differences.  The employee says there is concern that Monofrax won't be able to full-fill orders due to the strike... which began at Midnight, September 29th.  About 200 workers are involved.  Wages and benefits have also been an issue during contract negotiations.

 

Three male teens have been arrested in Dunkirk following two armed robberies that occurred early this past Monday morning.  Officers in the north county city say the two 16-year-olds... and, one 17-year-old were allegedly involved in the hold ups, one on Sixth Street near Central Avenue followed by a second one on Leming Street -- near Pine.  Police say the teens approached their victims in a car... then exiting the vehicle and displaying knives and a baseball bat.  Police later spotted the vehicle that was allegedly involved and stopped the car.  The teens, whose names are not being released, are facing multiple counts of first-degree robbery... criminal possession of a weapon... and, criminal possession of stolen property.

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