Local News Headlines

WJTN News Headlines for Tues., Jan. 31, 2023

Two arrests so far after paid of drug raids, and traffic stop in Jamestown...
Two city residents have been arrested -- so far -- following a pair of simultaneous drug raids... and, a traffic stop in Jamestown Monday afternoon.  City police say members of the Jamestown Metro Drug Task Force executed two search warrants... one at 144 Park St. and the other at 116 Park... about 2 p.m.  At 144 Park... investigators found two people inside... along with 11 grams of Fentanyl... and, a large amount of packaging materials.  At 116 Park... detectives found two more people... 22 year-old Karielys Reyes and a two-year-old child.  Detectives also found 505-grams of cocaine... and, some cash.  Police also found the apartment was in deplorable condition... and Reyes was taken to the city jail where she's being held pending arraignment on one count of Endangering the Welfare of Child.  The child was turned over to a family member.  City police also stopped a vehicle on Foote Avenue in the area of Jamestown High school... and, found 21 year-old Jamere Maisonet... who's name was on the search warrant.  He was arrested and faces federal charges in connection with the investigation.  City police were assisted by Sheriff's Department Narcotics investigators... and, the JPD SWAT Team. 


City Council approves two measures to use another $1.3-million in ARPA funding...
The Jamestown City Council has approved allocating another nearly $1.3-million in American Rescue Plan Act funding.  During last night's voting session... lawmakers approved adding $377,000 in ARPA funding to the Senior Citizen Home Improvement Program to fund all approved projects.  Council had been told last week that there was already just over $94,000 left unused from previous projects... and, the cost would be about $282,000.  However... Finance Committee Chairwoman Kim Ecklund says that was not the case... and, they would have to provide the full $377,000.  That way all projects approved will be done.  Council also approved the measure to use 900-thousand dollars from the ARPA Water, Sewer and Broadband program to replace a water main, and do street restoration work on Roland Road and Juliet Street. 


Council tables measure adopting NYS Climate Smart Community pledge...
City lawmakers last night tabled action on a proposal to adopt a New York State Climate Smart Community pledge for Jamestown.  The measure was discussed briefly during last week's work session... but, lawmakers had some additional questions... and Council President Tony Dolce says council agreed to wait a month to get more information about whether it "lock" the city into something, and where the Board of Public Utilities may fit into all of this.  The plan would have the city work in a number of areas to help Jamestown cut greenhouse gas emissions.  Dolce says the tabling also allows city lawmakers time to address residents concerns about the Climate Smart pledge before acting on it.  


Sundquist talks ARPA impact, budding cannibus industry in State of City address...
The city of Jamestown is in the best position it's been in on many fronts as 2023 gets underway.  That from Mayor Eddie Sundquist during his annual State of the City Address yesterday afternoon... where he said the "state of the city is strong, and looking for collaborative solutions to move our city forward."  Sundquist again this year recorded his State of the City message to avoid taking up additional time at last night's City Council voting session.  He looked back on three major accomplishments since he took office that have put the city on solid financial footing.  The first is having the city's largest fund balance in decades... settled every employee contract, and put out a new Medicare Advantage Program for retirees that has saved the city $1.6-million dollars in health care costs.  He also touted new equipment and facilities improvements to city departments during the just under 19-minute speech.


Wendel holding off on setting date for State of the County Address...
Chautauqua County Executive P.J. Wendel says he has not set a date for delivering his annual State of the County message to the county legislature.  During a recent interview... Wendel said he is still awaiting some important announcements before scheduling the address, with a lot of "great things have happened in 2022... and, a lot of great things are on the horizon in 2023."  He's looking at late February or sometime in March.  Wendel did not give out any specifics.  The State of the County is traditionally given during a County Legislature meeting in February.


Crandall retiring as Silver Creek School superintendent at end of current school year...
A man who has been an educator in Chautauqua County for more than three decades will be retiring at the end of this school year.  Todd Crandall, who currently serves as Superintendent of the Silver Creek Central School District, made his announcement in a letter to district families late last week.  Crandall says he had planned on retiring last year, but was asked to stay on after the district had a new administrative team.  He says the time has come for him to move on to the next chapter of his life, and while it's difficult to leave "it's time to move on to the next chapter in my life."  Crandall's career has spanned over 32 years... including seven in his current capacity at Silver Creek.  The Silver Creek school board has secured the services of Erie 2-Chautauqua-Cattaraugus BOCES Superintendent Dr. David O'Rourke to conduct the search for Crandall's replacement.

 

 


 

WJTN News Headlines for Mon., Jan. 30, 2023

Two local men killed in I-86 double-fatal crash last Saturday night...
The investigation is continuing into a double-fatal, wrong-way crash on Interstate 86 in the town of Ellicott last Saturday night.  State Police in Jamestown were called to the scene in the westbound lanes between Exits 12 and 13 about 6 p.m., and, found that a car... driven by 30 year-old Mathew Berry of Randolph was traveling the wrong way -- without headlights.  Troopers say an approaching, westbound pick-up truck hit Berry's car head on.  Police say the pick-up was then struck from behind by a semi-trailer.  Police say Berry was pronounced dead at the scene.  Both occupants of the pick-up... 57 year-old Todd Town, and his 54 year-old wife, Sandra of Jamestown... were seriously hurt and taken to area hospitals.  Todd Town later died of his injuries at UPMC Chautauqua Hospital... and, Sandra Town is in serious condition at UPMC Hamot Medical Center in Erie.  The semi driver was not hurt.  Further investigation found that Berry suffered from a mental illness... and was reported missing earlier in the day Saturday. 


Sundquist giving State of City Address today...
Jamestown Mayor Eddie Sundquist is delivering his annual State of the City message via video streaming today from City Hall.  Sundquist has released his message via video the past couple of years due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  However... he's also doing that again this year... after telling City Council recently that it was in the works.  Sundquist is touching on a number of issues, including the city's efforts to deal with the homeless crisis... and, push the need for resumption of commercial air service at the Jamestown Airport.  The State of the City has typically run about 20 minutes in length... and, will be available at jamestownny.gov/live.


Wendel has not set a date for his State of the County Address...
Chautauqua County Executive P.J. Wendel says he has not set a date for delivering his annual State of the County message to the county legislature.  During a recent interview... Wendel said he is still awaiting some important announcements to be made before scheduling the address for either late February or March.  He did not give out any specifics. 


City woman arrested for allegedly spitting on Tops Market employees, and chasing one...
A Jamestown woman has been arrested after allegedly becoming disorderly... and, spitting on employees at the Foote Avenue Tops Market store last Saturday.  City police were called to the scene at 738 Foote about Noon... and, found that 57 year-old Jennifer Jankowiak approached a Tops employee -- unprovoked -- inside the store.  She allegedly said that "all men are scum" and then spit on the worker.  Other staff then approached Jankowiak... and, asked her to leave the premise when she began spitting on another staff member.  She then began chasing the employee around the parking lot before leaving.  Jankowiak was located a short time later by police... and, arrested on two counts of second-degree harassment.  She was jailed pending arraignment.


City lawmakers ask for update on what may happen at former Rite Aid Pharmacy on No. Main Street...
Some Jamestown City Council members are questioning the recent closing of the Rite Aid Store on North Main Street... and, what may go in there in the future.  Councilwoman Kim Ecklund says she's received a number of questions about the closing from residents on the northside who used the pharmacy there... and, now have to find a way to get to Brooklyn Square to get medications filled.  She says, especially people with disabilities or having to use motorized transport chairs, ete.  City Development Director Crystal Surdyk says she has learned... in conversations... that Walgreen's has obtained the property.  However... she hasn't been able to talk to anyone directly about the chain store's plans for that location... and, she will do that next.  Earlier this month... Rite Aid officials confirmed that the store at 811 North Main St. would close as of Jan. 19. 


"Doors Open Jamestown" resumes, and is deemed a success...
The Jamestown Community Chamber of Commerce reports traffic was brisk at most all the locations involved in ‘Doors Open Jamestown’ on Saturday.  Roger Tory Peterson Institute Chief Executive Officer Arthur Pearson says it was their second ‘big crowd’ in two days.  Pearson says the first was Friday night with their first "Art After 5" event.  Sue Whitaker was one of the visitors at RTPI.  As someone relatively new to Jamestown, she found ‘Doors Open’ to be a great adventure... and, it "opened her eyes" to a lot of what's here.  Sixteen attractions and 21 businesses took part in 'Doors Open Jamestown.'  At the Reg Lenna Center for the Arts, Len Barry, the Director of Marketing and Communication said Saturday was an exciting prelude to the theater’s 100th anniversary celebration.  The Reg anniversary celebration is set for next Sunday, Feb. 5, with a ceremony at 2 p.m., and a free showing of the movie ‘School of Rock’ to follow.


Mayville Man arrested for having sex with, and trafficking underage girls...
A Mayville man has been arrested by federal authorities for allegedly having sex with... and, sex trafficking a minor.  U-S Attorney Trini Ross says 48 year-old William Quinones has been charged with transportation of a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity... and sex trafficking of a minor.  Prosecutors say in July of 2021... the Chautauqua County Sheriff's Office received a complaint that Quinones had been sexually abusing two children over the past eight years... and, a subsequent investigation found four minor victims.  The charges carry a mandatory minimum penalty of 15 years in prison and a maximum of life.

WJTN News Headlines for Fri., Jan. 27, 2023

Four arrested following drug raids in Dunkirk...
Four Dunkirk residents have been arrested in a pair of early morning raids in the north county city that also led to seizures of a significant amount of illegal narcotics.  Sheriff's officers say Dunkirk City Police... Jamestown Police and the FBI Safe Streets program all took part in executing search warrants at 123 Zebra St., and, 201 Deer St.  Local SWAT Teams assisted with the raids... which led to seizures of 6.2 grams of cocaine, 7.38 grams of crack cocaine, scales and packaging material for the distribution of narcotics, a high-capacity magazine and $726 cash.  Police arrested Victor Morales, and, Leonarda Morales-Colon... both 51... and, 23 year-olds Glory Torres-Rivera and Michael Morales.  All are charged with two counts of second-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance... two counts of fourth-degree criminal possession... and, second-degree criminally using drug paraphernalia... and, fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon.  All four were jailed pending arraignment.


Jamestown woman faces charges following car accident involving Jamestown school bus...
Two people were hurt... but, no students were injured... after a car struck a Jamestown school bus traveling on Route 394 in the town of North Harmony about mid-morning Thursday.  Sheriff's officers say 29 year-old Tori Carlson of Jamestown was northbound on Bly Hill Rd. -- at an unsafe speed -- just before 8:30 a.m. and her car slid through the intersection with Rt. 394... and, hit the bus.  There were two student passengers on board... but, avoided injury.  Carlson and another passenger on the school bus were hurt... and, were taken to UPMC Chautauqua Hospital for treatment.  Carlson is charged with speed not reasonable due to weather conditions... failure to yield the right of way... having a suspended registration... an unregistered Motor Vehicle... and, driving without Insurance.  She was issued appearance tickets for North Harmony Town Court.


Man from Panama accused in DWI accident with parked vehicle...
A Panama man is accused of driving drunk when his car swipe a parked vehicle and leave the scene on Jamestown's southside earlier this week.  City police say a patrol spotted the accident... and, identified the driver as 37 year-old Cody Erickson.  Police say their investigation determined that Erickson was driving while intoxicated.. and, he had a suspended registration.  He was arrested for leaving the scene of an incident, Moved from Lane Unsafely, driving while registration suspended, and DWI.  Erickson was held pending arraignment.


County Legislature approves opioid settlement with Teva Pharmacutical...
The Chautauqua County Legislature has approved moving ahead with receiving just under $1-million over the next 13 years through an opioid drug settlement.  Lawmakers voted Wednesday night unanimously to okay a New York Statewide Opioid Settlement Agreement with Teva Pharmacutical for nearly $958,000 through 2036.  County Attorney Patrick Slagle says Teva... and it's subsidiary... announced a just over $4-billion global opioid settlement last July.  Slagle says it's a "carve-out" from the overall settelment... and, requires Teva to pay out $550-million to the state... and, co-plaintiff counties... depending on the level of participation statewide.  Slagle urged the legislature to accept the settlement because, if they don't, they'd be looking at new litgation, paying additional lawyers fees, and not get anything in the end.  Slagle says the county would receive just over $50,000 a year under the settlement with funds to be used for the county jail's MAP program that helps drug users... along with education and training.


City man arrested for riding bike on the sidewalk found to be wanted for other offenses...
A Jamestown man illegally riding a bicycle on the sidewalk on West Fifth Street last Wednesday night has been arrested in connection with three separate burglaries.  City police say officers spotted 41 year-old Alberto Aponte-Narvaez, Jr. riding a bicycle in the area of Jefferson Street about 8:30 p.m., which is a violation of the Jamestown City Code.  In addition... police found that Narvaez had outstanding arrest warrants for the three burglaries... as well as five petty larcenies and four other bench warrants.  Once officers spotted Narvaez... he began to flee the scene... and, K-9 "Grimm" was brought to the scene.  The K-9 tracked the suspect until he was found hiding behind a northside home.  Narvaez was arrested for riding on the sidewalk... three counts of third-degree burglary... five counts of petty larceny... and, the four bench warrants.  He was held pending arraignment.


"Doors Open Jamestown" back this year under Jamestown Community Chamber...
"Doors Open Jamestown" returns this Saturday... giving local residents a chance to check out local attractions in the city... and, immediate area.  For the second year in a row... it's being put on by the Jamestown Community Chamber of Commerce... and, will feature some 16 attractions and 21 businesses taking part.  That from Chamber Coordinator Carrie Swanson... who says "Doors Open" will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and, they'll have a number of other activities taking place... including tours, a texting scavenger hunt.  However... Swanson says there will be some instances where you have to pre-register for tours and admission.  That'll be the case for the National Comedy Center and the Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Museum.  You need to pre-register on-line for those.  Other attractions taking part are: the Roger Tory Peterson Institute... Audubon Community Nature Center... Marvin House... DAR House... the Comedy Center... Reg Lenna Center for the Arts... Lucy-Desi Museum... the Martz-Kohl Observatory... the Prendergast Library... Northwest Arena... the Pearl City Clay House... and the Robert H. Jackson Center.  For more information... go on-line to "JTNY Events."
 

WJTN News Headlines for Thurs., Jan. 26, 2023

County Legislature approves management salary plan for Media Information Officer in executive's office...
The Chautauqua County Legislature has moved forward on establishing a new Media Information Officer's position in the County Executive's office.  Lawmakers in Mayville last night approved a local law setting a management salary plan for the position of between $60,000 and $90,000 a year.  Ellicott Republican Lisa Vanstrom fully supported the move... noting that local media do a "great" job covering the county... but, adds sometimes someone has to put information out immediately in cases like power outages, emergency, and the latest on COVID-19.  However... the three Democrats at the meeting voted no.  Fredonia's Susan Parker noted that while a media or public information officer is a good idea... the county executive's office already has seven employees in it... while there were just three 10 years ago.  Parker says that's a 124% increase in personnel in that office.  The local law was approved in a 13-to-3 vote with all Republican lawmakers voting in favor of the move.
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At the end of the meeting... the legislature read memorials for four past legislators and other local officials who passed away in 2022.  They included former County Executive John Glenzer of Fredonia... and, former Fredonia lawmaker Robert Penharlow... as well as former legislator and Jamestown City Council President John Y. Carlson... and, long-time Ellery Town Supervisor, Arden Johnson.  


Tributes coming in with sudden passing of local native, and musician, Jackson Rohm...
The tributes are pouring in on-line for local native and musician Jackson Rohm... a Lakewood-native who died earlier this week at his home in Rosemary Beach, Florida.  The website, 'Geniuscelebs,' reports that Rohm passed away tragically after a battle with cancer early Wednesday, Jan. 25.  Few details have been released... but, Rohm was a renowned singer and acoustic guitar player.  Geniuscelebs says his passing has "left his his family grieving and there is sadness in the community over the loss of this Rosemary Beach artist."  Rohm developed his love for music in middle school... and, later developed it into a career.  Among those paying tribute today on Facebook is Chautauqua County Executive P.J. Wendel... who attended Southwestern Central Schools with Rohm.  He says "your music will live on and always remind us of your talent, passion and true love for life."


Schumer says defaulting on national debt will cause "economic nightmare" for Upstate NY...
A small number of far right, "MAGA" Republicans are threatening to cause Congress to default on the nation's debt ceiling if they don't act soon.  That from U.S. Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer... who says today that a default would be an "economic nightmare" for the upstate New York region.  The Brooklyn-area Democrat says raising the debt ceiling to allow the government to pay it's bills has not been a partisan issue in the past.  Schumer says "everyone knew the consequences of default would be so severe."  He says even though the "MAGA Republicans are a small majority, they seem to be running the show." Schumer says default means "real dollars" coming out of New Yorker's pockets in higher mortgage rates, and interest rates on everything... especially car loans.  He says it could also cut Social Security payments to the regions 1.8-million recipients... who receive $3-billion in benefits each month.  Schumer made his comments during a Zoom press conference with state-wide media.


No one arrested, but, drugs and drug packaging items seized during raid on Jamestown apartment...                 
Members of the Jamestown Metro Drug Task Force and other local drug agents seized quantities of illegal narcotics, and items used in drug trafficking... during an early morning raid on the city's eastside Wednesday.  City Police say the task force... with the help of the JPD SWAT Team... made entry into the lower apartment at 616 East Second St., and, found no one inside.  However... they searched the residence and found quantities of fentanyl, and methamphetamine... along with cutting agents, packaging materials, scales, and drug ledgers.  Police say the investigation is continuing and charges are expected in the future.  Those charges will include third and seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.  The Task Force was assisted by the Sheriff's Department's Narcotics Investigators... Ellicott town Police... and others. 


BPU deals with another -- much shorter -- widespread power outage Wednesday...
There was a brief power outage early Wednesday afternoon in the Board of Public Utilities service territory that affected most of the area.  BPU Spokeswoman Becky Robbins says the outage occured about 12:10 p.m., and, lasted about five-minutes.  She adds it occured while the utility was troubleshooting the cause of last Thursday's outage.  Officials add the latest outage involved a new issue at the Dow Street substation.  While the power was all back on quickly... Robbins says BPU water customers may see discolored water through mid-day Thursday morning because the outage affected the system's water pumps.


Gas prices in Jamestown hold steady...
While the price of a gallon of regular, unleaded gasoline continues to move upward in the U.S., the price remains stable in the Jamestown-area.  That from AAA's East Central Gas Price report this week... which says the price remains just under $3.70 a gallon.  AAA says drivers seem to be taking advantage of the recent milder weather by fueling up and hitting the road.  Officials cite an increase in gasoline demand and slightly more expensive oil pushed the national average 12-cents higher than last week to $3.42 a gallon. 


  

WJTN News Headlines for Wed., Jan. 25, 2023

Two city men arrested for drug possession following traffic stop...
Two Jamestown men face drug related charges following a traffic stop early Tuesday morning where one of them was allegedly driving drunk.  City Police say a patrol stopped the car... driven by 38 year-old Darryl Cavness... on Harrison Street near Forest Avenue just before 1:30 a.m.  Officers say Cavness appeared to be drunk... and, his license had been revoked for a previous DWI conviction.  Police say a search of the vehicle uncovered a quantity of Alprazolam pills and suboxone strips.  Cavness was charged with DWI, first-degree aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle... circumvention of an Interlock Device... and, two counts of seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.  Cavness' passenger, 50 year-old Jonathan Barlow was also charged with two counts of seventh-degree criminal possession of a Controlled Substance.  Both men were taken to the City Jail pending arraignment.


City man arrested for driving drunk with one-year old in car...
A Jamestown man has been accused of driving drunk with a one-year old child riding in the backseat of his car.  City police say they conducted a traffic stop on a car for failure to keep right on East Virginia Blvd just after 1 p.m. Monday.  Officers say they also found the car had a suspended registration -- along with a cracked windshield that obstructed the driver's view.  The driver... identified as 47 year-old Dale Goodridge... who failed field sobriety tests during the investigation.  He was also found to have a revoked driver's license for a prior DWI conviction.  Police say a one-year-old child was seen in a carseat in the back seat of the vehicle... making it a Felony charge under Leandra's Law.  Goodridge was taken to the city jail where his BAC was found to be nearly twice the legal limit.  He was jailed pending arraignment on charges including failure to keep right... DWI Leandra's Law... and, first degree aggravated unlicensed operation.


United Way exceeds 2022 General Campaign goal...
The 2022 United Way of Southern Chautauqua County Campaign was another huge success.  The local human service organization last night celebrated beating it's campaign goal of $1.3-million at the Northwest Arena.  The United Way raised $1.37-million through the efforts of three campaign co-chairs: Danielle Stone, Denise Heppler, and Heather Turner.  Heppler thanked the United Way staff for all their help and guidance during the effort.  She says she feels privledged to have worked on the campaign behind the scenes to see how it all works... and, that the co-chairs did a "decent job..." which drew some laughs.  Stone expressed her appreciation to the staff, division chairs and others on hand.  She says being part of the campaign was an "incredible experience."  Turner says being involved in this year's effort was a "blessing."  United Way Executive Director Amy Rohler says being able to beat their goal in a small community like this requires a "united effort." 


Ribbon is cut on new Pearl City Clay House in Jamestown...
A new arts shop and gallery is now officially open in downtown Jamestown that's part of the Infinity Visual and Performing Arts program.  The ribbon was cut this afternoon on the new "Pearl City Clay House" on East Second Street... across the street from Infinity.  Infinity's Executive Director, Shane Hawkins, says the Clay House has been in the works for five years... and had to take several months "off" due to the COVID Pandemic.  However... Hawkins says they knew there was a need for programming in the community that helps sustain the program for the long-term.  She says this gives adults a chance to work with their families on various projects, with money raised to help the overall Infinity program.  Hawkins was joined by Clay House Program Director Deb Eck, who says they're able to offer a number of art, pottery, and other classes at the studio.  Several local officials and Infinity Board members joined in the ribbon cutting.  They included Jamestown Mayor Eddie Sundquist and Chautauqua County Executive P.J. Wendel.


NYS Legislature approves measure barring discrimination based on abortion, or "gender expression..."
The New York State Legislature has taken a "critical step" towards adopting a constitutional amendment that would bar discrimination based on ``pregnancy outcomes'' or ``gender expression.''  Supporters say the provisions are intended to protect abortion rights, and a person's right to seek gender-affirming care.  Both the Democrat-led Assembly and Senate Tuesday approved the proposed amendment... which will now put it on New York's November 2024 general election ballots for voter ratification.  The Legislature gave initial approval to the amendment last summer after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.  It was the first step in the state's amendment process, where lawmakers have to pass a resolution twice in order to send it to voters.


PA governor refuses to disclose Inaugural party donors...
The refusal thus far of Democratic Governor Josh Shapiro to disclose who paid for his inaugural party has exposed the gap in state law that lets governors in Pennsylvania escape the kind of transparency sometimes required elsewhere.  Presidential inaugural committees are required by federal law to disclose donors who give over $200 to inaugural celebrations.  States like Virginia, Maryland and New Jersey have such laws, as does the city of Philadelphia.  Many other states have no such disclosure laws, and millions of dollars can be given secretly by donors who seek favorable treatment under state regulations.

WJTN News Headlines for Tues., Jan. 24, 2023

State Legislature approves constitutional amendment barring discrimination in two areas...
The New York State Legislature has taken a "critical step" towards adopting a constitutional amendment that would bar discrimination based on ``pregnancy outcomes'' or ``gender expression.''  Supporters say the provisions are intended to protect abortion rights, and a person's right to seek gender-affirming care.  Both the Democrat-led Assembly and Senate Tuesday approved the proposed amendment... which will now put it on New York's November 2024 general election ballots for voter ratification.  The Legislature gave initial approval to the amendment last summer after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.  It was the first step in the state's amendment process, where lawmakers have to pass a resolution twice in order to send it to voters.


City Council to vote on adding $282,000 for Senior Home Improvement Program...
The Jamestown City Council will vote next week to increase the amount of money available for senior home improvement projects funded through the American Rescue Plan Act.  That from Council Finance Committee Chairwoman Kim Ecklund... who says the just over $377,000 in funding brings the total to $1.877-million.  However... she says they did realize some savings in the original $1.5-million allocated for projects... totaling $94,672.... so they need $282,856 to complete the eligible projects.  Ecklund says the committee also decided that the additional money would come from unallocated ARPA funding... which she says is now about $3.2-million.  She says the panel also wanted to not take any of the "general" $500,000 in the Residential Home Improvement Program for people who don't qualify for the other home improvement programs.


Council to move ahead with council, mayoral salary increases beginning in 2024...
City lawmakers Monday night also discussed two local laws that would increase both the mayor's and city council salaries beginning with the next term.  Finance Committee Chairwoman Kim Ecklund says her panel agreed to a $2,000 increase in council salaries... and for the Council President.  Ecklund says that would bring council salaries to $7,000 and council president to $8,000.  The proposed salary for the full-time mayor's position would become $82,000 a year... a $10,000 a year increase.  Councilman Jeff Russell proposed an additional stipulation where the city council would have to "sign-off" if the mayor wanted to have another full or part-time job.  As a JPD officer, Russell said he had to request the ability to get "secondary employment," and the chief would have to agree to that.  Councilwoman Marie Carrubba agreed with that stipulation because that's also common practice among non-profits... and not-for-profits.  The two measures may be introduced at next Monday night's City Council voting session... and, be automatically tabled for 30 days.


Council agrees to applying for Restore-NY funding for Furniture Mart Building project...
The Jamestown City Council last night approved applying for up to $2-million in Restore New York funding to convert the Furniture Mart building into a mixed use location.  Lawmakers voted during a brief, special meeting, to move ahead with the application in an effort to help the new owners turn the building into a mix of commercial and residential use.  The building at 111 West Second St. was approved last August by Empire State Development Corporation to proceed with the application process.  City officials say the project is consistent with the city's adopted Urban Design Plan from 2006... and, the building meets Restore-New York financing guidelines.


Dolce says he's made no decision on running for mayor, or city council again...
Jamestown City Council President Tony Dolce says he hasn't made a final decision yet... but, says city Republicans do plan on running a mayoral candidate this Fall.  During our Community Spotlight program last weekend on the Media One Radio group of stations... Dolce was asked if he is running.  He says he's heard that question a lot lately... but, says he has a lot of political and professional considerations to weight first.  The professional considerations include the fact he's eligible to retire.  As a council member... Dolce did take a short break from the political spotlight some time ago.  There are at a couple of other names that have come up on the GOP side as possible mayoral candidates.  Current Democratic Mayor Eddie Sundquist announced he's running for a second term earlier this month.


Hinsdale man arrested for domestic violence incident...
A Cattaraugus County man has been arrested following a domestic violence incident in the town of Hinsdale.  Sheriff's officers in Little Valley were called to a report of a domestic incident in progress just after 5 a.m. Sunday on Fay Hollow Rd., and, arrested 31 year-old Joseph Griffin of that address.  Deputies say they arrested Griffin for second-degree strangulation... criminal obstruction of breathing... second-degree harassment... endangering the welfare of a child... fourth-degree criminal mischief... and, resisting arrest.  He was issued appearance tickets for town court.


 

WJTN News Headlines for Mon., Jan. 23, 2023

Franklinville man arrested after 38 cows are found malnourished, and one dead on farm...
A Cattaraugus County man has been arrested on more than three dozen counts of not providing sustenance to cows on a farm... and, being responsible for at least one's death.  Sheriff's officers in Little Valley were initially called to a dead cow complaint on Cadiz Rd. in Franklinville last Christmas Eve.  Following an investigation... deputies arrested 52 year-old Russell Ulmer on 38 counts of failure to provide sustenance... and two counts of disposal of dead animals.  Ulmer was issued appearance tickets for Franklinville Town Court at a later date.


City man arrested on drug and traffic charges following vehicle stop...
A Jamestown man faces several drug and traffic charges following a traffic stop on Winsor St. along the East Second Street corridor last Friday.  City police say a Gun-Involved Violence Enforcement detail was doing a saturation patrol when members spotted a white sedan with tinted windows in the area of Crescent and Cheney Sts. shortly before 4 p.m.  Officers say they stopped the car... driven by 30 year-old Zachary Miller... after finding that he was wanted on outstanding bench warrants for Jamestown City Court.  A further investigation and search of the vehicle, found that Miller was in possession of a "large quantity" of methamphetamine... and, a quantity of MDMA/Ecstasy.  Miller was also found to be driving with a suspended North Carolina license.  He was arrested for third-degree and seventh-degree criminal possession of a Controlled Substance... third-degree aggravated unlicensed operation... and, several traffic violations and the bench warrants.  He was taken to the city jail pending arraignment.


City woman arrested as fugitive from justice in PA...     
A Jamestown woman has been arrested following a complaint of an unwanted person at a southside residence early Sunday morning.  City police were called to the scene just after 3 a.m., and, found the person, 32 year-old Trisha Ferraro... at the scene.  Officers did a background check... and, found Ferrao was wanted ton several bench warrants issued through Jamestown City Court.  They also found an additional warrant out of Erie County, Pennsylvania for theft.  Ferraro was transported to the Jamestown City Jail where she is being held pending arraignment on the city court warrants... and, one count of being a fugitive from justice.


Dolce says city lawmakers will likely make sure to fully fund Senior Housing Improvement projects...
Jamestown city lawmakers are expected to revisit the issue of whether there's enough American Rescue Plan funding in the Senior Housing Improvement Program.  The matter was brought up during a recent City Council Work Session... with members believing they had allocated enough money to the program to cover all eligible projects.  Council President Tony Dolce says another $500,000 in ARPA funding was added late last year.  Lawmakers initially put $500,000 into the program, then added $500,000 more a short time later because it had become so popular.  City officials then came back to the Housing Committee... and noted the need for a total of $1.8-million to cover another more than 50 projects.  A few lawmakers expressed frustration over the fact there still wasn't enough money with the funding that had already been put in.  But... regardless... Dolce says the added projects will be funded because they still have a few million dollars left of the $28-million originally granted to the city in it's ARPA allocation.  Lawmakers hold their second work session tonight at 7:30 p.m.  Dolce made his comments for last weekend's "Community Spotlight" program here on the six Media One Radio Group stations.


New York State moving towards barring insurrectionists from holding public office...
Democratic lawmakers in a handful of states -- including New York -- are looking to send a message two years after the violent attack on the U.S. Capitol. Their message is that those people who engage in an attempted overthrow of the government shouldn't be allowed to run it.  In addition to New York... Connecticut and Virginia are among states where proposed legislation would prohibit anyone convicted of participating in an insurrection from holding public office or a position of public trust, such as becoming a police officer. 


Angola man arrested for burglary in Silver Creek...
A Buffalo-area man has been arrested for allegedly breaking into a home in the village of Silver Creek... and, causing a disturbance until police arrived.  Sheriff's officers were called to 1207 Routes 5 and 20 about 4 p.m. last Thursday... and, arrested 40 year-old Michael Faraci of Angola, NY.  Deputies say Faraci is charged with second-degree criminal trespass... and, fourth-degree criminal mischief.  He was issued appearance tickets for Hanover Town Court at a later date.


Borrello named Pres. of NYS Conference of Italian American Legislators...
Chautauqua County's New York State Senator has been chosen by his Senate and Assembly colleagues to serve as president of the state Conference of Italian-American State Legislators.  Sunset Bay Republican George Borrello says he's "grateful" to his colleagues for naming him to the position.  Borrello says the mission of the bipartisan organization is to highlight the significant contributions of Italian-Americans to the state of New York.  He adds "New York State is home to over 3-million residents of Italian descent whose economic, social and cultural contributions make our state stronger and enrich the diversity of our cities and communities."  He also notes that his great-grandparents came to the United States from Italy... and, "worked hard to provide for their family." 

WJTN News Headlines for Fri., Jan. 20, 2023

Chautauqua Lake advisory panel nixes lake maintenance tax proposal...
An advisory panel established to look at forming a "taxing district" to fund the management and protection Chautauqua Lake has rejected the idea.  A source at the meeting tells Media One News that the vote came at the Chautauqua Lake Protection and Rehabilitation Agency's meeting... which was being held in Mayville to review recommendations to fund lake protection efforts.  A possible new tax on residents living in the lake’s watershed was to be discussed.  In a press release this morning... Chautauqua Lake Association Executive Director Doug Conroe says four people among the 75 to 100 people on hand spoke at the beginning -- mostly against the proposal.  Before moving onto their agenda... Conroe says a vote was requested on whether to continue with the current process.  He says the advisory panel voted to scrap the idea, 7-to-4.  Six yes votes were needed.  Any recommendation would have had to go through the county legislature to be enacted.


Body of dead man found along Lake Erie shoreline in town of Dunkirk...
The body of a dead man has been found near the Lake Erie shoreline -- near Canadaway Creek in the north county town of Dunkirk.  Sheriff's officer say Dunkirk Police reported the discovery shortly before 11 a.m. Thursday... and, city police and the Sheriff's Office responded and located the man's body.  Police say the man appeared to have been dead for a significant amount of time and has not yet been identified.  Officers say an autopsy will be completed.  The Sheriff’s Office is continuing it's investigation.


Suspicious man arrested for allegedly trying to break into homes and vehicles on Jamestown's northside...     
A city man accused by residents on Jamestown's northside of trying to break into homes and parked vehicles in that part of the city has now been arrested.  City police say they were called to the area about 9 a.m. Thursday on a report of a suspicious male with face tattoos running through several backyards.  As they checked the area... officers say they spotted 37-year-old Omar Rosado in the backyard of one address.  Police say Rosado matched the description of the suspicious man... and, he was known to have active domestic violence arrest warrants issued by city court.  When officers tried to stop Rosado... he allegedly fled through multiple backyards to avoid arrest.  However... he was finally caught by police and charged with attempting to evade arrest by jumping over fences.  Rosado was also charged with second-degree obstructing governmental adminstration... and, was jailed pending arraignment.


Man wanted in Warren Co. arrested in Jamestown...
A Jamestown man has been arrested as a fugitive from justice after city police investigated a "suspicious person" complaint on the city's southside.  Jamestown police were called to the undisclosed location just after 6:30 p.m. Wednesday... and, found 35 year-old Silk Spencer in a vehicle at the scene.  A background check showed that Spencer had an active warrant for his arrest in Warren County, Pennsylvania.  Officers took Spencer into custody.. and, he was taken to the City Jail without incident on a charge of being a fugitive from justice.


Langworthy to serve on two House committees in 118th Congress...
Local Congressman Nick Langworthy will be serving on two key House committees in the 118th Congress.  Langworthy says he's looking forward to serving on the House Oversight Committee.  Langworthy says they'll be seeking a lot answers from the Biden Administration in a number of areas... from the withdrawl from Afghanistan... to the situation at the southern border.  He says the American people "deserve answers from the government."  In addition... Langworthy will also serve on the Agriculture Committee.  He expects a busy year with the new, five-year Farm Bill to be considered.  He says there are a lot of policy and spending priorities they need to work on.  That committee is chaired by Central Pennsylvania Republican Glenn "GT" Thompson... who represents Warren County, PA.


Metzger retires from County IDA Board...
A man who has been on the Chautauqua County Industrial Development Agency's Board of Directors since early 1999 has now retired.  Deputy County Executive for Economic Development and Chief Executive Officer of the county IDA, Mark Geise, announced today that Chautauqua's Mike Metzger retired effective the end of last year.  Geise says Metzger "admirably" served on the CCIDA board for nearly 23 years... and, more than a decade of which was as it's Chairman.  He says earlier this year, "Metzger announced his retirement from his position as Vice President for Finance and Administration at SUNY Fredonia, and stated that he and his wife Marge wished to slow down and spend more time with their family, especially their grandchildren."  Geise adds that Metzger "has played a crucial role in the CCIDA’s development.  Through all of the ups and downs of the economy, challenges associated with changes in staff, and other trials, Mike has endured and led with a steady hand... Mike possesses great character and commitment, and he will surely be missed.”  Fancher Chair Owner, Gary Henry, was nominated by the IDA Board to replace Metzger as Chairman at their Dec. 27 meeting.

 

WJTN News Headlines for Thurs., Jan. 19, 2023

Widespread BPU power outage leaves much of Jamestown, and surrounding area without power a short time this morning...
A circuit problem tripped off power to most of the city of Jamestown... and, some parts of the surrounding area... about mid-morning today.  Board of Public Utilities Spokeswoman Becky Robbins says the widespread outage occured shortly before 9 a.m., and, was restored about half-an-hour later.  Mayor Eddie Sundquist was in the middle of a meeting in his office at Tracy Plaza when the power went out... but, says power was restored fairly quickly.  Robbins told us in an e-mail that all locations should have power back now.  In addition to most of the city... West Ellicott, Celoron and Falconer were also affected by the outage.  She says supervisors were able to quickly isolate the problem, and get the power back on.  However... she says the outage did cause water pumps at their pump station turned off... and, residents my see discolored water through tomorrow morning.


Langworthy proposes legislation that would eliminate federal tax credits for wind turbine projects on Lake Erie...
New local Congressman Nick Langworthy was in Dunkirk Wednesday afternoon to unveil his first bill since becoming a member of the 118th Congress.  The proposed legislation would deter companies from constructing wind turbines in Lake Erie.  Joined by County Legislator Martin Proctor of District 18... Langworthy announced the Lakes Before Turbines Act during a news conference at the Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club... and, changes a part of 1986 tax law that allows such credits for any projects in the Great Lakes.  He says without the federal tax credits, it would be too costly for companies to construct the wind turbines in the Great Lakes.  The Buffalo-area Republican says there's fierce opposition to such projects in his district... led by some state lawmakers... including local State Senator George Borrello and Assemblyman Andy Goodell. 


City man arrested for trepassing in same southside property three times in 2023...
A Jamestown man has been arrested for the third-time this year trespassing inside a condemned southside home.  City police were called to the location about 8:30 Tuesday morning on a trepass complaint.  Offficer ssay they found 38 year-old Aaron Albaugh inside... and, he was arrested for third-degree criminal trespassing.  Police say Albaugh was taken to the city jail pending arraignment.  Albaugh was arrested with two others just a few days ago for trespassing in the same building.


Falconer man arrested for burlgary in Lakewood...
A man from Falconer is accused of burglarizing a location on East Fairmount Avenue in Lakewood... and then trying to run off from police.  Lakewood-Busti Police were they were called to Wal-Mart SuperCenter at 350 East Fairmount Avenue about 4 p.m. Tuesday.  On arrival... officers spotted the suspect, 35 year-old Andrew Schultz, who matched the description of the suspect... and, was running off on foot.  Police say Schultz allegedly hid in a hedge-row before he was found... and, he tried to flee again... but, was caught.  He's charged with third-degree burglary, petty larceny and resisting arrest.  Schultz was issued appearance tickets for Busti Town Court at a later date.


Sundquist tells City Council his administration is working on a bonding resolution...
Jamestown city officials are looking at borrowing money for a number of capital projects and purchases... not covered by American Rescue Plan Act funding.  That from Mayor Eddie Sundquist... who told City Council at last week's work session... that he and his department heads are working out the particulars on what needs there are... and, how much it will all cost.  Sundquist says the last bond did not cover a number of areas that still need attention... and, they'll have a package together in the next "one to two months."  He was asked by a council member at the meeting if there is a chance that American Rescue Plan Act funding could be used at least for some of the projects.  He says there certainly is... but, he says they want to lay-out what they're looking to have bonded... then determine how much needs to be borrowed.  The previous capital bond was taken out during the Teresi Administration... and, went for a number of equipment and other purchases for the city.  


State Senate committee nixes Hochul's Chief Judge nominee...
New York Governor Kathy Hochul's nominee to be the state's chief judge was rejected by a state Senate panel Wednesday.  The Senate Judiciary Committee voted not to forward Hector LaSalle's Court of Appeals nomination to the full Senate after questioning him for more than four hours.  Most of Hochul's fellow Democrats voted against LaSalle.  Hochul has said he deserved a hearing before the full Senate.  She nominated LaSalle just before Christmas, hoping he would become the first Latino to lead the seven-member high court.  The pick ran into trouble after a vocal coalition of opponents claimed LaSalle's judicial record was too conservative.


JPD asks for public's help in locating missing juvenile...
The Jamestown Police Department is looking for the public's help in finding a missing runaway juvenile... who's not believed to be in any danger.  JPD Juvenile detectives are looking for 16-year-old Deston Guyot... who is 5'9" tall... and, weighs about 110 pounds.  Deston has brown hair and brown eyes.  Anyone with information regarding his whereabouts is asked to call the Jamestown Police Department at 716-483-7537 or the Anonymous Tip Line at 483-TIPS.


 


 

WJTN News Headlines for Wed., Jan. 18, 2023

Four people arrested during three, simultaneous drug raids in Jamestown...
Four people have been arrested following raids on three residences in the city of Jamestown early Tuesday morning.  The Chautauqua County Sheriff's Department reports it's Narcotics Investigation Team... along with members of the Jamestown Metro Drug Task Force... and, JPD and Sheriff's Department SWAT Teams... executed search warrants at the three locations shortly after 6 a.m.  The first was at 46 Beech St., and led to the discovery of 22.8 grams of fentanyl... 25.3 grams of methamphetamine, scales... packaging materials and $109 in cash.  The second warrant was executed at 47 Charles St., where police seized 1.8-grams fentanyl... 8-grams of meth, scales, packaging materials and $250 in cash.  The final raid took place at 711 Cherry St. where Investigators found just over 21-grams of fentanyl, a quantity of methamphetamine and cocaine... scales and packaging materials along with $79 in cash.  The warrants led to the arrests of 53 year-old Shelly Cavallaro... 34 year-old Alicia Osar and 43 year-old Sandra Pavlock for two counts each of third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance... and, second-degree criminally using drug paraphernalia.  They also arrested 27 year-old Abner Gonzalez-Esquilin for seventh-degree criminal possession of a Controlled Substance.  Cavallaro, Osar and Pavlock were taken to the city jail pending arraignment... while Gonzalez-Esquilin was issued an appearance ticket.  Anyone with information about illegal drug activity in their area is asked to call the Sheriff's Office Narcotics Investigators Tip line at either 800-344-8702 or 664-2420... or the JPD Tip line at 483-TIPs... that's 483-8477.


Two local men arrested after showing up for Victim's Impact Panel...
Two men attending a Victim's Impact Panel for people convicted of driving while intoxicated at the Ashville BOCES have been arrested... one for allegedly driving drunk to get to the class.  Sheriff's officers say defendants who were charged for any DWI, or impaired by drugs are mandated by the courts to attend a victim impact meeting.  During pre-registration screening last Wednesday night... deputies saw one of the defendants... 66 year-old Deo Taylor of Westfield... drive a car to the meeting.  While registering, deputies determined that Taylor drove to the meeting drunk... and, he was arrested for DWI.  He was later found to have a blood alcohol content of .10.  That same evening... officers say another attendee -- 34 year-old Richard Preston of Jamestown -- was seen driving a pick-up truck to the meeting.  At the time... Preston denied driving but was seen driving by a deputy.  Officers later found that his license was revoked... and, he was driving without a court-ordered Interlock Device. 


Borrello says state lawmakers will hold hearing Thursday on NYS Climate Action Council scoping plan...
State lawmakers will hold a joint public hearing this Thursday on the legislative and budgetary actions needed to implement the New York Climate Action Council's Final Scoping Plan.  One of the people expected to attend is local State Senator George Borrello... who says lawmakers will not only hear from environmentalists who back plan... but, also from those who feel the proposals will harm the state's economy.  Borrello says parts of the plan are in Governor Kathy Hochul's Housing Compact... which would eliminating natural gas being used in these new homes.  Borrello has been a critic of the plan... which was approved by the Climate Action Council last month.  The Sunset Bay Republican says it not only bans new natural gas, propane and heating fuel oil systems, beginning as soon as 2025 for new construction.  The hearing will get underway at 10 a.m. Thursday and will be livestreamed.


Gillibrand say "care economy," defense, and new Farm Bill top her legislative priorities list...
New York's junior U-S Senator says she'll be tackling a "robust agenda" during the coming year.  Democrat Kirsten Gillibrand says she'll be working with Senate colleagues... including some Republicans... on multiple bills regarding "care economy" for children... and older adults..  Gillibrand says she has a handful of priorities for senior citizens in 2023 allowing them to stay in their homes, and thrive.  As for the Armed Services Committee... she hopes to focus on emerging threats.  In addition... she says work will begin later this year on a new, five-year Farm Bill that will be important... especially to Upstate New York... which will include feeding programs such as food stamps, and WIC... along with school breakfast and school lunch programs.  She says small business development and rural broadband will also be part of that. 


Three arrested for shoplifting at Lakewood Wal-Mart SuperCenter...
Lakewood-Busti Police have arrested three people in recent days for separate shop-lifting incidents in which more than 2-thousand dollars worth of merchandise -- combined -- was allegedly taken from the Lakewood Wal-Mart SuperCenter.  Police say two of the incidents occured last Friday... and, one Monday.  Officers say 47 year-old April Sardi of Jamestown allegedly took $830 worth of items in the Monday incident.  Last Friday... police say 42 year-old Eric Preston of Olean allegedly ran off with $751 worth of merchandise before being caught.  The third person... 50 year-old Sue Foster of Little Valley... allegedly walked out of the store with $498 worth of items.  She was also allegedly in possession of drugs, and a child with her.  All three are charged with petty larceny.  Foster is also charged with third-degree burglary... criminal possession of a controlled substance... and, endangering the welfare of a child.  Each was issued an appearance ticket for Busti Town Court.

 

WJTN News Headlines for Tues., Jan. 17, 2023

Four arrested in three early morning drug raids in Jamestown...
Four people have been arrested following raids on three residences in the city of Jamestown early Tuesday morning.  The Chautauqua County Sheriff's Department reports it's Narcotics Investigation Team... along with members of the Jamestown Metro Drug Task Force... and, JPD and Sheriff's Department SWAT Teams... executed search warrants at the three locations shortly after 6 AM.  The first... at 46 Beech St., led to the discovery of nearly 23-grams of fentanyl... 25-grams of methamphetamine, scales... and, packaging materials -- along with $109 cash.  The second warrant was executed at 47 Charles St., where investigators seized 1.8-grams fentanyl... 8-grams of meth, scales... and, packaging materials and $250 cash.  The final raid took place at 711 Cherry St. where Investigators found just over 21-grams of fentanyl, a quantity of meth and cocaine... scales and packaging materials along with $79 cash.  Three women... 53 year-old Shelly Cavallaro... 34 year-old Alicia Osar and 43 year-old Sandra Pavlock... were arrested on two counts each of third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance... and, second-degree criminally using drug paraphernalia.  They also arrested 27 year-old Abner Gonzalez-Esquilin for seventh-degree criminal possession of a Controlled Substance.  Cavallaro, Osar and Pavlock were jailed pending arraignment... while Gonzalez-Esquilin was issued an appearance ticket. 


City man arrested for falsely reporting gun incident in Brooklyn Square parking lot...
A Jamestown man has been arrested for allegedly falsely telling police that someone had threatened him with a gun in the parking lot of a Brooklyn Square pharmacy.  City police were called to the CVS store at 19 South Main St. Monday morning... and, found that staff there had swifly locked down the building and relocated customers and staff within to a safe location. Staff then directed officers to 40 year-old Kenneth Mosley, Senior... who was inside the  building.  Mosley stated that someone had threatened to shoot him in the parking lot... and, displayed a gun.  He had also called 911 and told a similar story to the dispatcher.  However... his story continued to change... and, video surveillance showed the incident did not happen.  Mosley was arrested for third-degree falsely reporting an incident.  He was issued an appearance ticket for City Court.


Two pets perish in Westfield house fire...
Two pets perished in a late night, accidental house fire in the town of Westfield last Sunday.  Sheriff's Department fire investigators say Westfield firefighters were called to 6904 Sherman-Westfield Rd. just after 9:30 p.m., and, were joined by several mutual companies in battling the blaze.  After extinguishing the fire... the county's Fire Investigation Team was called to the scene to conduct an investigation into the fire.  That determined the fire was accidental... and, caused by the malfunctioning of a rechargeable Lithium Ion battery.  No one was hurt in the fire.  Howeer... two dogs were found to be deceased inside the residence as result of the fire.


Sundquist says sidewalk snowplowing set to go... but, staffing positions remains a challenge...
Not everything's in place... but, the city of Jamestown is ready to move forward on it's new sidewalk snowplow program with the Jamstown Public Schools.  Leaders had hoped to have the program up and fully-running by now... but, there have been issues getting the two new plows... and, one of the two new plow drivers has been hired.  Mayor Eddie Sundquist says they'll use the plows they now have available.  Sundquist says the district ordered the plows several months ago, and, hopefully they'll arrive by the end of January.  He says the plow driver has been able to do some trial runs so they're ready for the next significant snowfall.  Only having one person hired so far is part of the larger problem of being able to find enough staff for all city departments.  Sundquist says that goes all the way from the police department... to the comptroller's office.  He says one issue is the fact workers can go into the private sector and sometimes double the amount they would make with the city, and have better benefits.  Sundquist says the New York State Conference of Mayor's is looking at pushing some reforms that will ease up some of the civil service requirements to fill positions.  He made his comments for last weekend's "Community Spotlight" program on the six Media One Radio Group stations.


NYSSBA also pleased to see Hochul proposed Universal Pre-K expansion in State of the State...
In addition to a proposal to fully-fund Foundation Aid in the new state budget... Governor Kathy Hochul is proposing a major expansion of Pre-K in New York.  That from New York State School Board's Association Executive Director Bob Schneider... who says that was part of the text of the governor's State of the State Address.  Schneider says that will provide Universal Pre-K for nearly all young children.  Schneider says the additional $125-million will allow 17,500 more 4-year-olds to take part.  Schneider says it's important to get those children into Pre-K so that they'll already have some basic skills to allow them to move into Kindergarten so they can be better at learning, sooner.  


Hochul, others to push for fair hearing for Chief Judge nominee...
New York Governor Kathy Hochul and other prominent state Democrats and Latino leaders are demanding the governor's chief judge nominee get a fair hearing this Wednesday... pushing back on claims by liberal lawmakers that Hector LaSalle is too conservative and his nomination should be withdrawn.  Hochul, appearing Saturday at the Latino Pastoral Action Center Leadership meeting, pledged to stand by LaSalle, a veteran judge.  If confirmed, he would become the first Latino to lead the seven-member high court and oversee New York's judicial system. 

WJTN News Headlines for Mon., Jan. 16, 2023

Cattaraugus County man arrested for DWI following serious, two-car crash in Jamestown...
A Gowanda man is accused of driving drunk following a two-car accident in Jamestown last Friday afternoon that left the other driver involved with life-threatening injuries.  City police were called to the scene at Hazeltine Avenue and Colfax Street just after 12:30 p.m., and called for emergency medical attention for the woman driver.  Officers say she was rushed to UPMC Chautauqua Hospital with serious injuries... and, was later transferred to another hospital.  Police say further investigation revealed that the other driver involved in the crash, 23-year-old Matthew Kruszka, had been operating the vehicle in an intoxicated condition.  He was arrested... and, was later given a breath test that found him to have a blood alcohol concentration of nearly twice the legal limit.  Kruszka was charged with DWI... and, follow-up with the injured driver revealed the life-threatening nature of her injuries.  Police say Kruszka was additionally charged with second-degree vehicular assault... and, jailed pending arraignment.


Three arrested in Jamestown -- one for third time in recent days -- for trespassing in condemned home...
Three city residents are accused of trespassing inside a condemned home on Jamestown's southside late last Saturday morning.  City police add that one of them... 31 year-old Matthew Buck... has now broken into condemned homes three times in just over the past three weeks.  Officers were called to the undisclosed location shortly after 10 a.m. on a report of people being inside.  After investigating... police found Buck... 35 year-old Andrea Robbins... and, 38 year-old Aaron Albaugh inside the residence unlawfully.  Police say the trio did not comply with their numerous commands to come out of the dwelling, forcing officers to gain entry to locate them.  All three were taken to the city jail without further incident... and, are each charged with third-degree criminal trespass... and, second-degree obstructing governmental administration.


Hochul pushes interagency cooperation to stem illegal drug trafficking and deaths...
Governor Kathy Hochul is proposing an interagency task force to deal with the ongoing opioid epidemic... and, the huge increase in Fentanyl-related overdoses and deaths.  During her State of the State Address... Hochul says she'll direct the state to work more with federal agencies to stop the flow of narcotics... and, test street drugs to see what's in them.  She says the state will send resources where they need to go, and expand access to technology to find deadly additives to illegal drugs -- like fentanyl.  Hochul says the new interagency task force will "examine every possible solution... and, make recommendations."  The amount of Fentanyl being found in recent months during drug raids in Jamestown and elsewhere have led to the discovery of more and more Fentanyl.  In fact... local, state and federal agencies discovered between 50,000 and 60,000 pills laced with Fentanyl during a traffic stop in Jamestown involving a Florida woman late last year.  


State DOH looking at options with courts striking down COVID vaccine mandate for health care workers...
The New York State Department of Health says the agency is ``exploring its options'' after a state Supreme Court judge struck down a mandate requiring health care workers to be vaccinated against COVID-19.  The agency on Saturday defended the mandate, saying in a statement that the requirement protects vulnerable New Yorkers... and, the people who care for them... and it's a critical public health tool.  The Syracuse Post-Standard reports Judge Gerard Neri said in a ruling released Friday that the governor and the health department overstepped their authority by mandating a vaccine not included in state public health law.  The judge sided with a group of medical workers called the Medical Professionals for Informed Consent.


Borrello objects to Hochul's call for tying minimum wage with rate of inflation...
One of the biggest applause lines in New York Governor Kathy Hochul's State of the State Address was a proposal to tie the state's minimum wage to the rate of inflation.  However... it's not a big hit with conservative Republicans.  Those are the feelings of local State Senator George Borrello... who says New York already has one of the highest minimum wages in the country.  In recent years... Borrello says the minimum has increased by 50%... and, is about twice the national minimum wage.  New York's minimum wage is now handled in two parts... one upstate and the other downstate.  The upstate minimum wage increased to $14.20 to begin the new year.  Meanwhile... Borrello says he's excited about being named by the Senate Republican Committee as the new Chair of their campaign committee for the upcoming election cycle. 


Documentary on racism, "Who We Are," being shown at Reg Lenna Center for the Arts tonight...
The public is invited to the showing of a documentary film chronicling racism in American tonight at Jamestown's Reg Lenna Center for the Arts.  "Who We Are" is a nearly two-hour film by Emily and Sarah Kunstler... and, will be shown at 7 p.m. in honor of the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  Chautauqua County IDEA member Marion Beckerink is one of the people involved in organizing the event... and, says the admission cost is $3.90 in honor of the 39 years MLK was alive.  The Jamestown YWCA is also involved in the effort... along with St. Luke's Church.  There will be a discussion afterwards.  Tickets can be purchased at the door... or on-line by 5 p.m. today.

WJTN News Headlines for Friday, Jan. 13, 2023

Rite Aid store on No. Main St. in Jamestown closing Jan. 19...
One of the Jamestown area Rite Aid stores is closing later this month.  The home office of the pharmacutical retailer says the store at 811 No. Main St. will be closing on Thursday, Jan. 19.  There was an erroneous mention on another Media One station that the location at 50 South Main is closing... but, that is not the case.  In a printed statement... Rite Aid Spokesperson Catherine Carter says "like all retail businesses, we regularly review each of our locations to ensure we are meeting the needs of our customers, communities and overall business.  A decision to close a store is... based on a variety of factors including business strategy, lease and rent considerations, local business conditions and viability, and store performance." 


Wendel offers "mixed review" of Hochul's State of State Address...
The top-elected official in Chautauqua County believes the county can benefit from some of the proposals that Governor Kathy Hochul presented in her State of the Address earlier this week.  However... County Executive P.J. Wendel adds he also has some concerns.  Wendel attended the address this past Tuesday in Albany... and, says Hochul's proposed $1-billion commitment to mental health care is "paramount," and it would particularly help in the north county, because UPMC Chautauqua Hospital in Jamestown is the only "acute mental health crisis" facility in the county.  He says boosting those services "is paramount."  The Lakewood Republican also had positive comments about Hochul's efforts on public safety, including her commitment to put more state troopers on the road and her willingness to discuss possible changes to bail reform.  Meanwhile, Wendel expressed some concern over her New York Housing Compact proposal, citing the state's ongoing trend of population loss.  He says increasing the number of homes by 800,000 doesn't make sense given that the state has lost about 500,000 people in the previous decade.  Wendel also questions how much of what she proposed will actually be included in the state budget.


State School Boards Assoc. chief pleased Hochul wants to fully-fund Foundation Aid to schools in new budget...
New York Governor Kathy Hochul is vowing to make good on raising public school funding to necessary levels in the 2023-24 state budget.  That from New York State School Boards Association Executive Director Bob Schneider... who says their staff has read through the detailed State of the State message... ... and, found that Hochul is proposing a $2.7-billion increase in Foundation Aid.  Schneider says officials are very happy to see what is a 13% increase in that "general aid" catagory.  He says that's important in dealing with inflation... and, expected, added costs to increase mental health... and other support services... for students impacted by the pandemic.  He says some of that support may also come from Hochul's proposal to boost mental health spending by $1-billion dollars.  As with anything else in the governor's State of the State Address... the rubber really meets the road at budget time.  Hochul will present the 2023-24 spending plan to the legislature by the end of the month.  Schneider says they're waiting to see what the Senate and Assembly come back with and budget negotiations begin.


Investigation underway into fire at former farmhouse on Moon Road in town of Ellicott...
Chautauqua County fire investigators are now looking for the cause of last night's fire that involved a large, former farmhouse on Moon Road in the town of Ellicott.  Chautauqua County's Emergency Dispatch Center says Fluvanna firefighters had mutual aid from Ellery Center, Gerry, Bemus Point, Sinclairville, Chautauqua, Ashville, and the Chautauqua County FAST team in battling the fire around 10:20 p.m. Wednesday.  Heavy fire was reported when crews arrived at the location at the intersection of Strunk and Moon Roads.  No injuries were reported.  Fluvanna firefighters were called back to the scene at 6 a.m. Thursday after the fire rekindled.


Whitaker outlines new Visitor Policy for people coming to city schools...
The Jamestown Public Schools are looking to update their policy for all visitors in the wake of new background technology that will require photo identification.  School Superintendent Kevin Whitaker says the new procedures should be in place for school hours by the end of January or early February.  Dr. Whitaker told our Dennis Webster this morning that school board Tuesday approved the initial reading of the policy change... which they currently practice, but, now is down on paper.  He says they're also using new technology called "a raptor system" which looks for people on databases who have been convicted of sexual abuse, and other preditory crimes.  Under the proposed policy... which has been approved by the district's Policy Committee — visitors including parents and volunteers would be required to present a valid state- or government-issued photo identification.


City man sentenced to 7 years in prisonfor violating his probation...
A Jamestown man will now spend seven-years in state prison after violating his probation by committing a Felony crime.  Chautauqua County District Attorney Jason Schmidt says 27 year-old Michael Bland was re-sentenced by County Court Judge David Foley Thursday morning on a violation of probation charge.  Schmidt says Bland was convicted of second-degree attempted burglary in Erie County... and, his probation supervision was transferred to Chautauqua County where he violated his probation.  In addition to the prison term... he says Bland will also spend three-years in post-release supervision. 

WJTN News Headlines for Thurs., Jan. 12, 2023

Several fire companies battle house fire on Moon Road into early Thursday morning...
Fluvanna and several other fire companies were called to a house fire at 3384 Moon Road late Wednesday night.  County fire dispatchers had no official report early Thursday... but, a picture posted by the Jamestown Post Journal suggests damage was significant.  Crews were initially called to the former farmhouse about 10:20 p.m.  There was no known personal injury... and no one was living there.  Firefighters were called back to the scene around 6 a.m. for a rekindling of flames at that location... at the intersection of Strunk and Moon Roads in the Town of Ellicott.  


Car, part of garage heavily-damaged by fire in Stow...
No one was hurt when a car caught fire in Stow about mid-morning Wednesday... and, spread to the wall of a nearby garage.  Chautauqua County fire dispatchers say Ashville firefighters were called to the scene on Stow Ferry Road shortly before 10 a.m., and, found the car fully-involved in flames, and spreading to the garage.  Ashville was joined by Bemus Point, Chautauqua and Sherman fire crews at the scene.  There was a report the fire started accidently as a person was working on the vehicle at the time.


Schumer in Jamestown to announce push for burned-out Crawford Furniture factory site clean-up...
New York's Senior U-S Senator was in Jamestown Wednesday to urge the Environmental Protection Agency to expedite efforts to clean-up of the former Crawford Furniture factory site.  During a news conference in front of the burned-out structure on Allen Street... Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer said local communities don't have the resources to do the environmental work... then clean-up.  The New York Democrat says $3.5-billion was set aside in last year's infrastructure bill for situations like this... and, adds that Congress has also brought back the federal Superfund tax program.  Schumer says that allows the EPA to go after the current or former owners for those clean-up costs.  He and Jamestown Mayor Eddie Sundquist noted that the city, and the EPA, had begun working with the latest property owner to remove old solvents, varnishes and other toxic materials from the building.  However... Sundquist it looks like the clean-up costs could be upwards of 2-million dollars.  He's pleased that Schumer and Congress were able to reinstate the federal Superfund program in 2022... and Chautauqua County Executive P.J. Wendel echoed those sentiments.  Schumer says the EPA would be able to fully fund the clean-up once the review is done... and, a plan is drawn up. 


Supreme Court allows NYS Gun Ban to remain in place as court case move forward...
The Supreme Court is allowing New York to continue to enforce a sweeping new gun law banning guns from ``sensitive places'' for now while a court challenge plays out. The justices on Wednesday turned away a plea by the law's challengers. The gun owners wanted the high court to lift a federal appeals court order that temporarily put on hold a lower court decision blocking portions of the law. The appeals court hasn't finished its review of the case, and justices are often reluctant to weigh in under those circumstances. The justices could still consider the case and the law more generally in the future.


Langworthy joins chorus calling for Santos to resign...
Current 23rd District Congressman Nick Langworthy remains New York state GOP Chairman... and, in that capacity is supporting Long Island Republicans in calling for the immediate resignation of embattled Congressman George Santos.  The Nassau County Republican committee Wednesday morning called for Santos' immediate resignation in the wake of lies about his background, and career were discovered.  Langworthy says he's facing "multiple investigations by prosecutors over his personal and campaign finances and lies about his resume and family heritage."  The chair of the Nassau County GOP Committee says Santos' ``lies were not mere fibs'' and that he had ``disgraced'' the U.S. House.  Despite the call, the local party has no mechanism to remove Santos from office.  He was sworn in to the U.S. House last week.


Man arrested following domestic incident on Jamestown's eastside...
A 40 year-old man has been arrested following a domestic incident on Jamestown's eastside for allegedly holding a woman against her will and choking her.  City police were called to the scene shortly after 11 p.m. Tuesday... and, arrested 40 year-old Khalif Swanson, Junior.  Officers says they determined the unidentified woman was being held inside the residence against her will.  Police say they also found that Swanson had allegedly choked the victim.  He was arrested for second-degree strangulation.. second-degree unlawful iomprisonment... second-degree obstruction of governmental administration... second-degree harassment... and Aggravated Family Offense.  Swanson was jailed pending arraignment.


Schumer talks airline outage while in Jamestown...
While in Jamestown... Senator Schumer also addressed the computer outage that threw air travel across the U.S. into chaos Wednesday morning.  Thousands of flights had to be canceled or delayed after a government system that offers safety and other information to pilots broke down.  The problems stranded some planes on the ground for hours.  The White House said there was no evidence that a cyberattack triggered the outage.  That was confirmed by Senator Schumer.. and, President Joe Biden said he directed the Department of Transportation to investigate.  The breakdown showed how much American air travel depends on an antiquated computer system that generates alerts called NOTAMs - or Notice to Air Missions - to pilots and others.

WJTN News Headlines for Wed., Jan. 11, 2023

Schumer in Jamestown to push EPA to expedite review, and clean-up of burned-out Crawford Furniture factory building...
U.S. Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer joined local officials in Jamestown Wednesday morning to push the Environmental Protection Agency to expedite the clean-up of the former Crawford Furniture factory.  During a news conference in front of the burned-out structure on Allen Street... the New York Democrat said local communities don't have the resources to do the environmental work... then clean-up.  Schumer says $3.5-billion was set aside in last year's infrastructure bill to do this kind of work.  Schumer says once they determine the health risk, EPA will be able to move ahead with clean-up efforts.  Schumer and Jamestown Mayor Eddie Sundquist noted that the city, and EPA, had begun working with the latest property owner to remove old solvents, varnishes and other materials from the building.  However... Sundquist it looks like the clean-up costs could be upwards of $2-million.  He's pleased that Schumer and Congress were able to reinstate the federal Superfund program in 2022 because city government can only do so much with limited manpower and money.  A major fire last Nov. 16 destroyed the building... and, it took fire crews three days to put it out. 


Supreme Court allows NYS ban on guns in "sensitive places" to main in place -- for now...
The Supreme Court is allowing New York to continue to enforce a sweeping new gun law banning guns from ``sensitive places'' for now while a court challenge plays out. The justices on Wednesday turned away a plea by the law's challengers. The gun owners wanted the high court to lift a federal appeals court order that temporarily put on hold a lower court decision blocking portions of the law. The appeals court hasn't finished its review of the case, and justices are often reluctant to weigh in under those circumstances. The justices could still consider the case and the law more generally in the future.


Hochul pushes dealing with trifecta of issues during State of State Address...
New York Governor Kathy Hochul is pushing the state legislature to deal with a "trifecta" of issues this year to make the state safer... and, more affordable.  During her first State of the State Address in Albany after being elected to a four-year term last November... Hochul moved to address a number of concerns raised over the past year.  With crime being the state's top issue in recent polls... Hochul touted changes to gun laws and other measures in recent times.  She says there are a number of factors that have led to increases in crime.  However... Hochul called for finding "common ground" on changes to bail reform because recent polls have shown that public safety is the top concern amount residets.  She also proposed a major investment in strengthening mental health services... and, providing more psychiatric beds.  Hochul also addressed the outmigration of residents from the state... citing housing affordability as one problem.  She's proposed the "New York Housing Compact..." which has a goal of developing 800,000 new homes in the state by 2033. 


Borrello has "mixed reaction" to Hochul's State of the State...
There are proposals in Governor Hochul's State of the State Address that "sounded promising... and, others that raised red flags."  That's local State Senator George Borrello's reaction to the just under one-hour long speech.  Borrello says he "was glad to hear Governor Hochul recognize that New York State’s outmigration is a problem we can no longer ignore."  He says acknowledging the problem is the first step in fixing any problem.  However... he says "the blueprint she outlined won’t stop the exodus.  Some crowd-pleasing talking points accompanied a series of proposals that fall short of the change in direction we need."  He says the biggest disappointment was a "lack of emphasis on public safety."  Borrello does agree with the governor that the state needs to strengthen "our mental health system..." and he's encouraged" by the investments the governor has promised.


Gillibrand outlines $130-million proposal to help assist and revitalized NYS health care system...
New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand has announced more than $130-million in federal funding will be going to assist and revitalize the state's overburdened health care system.  The Democrat says the spread of the COVID-19 'XBB.1.5' sub-variant has fueled new challenges as public health workers continue coming back from the pandemic... along with a difficult flu and RSV season.  Gillibrand says the funding will help support local medical staffing... maternal mental health programs... pandemic preparedness... and, more to help it not only deal with what's going on now... but, future issues as well.  Gillibrand says "New York is currently facing a significant health care worker shortage and strain on our public health infrastructure that is burdening workers and patients alike. The $130 million-dollars I fought for will play a fundamental role in easing this burden and building the capacity of our health care workforce across the state."


Ruling made on Ripley house fire...
Unsafe use of a fuel oil heat source is the reported cause of a mid-morning house fire in the town of Ripley Tuesday.  Chautauqua County fire dispatchers say four fire departments responded to the blaze at 12 Loomis St. about 8:30 a.m.  Dispatchers say Ripley fire crews got mutual aid from South Ripley, Sherman and Westfield.  They also got assistance from Chautauqua County Emergency Services.  No one was hurt in the blaze.  County fire investigators were called to investigate once the fire was out.

WJTN News Headlines for Tues., Jan. 10, 2023

Hochul gives first State of the State Address after being elected Gov...

New York Governor Kathy Hochul stressed her commitment to public safety during her first State of the State Address since becoming the first woman elected to the post.  Hochul pledged Tuesday to expand beds in psychiatric treatment facilities and to again tackle the politically sensitive issue of bail reform.  The wide-ranging speech also unveiled her plan to create more affordable housing by spurring the creation of 800,000 new homes over the next decade.  Hochul says she wants to make New York safer and more affordable.  She also said there would be no tax increases... but, wants lawmakers to look at tying the state's Minimum Wage to the rate of inflation.

 

City lawmakers discuss shortfall in ARPA funding for senior housing improvement program...
Another $1-million in American Rescue Plan Act funding for the city of Jamestown's Senior Housing Improvement Program is still apparently not enough.  That's according to figures given to the City Council's Housing Committee.  Committee Chairwoman Marie Carrubba says there have been 302 total requests for just over $1.8-million.  However... there's only $1.5-million -- total -- allocated.  During last night's Council work session... President Tony Dolce said it was his understanding that the additional $1-million would cover all the eligible projects.  Dolce says the ones that weren't going to be funded were not eligible for it.  However... Carrubba reported that there were 63 projects... totaling $472,000... that can't be funded at this point.  She says there were another 54 projects added since the late report.  Some councilmembers recalled that they were told in October that another one-million dollars needed to be added to make the program whole, and cover all the eligible projects.  However... Mayor Eddie Sundquist recalled there was a request for another $1.3-million.  Sundquist says he'll meet with City Assessor Lisa Volpe to discuss the matter... and, report back to the City Council soon.


Jamestown lawmakers also discuss possible changes to Senior Tax Exemption...
The Jamestown City Council is considering a change in senior income levels for them to qualify for an exemption on their city, school and county taxes.  The matter of raising the level to $19,000 a year for city and school taxes, and $22,000 for county taxes was discussed during council's Finance Committee meeting.  Chairwoman Kim Ecklund says she asked City Assessor Lisa Volpe for more information on the impact... and possibly doing it in steps.  Ecklund says the council stopped the steps about a decade ago because it was having a "significant" financial impact on the city's tax roles.  She and Councilwoman Marie Carrubba agreed the exemption needs to be looked at now because of the recent, significant increase in the "Cost of Living" adjustment for Social Security.


Teen involved in Ellicott shooting death, arraigned, being held pending preliminary hearing...
A Town of Ellicott teen has been formally arraigned on a second-degree murder charge after allegedly shooting and killing another man during an incident in the town late last Friday night.  Ellicott Town Police say Chautauqua County dispatchers received a 9-1-1 call from 2256 Willard St. Ext. about 10 p.m. for a report of a person being shot at the residence.  Ellicott and Jamestown Police responded... and, found the victim, 57 year-old Scott Blake... dead from a gunshot wound.  Officers say the Chautauqua County District attorney’s office, Ellicott Police detectives, and members of the county's Forensic identification team secured the scene.  They then obtained a search warrant to look for evidence.  Once completed...18 year-old Tucker Richard was arrested... and, taken to the county jail.  He's been held pending a preliminiary hearing.


Wendel talks goals for 2023...
Economic development was among the major happenings at the forefront in 2022 in Chautauqua County... and, will remain such in 2023.  That from County Executive P.J. Wendel... who says there were a number of projects in the north county that received funding from New York State... the American Rescue Plan... and, elsewhere to get jump-started in the past year.  Wendel says there's $4.75-million for projects including the White Inn rehabilitation, Silver Creek school apartments, and new use for the former Welch's building in Westfield.  County Economic development officials are also hoping to see the redevelopment of the former Furniture Mart Building in Jamestown get underway in 2023.  Small projects include park upgrades in Mayville and Celoron.  This year... Wendel hopes to see progress made on some other fronts... including the expansion of broadband availability.  He says they want to find the gaps... and, use ARPA and Infrastructure funding to help fill those gaps.  He made his comments for last weekend's "Community Spotlight" program on the six Media One Radio Group stations.


City man arrested after 3-year-old is found wandering in Jamestown street...
A call to check on the well-being of a 3-year-old child on Jamestown's southside last weekend has led to the arrest of a city man.  Jamestown police were called to the scene about 12:30 p.m. Saturday to check on the 3-year-old.  Officers say they had a report the child was outside for an extended period of time, unsupervised, with inadequate clothing for the inclement weather.  Police were also told that the man living at the address... 41 year-old Rick Coy... had an active JPD warrant for his arrest for endangering the welfare of a child.  They were able to locate Coy... and, took him into custody... and, he was charged with a second count of endangering the welfare of a child. 

 

WJTN News Headlines for Mon., Jan. 9, 2023

Police arrest 18 year-old for shooting town of Ellicott man, killing him...
An 18 year-old man has been arrested for allegedly shooting and killing another man during an incident in the town of Ellicott late last Friday night.  Town Police say Chautauqua County dispatchers received a 9-1-1 call from 2256 Willard St. Ext. about 10 p.m. for a report of a person being shot at the residence.  Ellicott and Jamestown Police responded... and, found the victim, 57 year-old Scott Blake... dead from a gunshot wound.  The Chautauqua County District attorney’s office, Ellicott Town Police detectives, and members of the county's Forensic Identification team secured the scene.  They later obtained a search warrant to look for evidence.  Once completed...18 year-old Tucker Richard was arrested for second-degree murder... and taken to the county jail pending arraignment.


Police investigating fatal, car-pedestrian accident in Fredonia...
A Rochester-area man was killed last Friday night in a car-pedestrian accident on Rt. 60 -- just south of Vineyard Drive -- in the village of Fredonia.  Sheriff's deputies were called to the scene about 6 p.m., and, found that 48 year-old Richard Lorek of Brockport was trying to cross the roadway when he was struck.  Officers say Lorek was treated at the scene by Fredonia fire rescuers... and, rushed to Brook's Memorial Hospital in Dunkirk.  However... he later died of his injuries.  Deputies say the driver of the car, 64 year-old Polly Gambino of Cassadaga, was northbound when the accident occured.  Officers say no charges are expected to be filed.  The Sheriff's Office was assisted by the Fredonia Police Department and the New York State Police.


Sundquist formally announces run for second-term as mayor...
Jamestown Mayor Eddie Sundquist has made it official:  He's running for a second-term as the city of Jamestown's top-elected official this November.  Sundquist made the announcement in front of a standing-room only crowd at the Chop House on Main Restaurant last Friday night... noting that the trials and difficulties of the past four years have made him more determined to succeed in the next four.  He says his accomplishments include tackling public safety issues, bringing in millions of dollars in grant funding he says will "change the fabric of our city..." and making city government "more transparent and inclusive."  Sundquist was preceeded by three speakers... and, one was his counterpart from the city of Dunkirk... Mayor Willie Rosas.  Rosas says he and Sundquist have worked together in a number of areas at the county's only two Democratic Mayors... and, he wants to see that continue.  In years past... such announcements would not be made until later in the Spring.  No Republican has yet indicated that they'll be running next Fall.


Jamestown, County Democratic chairwomen on hand for Sundquist announcement...
Two of Chautauqua County's highest ranking Democrats were also on hand to support Mayor Sundquist's re-election bid.  Among them was the city's new, Democratic Committee Chairwoman.  Alyssa Porter ran for the city council two years ago... and, says the city needs Sundquist's inspiring leadership.  Porter says this race is "critical" for Jamestown's future... and, says the mayor will "inspire others to run for office."  New County Democratic Committee Chairwoman Marcia Westling-Johnson was also on hand to endorse Sundquist.  Johnson says she first got to know him when he ran for Congress in 2018... and, says it's great to see young people like Sundquist come back to the area and run for public office.  Other Democrats on hand included past County Chairman Norm Green... and county legislators Susan Parker... and, the recently appointed Tom Nelson.


Man arrested for allegedly pulling down a person's door using chains and pick-up truck...
A local man is accused of pulling the door off a victim's home using chains hooked up to his pick-up truck last Thursday night in Jamestown.  City police were called to a report of a disturbance on the southside shortly after 7 p.m., but, found that 39 year-old Joshua Erhard had fled the scene prior to their arrival.  JPD was assisted by Sheriff's deputies in finding the pick-up truck in question in the Mayville-area later that evening.  At that point... Erhard was found and arrested for third-degree criminal mischief.  Officers also learned that during the incident... Erhard's truck got stuck in a wet yard and sprayed mud all over a nearby house... and he was additionally charged with third-degree criminal tampering.  He was issued appearance tickets and released.


Two arrested on drug charges following traffic stop in Jamestown...
Two people were arrested late last week in Jamestown on drug possession charges following a traffic stop on the city's eastside.  Jamestown police say they stopped a car about 11 p.m. Friday for a traffic violation at East Seventh and Liberty Streets.  Officers say their investigation showed that 36 year-old Brandon Baker of Olean... and, 32 year-old Desteny Badgley of Jamestown... were in possession of illegal drugs.  Police say Baker was found to be in possession of a quantity of Fentanyl and Methamphetamine... while Badgley was found to be in possession of Fentanyl.  Baker faces two counts of seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance... while Badgley faces one count.  Both were arraigned... and, released with appearance tickets for City Court.


Second prize, $1-Million Powerball ticket sold in Gowanda...
There's been a $1-million winning Powerball ticket sold for last Saturday's drawing in the Cattaraugus County village of Gowanda.  The New York State Lottery reports that the ticket was sold at the Shop 'N Save store at 10 Buffalo St., and was the largest of five winning tickets in New York state last weekend.  The jackpot for today's drawing is $340-million.

WJTN News Update for Sat., Jan. 7, 2023

Brockport man dies of injuries in Fredonia Car-Pedestrian accident...
A Rochester-area man was killed last Friday night in a car-pedestrian accident on Route 60 -- just south of Vineyard Drive -- in the village of Fredonia.  Sheriff's deputies were called to the scene about 6 p.m., and, found that 48 year-old Richard Lorek of Brockport was trying to cross the roadway when he was struck.  Officers say Lorek was treated at the scene by Fredonia fire rescuers... and, rush to Brook's Memorial Hospital.  However... he later died of his injuries.  Deputies say the driver of the car, 64 year-old Polly Gambino of Cassadaga ws northbound when the accident occured.  Officers say no charges are expected at this time.  The Sheriff's Office was assisted by the Fredonia Police Department and the New York State Police.


Man from town of Dunkirk arrested in drug raid...
A town of Dunkirk man has been arrested for allegedly trafficking drugs in the north county area following a raid on his home.  Chautauqua County Narcotics Investigators were assisted by the Buffalo Police Intelligence Unit in conducting the raid at 5040 Route 5 shortly before 6 a.m. Wednesday.  They were assisted by the Sheriff’s Office SWAT team... Dunkirk City Police and Jamestown Police in arresting 22 year-old Malique Carter.  During the search... investigators say they found 7.6-grams of cocaine, scales and packaging material for the distribution of narcotics... along with a 9-millimeter high-capacity magazine... and, $1,730 in cash.  Carter is charged with third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance... third-degree criminal possession of a Weapon... and, criminally Using Drug Paraphernalia.  He was taken to the county jail for Centralized Arraignment.  Anyone with information about illegal drug or other suspicious activity in their area is asked to contact the Chautauqua County Sheriff's Office Narcotics Investigators Tip line call either 800-344-8702 or 716-664-2420... or Jamestown Police at 483-8477.


City man pleads guilty to federal drug charges...
A Jamestown man faces at least 10 years in federal prison after pleading guilty to drug and gun charges in Buffalo.  U.S. Attorney Trini Ross announced today that 38 year-old Douglas Beardsley pled guilty to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute, and to distribute, 500 grams or more of methamphetamine and being a felon in possession of firearms.  Prosecutors say that between Sept. 2018... and, Jan. 2019... Beardsley bought, sold and distributed heroin and methamphetamine for profit in the Jamestown area.  They say he did that by using several co-conspirators, associates, and runners as well as Facebook and various electronic devices to operate his drug trafficking activities.  Beardsley also distributed large amounts of meth in the Jamestown-area.  Prosecutors add that... during the conspiracy... Beardsley utilized homes on Linden and Forest Avenues for his drug trafficking.  In January 2019... investigators executed a search warrant at the Forest Ave. residence, recovering two firearms, ammunition, $296 in cash, quantities of crystal methamphetamine, a digital scale, and other drug paraphernalia.  Throughout the conspiracy, Beardsley obtained approximately $112,000 in monetary proceeds from drug trafficking.  He was convicted three times previously on similar charges... and, is prohibited from possessing a firearm. 
 

WJTN News Headlines for Fri., Jan. 6, 2022

Borrello sworn in to new State Legislative session, GOP Senators outline goals...
New York state lawmakers kicked-off their annual legislative session in Albany this week.  Local State Senator George Borrello says he and his fellow Republicans have two major goals in the session that got underway on Wednesday.  Borrello says they are "making New York safer, and more affordable."  The Sunset Bay Republican says he is very concerned about the outward migration of New Yorkers... because no state is losing state residents like New York is.  He adds that even Democratic Governor Kathy Hochul has acknowledged this.  Borrello... whose from Sunset Bay... was also pleased to nominate Rob Ortt in his re-election as Senate Republican leader. 


Borrello "encouraged" by NYSERDA Wind Turbine study showing "lack of benefits" to state...
The state agency charged with energy research and development has issued a report stating that there are a "lack of benefits" to the placing of wind turbines in the Great Lakes.  That's good news to State Senator George Borrello... who says “I am encouraged that after nearly two years of intense study and stakeholder engagement on the environmental, economic and social issues surrounding the potential siting of wind turbines in Lakes Erie and Ontario... commission members came to essentially the same assessment that opponents of this effort have advanced all along: the risks, costs and uncertainties are too great and the possible benefits too little."  The study was done by the New York State Energy Research and Development Agency.  Borrello adds that he's "grateful to the group 'Citizens Against Wind Turbines in Lake Erie...' and every organization and individual that rallied with us, testified at hearings, wrote letters and lobbied their representatives on this issue."


City man arrested on drug-fireworks possession charges...
A Jamestown man has been arrested on drug and fireworks-related charges following a traffic stop on the city's eastside Wednesday afternoon.  City police say a patrol pulled over 31 year-old Kasey Sweeney in the area of Falconer Street and Niagara Avenue just after 1 p.m. for a traffic violation.  During the stop... officers found 'dangerous' consumer fireworks inside the car... along with drug paraphernalia.  During a search of the vehicle... police say they also found a quantity of Fentanyl, Methamphetamine, Cocaine and cash believed to be proceeds from drug sales.  Officers say Sweeney was taken into custody and taken to the city jail pending arraignment on two counts of third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.. criminally using drug paraphernalia... unlawfully dealing with fireworks... and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.


Warren, Pa. woman arrested for drug possession following traffic stop...
A Warren, Pennsylvania woman has been arrested in Jamestown for being in possession of quantities of Fentanyl, suboxone, and methamphetamines during a traffic stop.  City police say a patrol stopped Katheryn Steinkamp about 1 p.m. Wednesday for not wearing a seatbelt at Falconer and James Streets.  Officers say Steinkamp was taken into custody on four counts of seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.  While being taken to the city jail where she tried to destroy narcotics in the back seat of the patrol vehicle that she was concealing.  With that... she was also charged with tampering with physical evidence.


Hamlin showing "remarkable improvement" in hospital, Co. Exec. comments from former athlete, EMT perspectives...
Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin has shown what his doctors Thursday called "remarkable improvement over the past 24 hours."  The NFL team announced that update three days after Hamlin went into cardiac arrest and had to be resuscitated on the field.  The team said that while Hamlin is still critically ill, the 24-year-year old has demonstrated that he appears to be neurologically intact.  That's good news for a team -- and region -- still trying to understand what happened.  Chautauqua County Executive P-J Wendel is a former athlete and coach... and, says being a well-conditioned athlete works in Hamlin's favor.  However... Wendel says we still don't know what long-term effects he might have.  The incident during late Monday night's Bills-Bengals game has drawn a lot of attention to people being trained in performing CPR... and, using Automatic Defibrillators... or AEDs.  Wendel -- who is also a long-time EMT -- says this actually occured in a situation where those who are trained were able to get to work quickly.


JPS back to school with no signs of "tridemic" locally...
There have been no big number of absences in the Jamestown Public Schools from what many medical experts have been calling a "tri-demic" of illnesses.  That from Superintendent Kevin Whitaker... who says they've only seen the usual number of COVID-19, flu, and RSV cases in the district since returning from the Christmas Break.  Dr. Whitaker says... while returning to mandating masks has occured in a few places nationally... there is no movement towards doing that in New York state.  However... he does say people who still want to wear one, they can.  In addition... with plenty of Winter left... Whitaker says the district is anticpating delivery "any day now" of two new sidewalk snowplows for the district as part of an agreement worked out with the city.  While the district is obtaining the plows... the city will provide the manpower.  That had been an issue initially... but, Whitaker says some people are being trained on the older machines.  He made his comments on WJTN's Dennis Webster Show Thursday morning.


 
 

WJTN News Headlines for Thurs., Jan. 5, 2023

City man receives four-years in prison for assault in 2021 stabbing...
A Jamestown man has been sentenced to four-years in state prison for stabbing a neighbor during an assault in the Fall of 2021.  Chautauqua County District Attorney Jason Schmidt says Sean McIlveen received the term from County Court Judge David Foley Tuesday after being convicted of second-degree assault -- a Class D violent Felony.  Schmidt says McIlveen pled guilty to the charge last September.  Jamestown Police filed the charge on Sept. 8 of 2021 after he stabbed the neighbor with a knife.  In addition to the prison sentence... Schmidt says McIlveen was issued five-years post-release supervision.


Dunkirk man arrested during drug bust in No. County city...         
A Dunkirk man faces several drug-related charges following a three-month investigation into drug trafficking from his home that ended with a raid late Wednesday morning.  Sheriff's officers say their Narcotics Investigation team... along with Dunkirk and Jamestown Police executed a search warrant just after 10 a.m. at 29 Leming St., and, arrested 42 year-old Rodney Clyburn.  Police say Clyburn was the only occupant in the residence at the time of the search... during which they found 8.3 grams of fentanyl... four Suboxone strips, scales and packing material for narcotics sales... and, $279 in cash.  Clyburn is charged with third... fourth and seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance... and, second-degree criminal possession of drug paraphernalia.  He was held pending arraignment in Dunkirk City Court.  If you have any information on suspicious or illegal drug activity in your area... you're asked to call the Sheriff's Department tip line at 800-344-8702 or 664-2420.


Gunderson says Comedy Center hopes to tap into more families, young children in 2023...
There is still an audience that remains somewhat untapped by the National Comedy Center in Jamestown that they hope to reach more of in 2023.  That from Center Director Journey Gunderson... who says the westside attraction continues to draw people to the city to see it's many exhibits and interactive displays.  However... Gunderson says they have found that children can have a really good time there as well as adults.  She says they haven't marketed it to young children... but, says her 3, 5 and 7 year-olds recently had a "wildly good time" there with her oldest having their birthday party there.  Gunderson noted that the comedy center made the list of top U.S. News and World Report destinations... and, that it won for "Best Family Destination" in the Post-Journal's annual "Best of the Best" survey.  She says her kids really enjoyed the interactive displays... including ones where they get a pie in the face... and, another where they're part of a cartoon and get hit in the head with a mallot.  Gunderson says the main floor of the Comedy Center is geared towards people of "all ages."  She says the more "adult humor" area is on the lower floor.  For more information... go on-line to ComedyCenter.org.  Gunderson made her comments during one of our recent Community Spotlight programs.


Jamestown man arrested following southside burglary...
A city man is accused of breaking into a home on Jamestown's southside... and, trying to steal items from inside.  City police were called to the location just after 5 p.m. Tuesday on a report of a "burglary in progress."  Officers say they found 33 year-old Steven Colburn inside... and, he was arrested.  Police searched Colburn... and, found he had stolen property in his possession... along with a quantity of methamphetamine.  He faces charges including second-degree burglary... petty larceny... and, seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance... and, jailed pending arraignment.


City woman arrested for child endangerment following domestic incident...
A  Jamestown woman faces multiple counts of endangering the welfare of a child following a domestic dispute on the city's eastside earlier this week.  Jamestown Police were called to the scene shortly after 3 PM Monday... and, found that 21 year-old Kirsten Swartz initiated a fight with another woman in front of the victim's three children.  Those children were ages 3, 2 and 11 months... and Swartz faces one count of endangering for each.  She was taken to the city jail pending arraignment on the charges.


Gasoline prices in Jamestown-area inching up...
Gasoline prices in some parts of the Jamestown-area have begun increasing after a spike in demand nationwide during the Christmas and New Year's holidays.  AAA's East Central Gas Price Report says -- to begin the week -- the cost for a gallon of regular, unleaded gas -- was about $3.70 a gallon.  However... some places have seen the price go up to $3.86 a gallon.  Nationally... the average price has gone up 12-cents a gallon from $3.10 to $3.22.  AAA says the late December winter storm and its frigid temperatures caused gas prices to spike... with refineries as far south as Texas and the Gulf Coast forced to shut down temporarily.  The storm also caused holiday travelers to fuel up... and hit the road early to beat the bad weather... and that spiked overall demand.  The Energy Information Administration says gas demand rose from 8.7 to 9.3 million barrels per day last week.  Meanwhile, total domestic gasoline stocks fell by 3 million barrels to 223 million barrels.


 

WJTN News Headlines for Wed., Jan. 4, 2023

County Legislature re-elects Chagnon as chairman...
The Chautauqua County Legislature will face a number of challenges in the new year... but, has members with enough experience to overcome those challenges.  That from Chairman Pierre Chagnon... who was unanimously elected to head up the panel for another year at the legislature's organizational meeting Tuesday.  Chagnon says some of those challenges come from relatively new people in a handful of positions in county government... and others... including impacts from inflation... state energy policy... and, the opioid crisis.  He adds state mandates... county workforce challenges and others also face them.  He told lawmakers he is "honored" to continue on as chair... and "humbled by your support."  He says there's a lot of experience on the legislature... and, he urged members to do all they can during the transition.  Two new legislature members were sworn-in by County Court Judge Stephen Cass.  They are Jamestown's Tom Nelson, who replaces Paul Whitford in District 13... and, Clymer Town Supervisor Travis Heiser, who replaces Jay Gould in District 17.


Dolce reflects on 2023 budget challenges in late 2022...
It was a "challenging" and at times difficult 2022 for the Jamestown City Council... and, that came out during 2023 budget deliberations.  That from Council President Tony Dolce at the council's year-end meeting... who says they worked hard to be open and transparent in their deliberations over the $38.6-million spending plan.  Dolce says some people may not believe the process was "open and transparent..." but, he believes they were, and listened to every department head about what they needed.  There was some criticism by some lawmakers over the way parts of the budget were presented... and, there were 27 amendments approved to the spending plan at the November voting session.  The effort was spearheaded by Council Finance Committee Chairwoman Kim Ecklund.  Five amendments that were vetoed by Mayor Eddie Sundquist were overriden... and, are part of the budget... which includes no tax rate increase.  


City woman accused of telling 7 year-old daughter she would give her a knife to harm herself...
A Jamestown woman is accused of trying to provide a knife to her 7 year-old daughter so she could hurt herself during an incident Tuesday at their northside home.  City police were called to the undisclosed address for a disorderly person.  When they arrived... they say 31 year-old Samantha Omeruo told them that she told her young daughter that she would provide her with a knife to harm herself.  Omeruo was arrested and charged with endangering the welfare of a child... and, jailed pending arraignment.


Three arrested for trespassing -- one of them twice -- at same southside location... 
A trio of Jamestown residents have been arrested for allegedly being found inside a condemned home on the city's southside... but, one of those persons was later arrested -- again -- at the same location.  City police were initially called to the scene at 23 Glenview Ave. just after Noon Tuesday on a report of several people inside the vacant home.  Officers cleared the residence... but, later found 31 year-old Matthew Buck... 44 year-old Raymond Brown... and, 29 year-old Nicole Brown still inside.  All three were arrested for third-degree criminal trespass.  Police say Raymond Brown was also found to be wanted on a Lakewood-Busti Police arrest warrant... and, was turned over to them.  Buck and Nicole Brown were released with appearance tickets.  But... just before 6 PM Tuesday... Buck was found inside the same residence... and, was again arrested for third-degree criminal tespass.  He was being held last night pending arraignment.


Three others arrested for trespassing on northside...
Three city residents have been arrested for allegedly entering a person's apartment on Jamestown's northside without their permission.  City police were called to the scene about 3:30 a.m. Tuesday for a possible burglary in progress... and, found that 28 year-old Jacklyn Webb... 32 year-old Jonathan King... and, 20 year-old Ray Babyak had entered the apartment unlawfully... and, they were arrested at the scene.  All three are being held pending arraignment on one count each of second-degree criminal trespass.


Langworthy stays with McCarthy as House Speaker through three votes...
The 118th Congress began meeting in Washington, D.C. Tuesday as Republicans take control of the House.  However... the battle for speaker has now gone through three votes... with California Republican Kevin McCarthy getting the most GOP votes in the first three rounds.  However... a stubborn group of nearly 20 members refused to change their no votes.  Among those voting an emphatic "yes" for McCarthy in three rounds of voting is new 23rd Congressional District Representative Nick Langworthy says you "stand as a conference... and he led us to victory (in November)."  Langworthy will take his oath of office -- once a Speaker is seated -- to become the new 23td District representative.


City woman arrested for resisting arrest...
A Jamestown woman is accused of kicking and damaging a city police car... and, spitting on an officer when she was arrested following a civil dispute.  City police were called to an eastside location just after 1 p.m. Monday... and, found that 33 year-old Akeyia Thagard was sought on active city court bench warrants.  When told she was under arrest... Thagard allegedly began walking away from police and disobeyed their orders to stop.  After a brief struggle, she was taken into custody.  Thagard then allegedly kicked and damaged a police vehicle while being arrested.... and, later kicked and spit at an officer when taken to UPMC Chautauqua Hospital for an evaluation.  She's charged with resisting arrest, second-degree obstruction... and, criminal mischief.

WJTN News Headlines for Tues., Jan. 3, 2023

Jamestown man faces two contempt charges for violating order of protection, and possessing shotguns...
A city man is accused of violating an order of protection... and, being in possession of multiple shotguns following a domestic incident on Jamestown's southside.  City Police were called the undisclosed location shortly after 7 p.m. last Saturday for a domestic dispute in progress.  On arrival... officers say they made contact with the victim, and the suspect, who's identified as 48 year-old Dennis Boron.  Further investigation revealed that Boron was in violation of the order to stay away from the victim... and, a second violation for still being in possession of shotguns after an order of protection was served at an earlier time.  Boron was arrested on two counts of second-degree criminal contempt... and, the shotguns were seized and kept for evidence.  He is being held pending arraignment.


Dunkirk woman arrested for DWI after crash lands in high water in Jamestown...     
A north county woman has been arrested for driving drunk early New Year's Day after her car went off Jones and Gifford Ave. in Jamestown and, into high water.  City police were called to the scene shortly before 5 a.m. last Sunday on a report of a vehicle off the road.  On arrival... officers say they were assisted by Ellicott Town Police in helping get 26 year-old Tiffani Wilson out of the car safely.  Police say they found Wilson was driving while under the influence of alcohol just hours after being arrested on the same charge in the town of Hanover.  Officers say she was taken to UPMC Chautauqua Hospital for treatment of her injuries... and, she was charged with DWI and other traffic violations.  Wilson was arraigned and released with appearance tickets for City Court.


Sempolinski reaches his "expiration date" today...
The "expiration date" on local Congressman Joe Sempolinski's short-term in the House of Representatives is today at Noon... as the new Congress is sworn-in.  That's when new 23rd District Representative Nick Langworthy is sworn-in in for his first-term in Washington, D.C.  As his four-months in office wound down... Sempolinski reflected on his time in Congress... noting that he's "very proud" of what he and his staff have been able to do.  He also vowed to keep working until the last minute... even though Congress will not be in session until Noon on Jan. 3.  Legislatively... Sempolinski says he's most proud of helping to craft... and, co-sponsor... the 21st Century 'Assistive Technology Act... 'and, says helping Americans living with disabilities was "a cornerstone of my time in office."  He and California Democrat Mark DeSaulinier co-sponsored the bill... which he called his "number one legislative priority."  Sempolinski says he voted just over 100 times during his short time in the House.


Hochul sworn-in as gov. during New Year's Day ceremony...
New York Governor Kathy Hochul was sworn-in for her first elected term on Sunday, making history as the first woman elected to the position in the state.  The Democrat launched her first-term as the 57th governor of New York by saying her main goals are to increase public safety and to make the state more affordable.  She first noted the need to fight the rise in gun violence... hate crimes... and, anti-semitism... among others.  Another fight Hochul says she's ready to take on is the U-S Supreme Court's - quote "hostile assault on basic rights... such as a woman to make decisions about her own body."  Hochul took the oath of office at the Empire State Plaza in Albany in front of a capacity audience. 


New Report shows NYS doing a "good job" making sure children have health coverage...
A new report says -- compared to most states -- New York is doing a good job of making sure children have health coverage.  The Georgetown University Center for Children and Families finds the rate of uninsured children in New York State was 2.6-percent in 2021.  However, that is a slight increase from 2019 – and there are concerns about keeping the numbers low.  Schuyler Center for Analysis and Advocacy spokesperson Bridget Walsh notes federal provisions put in place during the pandemic are still providing funding for kid’s Medicare coverage.  Walsh says groups like hers have been working to make these more permanent until age 6.  Nationally... more than 4-million children don't have health insurance, although 210,000 more kids were covered between 2019 and 2021. 


Jamestown man arrested for choking woman in front of children during domestic incident...
A city man has been arrested for allegedly choking a woman during a domestic incident -- in front of two children -- on Jamestown's northside early last Sunday afternoon.  City police were called to the scene shortly after 12 Noon... and, their investigation found that 38 year-old Eliseo Rivera choked the female victim in front of the pair of children during an arguement over an EBT card.  Officers say Rivera fled before they arrived... but, he was found a short time later at another location and arrested.  He faces two counts each of criminal obstruction of breathing... and endangering the welfare of a child.  Rivera was taken to the city jail... and was held pending arraignment.


Comedy Center receiving "Caroline's on Broadway" artifacts...
The National Comedy Center in Jamestown is receiving artifacts from the iconic "Caroline's on Broadway" Comedy Club in New York City... as it closes after a 40 year run in Times Square.  Comedy Center Director Journey Gunderson, and Caroline's founder and owner, Caroline Hirsch, made the announcement late last week.  Gunderson says "Caroline Hirsch has been a vital force for nurturing comedic talent for 40 years now, and Carolines on Broadway has been one of the world’s most important venues for showcasing the art form of stand-up comedy."  Among those who have performed at Carolines through the years are Jerry Seinfeld, Robin Williams, Billy Crystal, Wanda Sykes, and Rosie O’Donnell, to name a few.
 

WJTN News Headlines for Fri., Dec. 30, 2022

Trio involved in Monday Home Invasion-Robbery jailed on high-bail, or no bail...
The three main actors involved in this past Monday's "targeted" home invasion-robbery in Jamestown are now jailed with high-bail... or no bail.  City police say 47 year-old William Buckley... 29 year-old Joneece Talley... and, 34 year-old Joshua Ryan... were arraigned in city court Thursday on charges including first-degree robbery... first-degree burglary... first-degree criminal use of a firearm... second-degree menacing...  and fourth degree criminal possession of a weapon.  Officials say Buckley... who has two or more prior Felony Convictions... is jailed without bail.  They add that Talley and Ryan were also sent to the Chautauqua CountyJail on $500,000 bail... or $1-million property bond.  City police say the trio alleged tied a 73 year-old woman to a chair... and, assaulted her while stealing property from her house.  The woman was hurt... but, is expected to recover from what police are calling "a horrifying act of violence against an elderly victim." 


Roads reopen in Buffalo following blizzard...
Roads have reopened in storm-besieged Buffalo as authorities continue searching for people who may have died or remain stranded after last week's blizzard.  Mayor Byron Brown announced that the driving ban in New York's second-most-populous city was lifted just after midnight Thursday.  He says significant progress has been made on snow removal, but he's still asking residents not to drive if they don't have to.  Suburban roads, major highways and Buffalo-Niagara International Airport had already reopened.  At least 40 deaths have been reported in western New York from the blizzard that raged Friday and Saturday.


Dolce highlights funding doled out from ARPA monies in 2022...
The Jamestown City Council worked hard in 2022 to "touch" all areas of city government and other areas with American Rescue Plan Act funding.  In fact... the vast majority of the $28-million awarded to the city was doled out this past year... and, Council President Tony Dolce reflected on that at the panel's recent year-end voting session.  Dolce says they especially wanted to help businesses and neighborhoods recover from the COVID-19 pandemic...  he says the "put a lot of the money into business, and industries... as well as housing."  At the urging of some in the public... lawmakers spent a significant amount of money to beef up the police and fire departments with added manpower and equipment.  Dolce says another area they wanted to make sure to help was the Public Works Department... especially for "badly needed" equipment and vehicles.  There are still a few million dollars available to dole out in 2023.


Langworthy sworn-in ceremonially at High School alma mater...
The congressman-elect for the "new" 23rd District held a ceremonial swearing-in at his alma mater... Pine Valley Central School... Wednesday... as he prepares to take office.  Chautauqua County Court Judge David Foley administered the oath office to Buffalo-area Republican Nick Langworthy during the event Wednesday that attracted a large audience.  Following the ceremony, Langworthy spoke about the reason he choose to hold the event at the school.  He says "this community means a lot to me..." and, he wanted to show his appreciation for their support.  The Erie County Republican, who has also served as New York State GOP Chair, says he has been very busy since winning the Congressional seat in November.  He says the process has been complicated by redistricting... which has merged one district with the other.  There are now seven counties... including a significant portion of Erie County in the new 23rd District.  State Assemblymen Andy Goodell and Joe Giglio... along Seneca Nation Council member Odie Porter... spoke during the ceremony emceed by Chautauqua County Executive P.J. Wendel. 


Jamestown man arrested for allegedly stealing nearly $400 worth of merchandise from business...
A city man is accused of stealing nearly 400-dollars worth of merchandise from a business on Jamestown's northside just before Christmas.  City police were called to the scene Thursday night... Dec. 22... for a reported larceny.  On arrival... officers say they found 41 year-old Alberto Narvaez-Aponte, Jr., who matched the description of the suspect, on West 10th St. at North Main.  Police also found that Aponte had outstanding warrants from JPD.  However... once they made contact with the suspect... he led them on a brief foot chase before he was caught.  Officers say Aponte resisted arrest... and, hit one officer in the face.  He was finally taken into custody... and, police recovered the $394 in stolen merchandise.  Aponte was arrested for petty larceny... second-degree obstruction... second-degree harassment... and resisting arrest.  


Looking back on 2022: Investigators reopen Bindics Murder case...
There was a renewed push in 2022 by the Chautauqua County Sheriff's Office to try and solve some unresolved cases... many dating back a decade -- or more.  The Department's Unsolved Crimes Unit was recently formed... and, in August... asked for the public's help in solving a murder case involving a Jamestown woman whose remains were found almost 16 years ago.  Yolanda Bindics was 25 years old when she disappeared on Aug. 10, 2004, and her skeletal remains were found in a desolate, wooded, area in the town of Charlotte on Sept. 10, 2006.  Sheriff Jim Quattrone says the Bindics family has been persistent in trying to get justice for Yolanda.
 

  

WJTN News Headlines for Thurs., Dec. 29, 2022

Trio arrested for Jamestown home invasion robbery jailed on high or no bail...
Police say an alleged "targeted" home invasion-robbery in Jamestown in which a 73 year-old victim was tied to a chair... and, assaulted... has led to the arrest of five people.  City police say they were called to the undisclosed location about 5:30 p.m. Monday... and, found that two subjects has forced their way into the home and tied up the victim, who was held at gun-point during the incident.  Officers say their investigation showed that 47 year-old William Buckley and 34 year-old Joshua Ryan -- both of Jamestown... and, 29 year-old Joneece Talley of Dunkirk... also stole property from the victim.  Two others face misdemeanor drug possession charges.  Police say Buckley, Talley, and Ryan are all charged with first-degree robbery... first-degree burglary... first-degree Criminal Use of a Firearm... second-degree menacing...  and fourth degree criminal possession of a weapon.  Buckley, Ryan and Talley were all arraigned today... with Buckley -- who is a predicate Felony -- jailed without bail.  Talley and Ryan are jailed on $500,000 bail, $1,000,000 property bond.  City police call it a "horrifying act of violence against an elderly victim who... although injured... is expected to make a full recovery." 


Fire in Hartfield remains under investigation...
Heavy damage is being reported from an early afternoon house fire in the Hartfield area Wednesday.  However... no injuries were reported in the blaze at 6441 Hartfield-Centrailia Rd.  Hartfield firefigthers were called to the scene just after 1:30 p.m., and, found the structure fully-engulfed in flames.  Nine other mutual aid companies were called to assist at the scene.  Chautauqua County Fire Dispatchers say the owner called in the alarm... and, said everyone had gotten out of the home safely.  The county's fire investigation team was called in... but, has not yet determined the cause.


Sempolinski touts passage of his "21st Century Assistive Technology Act" legislation...
Local Congressman Joe Sempolinski has less than a week to go in his short... four-month term in the House... but, says he may have saved the best for last.  Sempolinski was a co-sponsor ot the "21st Century Assistive Technology Act..." which he says it designed to protect and "lift up" Americans with disabilities.  The Steuben County Republican says it's part of the National Defense Authorization Act approved this week.  Sempolinski says he worked with a Democratic Congressman Mark DeSaulnier of California to craft the bill.  He says there's also supporting legislation for it in the Omnibus spending bill... that promotes awareness and research of other similar disabilities.  Sempolinski says his daughter "Jo Jo" -- who has Down Syndrome -- was his inspiration for the bill.  He says since he has the "profound honor and ability to impact people's lives" -- he wanted to take the lead and use that power to help those "in that community."  He says "when I see what this bill does for those living with disabilities and the profound effect it will have on their lives, I know that we made a serious difference." 


Sempolinski "very disappointed" in Congressman-elect George Santos over lies, embellishments over his work and personal background...
A Long Island Congressman-elect who has admitted to lying about his work and personal background is coming under fire for misleading the voters in his district.  However... few Republican members of Congress have spoken out one way or the other on George Santos.  Santos has admitted to lying or embellishing about being Jewish... and, having grandparents who escaped the Holicaust in World War II.  Outgoing local Congressman Joe Sempolinski says he only met Santos once -- briefly -- and says he's "very disappointed" in the fellow Republican.  However... he says there's little that can be done, aside from Santos himself stepping down.  


Jamestown woman arrested for drug possession and Busti warrant...
A city woman has been arrested for allegedly being found in possession of narcotics in Jamestown... and, on a warrant in the town of Busti.  City police were called to report of a "suspicious vehicle" on Jamestown's northside shortly before 5 p.m. Wednesday... and, found 39 year-old Elizabeth Asher in the car.  Officers say Asher had a confirmed warrant issued by Lakewood-Busti Police... and, she was arrested.  Police say they found Asher in possession of Methamphetamine and Suboxone.... and, she was additionally charged with two counts of seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.  She was arraigned and issued appearance tickets before being turned over to Lakewood-Busti Police.


Look back on 2022: Fatal fire kills Jamestown man...
There was a fatal fire early in the year in the city of Jamestown... as a 19 year-old man died of injuries suffered in the blaze on the city's southside.  Two people in all were hurt... while two others escaped injury in a fire that gutted the two-story home at 109 Kidder Street.  City Fire Battalion Chief Roger Sigular told us at the scene that crews were called to the scene shortly before 2 PM on Feb. 4, and, were also told people were trapped inside.  Sigular says fire on the first floor spread quickly to the second-floor.  Jamestown Police Captain Bob Samuelson says the two victims taken to UPMC Chautauqua Hospital were the 19 year-old man, and a 3-year-old boy.  Both were undergoing emergency treatment.  One other person was unaccounted for initially... but, later found safe.  It's one of the stories making news in 2022... and, we'll present our Top 10 on this weekend's "Community Spotlight" program.
 

WJTN News for Wed., Dec. 28, 2022

No one hurt in Hartfield house fire...
Heavy damage is being reported from an early afternoon house fire in the Hartfield area Wednesday.  However... no injuries were reported in the blaze at 6441 Hartfield-Centrailia Rd.  Hartfield firefigthers were called to the scene just after 1:30 p.m., and, found the structure fully-engulfed in flames.  Nine other mutual aid companies were called to assist at the scene.  Chautauqua County Fire Dispatchers say the owner called in the alarm... and, said everyone had gotten out of the home safely.  The county's fire investigation team was called in... but, has not yet determined the cause.


Five people arrested for alleged home invasion, and assault in Jamestown...
Five people have been arrested in connection with a home invasion robbery in which a 73 year-old victim was tied to a chair... and, assaulted while they stole property inside the home.  City police say they were called to the undisclosed scene about 5:30 p.m. Monday... and, found that two subjects had forced their way into the home and tied up the victim, who was held at gun-point during the incident.  Officers say their investigation showed that 47 year-old William Buckley and 34 year-old Joshua Ryan -- both of Jamestown... and, 29 year-old Joneece Talley of Dunkirk... were responsible for the home invasion.  Two others... 33 year-old Cameron Strasser... and, 28 year-old Ryan Gifford of Jamestown... were also on-scene and charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.  Police say Buckley, Talley, and Ryan are all charged with first-degree robbery... first-degree burglary... first-degree criminal use of a firearm... second-degree menacing... fourth-degree conspiracy... and fourth degree criminal possession of a weapon.  Buckley is also charged with drug possession and, obstruction.  All five were jailed pending arraignment.  


Man treated for leg wound following shooting incident in Jamestown...
Jamestown Police are continuing to investigate a mid-evening shooting incident on the city's southside last night that left one person with a leg wound.  City police say they were called to the scene at Newland Avenue and Park Street about 9 p.m.  A JPD Sergeant tells us the victim was taken to UPMC Chautauqua Hospital by a private vehicle for treatment of a leg wound... and, he was later released.  However... police say the man has not been cooperative with their investigation.  More when it becomes available.


Wendel reports county involved in helping Erie Co. with blizzard response...
Chautauqua County is providing help to it's neighbor to the north as the Buffalo-area begins digging out out from what many are calling the "blizzard of the century."  That from County Executive P.J. Wendel... who says says several fire departments are ready to assist, including one local department.  Wendel says Forestville has now been deployed to the area... and the others are on stand-by.  As for our county... Wendel says we were fortunate to escape with just a few inches of snow as opposed to four-feet in the Buffalo-area.  However... Wendel says there was a lot of electrical infrastructure damage caused by the strong winds along the lake shore from Barcelona Harbor to Sunset Bay... and, that had to be replaced.  He adds it's the fourth-year in a row there's been this kind of damage in that part of the county.  


State and Millitary Police sent to Buffalo to enforce driving ban...
Officials in New York say state and military police were sent to keep people from driving in snow-choked Buffalo.  The Erie County executive said Tuesday that police are being positioned at entrances to Buffalo and at major intersections to enforce a ban on driving.  Officials say now that some 35 people have died in the region.  That's in addition to about two dozen other deaths the huge storm caused around the country.  And an emergency services commissioner in the Buffalo area says crews are keeping an eye on warmer weather forecast for later in the week that could bring a threat of flooding as the snow melts.


Huge contribution from foundation help's Salvation Army smash Red Kettle Campaign goal...
The Salvation Army of Jamestown found itself in a dire situation late last week.  It's Red Kettle Campaign had only brought in $80,000... and, was suspended late in the week due to the weather.  However... thanks to the generosity of a local foundation... they not only beat their $115,000 goal... but, smashed it.  Major Kim Merchant told the story on our Dennis Webster Show Tuesday morning... saying they received an e-mail from the Carnahan Founation last week that informed them that the foundation would be contributing $120,000 to the campaign on behalf of benefactor David Carnahan, and his wife.  That means the campaign brought in a record $200,000.  However... Merchant says a lot of the extra money will likely be eaten up by inflationary costs in the coming year.  She says... while the contribution was unexpected... the fact it came from the Carnahan's was not.  Merchant says David Carnahan was a 53-year member of their board.


Gasoline prices down again in Jamestown-area...
Gasoline prices in the Jamestown-area continue to drop during the holiday season... with the price falling 16-cents since the beginning of last week.  That from AAA East Central’s Gas Price Report... which has the price at just under $3.70 a gallon for regular, unleaded gas.  That's still 15-cents higher than last year at this time.  The price is also still well above the national average of $3.10.  That's 4-cents less than last week.  The Energy Information Administration reports that gasoline demand has increased slightly.  Higher demand, coupled with fluctuating oil prices, could cause pump price decreases to become smaller as the year ends. 
 

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Local News

WJTN News Headlines for Tues., Jan. 31, 2023

Two arrests so far after paid of drug raids, and traffic stop in Jamestown... Two city residents have been arrested -- so far -- following a pair of simultaneous drug raids... and, a traffic stop in ...

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