Phase-six of the city of Jamestown's Riverwalk Project got off to a rainy start this afternoon at the McCrea Point Boat Launch on the city's westside. A heavy downpour prevented a ceremonial ground-breaking... but, failed to dampen enthusiasm for this part of the multi-million dollar effort along the Chadakoin River. Mayor Sam Teresi says a grant from the state Environmental Protection Fund will provide about half-a-million dollars of the funding for this part of the project. Teresi says new asphalt paths will be constructed around the perimeter of the boatlanding... as well as from West Third Street to Jones and Gifford Avenue on the eastside of the Chadakoin River. Regional State Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation representative Jay Bailey says they're happy to help out... adding they use EPF dollars to help urban areas do "projects like these." Teresi adds that new playgrounds will also be installed as part of this phase in the vista on Steele Street near the Third Street Bridge... and, the McCrea Point Boat Landing.
A new Marist College poll shows Governor Cuomo's lead over his GOP challenger shrank following news that his administration is being investigated for meddling with an anti-corruption commission. The survey released Tuesday by Marist College gives Cuomo, a Democrat, 54-percent of the vote compared to 23 percent who back Republican Rob Astorino. A poll last month put Cuomo's lead at 59-to-24 percent. While some voters were swayed by allegations that Cuomo's top aide discouraged the panel from investigating groups linked to his administration... the episode hasn't significantly altered the race.
New York's governor is studying the state's options for how to spend an estimated 4.2-billion dollar budget surplus. The state says the windfall is the result of recent financial settlements with banks and insurance companies. BNP Paribas, for example, agreed to pay a 2.2-billion dollar penalty to the state after pleading guilty to charges that it violated economic sanctions by processing transactions for clients in blacklisted countries including Sudan, Cuba and Iran. Governor Andrew Cuomo's administration says Monday that it's reviewing options for the unanticipated revenue. Possibilities include paying down state debt, building up the state's financial reserves, or spending the money on one-time capital expenses. The money would certainly help cover the cost of one big-ticket item: the new Tappan Zee Bridge, which has a price tag of 3.9-billion dollars.
If you were shut-out of getting a ticket for Jay Leno's sold-out performance... there are plenty of good tickets left for other performances at this week's Lucille Ball Comedy Festival. The annual event begins today with several events in downtown Jamestown... and, kicks into high gear on Thursday. The Friday night headliner is up-and-coming stand-up Comedian Tom Cotter. Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Center of Comedy Director Journey Gunderson says Cotter really made a name for himself as being the first comic to make the finals of "America's Got Talent...." Gunderson says she had the chance to see one of Cotter's performances in Buffalo several months ago... and, believed he would be a good fit for the local comedy festival. Cotter's show begins at 8 PM Friday. On Thursday night... Caroline Rhea of "The Biggest Loser" fame will take the stage with three others for the annual "Comedy Showcase." Gunderson says -- in addition to "Loser" -- Rhea has a 'stand-up' career dating back to 1989. She says Carmen Lynch... Moody McCarthy... and, Andrew Norelli all have solid comedy credits. For more information on the festival... go on-line to Lucycomedyfest-dot-COM.
A mother and son from Jamestown will be the first parent--sibling team to lead the United Way of Southern Chautauqua County's annual campaign this year. United Way Executive Director Tori Irgang says Melissa and Shane Uber will serve as General Campaign Co-Chairs for the 2014 campaign... which kicks-off September 11th. Irgang says Melissa is a partner in the family's printing business, Quick Solutions. She says Shane is a Corporate Counsel for the law firm A-W Farrell and Son... and, has opened his own firm in Jamestown. Irgang says they wanted the Uber's to make sure they wanted to take on this responsibility first. Irgang says this year's goal is 1.32-million dollars... which is about 5-thousand dollars more than last year. She says they feel Shane and Melissa Uber are up to the task... but, add the campaign will have to get out of the "gate early" in order to meet the goal by the end of the year. Again... the General Campaign will kick-off on Thursday, September 11th at the Jamestown Boys and Girls Club with a community service program... and, other activities.
The year 1864 was an important one in the history of the Civil War. It was the year that Ulysses S. Grant rose to become the main leader of the Union Army. That from reknowned Historian and Documentary Filmmaker Ken Burns... who is having a week devoted to his work at Chautauqua Institution this week. Speaking with our Jim Roselle Tuesday morning... Burns referred back to his five-hour documentary on the Civil War... and, the success it's had. He says Grant had "4 in the morning Courage" because he could be awakened at 4 AM about an enemy move... and, be "cool as a cuccumber." Looking back... Burns says making a five-hour series using just still-photos... music... interviews and a narrator... was a tough sell. But... 24 years later... it's still the highest rated program in the history of public television. Burns will also be on the amphitheater stage today with Geoffrey Ward talking about his upcoming documentary on Vietnam.