WJTN News Headlines

There were some tense moments... but, fortunately Jamestown firefighters were able to cut off a natural gas leak after a car struck a home on the city's eastside late yesterday afternoon.  City fire crews and police were called to the scene at the intersection of East Second and Buffalo Streets about 3:45 PM after a car... traveling east on Crescent... went out of control and hit the dwelling.  Fire Battalion Chief Don Woodfield says the car also struck a gas meter inside the house... rupturing it. Woodfield says the driver... who was not identified... was not seriously hurt.  No one inside the home was hurt, either.  However... police say traffic was tied up around the intersection for nearly an hour.  Woodfield says the vehicle possibly lost it's brakes while rounding a curve.  He says the gas company was called.  Woodfield says it's unclear how far into the house the vehicle got... but, there was no fire.


A car and utility pole caught fire yesterday morning in Bemus Point after a construction crew struck a natural gas line at the corner of Main Street and Sunnyside Avenue.  However... Chautauqua County fire dispatchers say no one was hurt in the incident... which was called in about 8:45 AM.  Dispatchers say Bemus Point fire crews were called to the scene... and, found the pole, and a parked vehicle on fire.  They add some power lines came down on the vehicle... catching it on fire.  Extra manpower was called in from several nearby departments to put out the fire.  Most crews cleared the scene by about 10:30 AM.  Bemus Point Elementary School was also affected... but, students remained in school for the day.  However... Sunnyside Avenue in that area was closed for several hours... and, residents there were without electricity for some time while repairs were made.


Chautauqua County Executive Vince Horrigan "feels pretty good about where we wound up" on his 2015 budget proposal... but, he understands that no one wants to see even a small tax rate increase.  Horrigan's tentative 228.6-million dollar spending plan includes a 9-cent per thousand full value tax rate increase.  Department heads made their cases to county legislature home committees this week... and, Horrigan says he's found a lot of understanding of what he's trying to do.  But... he's NOT recommending use of more fund balance to bring down the rate. While there's a slight tax rate increase... Horrigan says the budget reduces spending by just under 450-thousand dollars.   He admits there's been "some push back..." but, he says he's trying to eliminate a 7-million dollar "structural" budget deficit over the next three-years.  There are 34 new positions in the budget... but, Horrigan says 26 are covered by private, state and federal funding.  He adds there's also a new Healthy Homes grant initiative to take care of people in their homes, and cutting Medicaid costs.  He made his comments during taping for this weekend's "Community Spotlight" program.


Dunkirk police wrapped up an investigation into Cocaine Sales with the arrest of two women on King Street in that city.  Just after 9pm Thursday police along with the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force stopped a vehicle driven by 32 year old Labrittany Eaddy of Dunkirk. A warrant was issued and Eaddy was arrested on charges stemming from an ongoing investigation regarding alleged cocaine sales to agents of the task force in Dunkirk.  During the stop Eaddy's passenger 24 year old Martika Casey also of Dunkirk allegedly had suspected cocain in her posession. The women were taken into custody and the car was searched. Police allegedly found a small quantity of marijuana and several thousand dollars cash in the car.  These arrests are the culmination of a several month long investigation.  Additonial information has been obtained with these arrests and more are expected.  The Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force encourages anyone who may witness to call either the task force at 800-344-8702 or their local police when they see narcotic related activity in their area.


Gambling regulators and mental health professionals are concluding a two-day meeting to examine gambling addiction in New York.  The New York Council on Problem Gambling began its annual conference Wednesday at an Albany-area hotel.  The conference comes as the state prepares to expand its gambling offerings with up to four upstate casinos.  This year's conference included the executive director of the state Gaming Commission... as well as leaders of the agency that oversees the state's programs to combat problem gambling.


New York is implementing new rules to address sexual violence at its state universities.  The policy will include a statewide training program for campus police, and the creation of a single, statewide definition of sexual consent for all of the 64 SUNY campuses.  Each campus will also have to ensure students can report sexual violence to campus law enforcement or the local police department.  Governor Cuomo announced the changes Thursday at a meeting of the SUNY Board of Trustees in Manhattan.


A Rally Against School Violence in Jamestown didn't draw as many students are organizers hoped it would... but, it's just the first step in the efforts to prevent violence... and, bullying in schools.  A small, but, enthusiastic group of people spoke, and rallied at Tracy Plaza Thursday afternoon... to address the issue... which has grabbed national headlines the past few years.  City director of Youth Services Vickeye James says her group is going to go with a new tact to get more students involved. There is a certain degree of violence in many schools... from fights to bullying... but, thanks to social media and video games... it's gone to a new level.  School officials spoke of no particular problems... but, Jamestown High School Principal Mike McElrath says it's a matter of reinforcing the "right message..." and, that's to keep them away from fighting and bullying.  Students were encouraged to bring other students... banners, signs, and wearing school colors.  In addition to the Youth Services Bureau... the Jamestown Public Schools, Mayor Sam Teresi... Family Services of Chautauqua County... and, Chautauqua Tapestry were part of the program.


Eastman Kodak says it will cut 70 jobs at its Rochester-area operations as it transitions to a smaller company focused on commercial and packaging printing.  The Rochester-based film and photography pioneer announced Wednesday that it was eliminating 85 positions companywide, including 70 in the Rochester area.  It's the largest number of layoffs since Kodak ended its Chapter 11 bankruptcy in September 2013.


The ``I Love New York'' tourism website is getting a new page dedicated to hunting. Empire State Development and the state Department of Environmental Conservation created the page as part of a statewide effort to promote outdoor recreation and make hunting information easily accessible. Officials announced Thursday that ``I Love NY'' is now providing more resources to outdoor enthusiasts with the inclusion of fishing, camping and now hunting on its New York Nature page. In addition to hunting locations, the site provides information on big and small game hunting and has links to DEC's website so visitors can get all the information they need in one place.


estaurant servers, busboys and other tipped workers are expected to weigh in as a New York state board considers whether to mandate that they be paid the minimum wage. The state wage board is reviewing whether to eliminate the so-called tip wage of about $5 an hour given to servers and other tipped workers. State law allows restaurants and hotels to pay those workers less than the state's $8 minimum wage, as long as their tips make up the difference. Tip workers say the law treats them as second-class employees. Seven states already require servers to be paid the minimum wage before tips. The board is meeting Today in Syracuse. A recommendation to Gov. Andrew Cuomo's labor commissioner is expected this fall, with a final decision due in February.


Summer's over, but state parks officials are reminding New Yorkers that many public camping sites from Long Island to the shores of Lake Erie remain open this fall, including some that don't close until late November. The Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation says most of the campgrounds are open through the Columbus Day weekend, with a few staying open into Thanksgiving week.  Camping reservations are available through ReserveAmerica, which provides online and phone reservations for campsites throughout New York state.