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News Update for Fri., Oct. 17, 2014

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

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

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

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

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

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