WJTN News Headlines!

A Mayville man has been arrested for allegedly operating three separate Methamphetime labs... and, selling quantities of Meth to an undercover police officer.  Agents with the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force say they raided the Beaujean Road home of 42 year-old John Noel-the-third late yesterday morning.  Task Force members says they arrested Noel without incident... and, found the "one-pot" Meth labs inside.  Police say they also seized over 12 ounces of Meth Oil... a quantity of Meth... Laboratory equipment... money... scales and packaging materials.  Task Force agents say Noel faces multiple counts of criminal possession and sale of a controlled substance... and, other charges are pending.  He was arraigned in Chautauqua Town Court... and, sent to the County Jail on 75-thousand dollars bail.  The Mayville Fire Department and County's Hazardous Materials Team were also called to the scene.  Anyone with information about illegal drug activity is asked to contact the Task Force at 1-800-344-8702... or your local police department.


Cattaraugus County Sheriff's officers are investigating a hit-and-run car-pedestrian accident in the town of Great Valley Wednesday night.  Deputies say they were called to the scene on Route 417... near Sullivan Hollow Road... about 7:40 PM.  Witnesses say a silver or grey colored mini-van allegedly struck the victim... who way laying in the road.  Officers say the vehicle left the scene.  The person was injured and taken to the hospital... but, no other information is available on their condition.  If you have any information... you're asked to call the Cattaraugus County Sheriff's Office at 938-9191.


It will now be up to the New York state Legislature to decide on a request to raise Chautauqua County's sales tax from 7.5 to 8 percent.  County lawmakers Wednesday night approved the proposal submitted by County Executive Vince Horrigan by a 14 to 4 vote.  Horrigan says he's is pleased by the overwhelming majority vote... and, calls it a "watershed" moment. Jamestown Republican Elizabeth Rankin supports the move... saying she has heard from her constituents... who say -- to a person -- that they prefer increasing the sales tax versus the property tax.  However... Sheridan Republican Terry Niebel called the sales tax a "regressive tax" and fears that many county residents will decide to do their shopping in nearby Pennsylvania where the sales tax is lower.  Niebel was joined by Legislators John Hemmer, Janet Keefe and John Runkle in voting against the measure.  Horrigan says the sales tax hike is needed to address the county's 5-million dollar structural deficit.


Hundreds of public school teachers protested Governor Andrew Cuomo's education reform proposals at the Capitol as closed-door budget negotiations continue.  Thursday's protest was organized by NYSUT -- the state's largest teachers union.  Cuomo and lawmakers are now working out the details of the state budget ahead of an April 1st deadline.  Cuomo's 142-billion dollar spending proposal contains several provisions that have angered teachers, including revised teachers evaluations that place more emphasis on student test performance, and new tenure rules.  Cuomo has tied a 1.1-billion education funding increase to the passage of the reforms.  Many lawmakers object to the measures, and a compromise proposal would create a commission to recommend changes to evaluations.


The new director of The Resource Center in Chautauqua County says she's excited to be in the position... one that she's been groomed for for the past several years.  Denise Jones has replaced the retired Paul Cesana... who had told TRC officials that he was stepping down at the end of March after 27 years as director.  Jones has been Assistant Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer at TRC the past several years.  She says The Resource Center is a "great organization...." TRC and it's affiliates support, and work with people who have developmental disabilties.  Jones has been with The Resource Center for 25 years... and, admits she has some "big shoes" to fill in replacing Cesana -- who she called a "visionary."  One area she wants to continue working on is moving it's employement arm -- Allied Industries -- away from declining U-S Defense Department contracts -- and towards commercial products.  Jones says they're also moving towards improving the "holistic" health of their clients... and, a wider variety of employment opportunities.  


Jamestown firefighters were called back to a re-kindle of an early morning blaze at a southside home early yesterday morning.  Deputy Fire Chief Chet Harvey says... while crews had to pull away some walls... the hot embers were put out quickly.  The call came in around Noon-time.  Officials say the original blaze... which was called in about 4 AM... damaged the porch, and part of the second-floor of the home at 50 Broadhead Avenue.  An off-duty shift was called in to assist.  When firefighters arrived... officials say fire was showing on the porch... and, had extended to part of the second-floor.  However... crews made a quick stop on the blaze.  No one was home at the time... but, firefighters had to rescue a "number of cats" from the building.  Crews were there about two-hours.  The cause remains under investigation.


Funding to help new, minority businesses get off the ground... and, paying attention to Jamestown's gateway streets were the two big take-aways from a public hearing Wednesday night.  The city's Department of Development held it's inital hearing on what residents and organizations want addressed in Jamestown's 2015 Community Development Block Grant.  Development Director Vince DeJoy says about 20 people attended the session... and, he says -- while it's been brought up before -- the idea of a Microenterprise Fund was brought up to help small, start-up businesses. DeJoy says city development officials also heard a lot about the need to improve the city's gateway streets -- namely East Second Street.  There's been a lot built and proposed for North Main Street... but, he says there's a feeling that all major points need to be developed... including East Second and Washington Streets, and Foote Avenue.  DeJoy says there was also a renewed call to continue with their "demolition program" to remove blighted homes and other structures in the city.  DeJoy says they'll now take the input from the meeting... and, work on their CDBG... and, HOME Program proposals.


Petitions for the two seats up for a vote in this year's Jamestown school board race will be available next Monday morning in the superintendent's office.  School Spokeswoman Cathy Panebianco says any eligible resident can pick up a petition at the district offices at 197 Martin Road.    Petitions are due with at least 100 signatures from qualified voter by 5 PM on Wednesday, April 29th.  Panebianco says two seats are up for election to a full, 3-year term.  They are currently held by Laurel Lucas, and Dan Johnson.  The terms begin this July 1st.  To qualify as a candidate... Panebianco says a person must be a U-S Citizen... and, be a registered voter in the Jamestown school district... and, has lived there for at least one-year before the May 19th vote.  If you are not registered to vote... the Jamestown Public School’s registration day will be held on Friday, May 1st, from Noon to 6 PM at the district offices.  For more information... call 483-4420.