Local News Headlines

Chautauqua County Court Judge John Ward to retire at end of the month...

After spending more than 40 years of working in the criminal justice system in Chautauqua County... County Court Judge John Ward says he's going to retire at the end of the month.  While he could have remained behind the bench until age 70 under state law... the 67 year-old Ward tells us the time is right.  He says the decision came after some recent vacation time.  Ward says someone once told him "you'll know when you're ready to retire," and, he knew it was.  Ward says he is in good health... but, he admits with the number of high profile cases he has had to handle in recent years, it was time to step down.  Besides spending 23 years as a judge,... Ward also served many years as an assistant District Attorney... and, as District Attorney.  He says he liked both positions... but, adds he was ready for a change after spending 15 years as District Attorney.  Ward says he will miss the people he works with... but, he looks forward to spending more time traveling and with his family.  Judge Ward says he expects to wrap up his work July 30.

Hochul meets with Horrigan to discuss help to deal with Flood damage...

New York state officials are fully on-board with flood relief efforts along the northern Lake Erie shoreline in Chautauqua County.  County Executive Vince Horrigan met in Mayville Thursday morning with Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul to provide details on the flooding... which she will report back to Governor Andrew Cuomo.  Most of the flood damage was seen in the Brocton and Westfield areas.  Hochul confirms that a federal declaration is not likely... but, she says some state, and Small Business Administration help should be available for the 250 home or business owners.  Silver Creek was also impacted by flooding... although the village was not hit as badly as Brocton and the town of Portland.  Horrigan says he appreciates the governor's interest... and, says the county is trying to get all the help it can for those people affected.  He says they waiting on the SBA to finish it's flood survey... work... and, then applying for aid.

Fast Food Workers may be earning $15 an hour by the end of decade in Upstate New York; sooner in NYC...

Fast-food workers in New York state may soon be making $15 an hour... but, it would be phased-in over several years.  A proposal to raise the minimum wage for workers at McDonalds, Starbucks and other fast-food restaurants to $15 an hour was endorsed Wednesday by a state labor board.  Governor Cuomo, whose administration has the final say on the idea, has signaled his support.  Many fast-food workers say $15-an-hour would allow them to keep up with the state's high cost of living.  However... restaurant owners say the increase will lead to higher prices and fewer jobs.

Chaut. County government, CSEA, at Impasse...

County employees represented by the Civil Service Employee's Association let lawmakers know what they thought about not having a contract for 43 months by holding an information picket before last night's County Legislature meeting.  Members of CSEA Unit Local-#6300 represent about 950 county workers.  That from Union President Steve Skidmore... who says he has had some discussions about the situation with County Executive Vince Horrigan.  Skidmore says they've talked a lot, but, adds both are ready for mediation now.  He says union found a way the county could save millions of dollars in insurance funding.  Horrigan says he would not comment on the CSEA Proposal... but, he does look forward to mediation.

Schumer warns of even higher Egg prices later in 2015 is funding to fight Avian Flu is slashed...

It's something that affects every family and every person who uses egg products in the United States... and, Senator Charles Schumer says Avian Flu is to blame for a 50-percent increase in the cost of eggs.  The New York Democrat said yesterday that while the U-S Department of Agriculture has been working hard to slow down and stop spread of the disease... it's not expected to peak until late this year.  However... Schumer says Congress is proposing to cut the $500-million the USDA needs to fight the outbreak.  He says the funding needs to be in place because a renewed wave of Avian Flu is expected around October 1st.  Schumer says the USDA uses the money to develop vaccinations... and, bio-security measures to help farmers reduce spread of the disease.  He adds that most grocery stores -- including Wegman's -- have seen prices increase 35-to-40-percent over the past month alone.  Schumer says Avian Flu has already forced farmers to euthanize some 48-million chickens.

Dunkirk man arrested for alleged domestic assault...

A Dunkirk man is jailed without bail following an investigation by undercover drug agents into a domestic incident he was allegedly part of.  Agents with the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force say they received a warrant for the arrest of 53 year-old Robert Gee of 25 East Benton St. on Tuesday morning.  Task Force members say they arrested Gee shortly before 11 a.m. on one count of second-degree assault.  Agents say the incident allegedly occured at the East Benton Street location where Gee lives.  He was arrested without incident... arraigned... and, sent to the county lock-up.

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WJTN News Headlines for Nov 23, 2020

Two people had to be taken to the hospital after a car struck a scooter from behind in the town of Clymer last Saturday night.  Sheriff's officers say they, along with Clymer and Sherman fi...

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