High winds -- especially along Lake Erie shoreline -- trigger power outages...

High winds are being blamed for downing power lines and knocking out electricity service to more than 11,000 utility customers in parts of upstate New York... including Chautauqua County.  The National Weather Service says wind gusts topping 40 MPH have been recorded early Wednesday morning in Dunkirk.  The winds led to outages that have closed the Silver Creek and Forestville Schools for today.  NYSEG says about 3,700 of its 5,400 total outages are reported.  RG&E reports more than 4,000 outages in the Rochester area, including about 2,500 in Monroe County and another 1,700 in neighboring Ontario County.  National Grid reports about 1,200 outages in the Syracuse area.  The weather service has issued wind advisories Wednesday from Lake Erie's eastern shore to the Finger Lakes region and Mohawk Valley, with gusts expected to hit 55 MPH in some areas.


Gerace says new, county-wide emergency radio system live date pushed back to March...

It'll be March now before the Chautauqua County Sheriff's Department goes live with it's new, digital, county-wide emergency communications system.  Sheriff  Joe Gerace has hoped to have the new system up and running by the end of January... however... he says he and the personnel involved in getting the system on-line have decided to make sure everything is checked and double-checked.  Gerace says there'll be some issues at first... but, adds they want to minimize those because these are "critical communications" equipment and systems.  He says they're working closely with the vendor, Motorola, on the project.  The Sheriff's Department completed testing of the new system back in late December.  Gerace says the new system has been about 20 years in the making... but, suffered a setback several years ago when New York decided to end it's effort to create at state-wide network.  He says the new system will be able to work with old, analog radios that local fire and police agencies have until they have made the change-over... using a system of "gate-ways" until they make the change.  The county received a $6-million state grant for the project. 


Gerace says latest statewide Stop DWI Crackdown coming up Super Bowl weekend...
 
The latest Stop-DWI Enforcement Crackdown is set for this coming weekend.  There's no holiday... but, there are going to be a lot of "Super Bowl" parties for the biggest game of the National Football League season.  With that... local police will be taking part in the Crackdown... which begins on Friday, Feb. 5, and, runs through Midnight Monday, Feb. 8.   Sheriff Joe Gerace says they see a number of crashes that occur... especially the evening of the Super Bowl.  Gerace says the increased effort is funded by the state's Stop DWI Foundation.  He says taking part in the program allows them to get additional funding to put more deputies on the streets... and, he says they'll be arresting drivers who's been drinking... or using drugs... and, driving.  During the most recent crack-down over the Christmas and New Year's Holiday period... Gerace says there were 129 vehicle stops, arrests and summonses. 
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The AAA says if you plan to drink, plan not to drive by having a designated, non-drinking driver... alternate transportation... or plans for an overnight stay wherever you watch the big game.  Party hosts are reminded to consider designated drivers when stocking up for parties.


State Assembly again approves Paid Family Leave bill...

The New York state Assembly has again passed legislation to allow workers to take up to 12 weeks of paid time off to care for a new child or a sick loved one.  The measure endorsed Tuesday would be funded by a weekly employee payroll deduction that would start at 45 cents in the first year.  When fully phased in... the maximum weekly benefit would be capped at $633.  Rhode Island, New Jersey and California have similar laws on the books. Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie noted that the U.S. is the only industrialized nation that doesn't offer paid family leave.  The measure has run into trouble in the Senate before, but this year supporters are optimistic.  Polls show broad public support and Governor Andrew Cuomo has offered his own proposal.


Employee at Artone Manufacturing burned during accidental ignition "flash explosion" Tuesday...

A worker at Artone Manufacturing is being treated for burns to the upper part of his body after a flammable material was ignited about mid-morning Tuesday.  Jamestown Fire Battalion Chief Roger Sigular says city fire-rescue crews responded to Artone... which is located on Allen Street... shortly after 8 a.m. Tuesday.  Sigular says the employee... who was not identified... was rushed to the hospital... and, later flown to the Erie County Medical Center for further treatment.  No condition was available for the worker.


State Assembly leader proposes millionaire tax increase...

A long-awaited tax plan from the New York state Assembly's Democratic majority would increase taxes on millionaires while giving relief to middle-class and low-income workers.  Speaker Carl Heastie tells The Associated Press that under the Democratic plan, the current top income tax rate of 8.82-percent would be applied to anyone making $1-million to $5 million a year, and two new, higher rates would be imposed on those making more.  Some 56-thousand taxpayers would be affected, with an average tax increase of $33,000.  The proposal also would reduce rates for middle class workers to give 5.5-million taxpayers an average savings of $50, and increase the earned-income tax credit for low-income workers.

Local News

News Headlines for Sat., Aug. 17, 2019

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