Local News Headlines
Local police agencies are looking for a Sinclairville area man who escaped from custody during a court appearance yesterday morning in the town of Charlotte.  Sheriff's officers say 34 year-old Jacob Raynor was being arraigned on a Felony charge about 11:30 AM when he got away from deputies.  Raynor is a white male, 6-foot tall, and weighing 170 pounds.  He was reportedly handcuffed and wearing a black shirt and black hat.  Officers say Raynor is not armed and is not considered dangerous.  Further updates will follow as more information becomes available.  The public is asked to call 9-1-1 with any information including his whereabouts.
 
 
Another round of potentially damaging winds will be hitting the area later today... and the National Weather Service has issued a High Wind Warning for Chautauqua and Erie counties.  The warning will run from 9 AM to 10 PM today.  Meteorologist Jon Hitchcock with the Weather Service's Buffalo Office says to expect wind gusts of up to 60 MPH. Hitchcock says this wind event will be very similar to one that hit the area last week causing downed trees and power lines, triggering scattered power outages.  Cattaraugus County is under a Wind Advisory from Noon today until 1 AM Thursday.
 
 
With our High Wind Warning today... the Chautauqua County Office of Emergency Services and County Executive Vince Horrigan are reminding residents to use caution and be prepared.  Horrigan says... with wind gusts expected to be up to 60 miles an hour... those winds could result in downed trees and powerlines, scattered power outages, and property damage.  He says residents are encouraged to secure or bring in any loose items outdoors that could be blown away by the wind.  If an outage occurs... residents can reduce the risk of fire by using flashlights in the dark and not candles.  They should also eliminate unnecessary travel, especially by car, as traffic lights will be out and roads may be congested.  Appliances, equipment or electronics that were in use when the power goes out should be turned off and disconnected.  This will prevent damage to the equipment, which could occur if there is a surge or spike when the power comes back on.  National Grid customers can report power outages by calling 1-800-NIAGARA. They can also view the Outage Map online at www.nationalgridus.com/Upstate-NY-Business/Storms-Outages/Outage-Map.  
 
Local Congressman Tom Reed says he's fully-on board with the new American Health Care Act... which President Trump and most Republican lawmakers have now introduced.  Reed says he believes the new House GOP plan -- in the final analysis -- will cover more residents in his Southern Tier District than the Affordable Care Act.  The Corning Republican reiterated that there will be a three-step process in putting the new plan in place.  He says the first took place with introduction of the bill to repeal and replace what had become known as "ObamaCare...." The proposal to include affordable tax credits for those who are insured has raised concern among lower-income Americans... who say they don't make enough money for those to help.  However... he says the tax credit will be based on age... not income.  Reed adds that Medicaid will be the "back-stop" through 2020.  White House spokesman Sean Spicer says the president is ``absolutely committed'' to the new health care legislation.  Reed made his comments during his weekly telephone conference call with regional media.
 
 
Gasoline prices in Chautauqua County have fallen for the first time in the past few weeks.  The Triple-A's Fuel Gauge Report says the cost for regular, unleaded fuel has dropped by 3-cents a gallon to just over 2-dollars-47 cents.  The Fuel Gauge says last week's price was an even 2--50 a gallon.  Nationally... Triple-A says oil prices slipped fractions of a penny over the weekend, reaching today’s national average price of 2-dollars-31 cents per gallon.  The Fuel Gauge reports that today’s price is still two cents more than one week ago, four cents more compared to one month ago and 50 cents more per gallon year-over-year.  Retail prices continue to fluctuate but have remained between 2-dollars-28 to 2--32 a gallon for more than a month as reports of increased U.S. production continues to counter OPEC rebalancing efforts.  Triple-A says the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic are some of the only regions to see moderate declines on the week.  Both New York and Pennsylvania saw pump prices move down by a penny or less.
 
 
New York state last increased the amount of money it paid to local governments to maintain it's streets and highways in those communities 40 years ago.  An increase is long overdue... and, the state Conference of Mayors is now pushing to at least double the amount they are receiving under New York's' Arterial Maintenance Agreements with 38 cities -- including Jamestown.  Mayor Sam Teresi outlined the program for city council Monday night... saying the state contracts with the city for several miles of state roadways.
Teresi says the agreement... which provides the city 203-thousand dollars a year at 85-cents per square foot of pavement... is generally a "win-win" for both the city and state.  He says that's because the state saves money in personnel and equipment, while the municipality gets some money to help defray it's expenses.  However... Teresi says those expenses have gone up about 55-percent since 1987.
 
 
The Martz-Kohl Observatory is offering Jamestown area residents a close up look at NASA's plans to send people to Mars.  Gary Nelson, the observatory's president, says local native Laurie Abadie will present a program at their Frewsburg location tonight at 8 PM. Nelson adds the program won't be overly technical. Extensive planning for the 2030 trip is going on now.  The Martz-Kohl Observatory is located at the top of Robbin Hill Road.  There are signs in Frewsburg that point the way. Again, that program is Wednesday at 8 PM.