Local News Headlines

WJTN Headlines

Flames have extensively damaged a vacant, two-and-a-half story, two-family home on Jamestown's eastside. 


City Fire Battalion Chief Matt Coon says crews were called to the scene at 621 East Sixth Street at the corner with Grant Street about 6:15 PM yesterday. 


Coon says there was a lot of fire shooting from the roof-area. Coon says it took about 30-minutes of pouring water from an aerial truck and other hand-lines to bring the blaze under control. 


He says part of the roof collapsed while they were battling the blaze. He says fire damage was confined to the upper floors of the structure while there was extensive fire damage to the first-floor of the house. 


Coon says they called in an off-shift of 12 firefighters to assist at the scene along with Jamestown Police who helped with traffic control. 


He says crews were still at the scene after 10 last night.  No one was hurt.  The cause remains under investigation.

The on-site investigation into Wednesday morning's fire that destroyed about half-a-block of businesses and residential apartments in the village of Falconer has concluded. 


However no findings have been released. Falconer Mayor Jim Rensel adds that the fire department has also snuffed out all the hot spots at the scene at 29 to 35 West Main Street. 


Rensel told us late yesterday that the owners of the four buildings involved will meet with contractors tomorrow about safety issues at the scene. Rensel says that "collapse-zone" remains in place on Main Street and he says they need to deal with that before they can look to open West Main between Davis Street and the four-corners where Main Street intersects with South Work Street. 


He says the unsupported walls on the Main Street side are the biggest concern right now. Power has been restored to the areas that lost it Wednesday and Wednesday night.  Rensel adds that power has been restored to the village hall and that reopened today. 


No one was hurt in the fire, but the cause remains under investigation.

The Falconer Community is coming together to help the people displaced by Wednesday's devasting fire that left 19 people without a place to live. 


Steve Penhollow, Superintendent of the Falconer Central School District says they are working with Mayor Jim Rensel to get donations of clothes, laundry detergent and monetary donations. Checks can be made out to the "Cheer Fund".   


Penhollow says that donations can be dropped off at the Hogg Shop on East Main Street in the village.  According to their Facebook page the Hogg Shop is open from 10am to 4pm today. 


The Lynn Group is also joining in on the effort offering a special deal on rent for those people displaced by the fire.

There will be a Community Prayer Service at 7pm this evening at the Falconer First Baptist Church. The church is located on the corner of Homestead and Falconer Streets. The whole community is invited to come show support.  The church is handicapped accessible.

As the cleanup continues from Wednesday's fire in Falconer, village officials say businesses unaffected by the fire are reopening. 


They include: CVS, Phil's Auto Plaza, Blue Fin Pet Shop, M & T Bank, the Falconer Vac Shop, and the Bellview East Restaurant.The Falconer Library will also re-open today. 


While West Main Street in the area of the fire is still shut down, the main intersection in the village is otherwise open to traffic and parking is available at CVS, Phil's Auto Plaza, and village parking lots.

Chautauqua County Executive Vince Horrigan spent time Wednesday at the scene of the Falconer fire talking with Mayor Jim Rensel and others on what's being done for the people who owned businesses and lived in the upper floors of the West Main Street structure. 


Horrigan says the county's Department of Emergency Services has been assisting Falconer and other local leaders. Members of the Chautauqua County Fire Investigation Team are also at the scene searching though the rubble and remains for the cause of the fire which has been under investigation since crew arrived at the scene. 


Horrigan says it's great to see the "incredible partnership" between local and county agencies to help those impacted by the blaze. He especially praised the fire departments and fire coordinators for their tireless efforts.

A Bemus Point man has been arrested for allegedly being found in possession of two stun guns and a large amount of Methamphetime and other drugs during an investigation early yesterday morning in Mayville. 


Sheriff's officers say they spotted two vehicles parked on vacant property near the intersection of Sea Lion Drive and Mill Street about 3:45 AM.  Deputies say they stopped one of the vehicles as it tried to leave and found the driver 41 year-old Gary Hannold, Junior in possession of a stun gun. 


Further investigation led to disovery of a second stun gun along with 37 grams of Meth, about 4 grams of crack cocaine, and more than 2-ounces of marihuana. 


Officers say they also found digital scales, packaging materials, and a quantity of cash.  Hannold was arrested and arraigned on several charges including two counts of third-degree criminal possession of controlled substance and third-degree criminal possession of weapon.  He was sent to the county jail without bail.

Chautauqua County's Congressman is echoing the concerns of local leaders over the proposed elimination of the federal Community Development Block Grant program. 


Corning Republican Tom Reed says he was the mayor of Corning several years ago and he knows the program is critically important to the many communities that receive those funds. 


While he supports many of President Trump's proposals Reed says they disagree on this one and he stands with local mayors who say there is "great value" in the program.  He believes he can keep the program in place.


Reed says he has already spoken with city leaders from Jamestown, Binghampton, and Ithaca who say they have benefitted from the CDBG Program. 


Earlier this week Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi blasted the President's proposal as being a "travesty" and one that would have a devastaing impact on Jamestown and several other upstate cities.

A proposal to eliminate a federal program that helps low-income families and seniors pay their Winter heating bills is on the choping block in President Trump's 2018 budget "blueprint." 


The proposal to scrap the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance program is already drawing sharp criticism from Congressional members in the northeast. 


US Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of New York calls the move "cold-hearted" and adds it would force more than one-million residents to have to make some very difficult decisions.


Gillibrand says more than 48,000 households in the Southern Tier and another 126,000 in Western New York take advantage of the LIHEAP Program. 


She says she'll do her best to keep the program in place because it's "irresponsible to cut these funds."  Benefits-dot-GOV says New York's grant is allocated among the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance for a heating benefit program, the state Division of Housing and Community Renewal for weatherization activities, and the state Office for the Aging for outreach and referral activities.