A Great Lakes researcher accomplished an impressive feat, swimming the 17 mile length of Chautauqua Lake. 


Sherri Mason, who is the chair of SUNY College at Fredonia's Department of Geology and Environmental Sciences, swam the length of the lake in just over 10 hours Monday morning.  WGRZ-TV reports Mason undertook the aquatic marathon to raise awareness about protecting fresh water sources. 


Mason says Monday's swim is practice for a planned 12.5-mile (20.11 kilometer) swim across Lake Erie in August.  She is fundraising for the swim through a personal GoFundMe page.

Falconer's mayor is again urging the Jamestown City Council to call-off the proposed annexation about 4 acres of land owned by the Board of Public Utilities for the Dow Street Substation into the city. 


Jim Rensel pointed out to city lawmakers that no one among the nearly 30 people who spoke during last Monday night's public hearing in Falconer supported the proposal.  He says that included a handful of residents from Jamestown who also spoke against the proposal. 


Rensel says judging by the public hearing "it doesn't appear as though you have any support for it."  Rensel added that the Jamestown School District would be benefitting from the annexation because it would also receive a payment in lieu of taxes on the property located at the city line. 


He said it was curious that no one representing the school district spoke at the hearing.  The City Council and, the Falconer Village and Ellicott Town Boards held the hearing last week on the proposal which would save the Board of Public Utilities about $325,000 in tax payments to the village, town, Falconer school district and the county. 


No council members responded, and we were unable to reach City Council President Greg Rabb last night for comment.

An Adirondack region manufacturer of scenic components has been awarded a 2.9-million dollar contract to create scenic art for exhibits in the new National Comedy Center in Jamestown. 


Governor Andrew Cuomo late Monday announced the contract with Adirondack Studios of Washington County will provide for the fabrication and installation of those components.  Cuomo says Adirondack creates the scenic and themed environments experienced in venues that range from theme parks to casinos, museums, live shows, retail and public art. 


He says with this contract the comedy center continues to make progress toward its targeted opening in 2018.  Cuomo says "The National Comedy Center, once completed, will boost the local economy and spur job creation for Western New York, while creating a world-class cultural hub for visitors and residents alike."

A strong cold front crossed the area this past Sunday night, bringing some severe weather late Sunday afternoon and evening. 


It also spawned some wind damage and localized flash flooding.  Forecaster Bob Hamilton with the National Weather Service in Buffalo says there were several reports of thunderstorm related wind damage across the area. 


There was a report of a possible tornado about two miles east-southeast of Frewsburg.  Hamilton said Monday the weather service is still checking out that report. 


But the weather service late Mondaysaid they have not been able to get anyone down to check the scene yet.  Forecasters, though, add that all the information points to "straight-line" wind damage.

Phone and Internet scams continue to be a major concern for local law enforcement officials and, they are finding that scammers have developed another tool to add their arsenal of deception and theft. 


Chautauqua County Sheriff Joe Gerace says local phone exchanges are now being used by some scammers who are trying to get your money and identity.  Gerace says they are able to do this through the use of new computer software that can be researched on the Internet. 


While it's virtually impossible for law enforcement to get the victim's money back in most cases, Gerace says it's still important to report such crimes.  He says if nothing else they can "stop the bleeding." 


However in most cases the money given to the scammers is gone.  In the most recent IRS Scams they found most were coming from Pakistan.  Gerace says he believes the best way to fight this type of crime is by educating the public.

The city of Jamestown's annual Summer Playground Program will run a week longer this year at five different sites where free lunches will be served to the children who take part. 


Parks and Recreation Coordinator Julia Ciesla-Hanley says the program begins it's seven-week run next Monday, June 26th at 11 AM.  Ciesla-Hanley says that's a later starting time and, adds the program will run until 5 PM at each location. 


She says they'll run through Aug. 11 at Allen Park, Lillian Dickson Tot Lot, and three elementary schools Lincoln, Ring, and Fletcher schools.  Ciesla-Hanley says the program is free of charge and, the free lunches will be served to all children through the Jamestown YMCA and the St. Susan's Center from 12:30 to 1:30 PM each day. 


She adds that while the playground program is limited to children ages 5 to 13 children up to 18 years of age can get a free lunch at the playground nearest them if they need one.  However they need to sign up the day prior to get one. 


Ciesla-Hanley adds they have a new Playground Program Recreation Leader this year Katrina Kerkendall who is a Jamestown Community College graduate.  For more information on the program, call the Recreation Office at 483-7523.

Local News

WJTN News Headlines for July 16, 2019

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