Local News Headlines

The investigation is continues into what caused a head-on collison in the town of Ripley Sunday night that killed a 22 year-old woman...  

Sheriff's Officers say the accident occurred just before 8 p.m. on Route 20 when a westbound vehicle operated by Madison Dunlap -- of Ripley -- and an east-bound vehicle operated by 58 year-old Kim Robbins -- of Dunkirk -- collided.  Sheriff Joe Gerace says investigators were at the scene until Midnight Monday.

Gerace says Robbins was transported by ambulance to Brooks Memorial Hospital in Dunkirk, then later sent to UPMC Hamot in Erie, Pennslvania.  Dunlap was pronounce dead at the scene.  Ripley Fire Rescue, Westfield Police also responded to assist.  Deputies say charges are pending the investigation.

A state law that takes 16-year-olds out of the adult criminal justice system is now in effect.  New York's 'Raise the Age' legislation got its official start on Monday....  

The law, passed last year, calls for most 16-year-olds charged with offenses to be tried in Family Court instead of automatically in adult criminal court.  More serious charges would go to a "Youth Part" of criminal court.  Next year, the law will extend to 17-year-olds.  The law also impacts juvenile detention.  On Monday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced all 16- and 17-year-olds had been moved off of Rikers Island, the city's jail, to dedicated juvenile facilities with access to social services.  New York was the next-to-last state in the U.S. to raise its age of criminal responsibility to 18.

Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi will present his 2019 budget proposal a week from today to city lawmakers and the public, but there's already been some discussion about how the plan will be presented...  

After Finance Committee Chairman Tony Dolce noted that budget hearings with Department heads would start the following week, on October 15, At-Large Councilman Andy Liuzzo questioned why the presentation was on Tuesday, October 9 instead of the 8th -- which is in the charter.  Fellow lawmakers noted that it's Columbus Day, which is a federal holiday.

A few lawmakers chimned in, saying that it's not practical to present the budget on what is a federal holiday.  Mayor Teresi says he would have to call staff in -- at time-and-a-half -- to be able to do that.  Teresi read a part of the New York State Consolidated Law, which states what local municipalities can do.  He says they can move any action that falls on a weekend, or a Monday holiday, to the next business day. 

The county legislature's Audit and Control Committee began it's review of Executive George Borrello's tentative, 2019 budget proposal Monday...  

Borrello says they were to take a hard look at his plan to close the Methane-to-Energy plant at the landfill, and sell the methane to a contract to convert to renewable natural gas.  During last week's budget presentation, Borrello noted that the move could bring just over one-million dollars into county coffers annually.

Borrello says the Methane to Energy plant would likely close by the end of the year, depending on how discussions progress.  He says he's pleased to have new Public Facilities Director, Brad Bentley, involved in the effort because of his strong background in the energy industry.  The Audit and Control Committee will be going through each department budget this week to discuss any further cuts, or restorations in the more than $254-million spending plan.  The legislature needs to act on the budget by December 1.  A vote is tentatively set for the panel's October meeting.

The proposed new trade deal between the United States, Canada and Mexico brings our trading standards "out of the dark ages and into the 21st Century".... 

That from local Congressman Tom Reed on the three-way agreement brokered just before a Midnight Monday deadline.  Reed says it will give "our dairy farmers and workers a fair shake at success."  Agriculture is still Chautauqua County's biggest industry, and County Executive George Borrello says it's great news.

Reed and fellow members of Congress, will have 60 days -- once final details are out of the way -- to approve the new agreement.  The Corning Republican says "we look forward to further reviewing this deal to verify our all of our local farmers, manufacturers and workers are treated fairly."  Reed says he's been an "unrelenting advocate" to level the scales of trade for the dairy industry going back to 2013.

Three homes in the city of Dunkirk were damaged by a major fire that occured last Sunday night on Lake Shore Drive East near Beagle Street...  

Fire Captain Gary Katta says crews were called to a reported structure fire at 187 Lake Shore Drive shortly after 11 p.m. and, says crews found an unoccupied residence at 191 Lake Shore Drive fully-engulfed in flames.  Katta says that house was destroyed by fire and, the other two had lesser damage.

Katta says seven people were left homeless by the fire and, the local Red Cross is assisting them.  Fire officials say there were no injuries.  Dunkirk crews received mutual aid from Fredonia and East Dunkirk fire departments.  The cause of the blaze is under investigation.

New York state is working to reduce maternal mortality and the racial disparities in the rate of maternal death...  

A new state task force created earlier this year met for the first time last week in Albany.  The group is made up of state officials and medical and public health experts.  It is tasked with studying the factors that lead to women dying in childbirth and recommending ways to address it.  In 2010, New York state had one of the worst maternal mortality rates in the nation.  While the state has made progress in reducing the rate, it's still in the bottom half of states.  Statistics show that black women are three times more likely to die in childbirth than white women in New York.

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WJTN News Headlines for Oct 27, 2020

With 11 teachers and staff at the Bemus Point Elementary School in "precautionary quarantine" after being in close contact with positive COVID-19 cases... the school is on a "virtual le...

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