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Local News Headlines

New York state has lowest daily death toll in several weeks, new infections also down...
New York State has reported its lowest number of daily COVID-19 deaths in weeks... as well as most other numbers.  However... Governor Andrew Cuomo says the figures remain at "an unimaginable level."  During his Friday press briefing... Cuomo said there had been 422 deaths reported the day before... and, he says new infections are down slightly.  However... he says that's still not good news, either.  He says there's basically been a "flat line" with that number being 1,200 on Friday.  The number of deaths in New York are the fewest since March 31st... when there were 391 deaths.  More than 16,000 people have died in the state from the outbreak.  The total number of people hospitalized statewide continues to drop slowly, hitting about 14,000. 


No new COVID cases in Chautauqua County, but, testing is being ramped up...
There will be an expansion of diagnostic testing for the Coronavirus in Chautauqua County starting today as more tests have become available.  However... Public Health Director Christine Schulyer say the county is still asking people to limit their request to if they have COVID-19 symptoms.  Schulyer says there are a number of things to look for.  They include having a fever of 100.4-degrees or higher, shortness of breath, sore throat, muscle pain, and a new loss of taste or smell.  Schulyer says the health care provider will determine if there's a need to have a test done.  In addition... she says there is a new testing center that has opened up in Dunkirk at the Well Now Center... which will be doing both diagnostic and anti-body testing.  She made her comments during County Executive P-J Wendel's Friday COVID-19 press briefing.  Wendel says there are still 29 positive case of the Coronavirus after two straight days of one infection each days.  He says there are currently two active cases... while 24 people have now recovered. 


County sees sharp spike in number of drug overdoses since COVID-19 outbreak...
Chautauqua County mental health officials are warning that the number of overdoses are continuing to spike amid the COVID-19 crisis.  With residents forced into social isolation... Department of Mental Hygiene Director Patricia Brinkman says the numbers are striking.  Brinkman says the number of overdoses double, and more calls to 911.  She says this is a nation-wide issue.  But locally.... Health Officials indicate 45 overdoses, including two fatalities, occurred during the month of March.  As of April 22.... 14 overdoses have been reported, including 3 fatalities.  In 2019, the average number of overdoses in one month was 19.  Brinkman says her department was alerted by local law enforcement agencies to a 'bad batch' of fentanyl being sold on the street... and, they are also concerned about that.  There are several locations throughout the county with individualized treatment options for those suffering from substance abuse.  For more information, go on-line to CombatAddictionCHQ.com.   


Goodell, Borrello outline plans to begin reopending NYS to County Chamber...
You have to deal with the present... but, you also have to think about the future.  That's why State Assemblyman Andy Goodell and Senator George Borrello developed plans for the "reopening" of New York state -- including Chautauqua County.  During a "virtual" County Chamber of Commerce Legislative Breakfast Friday morning... Goodell said he and Borrello took a lot of heat for what they did.  But, the Jamestown-are Republican says you need to look ahead to be in the best position to start restart the economy.  Goodell says we "can't afford not to talk about it..." but, adds it needs to be done in a way to minimize any negative impacts on health, and employees.  Borrello the shut-down has also put people in stressful situations, as well.  He recalled a recent discussion with County Sheriff Jim Quattrone... who said -- since April 1st -- domestic calls had increased by 75-percent.  He adds drug overdoses have also spiked along with others.  He says this also public heath issue. 


SWCS teachers, students, dealing with isolation, Internet issues...
Five weeks into the COVID-19 shutdown, education continues in the Southwestern Central School district, and Superintendent Maureen Donahue says the faculty and staff are rising to a unique challenge because they're "not designed" to do distance learning.  A lot of their education includes building relationships.  As learning has moved almost entirely on-line, she says they've set up hot-spots in their parking lots so familes came come by and download assignments.  Some people in the district have no internet... others don't have nearly enough because they have Smart TVs, phones, and some appliances connected to the Internet.  Donahue says when she and her staff speak with students, there are poignant moments because the kids often ask difficult questions they don't have answers to.  They include, "When's the next time we'll be together?" and "What's my graduation going to look like?"  


Local man arrested twice in connection with domestic incident...
A Jamestown-area man was arrested in both the city and the town of Ellicott last Thursday night for alleged domestic violence incidents.  Town Police say they were called to a dispute about 11:30 p.m. at an undisclosed location... and, found that 37 year-old Benjamin Ernewein allegedly committed first-degree unlawful imprisonment.  Shortly afterwards... Jamestown police were called to find a Toyota sedan involved in the incident.  City police found Ernewein driving the vehicle on Maple Street near Arnold Street, and found he allegedly assaulted woman inside.  Further investigation revealed he was driving drunk... and, he was also arrested on charges of assault, and criminal mischief.
 

Local News

WJTN Headlines for Wed., Feb. 24, 2021

Ground to be broken in April for new Love's Travel Center in Ripley... Ground is expected to be broken in April for a new, $12-million travel center project on Shortman Road in the town of Ripley...

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