Local News Headlines

Silver Creek evacuations ordered due to flooding...
There were mandatory evacuations ordered in the Silver Creek area last night due to significant flooding from Friday afternoon's heavy rains.  The Post-Journal reported late Friday that an order, from the Silver Creek disaster coordinator, was for Oliver Street.  In addition... a voluntary evacuation has been issued for residents along Montgomery and Lincoln streets.  A reverse 911 message went out to area residents.


Cuomo lifts Pause NY in Five Regions... but, not WNY...
Five regions of New York state have been given the green light to resume some business activity after being shut-down for several weeks due to the Coronavirus pandemic.  However... the Western New York Region... which includes Chautauqua County... is not one of them.  The Southern Tier Region -- east of Allegany County -- is among those that can reopen under Phase-one.  Cuomo emphasized those five regions have met all seven benchmarks his administration has set.  He said there's no politics or arbitrary nature to those five being able to reopen.  The Western New York region has been unable to meet the hospitalization rate and capacity numbers.  However... Cuomo did say that once a region meets the seven criteria... they can now reopen immediately.  He says that's unlike what some have said that those regions would have to wait two more weeks.  Cuomo says Phase-One allows more construction, manufacturing and curbside retail pickups are being allowed starting Friday in those five regions.


Wendel outlines effort by him, and other local leaders, to have "sub-region" considered for immediate reopening...
There are two new cases of the COVID-19 virus in Chautauqua County... but, overall... the county's numbers would be good enough to put it into Phase-One of Governor Andrew Cuomo's Reopening plan.  However... since the county is part of the Western New York Economic Region with Erie County... that's not happening today.  County Executive P-J Wendel started today's weekly press briefing with the numbers... including the new cases.  He says both are females, one in her 60s the other in her 70s.  Wendel says there are now 46 confirmed positive cases... with nine active cases, while 33 have fully recovered.  He adds there have still beeen four deaths... and, 149 people are under quarantine or isolation orders.  Another 1,656 people have come back negative for COVID-19.  He says it's disappointing that Chautauqua, Cattaraugus and Allegany Counties can't reopen because all their benchmark numbers are good.  Wendel says they will continue to push the governor to allow them to reopen... and, they would like all three to be considered a "sub-region" that could be reopened.  Officials from the three counties are also looking to tie the governor's decision to join three other Western New York counties... Wyoming, Genesee and Orleans... which were able to be joined with the Finger Lakes Region.  That region, along with four others, were able to do a Phase-One reopening Friday.  **Another protest at Jamestown's Dow Park was held Saturday afternoon, pushing to have the county reopened to at least Phase-One because the county meets the governor's criteria.  More on that Monday.


Heritage nursing homes to temporarily halt new admissions next Wednesday due to increased COVID testing...
Nursing homes in Chautauqua County -- and the rest of Western New York -- are scrambling to make sure they can deal with the governor's order this week that all nursing home staff must be tested twice weekly.  The new directive takes effect next Wednesday... and, with that... Heritage Ministries will temporarily halt new admissions that day.  Heritage Chief Clinical Officer Jeremy Rutter... says there are two issues... the first is staffing.  Rutter says if they find a number of employees who test positive and are asymptomatic, they would lose those staffers for 14 days, and they need to be able to have enough staff to handle the work.  Rutter says the other issue is that of money to pay for 800 staff between their three facilities to be tested twice a week.  He says, on average, that would cost $50,000 to $75,000 a week to do.  So far... Rutter says they have been testing staff and others who have symptoms of COVID-19.  However... he says they're had no COVID cases among staff or residents. 


40th Annniversary Babe Ruth World Series in Jamestown is cancelled due to COVID outbreak...
There will be no 13-year-old Babe Ruth World Series in Jamestown this August.  Host President, Russ Diethrick, made the official announcement.  Diethrick says they are now revising plans to have the World Series in 2021.  Babe Ruth Baseball has cancelled the world series and regional tournaments for all age ranges, to keep the focus on local games once players can get back on the field.  This year's event in Jamestown would have marked the 40th anniversary of the first-ever 13-year-old World Series... held in Jamestown in 1980. 


Kennedy man arrested for allegedly possessing Child Porn...
A Kennedy man faces ten counts of promoting a sexual performance by a child... after State Police allegedly found him in possession of child pornography.  Troopers out of Jamestown say they received a cyber tipline report that an IP address later determined to be 69 year-old John Lewis... allegedly uploaded images of child porn.  Officers executed a search warrant at Lewis's residence last Saturday, where they allegedly found more photographs.  He was taken into custody and released with an appearance ticket for Poland Town Court at a later date.