Local News Headlines

Chautauqua County is quickly closing in on 200 confirmed cases of COVID-19... with nine more being added over the past day.  That from Interim County Executive P-J Wendel... who says that brings the total to 188 cases.  Wendel says they include two people under the age of 18... three people in their 20s... a man in his 30s... a woman in her 40s... a woman in her 50s... and, a man in his 60s.  He says there are now 138 people who have recovered... and, there are now 609 cases under quarantine or isolation orders.  Wendel adds there are now 18,373 negative test results to date.

The shut-down caused by the COVID-19 pandemic is causing budget problems for the city of Jamestown over the first-half of the year... especially on the revenue side.  That from City Comptroller Ryan Thompson... who outlined the issues during last (Monday) night's City Council Work Session.  Thompson says payment-in-lieu-of-tax payments from the Board of Public Utilities are down about 5-percent compared to 2019 at the same time -- or about $100,000.

Thompson adds that second-quarter sales tax revenues will also be down significantly... nearly 13.5-percent.  He says that will put the city about 2.5-percent behind last year at mid-year.  Thompson says their Consolidated Highway Improvement Program... or CHIPS funding... is being cut by 20-percent.  He says they are still awaiting word on General Municipal Aid from the state.  On the expense side... Thompson says the only significant increase was overtime in the fire department, which was up 61-percent due to some added calls.  

Four more states have been added to Governor Cuomo's travel advisory requiring people who have traveled to New York from those states to quarantine for 14 days.  Cuomo says all those states have seen "significant community spread" of COVID-19... and, include Ohio, Minnesota, New Mexico and Wisconsin.  The quarantine applies to anyone arriving from a state with a positive test rate higher than 10 per 100,000 residents over a seven-day rolling average... or a state with a 10-percent or higher positivity rate over a seven-day rolling average.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is facing blistering criticism over a report that found no strong link between a controversial state directive that sent thousands of recovering coronavirus patients into nursing homes... and, some of the nation's deadliest nursing home outbreaks.  Scientists, health care professionals and elected officials assailed the report released last week for failing to address the actual impact of the March 25th order.  Some have accused the state of using the study to absolve Cuomo by reaching the same conclusion he floated for weeks - that infected nursing home employees were the real drivers of the outbreaks. 

Jamestown Public School officials are reviewing the use of 'Red Raiders' as the high school school’s nickname following nationwide calls to remove racist symbols from daily life. JPS Superintendent Kevin Whitaker says the district has formed a committee comprised of students, faculty, coaches and community members to hear feedback on both sides of the conversation. Dr. Whitaker says it's also important to received feedback from Native Americans in our area and he's reached out to Seneca Nation President Rickey Armstrong-senior, to have that conversation. In the meantime, the Superintendent says the committee is currently in the information-gathering phase. 

Whitaker says the committee will look at what 'Red Raiders' means and if the name and logo can be kept... modified... or changed entirely. He adds that this is not an issue that can be fixed overnight, which is why they hope to utilize the committee format to make sure all feel heard in the process. 

A Jamestown man has been arrested after allegedly being found with quantities of methamphetamine and Fentanyl in his possession while on parole.  City police were called to assist State Parole officials in finding 34 year-old Richard Philbrick about 8 PM Monday night... and, located him at a home on McDaniel Avenue.  Officers say the found Philbrick with the drugs, and supplies for packaging and distributing drugs.  He is charged with two counts of seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance... and one of criminally using drug paraphernalia.  Philbrick was taken to the city jail pending arraignment. 

The city of Jamestown is announcing that part of the Riverwalk will be temporarily closed for construction work between North Main Street and Panzarella Island.  The city's Parks, Recreation & Conservation Department says the project will begin today  and, affect both the north and south sides of the Riverwalk.  Public Works Director Jeff Lehman says there are a number of improvements being made.  Lehman says the projects include the state DEC's rehabilitation of the Warner Dam Rehabilitation over the next several months... and, the ongoing Riverwalk Green Infrastructure and Water Quality Improvements project.