Local News Headlines

WJTN News Headlines for Sept 14, 2020

A man from Falconer man was arrested last Friday night for allegedly driving drunk in a single-car accident on Salisbury Road in the town of Ellery.  Sheriff's deputies were called to the scene about 6 PM, and found no one hurt.  They also found that 26 year-old Ryder Shaffer was driving with more than two-times the legal limit of alcohol in his blood.  Shaffer was arrested and charged with aggravated driving while intoxicated, DWI, failure to stop at stop sign, second-degree unlawful possession of marihuana... and, multiple traffic violations.  He was released with appearance tickets for Ellery Town Court at a later date. 

A woman from Sheridan was arrested early last weekend after allegedly assaulting another person with a knife during a fight at a home in the north county town.  Sheriff's deputies were called to the scene on Route 20 about 2 AM Saturday... and, found the victim with a serious cut to their arm.  Officers later arrested 46 year-old Susan Snow after searching the area... and, finding the knife allegedly used hidden inside a vehicle's glove box.  Snow was taken into custody on charges of second-degree assault and second-degree menacing.  She was taken to the county jail for Centralized Arraignment Processing.  The victim was treated at the scene.

With hundreds of people in quarantine or isolation in recent weeks due to COVID-19 outbreaks at Fieldbrook Foods and the SUNY College at Fredonia... county officials are praising the volunteer efforts to help those people.  During last Friday's last weekly COVID-19 Press update... Public Health Director Christine Schuyler praised Father Luke Fodor at St. Luke's church in Jamestown for coordinating help for people who can't get out because they're infected.

Schuyler says... at this point... both outbreaks appear to be contained with mitigation work... and contact tracing.  She says there have been more than 80 students impacted at SUNY Fredonia. Schuyler says there were 82 cases of COVID related to Fieldbrook Foods in Dunkirk... with 61 of those being members of the workforce.  She adds that 57 have now completely recovered.  In addition... there were 21 close contacts who came down with the coronavirus during the outbreak... but, all 21 have now recovered.

The latest number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 grew by 17 over the past weekend... 10 of those were reported on Saturday.  That brings the county's total to 575 cases since the outbreak began in mid-March.

The Chautauqua County Board of Elections has already received a record number of nearly 7,000 absentee ballot requests for this November's General Election.  That comes with Election Day still eight weeks from tomorrow.  That from Elections Commissioners Norm Green and Brian Abram... who say no past presidential cycle has found much more than 4,000 absentees for the county.  Both commissioners expect that 70-percent of the county's voters will turnout this year.  The board is just one of five of the 62 counties statewide that prints its ballots in-house.  Those will be mailed out starting next Friday, September 18th, and every business day thereafter when a timely application is received before Election Day.  For more information, call the board at 753-4580.

The mentoring programs at Chautauqua Striders have adapted to the realities of COVID-19... while continuing to provide valuable relationships for young people.  Striders' Director of Mentoring and Advocacy, Erika Muecke says mentors can't have lunch in school like they used to, so they have found new places to meet... and are communicating more by text messages and face time.  In addition to running the program, Muecke is also a mentor... and has found increased use of technology to be a good thing.  Though she and her mentee can't have lunch, they are meeting more frequently via phone or apps.  Muecke adds Chautauqua Striders is always looking for new mentors.  Information is available at their website, or by phoning 489-3487. 

Dunkirk city officials say it appears repair work on the lake wall along Lakefront Boulevard could be underway soon.  That from Mayor Willie Rosas, who says Federal Emergency Management Administration officials have now agreed to the scope of work outlined by the city.  Late last week... Rosas said, all that's needed now, is final approval from FEMA. Rosas says the lake wall was heavily damaged by a storm that hit Western New York last Halloween.  The city of Dunkirk received help in its quest for funding from federal and state representatives who toured the wall earlier this summer.

As many as 2-million unemployed New Yorkers are set to automatically receive their share of an extra $300 weekly assistance boost -- starting this week -- under a federal program that's running out of money.  State labor commissioner Roberta Reardon said Thursday that another 435-thousand people are eligible for the boost but must first submit additional certification so they can receive it.  But the temporary $300-a-week boost implemented by President Donald Trump is about to end, with no extension in sight.  It's unclear how exactly the fund running out of money will impact unemployed New Yorkers.

The Jamestown Public Works Department will be closing a portion of South Main Street for most of the day this coming Wednesday for paving work.  That from Public Works Director Jeff Lehman... who says the closure will begin at 5 AM that day... but, reopen late that afternoon.  Lehman says motorists should use alternate routes and expect delays.  On Thursday, September 17th, motorists should expect delays while the Traffic Department puts striping down.  For more information... call the Public Works Office at 483-7545.