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WJTN News Headlines for Jan. 8, 2021

There's now been a 40th COVID-19 related death in Chautauqua County after one was reported from Wednesday.  The county's Health Department also reports there are 62 new cases being reported yesterday... bringing the local total to 4,371.  Officials say the most cases -- 20 -- were reported in Dunkirk... while 8 were added in Brocton.  Health officials say 645 cases are currently active... and, 43 of those are how hospitalized.  They add that 3,686 cases have now recovered.

There are seven new deaths to report in neighboring Cattaraugus County... bringing that county's total to 60 during the pandemic.  Health officials in Olean say there were 77 new cases reported on Thursday... bringing the total there to 2,888.  Officials say there are current 588 active cases... and, 38 of those are hospitalized.  They add that 2,270 have now recovered.

Wednesday afternoon's storming of the U-S Capitol building in Washington, D-C was "an assault on our Democracy."  Those are the feelings of local Congressman Tom Reed... who delivered a fiery speech on the floor of the House of Representatives last night to certify the Electoral College victory for Democrat Joe Biden.  Reed drew applause from both sides when he said mob rule can never be allowed in America.

Reed got emotional when he said the mob spit upon the blood of my father... that is in the soil of Europe and Korea."  He stood on both sides of the aisle in the House during his speech.  He says he will continue to fight for Republican ideals... but, says it will happen with a new, Democratic president... and, there will be a peaceful transition of power.  Reed joined with his co-chairman of the bi-partisan Problem Solver's Caucus, Democrat Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey... in denouncing the violence seen in Washington, DC yesterday... as thousands of pro-Trump supporters and others... stormed the Capitol building.

There was little question among members of Congress and the Senate that they should further delay the certification of the presidential election after that angry mob stormed the Capitol.  Local Congressman Tom Reed held a press briefing yesterday afternoon... and, described those moments when the capitol building was locked-down.  First, though, Reed expressed his appreciation to fellow lawmakers doing their jobs, and the words later of President-Elect Biden... and, President Trump.

When pro-Trump supporters rushed the Capitol... Reed says he had just finished speaking on the floor, and was in his office across the street when the incident occured.  He says he and some colleagues spoke by phone, and said they need to get back to business once the building had been secured.  Reed stopped short of criticizing those Republicans who still insisted on objecting to the certification of a handful of states.  However... while he didn't name them... he says some admitted that they had "political motives."  Reed says that needs to stop.

The governor of New York has done an about-face and now embraces mobile sports betting as a way to deal with financial losses stemming from the coronavirus pandemic.  Democrat Andrew Cuomo's announcement came as a company that tracks gambling legislation, and performance predicted that revenue from legal sports betting could reach $3.1-billion in 2021 and as much as $10-billion within five years.  Cuomo says, though, they would not have casinos administering the program.

VIXIO GamblingCompliance projects that at least six and as many as 14 additional states will legalize or expand sports betting in 2021.  Cuomo is also calling for the legalization and regulation of marijuana for recreational use by adults, his third attempt in as many years to get the drug fully legalized in the state.  He says he will announce his new proposals during his State of the State Address next Monday.

Two hunters -- one from Falconer -- have been arrested for allegedly "jacklighting" a deer at night last month in the town of Poland.  Ellicott Town Police say they helped state Department of Environmental Conservation officers with the incident... which occured on Sprague Hill Road about 9 PM on December 12th.  Investigators say they found that one of the two men shot a deer -- using a spotlight -- on posted property, and with a rifle equipped with a silencer.  Officers say they found that the rifle and silencer were provided by the other man, who was also at the scene when the deer was shot.  Police say 22 year-old Anthony Genco... and, 22 year-old Calvin Nowicki of Erie, Pennsylvania were ticketed for illegally taking a deer with a light... discharging a firearm from a roadway... using a silencer and trespassing.  A land owner reported blood and drag marks in the snow on his property shortly after the incident.