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WJTN News Headlines for Jan 12, 2020

Local Congressman Tom Reed is pushing for alternatives to impeachment, as talk continues to swirl around the nation's capitol about what to do in the wake of last week's riots in Washington.  In an op-ed in the New York Times... Reed calls on congressional leaders and President-elect Biden to "take a moment to consider what is at stake.  Work with us on constitutionally viable alternatives to ensure that no individual is above the law."  Reed says such options include censure, criminal proceedings, and actions under the 14th Amendment, after a complete and thorough investigation into the events leading up to the assault on the Capitol."  He says he and others in the House plan to introduce a censure resolution today to ensure accountability.

Governor Andrew Cuomo says the state will vaccinate millions, and jumpstart its flagging economy in 2021 Monday as part of his annual State of the State Address.  Cuomo spoke to a mainly 'on-line' audience from the capitol's "War Room..." and, says the state of the state is much like the nation and world.

Cuomo spoke mainly in generalities... noting that more details will be provided during the week.  It comes as the state tries to balance re-opening its economy with ending with a pandemic whose death toll is nearing 40,000 people.  He also -- again -- made the case for local and state aid... adding that the state cannot raise the $15-billion to eliminate that deficit.

During the address... Cuomo outlined a seven-point plan... led by beating COVID-19.  He says that includes improving New York's health care delivery system and medical equipment production through legislation.  Today... Cuomo said he's ordered the expansion of places to get the COVID Vaccine.

While Governor Andrew Cuomo's State of the State message on Monday addressed a number of challenges facing New York State, a state lawmaker from the area feels more focus belongs on what he calls the state's culture of overspending.  State Senator George says the federal government has a role to play when it comes to assisting the state with a $15-billion deficit, but he adds that the state must reduce spending. Borrello says he is glad to hear the Governor say that the state cannot afford another state-wide shutdown, but the Sunset Bay Republican says the damage caused by the state's spring shutdown was "catastrophic" and will take years to recover from.

Last weeks series of community stakeholder meetings on potential police reforms in the city of Jamestown was "very successful."  Those are the feelings of two City Council members who were involved in setting up, and taking part in the sessions.  Vickye James was one of the lawmakers involved in some of the sessions... and, said during last night's work session that some of those involved want to keep meeting.

James adds that she feels the city is in a "good place" to move reform forward.  The other council member involved... Tamu Graham-Reinhardt... was also pleased with how the meetings went, and, discussed the next steps.  She says a final plan now needs to be drafted... and that starts a 30-day comment period on it.  Jamestown Police need to finalize a plan for how police should deal with the community on a number of issues raised during the stakeholder meetings... and, submit those to the state by April 1st.  

Chautauqua County officials are reporting 376 new cases of the COVID-19 Virus since last Friday... and four new deaths.  The county's Health Department says that brings the total number of deaths to 44, and, 5,010 cases since the pandemic began.  County officials say the most cases the past three-days were reported in Dunkirk, which had 95... and, there were 87 in Jamestown.  County Executive P-J Wendel says one of the deaths was a person in their 70s... and, the other three were in their 80s.  He adds there are currently 715 active cases, and 42 people are in the hospital.  Wendel says 4,251 cases have now recovered.

In Cattaraugus County... officials reported 50 new cases yesterday... and the total number of cases is now 3,073.  Leaders say there are 451 active cases, and 41 of those are hospitalized.  The county says 61 people have now died from COVID-19 related illness... and, 2,561 have now recovered.