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WJTN News Headlines for Thurs., July 28, 2022

County Legislature approves plan to keep 19 legislative districts for next 10 years...
There will continue to be 19 Chautauqua County Legislature districts after lawmakers voted resoundingly in favor of that plan last night in Mayville.  The final vote was 14-3 along party lines.  A plan to reduce the number to 17 failed, 3-14.  Former Legislator Larry Wilcox of Cassadaga was a member of the bi-partisan redistricting panel... and, says -- if the 17 member plan was adopted -- the county could be sued because it "dilutes the minority vote in this county."  Wilcox later said the 17 district proposal also divided more towns into separate districts.  However... Mary Croxton with the Chautauqua County League of Women Voters noted that the county lost more than one district between 2010 and 2020... 7,248 people.  She adds future population trends aren't good either... with adults over the age of 18 has decreased by 4% the past 10 years, while the number under the age 18 and under has declined 10.5%.  However... Sheridan Legislator Terry Neibel says... while the county has lost 10.5% of it's population the past 10 years... the legislature is 24% smaller than after the 2010 Census.  The legislature also voted later against putting the matter up for a public referendum in another 14-3 vote.  


Legislature welcomes Gustafson as new District 10 lawmaker...
There's a new member of the County Legislature... as the appointment of Lakewood's Jamie Gustafson was approved unanimously last night.  Gustafson was born and raised in Jamestown... but, has lived in Lakewood with her family the past 30 years.  She spoke to lawmakers briefly after the vote, and thanked them.  Gustafson says she wants to bring her background of 32 years with M-&-T Bank to the panel, where she works with most of the businesses in the county.  She also is Vice-President of the local Creche organization that works with needy children.  Gustafson replaces Ken Lawton... who resigned earlier in the month after moving out of the area.  Lawton was finishing up his first term as District 10 legislator. 


Randolph man pleads guilty to child porn charges...
A Randolph man has pleaded guilty to producing child pornography with an 11-year-old girl two years ago.  U.S. Attorney Trini Ross says 29 year-old Alexander Carnahan entered the plea before U.S. District Court Judge John Sinatra, Jr. to two counts of production of child pornography.  Prosecutors say Carnahan removed the girl's clothing and took a video of the victim naked in early 2020.  They say he did so because he was sexually attracted to the girl.  During the investigation... law enforcement says they recovered additional images and videos of the girl in video files belonging to Carnahan.  He faces a mandatory minimum of 15 years in prison, a maximum of 30, and a $250,000 fine when he is sentenced next November.


Long-time Media One, James Broadcasting GM Merrill Rosen passes away at 82...
We are saddened to report the passing of the retired, long-time General Manager here at Media One Radio... and it's predecessor... James Broadcasting.  Merrill Rosen, 82, of Jamestown, passed away unexpectedly early this past Monday morning.  He was the husband of Patty Trusso Rosen.  Prior to retirement... Merrill was the vice-president of James Broadcasting, Trend Broadcasting, and Media One Group, consisting of WJTN, WWSE, WHUG and WKSN radio stations, where he served the broadcasting community for 52 years.  He had also been a member of the of the Temple Hesed Abraham, the Jamestown Area Jaycees, Jamestown Sertoma Club, Mt. Moriah Lodge 145 Free and Accepted Mason, the Jamestown Shrine Club, and the National Broadcasting Association.  A private service will be held at the convenience of the family.  Visitation will not be observed.  The Lind Funeral Home is handling arrangements for Merrill Rosen.


Comedy Center cuts ribbon on new Carl Reiner Exhibit...
The Lucille Ball Comedy Festival begins in Jamestown a week from yesterday... and, those attending will have a brand next exhibit to enjoy at the National Comedy Center.  The adult children of the late Carl Reiner were on hand to officially cut the ribbon on the comedy center's new Carl Reiner exhibit.  Before he died a couple of years ago... Reiner turned over 75 boxes of artifacts, props and other items to be archived at the center.  Center Executive Director Journey Gunderson expressed their appreciation, and thanks to the family.  The most well-known of Reiner's three children... Comedian and Actor Rob Reiner... talked about he and sister Annie watching him on "Show of Shows" on Saturday nights when they were little kids.  Reiner says they were allowed to watch... and, their father worked out a way to say good night to them... straightening his tie, which meant "I love you... now go to bed!"  Rob Reiner was joined by his sister, Anne... and, younger brother Lucas for the ribbon cutting.  Carl Reiner was a strong supporter of the National Comedy Center in it's early days... serving as a member of the center's Board of Directors. 


Gov. Hochul announces lithium-ion battery maker coming to Jamestown-area... 
The city of Jamestown will be welcoming a portable lithium-ion battery manufacturer... using an additional 1.5-megawatt hydropower allocation from the New York Power Authority.  The announcement was made late Tuesday by Governor Kathy Hochul... who announced that the Power Authority's board approved economic development awards to 23 companies that will support more than 3,700 jobs... with more than 1,000 newly created... to spur significant capital investments.  The NYPA allocation to Jamestown will support Electrovaya, a developer and maker of lithium-ion batteries... which is planning a 135,000 square-foot expansion project in Jamestown to operate cell manufacturing, and battery module assembly equipment.