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WJTN News Headlines for Fri., July 29, 2022

Ellery man arrested for trying to set house on fire late Thursday night...
An Ellery man is accused of trying to set fire to a home in the town during a reported argument and fight late last night.  Sheriff's officers say the 911 center received a hang-up call from the residence about 11:30 p.m.  Deputies investigated once they arrived... and learned that 40 year-old Dan Lutgen did try to burn down the home while other persons were there.  Lutgen was arrested for second-degree attempted arson... and, second-degree reckless endangerment.


EF-2 tornado reported in Wyoming County Thursday morning...
There was a brief, heavy rainshower yesterday morning in the Jamestown area... but, there was much more severe weather to our north and east in Wyoming County.  The National Weather Service in Buffalo says a tornado packing winds of about 115 mph touched down in the town of Java... about 25 to 30 miles southwest of Buffalo.  The 200-yard-wide twister then moved eastward for about 10 miles before dying out 15 minutes later.  The winds knocked down trees and power lines and sent some trees on to homes.  The weather service says one barn suffered extensive damage, with a portion displaced by about 30 yards.  Photos posted online showed a barn with most of its upper portion gone and the rest barely standing.


Geise cites two big reasons for new Ghostfish Brewing coming to Chautauqua County... 
A local connection... and, the need for an East Coast presence... has led a Seattle-based company to decide to locate a new craft brewery in Chautauqua County.  The county's Industrial Development Agency board this week approved AL Tech Revolving Loan Fund loans for Ghostfish Brewing Company to provide money, and equipment purchases for a new brewery and distribution center in the town of Westfield.  IDA Chief Executive Officer Mark Geise says it will occupy 51-hundred square feet of existing space at the Grape Discovery Center on Rt. 20.  Geise says one of the principles in the business is from Westfield, and he says they really like the Grape Discovery Center space... and, the proximity to I-90 is ideal.  He says Ghostfish Brewing is the largest dedicated 'gluten-free' brewery in the country.  He says they will use the new location to satisfy the steadily increasing demand for its products here in the east.  In fact... Geise says Ghostfish's second biggest consumer area is Massachusetts. 


County Legislature approves Makowski as new HR Director...
Chautauqua County government will have a new Human Resources Director... beginning early next month.  The county legislature Wednesday night unanimously approved the appointment of Cherry Creek's Debbie Makowski... who will begin her duties on Aug. 8... and, will fill the remainder of former director Jean Riley's term.  Riley resigned in early April.  Legislature Minority Leader Bob Bankowski says the bi-partisan search committee he was part of felt Makowski was the best candidate for the job, and he's glad to have her on board.  Makowski introduced herself briefly to lawmakers following the vote.  She says she brings 25 years of experience to the post... most recently as Executive HR Director at Warren General Hospital.  She's lived in Cherry Creek for the past 13 years... and, is ready to get started.  Prior to working at Warren General Hospital... she was a Human Resources Business Partner at Wells Enterprises in Dunkirk.


Falconer man arrested for allegedly trespassing and stealing trailer from Tow Company... 
A Falconer man has been arrested for allegedly breaking into a Stockton tow company... and, taking a trailer and damaging a vehicle before driving off.  State Police in Jamestown say 30 year-old Blaydon Niles is charged with third-degree criminal mischief... and third-degree criminal trespass.  Troopers say they received a complaint from the unidentified company July 22... and, Ellicott town Police later stopped Niles on County Rt. 380 in Falconer.  Niles was issued tickets by Ellicott Town Police... and, then arrested by troopers.  He was issued appearance tickets for Stockton Town Court.


Gov. Wolfe suing Pa. state legislature over proposed amendments...
Pennsylvania's Democratic governor is suing the state legislature over a package of proposed constitutional amendments that Republican lawmakers are pursuing... including one that would say the state constitution does not guarantee any rights relating to abortion or public funding of abortions.  The lawsuit filed Thursday in the state Supreme Court argues that the proposed abortion amendment would violate privacy protections.  Governor Tom Wolf wants the high court to throw out the amendments, declaring that they are not constitutionally valid.  He also says bundling the abortion amendment together with four others runs afoul of a constitutional rule against passing legislation that addresses multiple, unrelated topics.


United Way announces 2022 Campaign co-chairs...
With the start to the general campaign just under a month away... the United Way of southern Chautauqua County has announced three co-chairs for this year's campaign.  The United Way says they are Denise Heppeler, Danielle Stone, and Heather Turner.  Heppeler is a retired speech pathologist and special education chairperson from Jamestown Public Schools.  She is currently employed by the Jamestown schools as Preschool Enrollment Coordinator.  Heather Turner is the Owner of Blackstone Advanced Technologies & Ulrich Fabrication... and, current serves on the Northwest Ice Arena board of directors, and the board for the United Way.  Danielle Stone is currently the Service Area Manager at Wegmans in Jamestown, and, created the Striders/Wegmans work program that has been employing students from the Striders Jamestown High School Program for the last 5 years.