A large number of the inmates in the Chautauqua County Jail are repeat offenders... who are "cycling" through the system. The county's top-law enforcement official believes if there were good "Alternatives to Incarceration" programs in place... he could significantly reduce the current jail population. Sheriff Joe Gerace says the jail is again having an overcrowing problem... due mainly to an increase in local prisoners... and, parole and probation violators. That's why he wants to meet with county lawmakers and representatives from Chautauqua Opportunities, Incorporated... The Resource Center... and, other non-profit agencies. Gerace says local judges need a viable option if they're going to release a repeat offender who has not committed a serious, Felony crime. He says the jail can currently hold 303 prisoners at the most... and, they are now having to board out some to other counties. Gerace says that's because they need so much space for female... and, youthful offenders. He says the county should receive enough revenue from housing some federal inmates to help offset the cost of the jail. He made his comments for last weekend's "Community Spotlight" program.
A city man escaped injury... but, is accused of driving drunk after he swerved to miss a deer early last weekend... and, his car crashed in the town of Kiantone. Sheriff's Deputies say 42 year-old Christopher Conti of Jamestown was southbound on Peck-Settlement Road about 12:30 Saturday morning when he swerved to miss the deer... and, struck an earth embankment. Officers say further investigation determined that Conti had been operating the motor vehicle while intoxicated. He was issued traffic tickets for driving while intoxicated and other charges... and, released... pending a future court appearance.
A Westfield man is jailed on 20-thousand dollars bail following his arrest for allegedly being involved in a recent burglary in the town of Ripley. A Sheriff's Department K-9 unit and Westfield Police say they conducted a warrant check at 7816 North Portage Street in Westfield late last Friday night. Deputies say they found 29 year-old Jonathan Paddock-the-second inside the home. Officers say Paddock was wanted for third-degree Burglary... and, Grand Larceny in Ripley. Paddock was arraigned in Ripley Town Court... and, sent to the county lock-up pending further court action.
Chautauqua County Democrats are getting excited about President Obama's visit to Western New York next week. County Democratic Party Chairman Norm Green says there's been a lot of talk about Obama's visit to Buffalo next Thursday. Obama will appear at the University of Buffalo... but, Green adds there haven't been a lot of details released. Obama, who last visited the Buffalo area in 2010, is expected to focus on education. Green says Western New York still plays an important role for Democrats. He says Western New York will vote Democratic if you "give them the right candidate... and, the right set of circumstances." Green says the area is more aligned with midwestern thinking as opposed to East Coast. President Obama is expected to take a two day bus trip that will begin in Buffalo and include stops in Syracuse, Binghamton... and, later in Scanton in northeastern Pennsylvania.
State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli is reporting that state tax receipts for the first for months of the 2013-2014 fiscal year are 13.3-percent higher than they were last year. DiNapoli says most of the growth came in April from strong personal income tax receipts. However, he says the slow pace of economic growth ``calls for continued caution.'' Personal income taxes are up almost 18 percent.
State auditors say nursing homes were overpaid 46-million dollars from Medicaid while the state-run program overpaid 31-million dollars for hospital care for patients who died within 24 hours after they were admitted. The audits fault the New York State Department of Health computer system for failing to deduct a portion of patients' Social Security, pensions and other income sources from their cost of nursing home care. They also found fault with a new payment calculation intended to be fairer to hospitals.
Gas prices in the Jamestown-area have gone up... but, by just a fraction of a penny over the past week. The Triple-A's Fuel Gauge Report says the price for regular, unleaded is now just under 3-dollars-80 cents a gallon. Nationally... the Triple-A says the price is down seven-cents to 3-dollars-54 cents per gallon. Officials say motorists in all but four states are paying less at the pump than one week ago. These declines have been most dramatic in the Midwest where retail prices have tumbled by a dime or more in six states. The largest is an 18-cent drop in Indiana.
The first of numerous civil claims filed against Penn State amid the Jerry Sandusky sexual abuse scandal has been settled. Tom Kline, a lawyer for a young man known as ``Victim 5,'' who testified at Sandusky's criminal trial, says his client is relieved. The Philadelphia Inquirer, which first reported the settlement, said it amounted to several million dollars. The paper said settlements are expected soon in 25 more claims over the actions of the former assistant football coach. The university declined to comment. Michael Rozen, a lawyer representing Penn State, told the paper that Victim 5's complaint was among the more serious because the abuse occurred months after school officials were told of San