Chautauqua County officially has a new executive. County Court Judge John Ward administered the Oath of Office in Mayville yesterday to Bemus Point Republican Vince Horrigan before dozens of supporters and friends. Now that he's County Executive... Horrigan announced the theme of his administration will be "Working Together to Grow Chautauqua County." He says he came up with that after talking with previous executives Jack Glenzer, Andy Goodell, Mark Thomas, and Greg Edwards. Horrigan then recalled a note Edwards left for him on his desk.
Horrigan was upbeat as he addressed the people on hand at the County Courthouse... saying there a number of "neat things" underway that need to be seen through to fruition. He says that doesn't mean there won't be challenges, though. Horrigan says his theme came out of meetings with his transition team that was formed shortly after his election last November. In addition to Horrigan... new County Clerk Larry Barmore and incumbant District Attorney David Foley were also sworn-in during Wednesday's inauguation.
In addition to the three county-wide officials... 11 members of the new Chautauqua County Legislature were sworn-in yesterday by Surrogate Court Judge Stephen Cass. Former Ellicott Town Board member Lisa Vanstrom is among the newcomers to the new, 19 member county legislature. The legislature was down-sized prior to last November's election. Both the Republican and Democratic leadership have met... and, incumbant Jay Gould of Ashville has been voted in as chairman again this year. State Assemblyman Andy Goodell and State Senator Cathy Young addressed lawmakers after they took their oath of office... and, Goodell gave them three words of advice from Ghandi. Be "truthful... courageous... and, gentle." Goodell also urged lawmakers to remember the last few words of their oath... "so help me God...." Goodell first congratulated each lawmaker on their election or re-election... and, told them they have an "awesome responsibility." Senator Young also congratulated each... calling the ceremony a "joyous celebration." The county legislature will hold it's annual re-organizational meeting this afternoon in Mayville beginning at 4 PM in the Legislature Chambers.
While in Chautauqua County yesterday... Senator Young hosted an event at her Jamestown office to honor a retired World War-Two veteran for being received into the French National Order of the Legion of Honor. The honor went to U-S Army PFC Basil Spitale... recognizing his "outstanding" record of military service during the war... especially his contributions to the liberation of France in 1944-45. Young presented Private Spitale with the official medal of France's National Order of the Legion of Honor. The Olean Republican says the National Order of the Legion of Honor is the highest decoration in France. Appointment to the Order is awarded by the President of France for excellent civil or military conduct, as confirmed after official investigation by the French government. Spitale served with the U-S Army from January of 1943 to January 1946 with the 7th Infantry Regiment of the 3rd Infantry Division. After the war... Spitale returned to Jamestown, where he and his wife of 71 years, Ann, later raised their three sons.
Dunkirk police have identified a suspect in their investigation into a shooting incident early New Year's Day in the 400-block of Swan Street. Officers say 24 year old Traiquane Nance of Dunkirk has been identified as the shooter. North county city police were called to the scene about 4 AM... and found a male victim with a single gunshot wound to the hip. Police say the unidentified victim was treated at the scene... and, taken to Brooks Hospital for treatment of a "non-life threatening" wound. Police are asking for the public's help in locating the shooter... and, how the incident began. Officers say Nance should be considered Armed and Dangerous and anyone who sees him or knows of his whereabouts is encouraged to call Dunkirk Police at 366-2266... or their confidential tip-line at 363-0313.
A pair of winter storms are heading for New York state... and, Governor Andrew Cuomo is urging downstate commuters to leave their cars home in case major highways are closed for Thursday's evening rush hours. During a Wednesday conference call... Cuomo told reporters a storm system approaching from the west could drop a foot of snow on upstate New York -- while a coastal storm may bring heavy snow to New York City and blizzard conditions to Long Island. Cuomo said ``mass transportation is a prudent option, given that highways may be closed.'' As the snow tapers off early Friday, Cuomo said brutal cold may complicate cleanup efforts. The National Weather Service says wind-chill temperatures may dip to 30 degrees below zero in northern New York.
Looking back at some of the top stories of 2013: Gerry Republican Larry Barmore defeated Jamestown Democrat Lori Cornell by more than 2-thousand votes to take the open, County Clerk's post. Barmore was the County Legislature's Majority Leader. He took some time to thank the people that helped get him elected. Democrat Lori Cornell conceded to Barmore... adding that she tried her best, and thanked her supporters. She also said Barmore will do a "fine job." Barmore replaces retiring five-term County Clerk Sandy Sopak.