WJTN News Headlines

Three people accused of trafficking heroin on Jamestown's eastside have been arrested following a raid early last weekend.  City police say they... along with members of the JPD SWAT Team... executed a search warrant at an apartment at 218 East Second Street early Friday night.  Officers say inside they arrested 22 year-old Juan Aponte-Sierra... 18 year-old Christian Marquez-Sierra... and, 17 year-old Josh Figueroa.  Police add they seized a large quantity of heroin... and, cash.  They also found a shotgun and ammunition for the weapon.  Officers say all three were arraigned in city court on one count each of Felony criminal posession of a controlled substance... and one count of criminal using drug paraphernalia.  They were sent to the county jail without bail.  More charges are pending.  Anyone with information on the sales of illegal narcotics is asked to contact the JPD Anonymous Tip-Line at 483-TIPS... that's 483-8477.


A town of Busti man is jailed without bail for allegedly being being found in possession of heroin... and, two hypodermic needles after his car was pulled over Jamestown's southside last Saturday night.  City police say they stopped 32 year-old Stephen Bush, Junior for an apparent traffic infraction on Forest Avenue -- near Lee Avenue -- about 6 PM.  Officers say that during the course of the investigation... they found a quantity of heroin... which Bush allegedly tried to eat... and, the two needles.  Police stopped Bush... and, he was arraigned on charges including Felony criminal possession of a controlled substance... possession of a hypodermic instrument... and, tampering with evidence.  Bush was then sent to the county lock-up.


A Winter Storm left about 2 to 3 inches of new snow in the Jamestown-area this past weekend... but, only little more is expected early this week.  On the other hand... frigid temperatures will be back with us the next couple of nights.  There'll be a little more snow today... but, temperatures will drop to near zero tonight... and, zero to 5-below tomorrow night.  Forecaster Tom Paone with the National Weather Service in Buffalo says these temperatures are not unusual for this time of year. Many local residents have said it seems to have been colder for longer periods of time this Winter than usual... but, Paone says -- for the most part -- we've been close to average this year. Temperatures yesterday climbed up to about 20 to 22 degrees... and, after our two nights of frigid air... we'll begin to see a slight warm-up around Wednesday and Thursday.


Governor Andrew Cuomo has assembled a panel of lawmakers, parents, educators and business leaders to look into New York's rollout of the Common Core Learning Standards.  Cuomo announced plans for the panel last month and wants recommendations by the end of the legislative session.  The Common Core has been adopted by all but a handful of states as a uniform set of kindergarten-through-graduation benchmarks.  But... critics say New York rushed the rollout and now shouldn't punish teachers if students do poorly on Common Core-aligned assessments.  Others question whether the standards will really elevate student achievement.  The panel announced Friday is chaired by Stanley Litow, president of the IBM International Foundation.  A separate Board of Regents panel is expected to make its own recommendations Monday.


There is real concern that if the Chautauqua County Legislature doesn't accept the latest agreement to sell the County Home that future offers will continually go down.  That from County Executive Vince Horrigan... who says the subject came up during this past week's state Association of Counties Winter Conference in Albany.  Horrigan says the county's already seen that with the latest offer from VestraCare of Long Island.  The company dropped it's offer from last September to 16-million dollars.  Horrigan says... in talking with the county's broker -- Marcus and Millichap -- they've found it's currently a "buyer's market...." Unlike opponents of the potential sale of the County Home feel... Horrigan says he's the "gatekeeper" on any deal involving it's sale.  He has to not only try to get the best "dollar deal..." but, one that's best for the people living at the Dunkirk facility... and, those who take care of them. Horrigan says he also believes it's a good deal because... even county legislators who will vote against the sale say they are impressed by VestraCare and it's operation.  He made his comments for this weekend's "Community Spotlight" Program.


The insurer with the most initial clients from New York's health exchange says it's taking steps to fill coverage gaps.  The exchange has helped process enrollments by more than 380,000 New Yorkers with 16 commercial and non-profit insurers and Medicaid.  Empire BlueCross/BlueShield says its nearly 30,000 new clients who enrolled by December 24th... and, who paid an initial premium by January 31st are considered covered since January 1st.  The insurer says it's also posting temporary insurance cards online that can be printed by clients who paid but didn't yet get regular cards.  State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman faulted Empire in a January 14th letter.  He said some patients who lacked proof of coverage may have skipped medical care.