WJTN News Headlines

Two familiar names won seats on the Mayville Village Board in Tuesday's village elections in Chautauqua County.  Republican Tim Jacobson won one seat...getting the most votes with 115... while the other seat was won by Rick Syper with 111 votes.  Syper had both the GOP and Democrat endorsements.  Democrat James Mayer was third.  Also in Mayville... residents decided to move their elections to the Fall by an overwhelming margin of 135-to-27.  Mayor Marty Bova was unopposed.


Also Tuesday... a long-time Cherry Creek village official, Republican Betty Milspaw won election to the board with 40 votes.  She gets one seat.  The other seat was a close contest between Democrat Michael Seivert, who had 33 votes... while Republican George Hodges, Junior received 32 votes.


In Westfield... Mike Catalano and Dave Brooker won the two seats in the contested trustees race... with Rick Raynor third.


In Forestville... voters decided to move their village elections to the Fall's General Election, 58-to-27.


Chautauqua County's representative in the state Senate says she voted against the proposed Dream Act because that's what her constituents wanted her to do.  Olean Republican Cathy Young was among the 29 members of the panel who voted against the measure... killing the bill for now.  Only 30 voted for the bill... which would have opened up the state's Tuition Assistant Program to students in the country illegally.  Thirty-two "yes" votes were needed for passage.  Young says many constituents were "outraged" that their tax dollars could be used for that when so many can't afford a college education right now.  She adds most aren't even qualified for TAP. Young says two Democrats joined the GOP in rejecting the bill.  The Assembly passed the Dream Act last month... and, included it in it's budget resolutions last week.  Governor Cuomo had also voiced his support for the measure.  The proposal would use more money to open up TAP for students at both public and private colleges.


The brutal Winter cold is at least being partially blamed for a 1.1-percent increase in Chautauqua County's jobless rate in January.  State Labor Department Analyst John Slenker says the unemployment rate jumped from 7.2-percent in December... to 8.3-percent in January.  However... Slenker says there were "normal" seasonal factors involved.  He says both the number of people working... and, the number who were employed... were down.  Slenker says some sectors were up... and, some others were down. Slenker says the frigid temperatures... especially in early January... were the major reason construction ended up being down 300 jobs for the month.  He adds it also kept people indoors... and, not out shopping.  At the same time... he says a lot of what happened in January -- normally happens. Slenker says the good news is the January 2014 jobless rate was one-and-half percent lower than that in January of last year... when it was 9.8-percent.  He says... hopefully... this is an indication of better economic news later in the year.


Chautauqua County's top prosecutor says he's satisfied with the sentence given to a Dunkirk man who admitted to pulling the trigger in the fatal shooting of a Fredonia man.  District Attorney David Foley says 46 year-old Theodore Wickham pled to second-degree manslaughter last month in connection with the death of 73 year-old Frank Slate in September of 2012.  Foley had asked for a 3 to 9 year sentence... but, ultimately agreed to a 1 to 9 year term handed up Monday in County Court. Foley says Wickham and his co-defendant, 28 year-old Christopher Grant, were at Slate's apartment when an argument broke out... and, Wickham shot Slate with the victim's 16-gauge shotgun.  However... Wickham said he only intended to shot toward Slate to scare him.  Foley says that will be considered when it comes to how long Wickham actually spends behind bars.  Grant received 20 to 60 months as a sentence for his role in the crime because he did not shoot Slate... and, he cooperated with the prosecution in the case.


New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman  and attorneys general from 27 other states and U.S. territories have written to the chief executives of major U.S. pharmacy chains urging them to stop selling cigarettes and other tobacco products.   Following the decision by CVS Caremark to stop selling tobacco in its stores... the chains Wal-Mart, Walgreens, Rite-Aid, Safeway and Kroger are being asked to follow suit.


The Jamestown School Board will hold a special session tonight in the superintendent's Conference Room at Jefferson Middle School on Martin Road this afternoon.  School Spokeswoman Cathy Panebianco says the session begins at 5 PM.  She says it's being held to act on a few items board members couldn't vote on last week due to lack of a quorum.  Among the items to be acted on are monthly financial items... two field trip approvals... and, the first draft of a 2014-15 calendar.  Again... the special Jamestown School Board meeting begins at 5 PM.