Local News Headlines

Nine people have been arrested following a major drug sweep in downtown Jamestown yesterday targeting locations where heroin and cocaine have been sold from over the past several months.  City Police Captain Bob Samuelson says the raids began early Wednesday... and involved the serving of seven search warrants.  Samuelson says the raids took place at 228 East Second Street... 108 East Eighth Street... 3 Forest Park... 614 Spring Street... 129 Fairview Avenue... and, 20 Willis Street. Samuelson says they are continuing to follow up on leads they got during today's drug busts.  He says six of the seven locations they raided along with state and federal authorities... were strictly regarding Heroin.  Samuelson says the seven were "street" to mid-level dealers... but, he called it a "good start" in dealing with the city's Heroin epidemic. Samuelson says the charges range from criminal sale and possession of a controlled substance... to probation violation... criminal possession of a weapon... and, criminal use of drug paraphernalia.  Only one person had been sent to the county jail by last night.  27 year-old Leslie Rodriguez was being held without bail.  Samuelson several growing marijuana plants were found in one raid.  Anyone with information on illegal drug activity in the city is asked to call JPD at 483-7531... or the confidential tip-line at 483-TIPS... or 483-8477.


Jamestown police say the raid at 711 Cherry street wound up being a bonus because arresting agents discovered the active growing marijiuna operation there.  Captain Samuelson says a quantity of cocaine was found before they found the hidden cannibus plants. At that residence... Samuelson says they arrested 56 year-old Robin... and, 35 year-old Wesley Riley... along with 20 year-old Brooke Weinert.  He says they are charged with third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance... prohibited growing of marijuana... and, unlawful possession of marijuana.  Samuelson says they also face criminal possession of a weapon charges.


It's tax season... and, New York officials are warning about tax collection scams.  State tax and consumer protection officials say scammers are calling people claiming to be from the Internal Revenue Service or the state Tax Department and demanding immediate payments.  Tax officials say New Yorkers should be careful about providing personal information or making payments in response to telephone calls.  The agencies also are warning of an email ``phishing'' scam in which taxpayers receive emails with the IRS logo claiming to be from the ``Taxpayer Advocate Service.''  The email asks taxpayers to resolve an issue with their 2013 filing by clicking a link in the email.  The webpage then asks for personal information.


Upon further review... one Chautauqua County school district now reports it's getting about twice as much new state aid in New York's new budget than first believed.  When the new numbers came through... Interim Cassadaga Valley Central School Superintendet Tom Schmidt believed they were only looking at a 57-thousand dollar increase.  However... Schmidt says they worked the numbers again... and, found they'll actually get about 110-thousand more. School runs from State Senator Cathy Young's office shows Cassadaga Valley receiving about 318-thousand dollars in total aid above what Governor Cuomo has in his initial budget plan.  That's about a 4.4-percent increase.  Schmidt says that will help restore an Agriculture Program... and, make a part-time music teacher position full-time. The school runs show Cassadaga Valley receiving about 108-thousand dollars more in Foundation Aid... and, another 190-thousand dollars to cover the "Gap Eliminiation Adjustment" where schools have seen taken taken away the past few years because the state was running deficits.


Gas prices in the Jamestown-area remain unchanged this week.  The Triple-A's Fuel Gauge reports the price of regular, unleaded remains 3-dollars-71 cents a gallon.  Some stations are charging 3-dollars-69 cents... while others have topped out at 3--74 a gallon.  Nationally... the average retail price is 3-dollars-56 cents per gallon.  This is 3-cents more expensive than one week ago... but, it's still 8-cents less than the same date last year.  The national average is continuing to creep higher into the range that the Triple-A expects prices to peak: between 3--55 and 3--75 per gallon.


Thousands of New York parents are refusing to have their children take the statewide English assessments being given this week.  They're protesting state education policy that they say puts so much emphasis on testing that it interferes with learning.  Results of the three-day assessments don't count toward student averages, but they do factor into teacher and school evaluations.  In New York City... they help determine whether students pass or fail.  Groups compiling numbers from around the state estimate that more than 25,000 of the more than one-million third- through eighth-graders in the testing pool are skipping this week's tests.  Long Island is seeing the highest opt-out numbers.  Depending on the district... students are either quietly reading during the daily 70- to 80-minute sessions or at their desks doing nothing.