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WJTN News Headlines

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo will have to pick a new running mate now that Lieutenant Governor Robert Duffy has decided not to seek another term.  Duffy announced his decision in a letter to Cuomo that was first reported by the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle.  The 59-year-old former Rochester mayor cited the job's travel demands and a desire to spend more time with family.  Duffy wrote that he's proud of the administration's accomplishments... articularly its work to boost the upstate economy.  The announcement comes two weeks before Democrats hold their nominating convention on Long Island.  Cuomo is widely expected to tap a running mate from western New York or Long Island.  Possibilities include Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown... former Congresswoman Kathy Hochul of Buffalo... and, Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone.


A Busti man is being held in the County Jail on 25-thousand dollars cash bail for allegedly having sex with a 16 year-old girl in the Summer of 2013 in the town of Kiantone.  State Police in Jamestown say they concluded a lengthy, joint investigation with Jamestown Police with the arrest of 27 year-old Michael Clark.  Clark is charged with third-degree rape... and, Endangering the Welfare of a Child.  Police say Clark was arraigned in Kiantone Town Court... and, sent to the County lock-up.


It only taken about three weeks for the Jay Leno headliner program at this August's Lucille Ball Comedy Festival to sell out.  Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Center of Comedy Executive Director Journey Gunderson announced the Saturday, August 9th sell-out late this (Thursday) morning.  Earlier... Gunderson told us... shortly after the tickets went on sale April 18th... that they were going fast.  However... she says the final tickets for the Jamestown Savings Bank Arena performance were officially scooped up after about three-weeks. Gunderson says they're "thrilled, pleased... and, relieved" to have been able to sell out all 22-hundred seats available for the Leno performance.  Lucille Ball's daughter, Lucie Arnaz, will do the "warm-up" show before Jay Leno takes the stage.  Gunderson adds that this is the fastest a Lucy-Desi Festival headliner has sold out in the history of the event.  The usual venue for these event... the Reg Lenna Civic Center... holds about 12-hundred-70 people.  While Leno is sold out... Gunderson reminds people that there are 50 other programs and shows taking place during the August 6th through 10th festival.  For more information... call 484-0800... or go on-line to Lucy-dash-Desi-dot-COM.


Four water projects that are expected to be part of the effort to create a North County Water District have been approved for low-interest, state loans totaling 19.8-million dollars.  The loans were announced late yesterday by the State Environmental Facilities Corporation... which is marking the  25th Anniversary of New York's Clean Water Revolving Loan Fund.  A total of 17 projects have been approved in Western New York... including four for Chautauqua County villages.  Two are for Silver Creek... with the first one worth 4.8-million dollars... while the second is for 4.6-million.  In addition... Corporation Executive Director Matthew Driscoll says the village of Westfield is receiving 5.65-million dollars... and, the village of Brocton is getting 4.75-million dollars.  Driscoll says the new business model they use allows the infrastructure loans to be made at as low as zero-percent interest.


Two Cassadaga Valley Central School students have been suspended... and, the school was briefly put into lock-down yesterday after shotguns were found on the back seat of two vehicles.  Cassadaga Valley School Superindent Tom Schmidt says they were alerted to the situation by someone walking through the parking lot... and, saw the guns in the two separate vehicles.  At that point... Schmidt says they immediately locked down the schools as part of their protocol for such incidents. The students had apparently been hunting turkey's earlier in the day... and, instead of taking them home... left them in the cars and went to school.  However... while there was never any threat to the schools... Schmidt says the law is pretty clear on the matter.  He adds the administration has taken some heat for their reaction... but, he says it's better to err on the side of caution. Schmidt told our Dennis Webster Thursday morning that the school was only in lock-down mode for about 20 minutes.  A patrol unit from the Chautauqua County Sheriff's Department was called in to assess the situation.  The students were not identified.


Firefighters are getting some practice battling crude oil fires as part of stepped-up efforts by the Cuomo Administration to address safety threats from increased rail shipment of highly flammable crude from North Dakota to East Coast refineries.  The state Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services hosted a two-day disaster training drill at the Port of Albany through Thursday.  Wednesday afternoon, fire and hazardous materials personnel will practice using fire suppressant foam to douse flames in a simulated oil-spill fire.


The state Senate has passed legislation to make all honorably discharged military veterans eligible for a high school degree based on knowledge and experience from their service time.  The effort, called ``Operation Recognition,'' already allows veterans of World War II, Korea and the Vietnam wars to get diplomas.  The legislation would expand eligibility to other veterans who didn't complete their formal education afterward.  The Senate bill was sent on to the Assembly.