Community Spotlight, the area's longest running local public affairs radio program, airs on all six Media One Radio Group stations each weekend and is also available to hear in our Podcast Section.  Each week we sit down with a community leader or another special guest to talk about issues within our community.  


Weather Forecasts are available across our radio stations each day and also as your fingertips! 

Connect with The National Weather Service's Buffalo Office or with WGRZ-TV for accurate weather information!

 

 

 


 

WJTN News Headlines for Fri., Apr. 28, 2023

Investigators looking into two south county fires overnight...
Fire has extensively damaged one-side of a two-story, two family house on Jamestown's southside overnight.  City Fire Battalion Chief Ryan Rousch says crews were called to 29 Crown St. about 1:40 this morning... and, found heavy fire coming from both floors of the building.  Rousch says all the occupants got out safely... and, adds it took about an hour to bring the blaze under control.  He says a parked car nearby was also extensively damaged... and, the heat caused the siding on a neighboring house to melt.  Rousch says an off-duty shift was called into assist... along with fire investigators.  The last crews left the scene about 4 a.m.  The cause is under investigation.
---
Last night... another fire damaged a home on Route 474 in the Ashville-area.  It was first reported just after 7 p.m., and, county dispatchers say Ashville firefighters received mutual aid from Lakewood, and County EMS.  County fire investigators were called to the scene to search for a cause.


Hochul, State Leg. leaders reach "conceptual agreement" on $229-billion budget...
Judges in New York will have more discretion to jail people awaiting trial for alleged crimes.  That from Governor Kathy Hochul Thursday night... as a "conceptual agreement" had been reached on a new, $229-billion budget with the state legislature.  That policy change had been fiercely resisted by some of her fellow Democrats.  Hochul made her comments during a state Capitol news conference to announce the "conceptual agreement..." which still needs to be approved by lawmakers.  The budget includes policy proposals ranging from a minimum wage hike to allowing more charter schools in New York City.  However... negotiations between the governor and legislative leaders ran well past an Apr. 1 deadline... in large part because Hochul insisted on changes to the state's bail laws.


Borrello and Goodell agree Hochul "gave up a lot" to get "conceptual budget agreement...
Governor Hochul "gave up a lot" to get the conceptual agreement on a $229-billion state budget... that's now four weeks late.  Those are the feelings of Chautauqua County's two state representatives in Albany.  State Senator George Borrello and Assemblyman Andy Goodell discussed the return to "dysfunctional" government during this morning's annual State Legislative Breakfast hosted by the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce in Mayville.  Borrello says Hochul gave into speeding up the timetable for eliminating natural gas hook-ups in new home construction by 2025... as well as new minimum wage increases... and, tying that in with the rate of inflation.  Borrello again railed on far-left Democrats who have insisted on putting policy changes in the budget... as opposed to dealing with them separately.  He and Goodell both agree that catering to special interests downstate have led to the budget "mess" this year.  Goodell says downstate interests dominate the budget... with New York City's transit system receiving $4-billion in the spending plan.  He says all of the rest of New York is receiving just under $600-million. 


County IDA approves The Krog Group purchasing former Truck-Lite plant...
A developer from the Buffalo-area has been given the go-ahead to purchase the former Truck-Lite building in Falconer... and, has also been approved for financial incentives to do it.  The final financing package for The Krog Group of Orchard Park to purchase the building was approved Wednesday by the Chautauqua County Industrial Development Agency.  IDA Director Mark Geise says that The Krog Group plans to lease out the facility to a yet-unnamed tenant or tenants within the next few years with an option for the tenant to purchase the building.  IDA officials say the property is being sold for just over $3.6-million, and Krog will receive a 15-year Payment-in-Lieu of Taxes agreement... which would save them about $500,000.  The IDA Board also approved a $900,000 Al Tech loan for development of the building.  Krog's principle owner, Peter Krog, is known to the area as being developer of the Celoron Harborfront Hotel.  Geise made his comments during last weekend's "Community Spotlight" program on the six Media One Radio Group stations.


Jamestown man arrested for trespassing inside condemned apartment building...
A city man is accused of barricading himself inside a condemned apartment house in Jamestown late Wednesday afternoon... and, refusing to leave.  City police were called to 209 Spring St. just after 4 p.m. to assist the fire department and Department of Development evacuate to "The Jungle" Apartments.  Once officers arrived... they found that 43 year-old Michael Saxon was barricaded inside his apartment with a refrigerator up against the door.  After about 20 minutes of de-escalation attempts, Saxon became more hostile towards officers.  They then forced the door open... and, were able to take Saxon into custody without any injuries to him, or police.  He was charged with second-degree criminal trespass... and, second-degree obstructing governmental Administration.  He was take to the city jail without further incident... and, later release with appearance tickets for city court.


Jamestown schools won't have to worry NYS Regents decree on clothing with Native American imagery...
Jamestown public school officials are breathing a sigh of relief after state Education leaders decided against banning students from wearing clothing with any kind of Native American imagery on it.  School Superindent Kevin Whitaker says the district has begun steps to now eliminate the name "Red Raiders" from the schools.  However... Whitaker says there was concern voiced after the Board of Regents initial plan also banned students from wearing clothing with Native American imagery in it.  He says the Regents had intially voted in favor of that being in the new regulations...but, have since taken that out. 

 

WJTN News Headlines for Thurs., Apr. 27, 2023

Co. Legislature approves partial tax exemption for volunteer firefighters, and ambulance workers...
Chautauqua County lawmakers have passed two local laws that will grant volunteer firefighters and volunteer ambulance workers an exemption for county property taxes.  Legislators approved both local laws by unanimous votes Wednesday evening.  Legislators heard from Jeff Molnar of County's Fire Advisory Board who urged approval... who reminded lawmakers about the recruitment and retention issues -- both locally and nationwide.  Sheridan Republican Terry Niebel backed the legislation... saying that without their services... people in the area would be spending "millions of dollars" on those services.  Meanwhile, after much discussion, county legislators also passed two resolutions pertaining to Chautauqua Lake.  Lawmakers passed a measure using federal ARPA funding to acquire lake maintenance equipment by a 17-2 vote. A resolution to use $1-million in ARPA funding for the Jefferson Project was also passed 17-2.  Legislators rejected efforts to table both resolutions.  


Legislature also approves ARPA funding for Chautauqua Lake, and new Jamestown Airport study...
Chautauqua County legislators have approved two resolutions that deal with the problems of weeds and alga blooms in Chautauqua Lake... but, not until after considerable debate and discussion.  Fredonia Democrat Susan Parker was among a handful of legislators who wanted to table action on a measure... using $1-million in American Rescue Plan Act funding to acquire lake maintenance equipment.  She proposed using the next month to make sure everyone knows what the funding is going to be used for.  Parker was also among the lawmakers who wanted to table action the $1-million in ARPA funding for the Jefferson Project... an on-going study of Chautauqua Lake.  Dunkirk Democrat Bob Bankoski, who also favored the motion to table, in the end voted for the study... and, hopes this will be the end of the lake studies.  Both resolutions were approved 17-2.  Lawmakers also approved a resolution to spend $50,000 in ARPA funding to help pay for the Air Service Development Project at the Jamestown Airport.


Convicted Felon arrested for allegedly shooting off gun in Jamestown...
A Jamestown man has been arrested for allegedly firing a gun towards another person early last Saturday morning on the city's northside.  City police say they were called to the area of Lafayette Street and Isabella Avenue on a gunshot complaint just after 4:30 a.m.  Officers say they arrested 32 year-old Raheem Butts for firing off the gun... which was also found during the investigation.  Police took Butts into custody on one count of second-degree criminal possession of a weapon because he's a convicted Felon... and not allowed to possess a firearm.  He was also charged with first-degree reckless endangerment... and, taken to the city jail pending arraignment.


Schumer blasts House GOP debt ceiling bill...
New York's senior U.S. Senator says the House Republican proposal to raise the debt ceiling... but, also make major spending cuts... will be a 'wasted effort.'  Earlier in the day... Democrat Charles Schumer told reporters during a video conference the measure would have devastating consequences to the Upstate region... and, will be a "gut punch" to upstate families, and jobs.  The Senate Majority Leader says that's because if no action is taken soon... the U.S. will default on it's current debt.  However... Schumer says the House plan would "default on upstate families."  He says the legislation means fewer jobs, higher costs to families, and would lead to cuts to police, and firefighters.  Schumer says there would be "real cuts" to Medicaid... and, home heating assistance.  He adds it would also slash job training programs that are critical to landing good paying tech jobs.  He says a major financial firm, Moody's, is also sounding the alarm on the GOP bill.  The GOP bill coming up for a vote in the House would suspend the federal debt limit through next Mar. 31, and allow the government to issue up to $1.5 trillion in debt.


Rep. Langworthy votes in favor of GOP Plan, dubbed the "Limit, Save, Grow Act..."
Chautauqua County's representative in Congress was among the slim majority of House members who voted for the debt ceiling legislation... dubbed the "Limit Save Grow Act of 2023."  Buffalo-area Repubican Nick Langworthy says he was "proud" to vote for the plan... which he calls "the first step to breaking Washington’s addiction to spending and getting our nation’s finances back on track.  This plan is a responsible, reasonable framework for spending reforms that the American people are demanding."  He also called on President Biden "come to the table to negotiate.”


Gillibrand proposes measure to expedite FDA approval of drug treatments for life-threatening illnesses...
New York's Junior U-S Senator has introduced bi-partisan legislation she says will expedite provisional FDA approval of drugs intended to treat a number of life-threatening illnesses.  Democrat Kirsten Gillibrand held a video press conference Wednesday to announce the "Promising Pathway Act..." which would accelerate provisional approval by the Food and Drug Administration for drugs to treat people with ALS... Parkinson’s Disease... Alzheimer’s and others.  She says they don't need to sacrifice the FDA's final approvals... and, this would give ability to use new drugs while research continues.  Gillibrand says the standard FDA approval process takes many years to get drugs to market, but patients with rapidly progressing illnesses often don’t have many years to wait.  She says the Promising Pathway Act would accelerate the FDA’s approval process and help get promising treatments to those who need them. 
 

WJTN News Headlines for Wed., Apr. 26, 2023

Dealing with illegal pot shops helping to slow down state budget process...
New York Governor Kathy Hochul and legislative leaders are looking at ways to crack down on illicit pot shops threatening the state's fledgling legal market for recreational marijuana as part of negotiations on the overdue budget.  Hochul, a Democrat, told reporters Tuesday at the state Capitol that she expected the budget negotiations to wrap up soon.  It was due April 1st.  She says it's been a "long process..." but, adds “I do see a path to ramp up the state budget, perhaps as early as the end of this week.”  Hundreds of unauthorized pot shops have opened in New York City — competing with legal dispensaries whose products are heavily taxed.  The illicit stores and trucks have been multiplying even as New York slowly works to get its legal market established.  Hochul said she wants to give state tax officials and the Office of Cannabis Management enforcement tools to shut down or fine illegal pot shops, a proposal outlined in a bill she unveiled last month. 


Jametown settles final Tracy Plaza renovation lawsuit...
The city of Jamestown has resolved a nearly decade-long lawsuit involving one of the contractors for the Tracy Plaza renovation project.  The City Council Monday night approved the final agreement with Patterson Stevens for $155,000.  However... to settle Patterson Stevens countersuit against the city... the contractor's financial trust will pay the city $75,000.  Corporation Counsel Eliot Raimando says the city has now settled lawsuits involved roof leaks and flooding in the police and fire departments.  Raimondo says the one involving damage to the fire department was resolved in 2021.  He says he and the city's outside counsel on the matter worked to settle the claim regarding the police department... which impacted the reception area, and some offices.  He says current Councilman Jeff Russell was still a JPD officer at the time.  Patterson Stevens was one of the contractors involved in reconstruction of the deck on Tracy Plaza several years ago. 


Domestic inside moving vehicle leads to arrest in Jamestown...
A domestic incident inside a moving car last weekend has led to charges against a Jamestown man who was with two people who had orders of protection against him.  City police say officers were called to a location on the city's northside about 7 PM last Saturday night... and, finally located the vehicle near Advanced Auto Parts at 707 E. Second St.  Police say they found 27 year-old Samuel Williams inside the vehicle with the two victims.  Williams was taken into custody on two counts of first-degree criminal contempt...  and, one each of Aggravated Family Offense and resisting arrest.  He was jailed pending arraignment.


Overheated lithium-ion battery cause of fire at Bargain Monkey store in Dunkirk...
East Dunkirk firefighters... with the help of several nearby departments... responded to a structure fire Monday night on Bennett Road Extension in the town of Dunkirk.  The fire at the Bargain Monkey was first reported just after 7 p.m., and, the Chautauqua County Emergency Dispatch Center reports that East Dunkirk received assistance from city of Dunkirk, Fredonia, Sheridan and West Dunkirk fire crews... along with County fire coordinators.  The Chautauqua County Fire Investigation Team was called in a determined the blaze was accidental... and, caused by an overheated lithium-ion battery.


Sherman man arrested for allegedly stealing generator...
A Sherman man has been arrested for allegedly stealing a generator from a West Main Street address in the village earlier this month.  Sheriff's officers were initially called to the scene about 5 p.m. on Tues., Apr. 18 on a report of a larceny.  Deputies say their investigation showed that 24 year-old John Lutgen stole the generator from the property.  Lutgen was taken into custoday Tuesday and issued an appearance ticket for Sherman Town Court for petty larceny.


Prendergast Library begins new "Reader's Advisory" service...
The Prendergast Library is offering a service to help people find books they will 'really like.'  It's called 'Reader's Advisory' and is supervised by librarian Hannah Dewey.  She says the process starts with library patrons filling out a form on the Prendergast's website regarding their preferences... including genres, and what most recent books the person read.  Dewey says a lot of research has gone into helping readers find that 'next good book' instead of one that's not interesting.  She says getting people to read is the idea behind it.  The Reader's Advisory form can be found on the homepage at prendergastlibrary.org.


BPU to being Spring Flushing this Friday afternoon...
The Jamestown Board of Public Utilities has announced Spring flushing dates... beginning this Friday -- weather permitting.  BPU Communications Coordinator Becky Robbins says the annual pre-flush in Falconer will begin at 1 p.m. this Friday... in the areas of Aldren, Mapleshade, Ralph and Valmeere.  Robbins says the entire village will be flushed beginning at 8 p.m. on Saturday, Apr. 29, and overnight into Sunday the 30th, until flushing there is completed.  She says flushing for the rest of the BPU Water Division system will take place... beginning next Monday, May 1 from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  The lone exception will be on Wednesday, May 3, when flushing will begin for downtown and Fairmount Avenue businesses and restaurants at 4:30 a.m.  Regular flushing will resume on Thurs. May 4 and continue weekdays through the following Wednesday, May 10 from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  For more information... go on-line to jamestownbpu.com.


 

WJTN News Headlines for Tues., Apr. 25, 2023

Council tables action on hiring eight new firefighters with federal SAFER Grant...
The Jamestown City Council has tabled a resolution to hire eight new firefighters through a $1.8-million federal grant.  After much discussion about whether to go ahead with using the SAFER grant to bring on the firefighters... lawmakers asked if the city could look into hiring a smaller number using the grant.  A couple of them... including Council Finance Committee Chairwoman Kim Ecklund... asked Mayor Eddie Sundquist to look into that when they communicate with the Federal Emergency Management Administration.  Sundquist says they will have to have a specific number.  Ecklund says, usually firefighters are brought on in groups of four, so they would likely be looking at 4 more.  Councilman Jeff Russell says the idea of being able to talk with FEMA about reducing the number of firefighters hired was new information... and, he agreed with a member of the public who said... why not at least try to hire "4 or 5" new firefighters.  Russell says they've asked about doing that... but, had been told it was "8 or nothing."  The additional eight firefighters would mostly be paid for through the three-year SAFER grant.  However... most lawmakers have expressed concerns over future costs once the grant funding is gone.  The vote to table was 8-to-1, with Councilwoman Regina Brackman casting the lone no vote.


Firefighters union chief urges lawmakers to approve the measure...
The head of the Jamestown Professional Firefighters Association was on hand... with able 20 rank-and-file members of the department... to urge lawmakers to approve the eight firefighters.  Union President Ben McLaughlin thanked the administration, and Deputy Fire Chief Matt Coon, for looking into -- and getting the grant.  McLaughlin says it's generally agreed that the city needs more firefighters... and, he says they understand there are financial "uncertainties" with the grant.  However... he says FEMA agrees the department is understaffed.  McLaughlin says the additional firefighters would be beneficial in a "number of ways..." including less dependence on local volunteer mutual aid companies... meeting minimum staffing numbers... and better response times for fire and emergency calls.
---
While the council tabled the measure to hire eight new firefighters... lawmakers did approve purchasing a new ambulance for the department for $247,000.  That vote was unanimous.  


Geise says it will likely cost County $11-million to develop new industrial park...
It will likely cost Chautauqua County upwards of $11-million to develop a new, 150-acre industrial park in the western part of the county.  However... the effort to create more "shovel-ready" industrial sites won't end there.  That from Deputy County Executive for Economic Development, Mark Geise, who says he and his department are continuing to do it's work to get a new site in place.  Geise says they're working with several property owners to package the land... and, adds there will still be engineering and infrstructure that has to be brought in.  During his State of the County Address... County Executive P.J. Wendel said that his administration, and the Department of Planning and Economic Development, were contining to work on acquiring the land... and, developing it for future projects.  However... Geise says the county still needs what he calls "mega-sites" to draw developers.  He says their current parks don't have much room left... with about 30-acres in the Mason Industrial Park near Jamestown... and, about 10 left in the Chadwick Bay Park.  So far... Geise says the county has allocated $4.8-million in American Rescue Plan Act funding for the west county site... along with $700,000 in Capital Projects money.


Wendel says he'll support county helping to pay part of Fredonia's water study...
Chautauqua County's top-elected official says he would support having the county help pay for a portion of Fredonia's comprehensive water study... should they include an option to consider water service from the city of Dunkirk.  Lakewood Republican P-J Wendel spoke about the study Monday... noting that the legislature's Planning and Economic Development Committee discussed the matter last week.  However... he says it's up to the village to make the request.  The Dunkirk Common Council approved a resolution last week that would pay about $28,000 for such a study.  The Fredonia Village board tabled action on a study last Monday. 


Gas prices up slightly in Jamestown-area...
Gasoline prices in the Jamestown-area continued their upward trend over the past week... with the price for a gallon of regular, unleaded... now nearly $3.70.  The AAA East Central Gas Price Report says... to begin the week... the price is now just over $3.69 a gallon in the wake of rising oil prices over the past month.  AAA says the price last week locally was just over $3.65 a gallon.  The national average price rose about a nickle the past week to $3.66.  That's even though gas demand has decreased and total domestic stocks have increased.


JPS student's artwork on display now in lobby of City Hall...
A new display of artwork from 16 students in the Jamestown Public Schools is now being shown in the lobby of city hall.  Mayor Eddie Sundquist recently joined with many of the students to celebrate the new display.  Sundquist says the students are from Bush and Fletcher elementary Schools... Persell and Washington Middle Schools... and Jamestown High School.  During a reception at City Hall... Sundquist and School Superintendent Kevin Whitaker presented each student with a certificate marking the achievement.  The student artwork will be on display at City Hall through the end of the year.


 

WJTN News Headlines for Mon., Apr. 24, 2023

Fire investigators continue probe into house fire in Forestville...
The investigation is continuing into a house fire in the village of Forestville early last Saturday evening.  Chautauqua County Fire investigators say Forestville firefighters were called to the scene at 31 Center St. about 7 p.m., and, with the help of a handful of mutual aid companies... got the blaze out.  Sheriff's Office dipatchers say the fire investigation team was called in... and, found the fire originated in a second-floor crawl space.  They add the two adults and four children living there got out of the home safely... and, no injuries were reported.


Gerry man arrested for menacing...
A town of Gerry man has been arrested for allegedly trying to hit another person with an object... and, injuring them.  Sheriff's officers were called to an undisclosed location for a possible "harassment in progress" shortly after 11 p.m. last Friday.  Deputies say they found that 61 year-old William Harrison tried to hit the other person... causing that person to fear for their safety.  Harrison was arrested... and, charged with third-degree menacing.  He was taken to the county jail pending centralized arraignment.


City Council to vote on several major items tonight...
The Jamestown City Council is expected to act tonight on several key resolutions... including one to hire eight new firefighters, and another to purchase a second ambulance.  The additional firefighters would mostly be paid for through a three-year, $1.8-million dollar federal SAFER grant.  However... while most lawmakers have said they would love to have more firefighters... they are very concerned about future costs once the grant funding is gone.  The new ambulance... which would cost about $247,000, would allow the city to handle more EMS calls.  Council will also vote on acquiring a new computer software service from Springbrook Holdings to upgrade a 20 year-old financial software program... and will help the Finance Department's workflow to save time, and hopefully money.  Corporation Counsel Eliot Raimando explained the resolution to lawmakers... noting that the just over $106,000 cost would be paid for through American Rescue Plan Act Transparency and Tracking funds.  Finance Committee Chairwoman Kim Ecklund says... given that the move is recommended by their third-party auditor... she's not opposed.  However... she adds there be an additional $23,000 cost in next year's budget.  Tonight's voting session begins at 7:30 p.m. 


Irving man arrested for violation of Leandra's Law...
A north county man faces drunk driving and Leandra's Law violations following an altercation at a location in Irving just over a week ago.  Sheriff's officers were called to the location shortly after 1 a.m. on Sunday, Apr. 16.  Deputies say they found that 35 year-old Jamar Fountain of Irving was driving a car while drunk that had several people under the age of 16 as passengers.  Officers say the altercation occured after Fountain had arrived at the location.  He was arrested and charged with Aggravated Felony DWI Leandra's Law... and, DWI.  Fountain was released with appearance tickets for Hanover Town Court.


County development officials excited, pleased by Cummins' $452-million expansion project at JEP...
Chautauqua County economic development officials are very pleased about Cummins Engine's recent announcement of a $452-million dollar expansion project at the Jamestown Engine Plant.  But... at the same time... Deputy County Executive for Economic Development, Mark Geise, says he doesn't want to get "too far out in front" of what's taking place at the Ashville-area plant.  Geise does agree, though, that this shows a long-term investment in the Jamestown-area.  As for a start date for the project in 120,000 square feet of the nearly 1,000,000 square foot facility... Geise believes that will be announced soon...but, adds getting the infrastructure in place, and other pre-construction work should begin shortly -- if it's not already underway.  Geise -- who is also director of the county's Industrial Development Agency says -- so far - that Cummin's has only requested additional sales tax exemptions from the IDA.  He says there are already exemptions in place for things like equipment purchases... but, obtaining infrastructure and other items still has sales tax attached to it.  Those additional exemptions would save Cummins about $3-million.  Geise made his comments for this past weekend's "Community Spotlight" program on the six Media One Radio Group stations.


JCC to begin new "Career Closet" on Jamestown campus...
The Career Services office at Jamestown Community College is launching an ambitious project and asking the public to assist.  Julie Page, Navigator at Career Services says the new venture is the ‘J. Hawk Career Closet’... a free clothing closet for students.  Beginning this fall each student can get up to five items per semester.  Page says, by the time students leave JCC, they should be able to have a "professional" wardrobe that they can use for job interviews, internships and the like.  To get the ‘Career Closet’ up and running... Page says a donation day has been set up for the Phys Ed Center at JCC on Saturday, May 6 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.  She says they're looking for professional clothing for "all sizes and gender."  Page notes that ‘professional clothing' is expensive and hard to find, but still necessary for those who want to enter the workforce.  She made the announcement on Media One’s High School Bowl program over the weekend.


 

WJTN News Headlines for Fri., Apr. 21, 2023

CCB opens up new Lakewood branch near Mall...
The ribbon has been cut on Cattaraugus County Bank's newest location on Fairmount Avenue in the village of Lakewood.  The grand opening was held at the location -- at the intersection with Mall Boulevard -- Thursday afternoon.  Several CCB officials... and, local dignitaries were on hand for the ribbon cutting.  The bank's Chief Executive Officer -- Mike Weimer -- says they're "excited" to open their new location... and, appreciate the warm welcome.  Wimer says the new location shows they are in for "the long-haul" and "making this a community bank."  The new location replaces CCB's  -- primarily drive-thru location -- on Fairmount Avenue in West Ellicott.  Among those on hand to help cut the ribbon was Lakewood Mayor Randy Holcomb.  The event was co-hosted by the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce... and, President Dan Heitzenrater loved the bullding's new look... that is the first location with CCB's new branding.  Officials say the new location will have five employees... and, five others who will be there on a rotating basis.  Chautauqua County Executive P.J. Wendel... and, a representative of State Senator George Borrello.


City woman arrested on warrant, also found with Fentanly in her possession...
A woman from Jamestown has been arrested on a drug possession charge following a street check by police on the city's eastside this past Tuesday night.  Jamestown police say they were patrolling the area about 8 p.m., and, spotted 40 year-old Amy Robbins, who was known to have a warrant out for her arrest.  Officers took Robbins into custody without incident.  However... she was found with just under a gram of Fentanyl in her possession.  Robbins was charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance... in addition to the warrant.  Robbins was jailed pending arraignment.


North County man arrested in Sheridan for allegedly selling stolen AR-15 rifle...
A Forestville man has been arrested for allegedly stealing an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle last month in the town of Sheridan... and, selling it to another person.  Sheriff's officers say 24 year-old Franklin Silvagnia is accused of knowing the rifle was stolen... and, sold it anyway.  Deputies say the AR-15 was recovered at a later date during a narcotics warrant investigation by the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force.  Officers say Silvagnia was arrested for criminal sale of a semiautomatic rifle... and, fourth-degree criminal possession of stolen property.  He was issued appearance tickets for Sheridan Town Court.


Jamestown School Board approves $101-million, 2023-24 budget that includes no tax increase...
Jamestown School District voters will cast ballots on a $101-million, 2023-24 budget that includes no tax increase next month.  School Superintendent Kevin Whitaker says the school board Wednesday night approved the spending plan 5-to-0 with two board members absent.  Whitaker told our Dennis Webster that the district is slated to receive an additional $9-million in state aid... and, says the bulk of that money will be used to create "student learning centers" in each school... adding the focus will be on helping elementary grades with reading and math.  Dr. Whitaker says the secondary grades will focus on English Language Arts... and math.  He adds that there will also be two new staff members brought on at Fletcher Elementary School because it's population has grown to the second largest in the district.  Dr. Whitaker says the budget hearing will be held on Tues., May 9 at Jefferson Middle School at 6 p.m.


JPS voters will also decide on establishing a $5-million capital reserve fund...
In addition to the budget vote... Jamestown school district voters will also decide on establishing a $5-million reserve fund to help pay the district's matching funds for state aid on projects.  Superintendent Kevin Whitaker says no matter what size a capital project is... the state will pick up 98% of the cost.  However... he says the district must pay that 2% that's not covered.  Dr. Whitaker recently indicated there may be another, smaller capital project to be proposed for the district apart from the current, $86.5-million project that's underway.  The budget vote will be on Tues., May 16 from 12 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the three "presidents" schools... Lincoln, Jefferson, and Washington Middle Schools. 


Dunkirk pair arrested on drug and weapons charges...
Two Dunkirk men face charges after police seized a quantity of crack cocaine and fentanyl from a vehicle along with a loaded .380 calibur pistol during a traffic stop on Central Avenue Wednesday night.  Dunkirk Police have charged the driver, 30 year old Gabriel Soto, with two counts of seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance... along with vehicle and traffic violations.  The passenger, 23-year-old Angel Ramos, is facing second-degree criminal possession of a weapon... and, criminal possession of a firearm charges.  He was taken into custody and is being held for arraignment in Dunkirk City Court.


Woman arrested for allegedly trying to steal basketball hoop...
A 50 year-old woman has been arrested for allegedly trying to steal a portable basketball hoop from a home in the village of Celoron.  Ellicott Town Police were called to the location... and, found that Melissa Sweeney had loaded the hoop and stand into her vehicle... and, was trying to drive off when she was confronted by the homeowner.  Upon arrival... officers took Sweeney into custody on a larceny charge... and, she was later issued an appearance ticket for Ellicott Town Court on a later date.

 

WJTN News Headlines for Thurs., Apr. 20, 2023

Jamestown man arrested after allegedly chasing woman during domestic incident...
A city man is accused of chasing a female victim during a domestic incident in the McKinley Avenue area of Jamestown.  City police were called to the scene about 1:30 p.m. Tuesday... and, made contact with both people.  Officers say they learned that Darren Mitchell, Junior, had allegedly damaged property in the home prior to their arrival.  Police arrested Mitchell at the scene on charges of fourth-degree criminal mischief... based on the state's Mandatory Arrest Laws.  He was taken to the city jail pending arraignment.


City man arrested for reckless endangerment...
A Jamestown man has been arrested for allegedly acting in a "reckless manner..." and creating a "substantial risk of injury" to another person.  Chautauqua County Sheriff's officers responded to a complaint from last Mar. 28 on Barker Street.  Deputies say they investigated... and, charged 35 year-old Benjamin Haskin with second-degree reckless endangerment... and, disorderly conduct.  He was issued appearance tickets for city court at a later date.


Lakewood Village Board approves budget with slight tax decrease...         
There is a slight tax rate decrease in the final 2023-24 budget for the village of Lakewood.  Mayor Randy Holcomb says the budget he introduced last month... totaling $4.17-million dollars... included an $8.09 per $1,000 assessed value increase.  However... Holcomb says the village board was able to cut the spending plan by about $20,000... cutting the rate to $8.05 per $1,000.  Holcomb says there were no big cuts made by the board... but, seven smaller ones.  He says those were mostly in salaries and contractual obligatons.  Holcomb says they also cut the lifeguard salaries for Lakewood Beach from $20,000 to $18,000.  He says the tax levy is about the same as the current year's budget at about $2.4-million  The budget was approved after the village board held a required public hearing on Apr. 10.  The budget was due by May 1.


Borrello blasts Democratic majority in NYS Senate for confirming Wilson to judge's post...
State Senator George Borrello is blasted majority Democrats in the chamber for winning their "months-long campaign to transform the state’s highest court with their brand of progressivism."  Borrello is reacting to the majority's confirmation of Justice Rowan Wilson for Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals.  The Sunset Bay Republican says "they rejected Judge Hector LaSalle, a brilliant and independent jurist with the administrative experience the role demands, in favor of an activist judge.  Judge Wilson will be more likely to legislate from the bench and willing to ‘interpret’ the law and State Constitution however necessary to advance a liberal agenda."  He says... given Democrats resistance to amend the bail reform law... and, the by confirming Wilson... they have made "it clear that they are as committed as ever to their radical agenda."


Dunkirk lawmakers support plan for "intermunicipal" water study...
The Dunkirk Common Council is supporting a proposal for the city to take part in a study of the village of Fredonia's water system.  On Tuesday... north county city lawmakers unanimously passed a resolution to allow the city to spend up to $28,000 to make it an "intermunicipal study" that could help ensure that Fredonia... and, the town of Pomfret have an adequate supply of quality water.  Mayor Willie Rosas says the city is now in a position to provide more water to other municipalities following upgrades to its water treatment plant.  Rosas says the city has spent $25-million the past decade to upgrade the water plant... and, is now in position to provide "more water to more customers."  Rosas says the city is currently producing approximately 35% of its water capacity... which is 10-million gallons a day.  He says they currently pump out 3.5-million... and, definately have the capacity.  The resolution also allows Rosas to seek just over $43,000 for the county to participate in the study.


Earthfest staged indoors at SUNY JCC...
The Collegiate Center at Jamestown Community College was packed with people Wednesday for the annual ‘Earthfest’ celebration.  A wide variety of local vendors and conservation groups offered environment related displays.  SUNY JCC's Earth Awareness Club puts on the event.  President Samuel Palmieri was pleased with the crowd, and the vendors.  He says there were quite a few vendors this year after smaller numbers the past two years due to COVID restrictions.  Another of the club members, Skyela Banse-Fay, summarized the essential message of Earthfest... which is to "treat the earth with kindness."  Organizers plan Earthfest as an outdoor event... but most of it had to be inside this year because of cool and breezy weather Wednesday morning. 


Woman inmate at county jail accused of assaulting another inmate...
A female inmate at the Chautauqua County Jail has been arrested for allegedly assaulting another female inmate late last week.  Sheriff's officers say 34 year-old Titana Berrios-Vega is accused of physically injuring the other woman during an incident in the jail's recreation yard last Friday aftenroon.  Deputies say Berrios-Vega was already in jail on a first-degree assault charge... and, in this case... she was charged with second-degree assault... a Class D Felony.  She was taken to centralized arraignment, and returned to jail.

 


 

WJTN News Headlines for Wed., Apr. 19, 2023

Wilson confirmed as new Chief Judge; first black to hold position...
The New York State Senate has confirmed Rowan Wilson as the state’s first Black chief judge... two months after lawmakers dealt Governor Kathy Hochul a political defeat by rejecting her initial nominee for the top court post.  Wilson has been an associate judge of the Court of Appeals, New York's highest court, since 2017.  Hochul tapped him earlier this month to lead the seven-member high court and oversee the state’s judicial system.  The confirmation vote caps months of conflict between Hochul and her fellow Democrats in control of the Senate over the direction of the court. 


City of Jamestown looking to bring back ombudsman position...
With human resource needs growing in Jamestown city government... the city council is considering bringing back the ombudsman's position handle those duties.  Lawmakers will consider next week lifting the hiring freeze to bring in an HR specialist for the rest of the year to do that work.  Mayor Eddie Sundquist says that person would replace the part-time, Associate Corporation Counsel's position, recently vacated by Ben Haskins.  Sundquist says they are seeing more mental health issues... and, employee disputes that have been seen in a long time.  The city eliminated the city ombudsman's position more than 20 years ago due to department restructuring and to save money.  City Council President Tony Dolce and Finance Committee Chairwoman Kim Ecklund say they have no problems doing this for the rest of 2023.  However... Dolce says this creates the likelyhood of having two full-time people in the Corporation Counsel's office... and that could double the cost in that department.  Sundquist says the cost for the Associate Corporation Counsel in the 2023 budget was $57,000... and, filling it for the rest of the year would cost in the neighborhood of $40,000. 


Cause of late Monday night fire in Sherman still under investigation...           
A late night fire Monday at a home in the town of Chautauqua remains under investigation.  Chautauqua County fire dispatchers say Sherman fire crews were called to the scene at 4649 Route 430 about 11:20 p.m. Monday... and, several mutual aid companies were called in to assist.  After extinguishing the blaze... members of the county's Fire Investigation Team were called into to look for the cause.  They determinied the fire originated in the second story of the home... but, the cause has not been determined at this time.  No injuries were reported.  The local Red Cross is assisting the family.


Fredonia Village Board approves $11.3-million budget...
Fredonia village lawmakers have approved a 2023-24 budget that totals just over $11.3-million dollars.  During Monday evening's meeting... board members approved the proposed spending plan by a 4-to-0 vote.  Trustee Jim Lynden did voice concerns during the vote... noting that an employee was slated to receive a $17,000 raise.  Still, he voted for the budget.  The Fredonia budget will raise the village's tax rate to $36.95 per $1,000, up from $36.18 per $1,000.  The budget will also increase the water rate by 15-cents to $4.95 per 1,000 gallons... and, the sewer rate by 15-cents to $6.32 per 1,000 gallons. 


Investigation continuing into 750 pounds of marijuana being found in big rig involved in Thruway accident...
Local, state and federal law enforcement agencies are continuing to investigate the discovery of nearly 750 pounds of processed marijuana inside a tractor-trailer that was damaged after hitting an overpass on the State Thruway Monday.  Chautauqua County Sheriff Jim Quattrone says investigators working with the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force were surprised by the quantity of marijuana involved... but, adds there are still a number of unanswered questions... including where the pot came from, and where it was going.  The tractor-trailer was found in the Wal-Mart Parking lot in Fredonia.  Quattrone says the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency is also involved in the investigation.  He says he's never seen that much marijuana in one place ever.


Wayne Co. man arrested following DWI crash in Cattaraugus County...
A Western New York man has been arrested for allegedly driving drunk after he was involved in a single-car accident in the Cattaraugus County town of South Valley early Monday.  Sheriff's deputies in Little Valley were called to the scene on West Perimeter Rd. about 12:30 a.m., and, found the car had struck a guard rail and overturned on the road.  Officers say 41 year-old Ronald Bishop of Marian in Wayne County, appeared to be drunk... and, they found open containers of alcohol inside the vehicle.  Officers say Bishop apparently drove into a creek and hit a bank before hitting the guard rail.  He was issued appearance tickets for South Valley Town Court.


Erie, Pa. man arrested for DWAI in town of Portland...
A man from Erie, Pennsylvania man faces several charges... including driving while under the influence of drugs... following a traffic stop late last week in the town of Portland.  Sheriff's deputies say they stopped a vehicle... driven by 42 year-old Michael Buckner... on Webster Rd. on multiple traffic violations.  Officers say they conducted field sobriety tests... and, found that Buckner was operating the vehicle while impaired by drugs.  He was taken into custody on charges including: DWAI-Drugs... failure to stop at stop sign... improper or unsafe turn without signal... and, moving from lane unsafely.  Buckner was issued appearance tickets for Portland Town Court.

 

 
 

WJTN News Headlines for Tues., Apr. 18, 2023

Three-day budget extender approved as state budget talks continue...
New York lawmakers passed a three-day budget extension Monday to ensure state operations continue undisrupted as negotiations over the spending plan continue.  The budget was originally due April 1.  Democratic Gov. Kathy Hochul and lawmakers missed that deadline as they tried to reach agreement on changes to the state's bail law, a housing plan and other policy issues the governor had included in her budget proposal.  A key sticking point has been Hochul's proposed changes that would give judges more discretion on setting bail for violent felonies.  Liberal lawmakers have resisted further changes to the state's bail law.  This was the third temporary budget extension approved by state lawmakers. Some state lawmakers expressed frustration at the holdup on a final budget.  The A-P quotes Republican Assemblymember Edward Ra during the floor vote... "“This is the third (extender), and it’s happening despite the fact that one party is controlling our state government."  However... he voted in favor of an extender.   Lawmakers must pass another extender Thursday if a state budget isn't finalized by then.


City lawmakers get more information on proposal to hire eight new firefighters; find future costs may be prohibitive...
It appears that it will cost at least an additional $2.7-million to keep eight new firefighters in the Jamestown Fire Department through 2029.  That's from a detailed analysis of salaries... benefits... and, other costs from the City Comptroller's office, provided to city lawmakers Monday afternoon.  During last night's City Council work session... Finance Committee Chairwoman Kim Ecklund addressed accusations that lawmakers don't care about the fire department.  Ecklund says the city council cares "deeply" about the first department, but, adds the committee needs to look at all financial ramifications of actions taken.  The federal SAFER Grant the city would received would cover $1.8-million of the cost for three years.  However... the total cost for the eight firefighters would be $2.1-million, leaving the city picking up more than $270,000 of the cost.  Councilman Jeff Russell says, while salaries would cost $1.29-million... there are other costs including: state retirement contributions of $262,000 and city health and dental insurance cost of $372,000.  The addition of a second ambulance was also discussed.  Fire Chief Matt Coon says the department could still run that -- with the four added firefighters through the American Rescue Plan Act funding. 


Borrello blasts contractors plea for more money for State Thruway rest area projects...
As the renovation process continues for the New York State Thruway's service areas, one of the companies involved in the Thruway Authority's project is reportedly losing millions of dollars on it.  Ireland-based construction company LeChase is now seeking $270-million from the state in order to complete the project.  That from State Senator George Borrello... who calls that "outrageous."  Borrello says he now firmly believes the state's authority system is "corrupt" and needs to be reformed.  The Sunset Bay Republican, who was recently appointed to the state's Public Authorities Control Board, plans to ask for an investigation into LeChase's bid on the project.
 

City woman arrested for DWI, and drug possession during traffic stop...
A Jamestown woman has been arrested for drunk driving... and, illegagl drug possession after being pulled over during a traffic stop on the city's eastside.  Jamestown police stopped a vehicle on Fulton St. about 3 a.m. last Friday for not signaling a turn.  Officers determined that 38 year-old Alisha Crouse was driving while intoxicate... and, she was taken into custody.  Police say they also found a quantity of methamphetamine in her possession.  Crouse was charged with DWI... seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance... second-degree Aggravated Unlicensed Operation... and, several other traffic violations.  She was issued appearance tickets and released.

Sundquist highlights meetings with White House staff, Schumer and Langworthy during Wash., D.C. trip...
Jamestown Mayor Eddie Sundquist had the chance to speak with federal leaders during a recent visit to Washington, D.C. as part of a conference of the nation's mayors.  Sundquist says he met with Biden Administration officials about the need for projects... and, programs to built the workforce in Jamestown... especially regarding infrastructure projects that would be funded by the Jobs and Infrastrucure Act.  In addition... Sundquist met with U.S. Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer of New York... who's been a frequent visitor to Jamestown and Chautauqua County.  The mayor says one of the big topics for Senator Schumer is one the Brooklyn Democrat has commented a lot on in recent weeks... railroad safety.  Sundquist says he also met with Schumer... and, local Congressman Nick Langworthy... about restoring Essential Air Service to the Chautauqua County Airport near Jamestown.  In addition... he also discussed the need to preserve SNAP benefits in the new Farm Bill... which is up for reauthorization this year.


Earthfest set for Wednesday at SUNY JCC...
Jamestown Community College’s annual Earthfest will be this Wednesday on the city campus from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.  As advisor to the Earth Awareness Club, Professor Jan Bowman helps organize the event, and says water will be a major focus for this year's event.  Earthfest features a variety of local vendors with environment related products and services.  There’ll be some special events too, including Jeff Musial from ‘Nickel City Exotics’ at noon.  He says he'll be bringing his "animal ambassadors..." and explain why it's a "bad idea" to own an exotic animal.  Local musician Jamie Haight will provide entertainment.  The Soil and Water Conservation District will be offering seedling trees to plant.  Bowman emphasizes the public is welcome at Earthfest, and it is very ‘kid friendly.’    

WJTN News Headlines for Mon., Apr. 17, 2023

City man arrested for trying to break into eastside Key Bank...
A Jamestown man has been arrested for allegedly trying to break into the Key Bank location on the city's eastside last weekend.  Jamestown police were called to the bank at 417 Spring St. shortly before 10 p.m. Saturday on a complaint of a man trying to break-in.  Officers say they located 20 year-old Zachary Conklin at the scene trying to gain access to the bank in an attempt to steal property.  Conklin was arrested for third-degree attempted burglary.  He was taken to the city jail pending arraignment.


Ashville man arrested following alleged burglary on drug, giving fake name charges...
An Ashville man has been arrested on charges of drug possession and giving police a false name after allegedly breaking into a home on Jamestown's southside last weekend.  City police were called to a "burglary-in-progress" shortly after 10 p.m. Saturday... and, learned that 52 year-old Sean Trask had broken into the residence... and, got inside through a window.  While officers were on scene, Trask tried to return to the scene through some backyards.  However... police made contact with him... and, Trask gave them a false name to avoid being arrested.  He was taken into custody... and, during a search... Trask was allegedly found in possession of a quantity of methamphetamine.  The victim did not wish to pursue charges... so, Trask was only charged with second-degree criminal impersonation... and, seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.


Town of Busti kicks off Bicentennial year with re-enactment, proclamation and fireworks...
A large crowd was on hand most of the day Sunday in Lakewood to kick-off the town of Busti's Bicentennial Celebration.  The opening ceremony was held during activities at the Lakewood Rod and Gun Club... and, featured proclamations from local, state and federal leaders.  Among them was State Assemblyman Andy Goodell... who joined with others in celebrating the town's rich history of leadership... and, firsts -- including the first woman admitted to the state Bar Association, Kate Stoneman.  Chautauqua County Executive P.J. Wendel... who has been a long-time resident of the town of Busti... noted that he, and his two of his predecessors were all from Busti.  They were Greg Edwards and Joseph Gerace.  While he's now the mayor of Lakewood... Randy Holcomb talked about being involved in Busti Town government for 38 years... 30 of those as assessor... and, thanked officials for allowing him to be part of it.  State Senator George Borrello and a representative for Congressman Nick Langworthy also spoke... and, handed commendations to current Town Supervisor Jesse Robbins.  Robbins portrayed the first supervisor, Daniel Sherman, in reenacting their first meeting.  Afterwards... he thanked everyone involved... in putting the Bicentennial together.  


Miss Busti is crowned at Bicentennial event...
During the Bicentennial celebration... the town announced the new Miss Busti for this year's events and activities.  Supervisor Jesse Robbins announced that Reece Beaver was named the winner from the Friday night competition.  First runner-up was Loren Cotter, and Second runner-up was Maddie McIntyre.  Robbins says all three wrote essays about the town... and, says the judges had a difficult time determining a winner out of that.  All three will be seniors at Southwestern High School this Fall.  Reece Beaver thanked everyone who came out... and, helping the town celebrate.  Several other activites and events were held during the Bicentennial Kick-off... including a cornhole tournament... bounce houses for the kids... and, a chicken barbecue.  The day concluded with a fireworks show.


Jamestown man accused of threatening another person with knife last week...
A city woman is accused of threatening another woman with a knife during a dispute on Jamestown's eastside late last week.  City police were called to the undisclosed location just after 9 p.m. last Thursday on a reported dispute with a weapon involved.  Officers investigated... and, found that the suspect, 20-year-old Skylar Mabee, had threatened the other female with a knife.  Mabee was arrested and arraigned on one count of second-degree menacing... and, was issued an appearance ticket for city court.


Homer City coal-fired power plant, used for additional power in NYS, to be retired in July...
The largest coal-burning power plant in Pennsylvania is to begin decommissioning on July 1, and, that could have ramifications to Western New York.  The Homer City Generating Station is about 50 miles east of Pittsburgh.  Sierra Club Pennsylvania Chapter Director Thomas Schuster says the plant has experienced some financial issues... and, hasn't operated above 50% capacity since 2015.  Last year, he says it was at less than 20% of capacity.  Schuster notes the shutdown process is already resulting in cleaner air, but plant workers' employment can't help but be affected.  Owners of the Homer City station cite high coal prices and increasingly warm winters that drive down energy demand as reasons for the shutdown.  Schuster emphasizes if Pennsylvania had been part of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative known as "Reggie" -- RGGI -- limits would have been imposed on carbon dioxide from power plants – and a significant amount of money could have been reinvested to help the local community with its economic transition.  He says there would have been $800-million available in that fund... starting last year.  Suppliers in New York have bought extra electric supply to meet demand from the Homer City plant.


 

WJTN News Headlines for Fri., Apr. 14, 2023

Jamestown man accused of threatening another person with handgun...
A city man has been arrested for allegedly pulling a handgun in a threatening manner to another person on Jamestown's northside Wednesday night.  City police were called to the scene shortly before 8:30 p.m., and, were told that 23 year-old Jeremiah Warrior was arguing with the other person when he displayed the black-colored gun.  Officers say Warrior allegedly started walking towards the victim... but, later left the scene.  He was located at his home... and, he was arrested for first-degree menacing... and, third-degree criminal possession of a weapon.  Warrior was jailed pending arraignment.


Wendel hosts public meeting on possible boat user fee to help fund Chautauqua Lake...
Chautauqua County Executive P-J Wendel says there seems to be support for a boat user fee to help fund improvements and maintenance of Chautauqua Lake.  However... Wendel cautions that they are in the very preliminary stages of developing any kind of formal proposal.  The Lakewood Republican hosted a meeting Wednesday afternoon in County Legislature chambers in Mayville Wednesday afternoon... where the majority of the 50 people on hand said they could support such a measure.  Wendel says that would allow more projects to continue lake improvements, along with improving water quality.  Wendel says the meeting featured a power-point presentation for those on hand.  He adds the next steps include forming a committee two work with their consultants, Barton and LoGuidice on the specifics.  Wendel says implementation of any kind of fee would not happen until next year... or 2025 depending on state approvals.  He says the fee would help generate funding that could lead more projects that would help extend the use of the lake, and improve the quality of the water.  Last year... Wendel told us he believed such a fee could generate between $20-million and $2.4-million a year. 


Langworthy calls for more discussions between Biden and McCarthy on raising debt ceiling...
The county's representative in Congress is hoping that President Biden will soon agree to meeting with the Republican leadership about raising the nation's debt ceiling.  Buffalo-area Republican Nick Langworthy says there was one "productive" meeting between the president... and, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy about the debt ceiling... which actually was hit earlier this year.  However... extraordinary measures were taken by the Treasury Department and others to delay that.  Langworthy agrees that action has to be taken soon... and, they've said "we need to see spending changes after spending $5-trillion the past couple of years on COVID relief and infrastructure.  The debt ceiling is currently $31.4-trillion, and, the extraodinary measures taken will only hold off defaulting on that debt until June -- or late Summer at the latest.  Langworthy says the GOP majority, though, will not agree to a "clean" raising of the debt ceiling.  Officials say that... failing to raise the ceiling... would be a serious self-inflicted wound that risks the "full faith and credit" of the United States.  They add that would happne with potentially severe consequences for our economy, our fiscal outlook and our standing in the world.


Vehicle pursuit in Dunkirk leads to numerous charges to three men from Buffalo-area... 
Three men from the Buffalo-area face a slew of charges after a police chase that covered much of the city of Dunkirk, and extended as far south as Route 60 near Fredonia.  While police are still working on the case... Chief David Ortolano says the suspects were allegedly breaking into vehicles just after 1:30 a.m. Thursday when they were discovered by police.  They then fled the scene in a vehicle reported stolen in Buffalo, and the vehicle rammed one Dunkirk patrol car.  Police have identified the driver as Kenneth Craig of West Seneca, along with two passengers, Marvin Royster of Buffalo and Christopher DeLosAngelos with no known address.  Ortolano says all three are facing a variety of charges... including 30 traffic and vehicle charges... for slamming a police car... and, criminal possession of stolen property.  He says because of New York State's Bail Reform Law, all three were released with appearance tickets. 


City woman arrested in town of Ellery for Leandra's Law violations...         
A Jamestown woman faces three Leandra's Law violations for allegedly driving drunk with children in a car with her.  Sheriff's deputies were called to the High Acres Mobile Home Park in the town of Ellery recently for a suspicious situation involving kids in a vehicle.  When they arrived... officers spoke with the driver... 31 year-old Brea Wilkins-Carlson... and, after further investigation... found that she had committed Felony DWI.  Wilkins-Carlson was taken into custody and charged with Felony DWI... and, the Leandra's Law violations.  She was issued appearance tickets for Ellery Town Court.


Two people in Jamestown arrested after several hours of noise disruptions...
Two city residents are accused of disturbing the peace after receiving multiple warnings to turn down their music... and, fighting in their neighborhood on Jamestown's eastside.  City police were called to the scene just after 9 p.m. Wednesday for the fourth-time in five hours.  On the third call... officers issued appearance tickets to 49 year-old Melissa Huch... and, 38 year-old Matthew Huch for violating the city's noise ordinance.  Police also took their speaker from their front porch... and, took it to the police station as evidence.  The couple continued causing a disturbance... and, they were taken into custody on one count each of second-degree criminal nuisance.  Both were held pending arraignment.

 

WJTN News Headlines for Thurs., Apr. 13, 2023

Jamestown man arrested after threatening another person with handgun...
A city man has been arrested for allegedly pulling a handgun in a threatening manner to another person on Jamestown's northside Wednesday night.  City police were called to the scene shortly before 8:30 p.m., and, were told that 23 year-old Jeremiah Warrior was arguing with the other person when he displayed the black-colored gun.  Officers say Warrior allegedly started walking towards the victim... but, later left the scene.  He was located at his home... and, he was arrested for first-degree menacing... and, third-degree criminal possession of a weapon.  Warrior was jailed pending arraignment.


Investigation continues into fatal ATV accident in Cattaraugus County last weekend...
The investigation is continuing into a fatal all-terrain vehicle crash in the Cattaraugus County town of Portville.  Sheriff's officers in Little Valley were called to the scene on Gleason Hollow Rd. about 8:30 p.m. last Saturday... and on arrival found the unidentified rider pinned under the ATV.  Deputies say they were assisted by State Police... the Portville and Westons Mills Fire Departments... and, TransAm Ambulance.  However... efforts to revive the victim were unsuccessful.  No other information has been released. 


Trio from Jamestown among four indicted by federal grand jury for drug trafficking...
Four people -- three of them from Jamestown -- have been indicted by a federal grand jury on numerous drug trafficking related crimes.  U.S. Attorney Trini Ross says the indictment charges 39 year-old Joseph Zaso of Buffalo... and, 37 year-old Richard Philbrick, Senior... 63 year-old Brian Cessna... and, 31 year-old Kyle Lewis -- all of Jamestown -- with narcotics conspiracy. In addition... they say Philbrick is also charged with possession with intent to distribute, and distribution, of fentanyl and methamphetamine.  They add that Cessna is also charged with using and maintaining a drug-involved premises... and, Lewis is charged with distribution of methamphetamine and fentanyl.  Proescutors say that Zaso organized and managed an illegal narcotics ring in the Buffalo and Jamestown area... beginning in late 2018.  He's also accused of conspiring with the trio from Jamestown to sell heroin, fentanyl, and methamphetamine from homes at 12 Locust St. and 110 Fairview Ave. in Jamestown.  If convicted... Zaso faces up to life in prison while Philbrick, Cessna, and Lewis face a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years in prison.


Traffic stop for loud exhaust leads to arrest of Lakewood man in city on drug charges...
An overnight traffic stop for a loud exhaust has led to the arrest of a Lakewood man in Jamestown for being in possession of two kinds of illegal drugs.  City Police say they pulled over 32 year-old Dustin Turner at North Main and East Seventh Streets about 2:30 a.m. Wednesday.  Further investigation determined that Turner had an outstanding warrant for his arrest through City Court for failure to appear.  Officers say they searched Turner... and, found a quantity of cocaine.  They also searched the vehicle... and, found a quantity of psilocybin mushrooms.  Turner was arrested for fourth and seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance... uninspected motor vehicle... and, Inadequate Exhaust in addition to the outstanding warrant. He's being held pending arraignment.


City man arresting during narcotics raid on southside home...
A Jamestown man faces Felony drug-related charges following a Tuesday afternoon raid on his southside home.  Members of the Jamestown Metro Drug Task Force say they executed a search warrant at 138 Colfax St. about 2 p.m. with the help of the JPD SWAT Team... and, found 47-year-old Derek Dubois inside.  Detectives searched the home... and, found 28.4 grams of cocaine inside... and, arrested Dubois on two counts of third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.  The task force was assisted by the Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office, Lakewood-Busti Police, and the Jamestown Fire Department.


Prendergast Library to open new patio named after late WJTN Radio personality in June...
Work will begin later this month on a new patio to the left of the Cherry Street front doors of the James Prendergast Library.  The library's Special Projects and Facility Manager, Jenn Champ, says the patio will be in honor one of the library's most famous patrons.  Champ says they're very happy to announce that it'll be named after the late Jim Roselle, who was a big advocate of the area -- and the library in particular.  Jim Roselle announced on WJTN radio for 63 years, right up to the time of his death in 2016.  The new patio will have space for special events and small performances... along with benches for reading. A lighted walkway up to the library's 5th St. entrance is also in the plans.  The Roselle Patio will be officially dedicated on Saturday, June 24 as part of the library's annual block party.  


"Frustrating" ski season concludes in Chautauqua and Cattaraugus Counties...
Skiiers in the Western Southern Tier can put away their skis and poles now that the Winter Season officially came to an end.  That happened last weekend at the Holimont Ski area in Ellicottville... and other locations.  Frewsburg resident Scott Axelson is a member of the Ellicottville center's Adaptive Ski Program... and, says it was a "frustrating" season because there was so little natural snow that fell in this part of the region.  He says they had to produce more in the way of man-made snow in 2022-23 to make a go of it.  Axelson says it wasn't a "typical season..." especially because the colder nights in the past one-month-plus allowed them to maintain a pretty good base for the late season. 

WJTN News Headlines for Wed., Apr. 12, 2023

JPD investigating alleged stabbing...
A juvenile is in custody following an overnight stabbing on Jamestown's eastside that sent the victim to an Erie, Pa. hospital.  City police were called to the area of East Second and Bowen Streets about 2:30 a.m. Wednesday on a report of a person being stabbed multiple times.  The unidentified juvenile was taken into custody... while the victim was taken to UPMC Hamot Medical Center for treatment.  Police say their investigation is continuing.


City man arrested for allegedly trafficking cocaine following drug raid...
A Jamestown man faces Felony drug-related charges following a Tuesday afternoon raid on his southside home.  Members of the Jamestown Metro Drug Task Force say they executed a search warrant at 138 Colfax St. about 2 p.m. with the help of the JPD SWAT Team... and, found 47-year-old Derek Dubois inside.  Detectives searched by home... and, found 28.4 grams of cocaine inside... and, arrested Dubois on two counts of third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.  The task force was assisted by the Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office, Lakewood-Busti Police Department, and Jamestown Fire Department.  Anyone with information about drug or other criminal activity in the city can call the JPD Tip Line at 483-TIPS or 483-8477... the Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office Tip Line at 716-664-2420.


Jamestown man arrested for allegedly shooting BBs at neighbor's windows...
A Jamestown man is accused of shooting BBs at his neighbor's windows on the city's northside Monday afternoon.  Jamestown police were called to a criminal mischief complaint involving the man shooting at a neighbor's home with a pellet gun about 3:30 p.m.  Once they arrived... officers spoke with 49 year-old Joseph Brisson... and, determined he intentionally shot BB's at the neighbor's windows.  Brisson was arrested for fourth-degree criminal mischief... and, was taken to the city jail pending arraignment.


Fredonia house fire ruled accidental...
A fire that damaged a two-and-a-half story duplex apartment in the village of Fredonia late Tuesday morning has been ruled accidental.  Fredonia firefighters and several mutual aid companies were called to the scene at 19 Central Ave. shortly before 11 a.m., and, Fire Chief Joshua Myers says the fire was moving to the upper parts of the home as they arrived... the blaze began on the second-floor.  Myers says they issued a second-alarm for more manpower and apparatus.  Fredonia got mutual aid from Brocton, the City of Dunkirk, East Dunkirk, Chautauqua County Emergency Services, Sunset Bay and Westfield firefighters.  Myers says three people who were home at the time in one half of the duplex... and, they got out before the flames became a problem.  He says one resident was treated for smoke inhalation, while one firefighter suffered a "very minor" injury.  The Red Cross is providing assistance to the residents of the building.  The county's Fire Investigation Team says carelessly discarded smoking materials is the listed cause.


City man facing additional charges following car pursuit...
A Jamestown man faces a slew of charges following last week's vehicle pursuit in which the driver almost struck two postal employees in the 200-block of Winsor Street.  City police say received a report of a stolen vehicle shortly before Noon last Thursday... and, it was spotted near the Dollar General store at 226 Winsor St.  However... the driver -- 25 year-old Jordan Thayer -- drove off -- nearly hitting the two people.  Thayer then got out of the car... and, tried to flee on foot.  Police caught him a short time later.  He's now charged with two Felony counts of first-degree reckless endangerment... third-degree unlawfully fleeing a police officer... third-degree criminal possession of stolen property, and a controlled substance... third-degree aggravated unlicensed operation... and, speeding.  He was jailed pending arraignment.


New Airport Restaurant opens... and, with it, officials hope it bolsters their case for resuming commercial air service...
The opening of a new restaurant and boutique shop in the main terminal of the Chautauqua County Airport near Jamestown is being viewed as the start of a renewed effort to bring back commercial air service.  During Tuesday's ribbon cutting at the 'Studio "D"/716 Boutique...' the subject of getting Essential Air Service back in place was mentioned by local officials.  One was Jamestown City Councilman Bill Reynolds... who says it's important to the city.  He says "we need this airport."  Also mentioning efforts to get Essential Air Service back at the airport was County Executive P.J. Wendel... who says having a restaurant and events venue will help bring more foot traffic to the airport.  Wendel says they're also looking to expand the facility... and if not get the EAS designation back... at least develop a "general aviation airport." 


New Jim Roselle Patio to open soon at Prendergast Library...
Work will begin later this month on a new patio to the left of the Cherry Street front doors of the James Prendergast Library in Jamestown.  The library's Special Projects and Facility Manager, Jenn Champ, says the patio will be in honor one of the library's most famous patrons -- long-time WJTN morning man, Jim Roselle.  Jim announced on WJTN radio for 63 years, right up to the time of his death in 2016.  As Jenn Champ says... when Jim Roselle wasn't on the air, he was at the library -- and family confirmed that for them.  The new patio will have space for special events and small performances... along with benches for reading.  The Roselle Patio will be officially dedicated on Saturday, June 24 as part of the library's annual block party.  


 

WJTN News Headlines for Tues., Apr. 11, 2023

Post sentenced to 125 years to life in child sex assault cases...
The Silver Creek man convicted of six counts of Felony sexual assault of a child earlier this year will spend the rest of his life in prison.  Chautauqua County District Attorney Jason Schmidt says the sentence against 27 year-old Dustin Post was handed up by County Court Judge David Foley Monday... and, will be served consecutively with a federal sentence Post is currently serving.  Schmidt says the total number of years would amount to 125 years to life in prison.  In a printed statement issued late Monday... Schmidt said "today's sentencing of Mr. Post ensures that he will spend the rest of his life behind bars... and, will never be free to harm another child ever again..." adding that "it is the only good that comes from this case."  The D.A. also called Post's child victims "the real heroes here."


Ellicott residents, attorneys and justice blast town board's move to eliminate one justice...
Ellicott Town Justice Marilyn Gerace went before the town board Monday night with a forceful request... not to cut her job.  Gerace told them their recent decision to eliminate one of the two justice positions was made without providing an "adequate opportunity for public input -- you failed your constituents."  The decision to eliminate one justice was made unanimously and without fanfare in March.  Since Gerace is up for re-election this year, it’s her position that would go, leaving Sally Jaroszynski as the remaining justice.  Among the many people who addressed the board were two local attorneys.  They praised the work of the Ellicott Court as one of the most efficient and effective in the county.  One of attorneys, Mike Goldman, questioned the legality of the move because the town code has a mandate to have two justices in a town the size of Ellicott.  Each justice earns around $14,000 a year.  The Ellicott board could reverse its decision, but took no steps in that direction Monday night.  No one on the board commented on the March decision.  Marilyn Gerace says she’s already gotten enough signatures to force a referendum on the matter, if needed.


Coon outlines plans for new, second ambulance to City Council...
City lawmakers in Jamestown hope to have more information next week on the financial impacts of purchasing a second ambulance... and, hiring eight new firefighters.  The City Council's Finance Committee has delayed action on a resolution at last night's work session to purchase a new ambulance for the fire department.  Finance Committee Chairwoman Kim Ecklund says they want more information on both anticipated revenues... and expenses.  Deputy Fire Chief Matt Coon says the basic vehicle will cost between $150,000 to $160,000.  Coon adds that patient loading and extrication equipment will cost another $65,000.  Radio equipment would cost about $15,000.  The total cost would be about $247,000.  There was also no action taken on the federal SAFER Grant that would cover the cost of hiring eight new firefighters -- mainly to staff the new ambulance.


Borrello blasts Democratic majority in state legislature after another budget extender is approved...
There's still no agreement on a new New York state budget... and, with that... the legislature has approved another one week extention of the current budget.  State Senator George Borrello says... though... policy remains the sticking point with Governor Kathy Hochul standing her ground on changes he says are "critically needed to the disastrous bail reform law."  Borrello says the Democrat-led legislature is still resisting those.  The Sunset Bay Republican says "this fiasco underscores my point that policy should not be in the budget, which is supposed to be a financial document."  Instead... he says the budget has become a vehicle for "controversial policy changes that could never survive a stand-alone vote."  Borrello adds that everyone who relies on state funding for programs and services are hurt by these "political maneuvers." 


City man accused of threatening workers at CVS, and being in possession of fentanyl...
A Jamestown man is accused of being in possession of Fentanyl while he threatened staff at the CVS Pharmacy in Brooklyn Square last Saturday afternoon.  City police were called to the store at 19 South Main St. shortly before 1 PM on a report of a disorderly man threatening employees.  After investigation... officers learned that 38 year-old Richard Neal had left the property following the incident... and, he was later found in the area.  Neal was taken into custody... and during a search... police found him in possession of a quantity of fentanyl and packaging material.  He's charged with second-degree harassment... seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance... and, second-degree criminally using drug paraphernalia.  Neal was jailed pending arraignment.


Ribbon is cut on new Studio 'D' Restaurant/716 Boutique at Jamestown Airport...
A well-know catering business in downtown Jamestown has now opened up a new restaurant and gift boutique at the Chautauqua County Airport near Jamestown.  The ribbon was cut Monday afternoon for "Studio D and 716 Boutigue... owned by Diana Scott... in the airport's restaurant space.  Scott says her business was approved for the space late last year by the county legislature after their lease was up at their location in the city... and, says they approached the county about the space late last year.  Scott says they're opening the new location today... will will be open during the week from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., and, will also be doing catering out of the restaurant location, which will also include an event venue.  The ribbon cutting was hosted by the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce.

WJTN News Headlines for Mon., Apr. 10, 2023

North county man killed in weekend tractor accident...
A Fredonia man was killed last weekend when his tractor rolled over while trying to pull another tractor that was stuck in some mud.  Sheriff's officers received a report of the accident on Lamberton Road about 3 p.m. Saturday.  On arrival... deputies found that 65 year-old Andrew Lawrence had been operating the tractor on his property when the vehicle rolled over backwards.  Officers say Lawrence was pronounced dead at the scene.  Fredonia Fire rescuers, and the county's Tech Rescue Team assisted at the scene.


House fire in Silver Creek ruled accidental...
An electrical issue on the second-floor of a Silver Creek home triggered flames that damaged to a home on Adams Street in the north county village.  Sheriff's Department Fire Investigation Team members say Silver Creek firefighters were called to the scene about 11:30 p.m. Saturday, and, investigatiors were called once the blaze was out -- about an hour later.  Investigators say the fire was accidental in nature due to the electrical problem.  No injuries were reported.


In light of "swatting" and large fight incidents near schools, JPS district looking at new safety measures...                       
School safety has been front and center the past 25 years.  However... it's taken on multiple facets now with 'swatting' and fights outside of Jamestown High School in recent months.  School Superintendent Kevin Whitaker says the recent, nationwide "swatting" incidents have become a major concern because the Jamestown schools were among those targeted.  'Swatting' is where a someone contacts local police about a phony "active shooter" at the school.  Whitaker says it's an effort to play "on people's emotions and fears about their kids in order to get a laugh or some notoriety... and, adds such calls cross a "moral and ethical line" in society.  These issues were brought up at a recent school board meeting by the board's two student members who expressed the feelings of fellow students about their safety.  He says... since the recent incidents... "8 to 10 people" have come forward to say they want to help with security... and, he says officials are looking to established a committee to look at new safety measures the district can take.  In addition... Dr. Whitaker noted that the now underway Capital Improvement Project will include new safety measures for schools... including security badge... alarm... and updated camera systems. 


City man arrested for damaging vehicle outside southside business...
A Jamestown man is accused of damaging another person's car at a business on the city's southside early last Saturday night.  Jamestown Police were called to the scene shortly before 7 p.m., and, found that 50 year-old Christopher Mekus had kicked the unoccupied vehicle in the parking lot... causing minor damage.  Officers say Mekus was then arrested for fourth-degree criminal mischief... and, was taken to the city jail pending arraignment.


City holds first full, outdoor Easter Egg Hunt since COVID Pandemic...
The air was crisp, but the conditions were perfect otherwise for an Easter Egg Hunt on Saturday morning, allowing the City of Jamestown to have its first full outdoor hunt since before COVID-19.  Mayor Eddie Sundquist scanned the crowd at Allen Park and said they're "very excited" to have it on a nice, dry weather day.  Sundquist adds they also had quite a gathering of kids."  The hunt took over the upper end of the park, with young people hunting in three separate age groups.  One of the most fortunate egg hunters was a 9-year-old Fletcher School student named Aniyah Payne.  She told our Dennis Webster that she found a golden egg as she was leaving the area she was looking for eggs in.  She was excited about winning a new bike because the one she had now is broken.  The candy and prizes all came from local businesses and city unions with considerable help from the Allen Park Women’s Club, as well.


Langworthy calls Trump indictment and arrest "an abuse of judicial resources...."
Local Congressman Nick Langworthy is calling this past week's arraignment of former President Donald Trump as "an abuse of judical resources."  Mr. Trump was arraigned on a 34-count Felony indictment pertaining to hush money payments to a porn star for an alleged trist several years ago.  Langworthy says Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg's case is nothing more than a "witch hunt" to fullfill a campaign promise... and, previous prosecutors had declined to prosecute.  A number of legal experts on both sides of the political spectrum even say the case againt Mr. Trump is weak.  However... many have been critical of what the former president said during his 25-minute speech made when he returned to Florida.  Langworthy would not criticize what Trump said... but, says he believes it should not hurt his case. 


City man arrested for allegedly stealing woman's property during domestic incident...
A Jamestown man has been arrested for allegedly stealing a woman's property during a domestic incident on the city's northside last week.  Jamestown police were called to the area of Sturges and Chestnut Streets about 10 a.m. Wednesday... and, victim told them that 19 year-old Joshua Tolliver had taken the property.  Officers were able to find Tolliver a short distance away... but, he ignored their commands to stop. Police say he finally stopped walking... but, when asked his name... gave a false one.  Tolliver was detained, and finally gave his real name to officers, but, then started to try and get away.  A physical altercation then ensued, but, he was finally taken into custody.  Tolliver was arrested for petty larceny, false personation... obstruction and resisting arrested. 

WJTN News Headlines for Fri., Apr. 7, 2023

City man arrested for driving stolen vehicle... and, almost hitting two people while trying to get away...
A Jamestown man has been arrested for being seen driving a stolen vehicle... which almost struck two people as he was trying to get away.  City police were called to the Dollar General store at 226 Winsor St. shortly before Noon Thursday... and, spotted the stolen car -- driving off from the scene.  However... officers say the driver, 25 year-old Jordan Thayer, nearly struck two postal workers in the area before getting out... and trying to run away.  Police say, though, that they caught Thayer after a short foot pursuit.  He was arrested on two felony counts of first-degree reckless endangerment... third-degree unlawful fleeing a Police Officer... third-degree criminal possession of Stolen Property... seventh-degree criminal possession of a Controlled Substance ... third-degree aggravated unlicensed operation... and, speeding.  Thayer was jailed pending arraignment.


Man accused of breaking into a business, and throwing molotov cocktail at another person is arrested...
A Jamestown man faces numerous charges after allegedly breaking into a business and stealing property... and, later throwing a molotov cocktail at another person.  City police were conducting a warrant check in the Winsor Street area for 33 year-old Robert Yates.  However... responding officers were told that Yates had fled the scene shortly before they arrived.  Police and the JPD K-9 Unit tracked Yates... and, found him on the back porch of a home... where he was arrested.  Police say Yates was wanted for two separate incidents this past Tuesday.  The first was the burglary... where he allegedly took more than one-thousand dollars worth of property from the business.  The second was from him throwing the molotov cocktail at the other person to try and set them on fire.  Yates is charged with third-degree burglary and fourth-degree grand larceny... and, first-degree criminal possession of a weapon... and, first-degree attempted assault.  Yates was jailed pending arraignment.


Wendel announces Apr. 12 meeting to further discuss Boat User Fee...
The idea of instituting a boat user fee in Chautauqua County to help pay for improving and maintaning Chautauqua Lake will be discussed at a meeting next week.  That from County Executive P.J. Wendel... who says that meeting will take place next Wednesday, April 12th.  Wendel says this comes in light of the county legislature's decision to keep the local occupancy tax at 5%.  He says "we're going back to the drawing board..." and still looking for ways to fund the lake's maintenance.  He proposed a 3% increase in the occupancy tax to 8%... and, if implemented next year... would have brought in about $2-million.  To criticism that the proposal to increase the occupancy tax was made at the "11th hour..." Wendel said the proposal did pass in committee... and, the county needed to begin action so it could be approved by the state by the November deadline.  Next Wednesday night's meeting begins at 5:30 p.m. in legislative chambers of the Gerace Office Building... and the public is invited.  Wendel made his comments for this coming weekend's "Community Spotlight" program on the our Media One Radio Group stations


Jamestown man arrested for incident in front of southside pizza shop...
A city man has been arrested for allegedly kicking and damaging another person's vehicle during an argument outside a pizza shop on Jamestown's southside.  City police were called to the Little Caesar's Pizza at 760 Foote Ave. just after 3 p.m. Tuesday... and, arrested 73 year-old Patrick Lamper.  Officers investigated... and found that Lamper had threatened the victim... causing them to fear for their safety.  Lamper was found and taken into custody for fourth-degree criminal mischief... and, second-degree harassment.  He was taken to the city jail... arraigned and released with an appearance ticket for city court.


Whitaker outlines objectives in proposed, $101-million, 2023-24 JPS budget...
There's no tax increase in the Jamestown Public School district's $101-million, 2023-24 budget proposal... but, there are some new positions, and programs.  That from School Superintendent Kevin Whitaker... who says having no tax increase was the main goal.  However... he says the fact they will get more state aid -- to bring it to where it should be -- is allowing them to address some serious needs.  Dr. Whitaker says one is adding an assistant principal's position to Fletcher Elementary School... which is now their second biggest school in terms of population.  He says they're also moving forward with what are called "Student Support Centers" in each of their schools.  Whitaker says that includes the middle and high schools... which will have a focus on English Language Arts, and math.  The concerns for elementary students are reading and literacy.  On our Dennis Webster Show Thursday... Dr. Whitaker said the student centers will assist in getting students that need the help to bring them up to "grade level" coming out of the COVID Pandemic.  The budget vote and school board elections will be held on Tuesday, May 16.


Two Dunkirk men arrested for Portland-area burglaries...
Two north county men are accused of being caught in the act of stealing property from a camper parked on Lake Avenue in the town of Portland.  Sheriff's deputies were called to a "burglary in progress" shortly after 2 p.m. Wednesday... and, found 47 year-old Todd Reardon, and 52 year-old Robert Ryen -- both of Dunkirk -- taking items from inside.  Deputies say they found that Reardon and Ryen had also broken into another structure on the property... and, took items from there.  Both men were arrested on two counts each of third-degree burglary... and, two counts of petty larceny.


 

WJTN News Headlines for Thurs., Apr. 6, 2023

City man arrested for business burglary, and throwing molotov cocktail at another person...
A Jamestown man faces numerous charges after allegedly breaking into a business and stealing property... and, later throwing a molotov cocktail at another person.  City police were conducting a warrant check in the Winsor Street area for 33 year-old Robert Yates.  However... responding officers were told that Yates had fled the scene shortly before they arrived.  Police and the JPD K-9 Unit tracked Yates... and, found him on the back porch of a home... where he was arrested.  Police say Yates was wanted for two separate incidents this past Tuesday.  The first was the burglary... where he allegedly took more than one-thousand dollars worth of property from the business.  The second was from him throwing the molotov cocktail at the other person to try and set them on fire.  Yates is charged with third-degree burglary and fourth-degree grand larceny... and, first-degree criminal possession of a weapon... and, first-degree attempted assault.  Yates was jailed pending arraignment.


Lakewood doctor faces new charge in sex abuse/rape investigation...
A Jamestown-area doctor has now been accused of sexual abuse after he was arrested late last week for statutory rape.  City police say members of their Investigative Section... with the help of Lakewood-Busti Police... took 36 year-old Oludotun Adegoke into custody Wednesday on a Jamestown City Court warrant for third-degree sexual abuse.  Police would only say this is part of "an ongoing sexual abuse investigation."  Adegoke was arrested at his home in Lakewood as well this time... and, was taken to the city jail pending arraignment.  Police say the investigation is continuing... and, anyone with more information is asked to call Jamestown Police at 716-483-7537... or the anonymous tip line at 483-TIPS... that's 483-8477.


Gas leak triggers accidental barn fire in Forestville...
A natural gas leak is the apparent cause of a fire early last Saturday evening in a barn in the Forestville area.  Chautauqua County Sheriff's Fire Investigation Team members say Forestville fire crews were called to the scene at 10996 Dennison Rd about 6 p.m., and, the FIT team was called in about 6:30.  They looked for the cause... and, determined the blaze originated on the east side wall at floor level due to the gas leak, near a wall heater.  No injuries were reported... and, the fire has been ruled accidental in nature.


Langworthy visits Chautauqua County Jail to learn more about "frontlines" in fight against crime, and fentanyl crisis...
Local Congressman Nick Langworthy got a tour of the Chautauqua County Jail during a visit to Mayville Tuesday... and learned more about what the Sheriff's Department needs   Langworthy met with Sheriff Jim Quattrone... and, says they talked about current issues... like dealing with increases in crime... and, the opioid drug crisis.  Langworthy adds "it's important to show solidarity with our men and women in uniform, and have a better understanding of what's going on."  One of the matters discussed at length was Quattrone asking for help to support the department's still-new "unsolved crimes unit."  Langworthy confirms the Sheriff's office has formally applied for federal funding... which would hopefully help solve these cold cases.  He adds that the victim's families deserve answers to what happened... and, receive justice in those cases.  In addition to the jail... the Buffalo-area Republican also got a look at the medical and mental health clinics in the facility.


Quattrone expresses aplpreciation to Langworthy for visit to CCSD...
Sheriff Quattrone says he appreciated Congressman Langworthy's visit to get a look at the Mayville facility.  He met and talked at length with Langworthy about funding for the Sheriff's Office Unsolved Crimes unit.  Quattrone says his department applied for the funding earlier this year... and, wanted to let him know what the money will be used for.  He says Langworthy also got a first-hand look at the operations at the jail... and, wanted to show what the custody, health and mental health facilities and clinics look like.  Langworthy's travels Wednesday took him to Cattaraugus and Allegany counties.


As JPS district's $86.5-million project begins, another capital project soon to be considered...
While there are a number of individual buildings and facilities that'll be touched by the $86.5-million Capital Improvement Project... not all will be.  That from Jamestown School Superintendent Kevin Whitaker after Tuesday's ground-breaking on the project at the district's Tech Academy on East Fourth Street.  The academy, the high school and Fletcher Elementary School are three of the main focal points of this project... along with the bus garage.  The referendum was approved by voters in May of 2021.  However... Dr. Whitaker does say they are looking at upgrades to other buildings in the future... and, that will likely require another vote by the public at some point down the road.  He say they really wanted to get to this group of projects first. 


Fire extensively damages historic Hotel in northern Pennsylvania...
Fire people were taken to a hospital for treatment after an early morning fire at a northern Pennsylvania hotel that dates back to the 19th century.  The A--P reports the blaze on the third floor of the Hotel Crittenden in downtown Coudersport in Potter County was reported shortly after 6:30 a.m. Wednesday.  Chief Bryan Phelps of the Coudersport Volunteer Fire Department said 100 to 125 firefighters were called to the scene.  Phelps said the blaze was under control by late morning... and, five people were transported to local hospitals for treatment of injuries; he said he had no update on their conditions. 


 

WJTN News Headlines for Wed., Apr. 5, 2023

County Emergency Services Dir. cautions about potentially damaging winds with thunderstorms later today... 
Chautauqua County officials are warning of a severe storm possibility today after attending breifings with local and national weather reporting organizations.  County Director of Emergency Services... Noel Guttman... says weather reports for Wednesday call for showers and thunderstorms in the morning.  During the mid-morning and early afternoon... Guttman says temperatures are expected to rise to around the mid-70s.   Showers and thunderstorms are then expected to redevelop in the late afternoon or early evening hours and are expected to bring damaging wind gusts.  Guttman says National Grid and NYSEG are pre-positioning crews to be able to quickly respond.  County officials encourage residents to take precautions, avoid and report downed power lines, and follow any warnings that are issued about the storm.


Jamestown woman arrested as fugitive from justice...
A city woman is jailed pending extradition following her arrest on several warrants from multiple police agencies in New York and Pennsylvania.  Jamestown police say a patrol in the area of West Second and Cherry Street spotted 44 year-old Sarah Johnson walking on foot shortly before Midnight Monday night... and, she was taken into custody on warrants issued in both the city, and town of Ellicott.  Officers later found that Johnson had several more warrants for her arrest in Pennsylvania from Warren County... the city of Erie, and Millcreek Township -- all for retail theft.  Johnson was take to the city jail on three counts of being a Fugitive from Justice... in addition to the local warrants.  


JPS breaks ground on new $86.5-million capital improvement project...
Ground has been broken to officially begin the Jamestown Public School's multi-year, $86.5-million Capital Improvement Project.  During a ceremony in front of the Tech Academy on East Fourth Street... School Superintendent Kevin Whitaker said they're "doing a lot" to "keep kids warm, safe and dry."  Whitaker was joined by school board members... and, representatives from the district's architectural firm... and, the general contractor.  He says much of the project... which was approved by district voters in May of 2021... will be upgrades to a number of facilities, including HVAC, roof, sidewalk and other upgrades.  In addition... he says they'll be increasing the size of many classroom -- especially in the high school -- after the Covid pandemic.  Young and Wright Architectural Project Coordinator Eric Zeffiro says one of their major areas of focus will be the Tech Academy... where they'll replace all the window, and add a new, secure entrance.  Dr. Whitaker says the largest phase will be Phase-Two... which will involve major renovations to Jamestown High School... including a complete upgrade to the cafeteria.


Whitaker says JPS Capital Improvement Project includes emphasis on safety...
Safety and security has come to the fore-front as a major concern after the most recent school shooting in Nashville, Tennessee.  With that in mind... Jamestown Superintendent Kevin Whitaker says that was already one of the key focuses of this most recent capital project.  Whitaker says that will include new, and upgraded security cameras, and door systems.  He says upgrading the security of entryways in the $86.5-million capital project will mainly focus on the Tech Academy... and, Persell Middle School.  He says the Persell project has been underway as part of a "capital outlay" project in recent years.


Unattended cooking blamed for Dunkirk house fire...
A major fire that extensively damaged a home in the north county city of Dunkirk Tuesday afternoon has been blamed on cooking oil left unattended on a stove top.  That's the ruling of the Chautauqua County Fire Investigation Team after it was called to investigate the blaze at 137 Maple Ave., which was reported shortly after 3 p.m.  The fire and response led to the closing down of Route 60 in that area while firefighting efforts were underway.  Dunkirk firefighters were joined by Fredonia and East Dunkirk at the scene.  No injuries were reported.


Yorkshire man arrested following vehicle chase in Catt. Co...
A vehicle chase throught multiple towns in Cattaraugus County recently led to the arrested of a Yorkshire man for being in possession of methamphetamine.  Sheriff's officers in Little Valley say they tried to stop 49 year-old David Smith after he allegedly failed to yield on Worden Road... and, wouldn't stop for deputies.  Officers say they found Smith in possession of the drugs... and, he was taken into custody on the failure to yield charge... and, multiple others.  He was arraigned and given appearance tickets for Yorkshire Town Court.


Fredonia trustee responds to offer by Rosas to help with water issues...
A proposal from Dunkirk Mayor Willie Rosas to offer assistance to the village of Fredonia as it deals with ongoing water issues has received a response from a village trustee.  During Monday night's Village Board meeting... Trustee Jim Lynden spoke out against the proposal... saying they have not asked the North County Water District, nor the city of Dunkirk, to take over services provided to village water customers.  Lynden says trustees previously rejected an offer to join the North County Water District after conducting professional research.  He supports the continued use of the village's water system... which includes a reservoir and water treatment plant.  In a news release issued Sunday... Rosas indicated the city, which also supplies water to the North County Water District, could -- in combination with the district -- supply the village with about 1.3 million gallons of water on a daily basis.
 

WJTN News Headlines for Tues., Apr. 4, 2023

Lakewood man arrested in Jamestown on drug and weapons charges...     
A Lakewood man has been arrested for drug and weapon's possession following a traffic stop on Jamestown's eastside.  City police say they stopped 32 year-old Dustin Turner shortly after 1 a.m. Monday in the area of East Sixth and Fulton Streets for making an improper turn.  Their investigation found that Turner was in possession of a loaded pistol with a high capacity magazine... along with a quantity of pills that tested positive for Methamphetamine.  Officers say Turner was taken into custody without incident... and, taken to the city jail on charges of second and third-degree criminal possession of a weapon... and seventh-degree criminal possession of a Controlled Substance.  He was jailed pending arraignment.


Silver Creek man arrested on illegal gun possession charges...
A north county man is accused of violating a pair of court orders by being in possession of firearms.  Sheriff's deputies say the department's Criminal Investigation Division began an probe into the violations by 31 year-old Tyler Crouse of Silver Creek... and, a warant was issued for his arrest.  Officers say they took Crouse into custody last Saturday on two counts of second-degree criminal contempt... and one count of fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon.  He was issued appearance tickets for Hanover Town Court.


Work on late state budget continues, as one-week extender is approved...
Work continues on a new budget agreement in Albany... but, the New York State Legislature has approved a one-week extender allowing bills and state employees to be paid.  However... lawmakers would not be paid through the extender.  One local legislator... State Senator George Borrello... says he does not expect a spending plan to be approved this week, either.  Borrello say, even if an agreement is stuck today, there's probably not enough time to get bills out and on legislators desks in time.  He says the main sticking point is Gov. Kathy Hochul's proposed changes to the State's Bail Reform Law... which far left progressive lawmakers oppose.  The budget deadline was last Saturday... Apr. 1.  Hochul proposed a $227-billion spending plan for fiscal year 2023-24... but, both the Senate and Assembly one-house budgets are each over $230-billion.


State Cannibus Control Board approves 99 dispensaries after injunction is lifted...
New York regulators approved 99 new provisional licenses for recreational marijuana dispensaries Monday as they try to speed up the rollout of a legal market that had been impeded by a court ruling.  New York legalized recreational marijuana for adult use two years ago, although only seven shops have opened so far.  The rollout was slowed in part by a federal court ruling last fall that put retail licensing on hold in some regions, including Brooklyn and the Buffalo area, and legal operations are also undermined by a proliferation of unlicensed stores.  A federal appeals court lifted most of that injunction last week, paving the way for the Cannabis Control Board to provisionally approve licenses in those areas as part of the 99 green-lighted Monday.  Four of the dispensaries will be in Western New York.  Applicants still need to complete a supplemental application. 


Bemus Point man arrested following fight in Ellington...
A Bemus Point man has been arrested for allegedly getting involved in a fight with three people... including two that were under the age of 17.  Sheriff's officers were called to a location in the town of Ellington shortly after 3 p.m. last Sunday... and, investigated the incident.  Deputies say they arrested 26 year-old Cody Dickerson and, charged him with three counts of second-degree harassment... and, two counts of endangering the welfare of a child.  Dickerson was taken to the county jail pending arraignment.


City's annual Easter Egg Hunt to hopefully return outdoors at Allen Park Saturday...
Jamestown Parks and Recreation officials are hoping to have the city's annual Easter Egg Hunt outdoors this year for the first time since the COVID Pandemic began.  That from City Parks Manager Dan Stone... who says the hunt will again be held... beginning at 11 a.m. this Saturday... in the upper level of Allen Park.  Stone says they'll be closing off the roads into that part of the park about 10:30 a.m.  If there is inclement weather... he says they'll move activities into the Allen Park skating rink.  Stone says this should officially be the 75th anniversary of the city's Easter Egg Hunt.  He says they have several thousand candy eggs and special prize eggs that'll be place around the park in the three locations they'll have for each of three age groups.  He adds that "Wiffy" the Jamestown Tarp Skunks mascot... and, the Easter Bunny will be on hand.


City of Jamestown still cleaning up damage from last Saturday's wind storm...
The clean-up was still going on Monday after last Saturday's major wind event that cut power -- at least briefly -- to thousands of local utility customers.  There were a number of trees that were either knocked down... or uprooted entirely by the winds... which reached 59 mph at the Jamestown Airport.  City Parks Manager Dan Stone says it was a "crazy day" with a number of calls... and, work was continuing as the new week began.  Stone says they probably lost 8 to 10 city trees... and, they were also working with the Board of Public Utilities to remove trees and limbs from power lines, and other clean-up. 

WJTN News Headlines for Mon., Apr. 3, 2023

Chautauqua County first responders, dispatchers have busy day with stormy, windy conditions...
One Deputy Fire Coordinator in Chautauqua County said it all on Facebook Sunday: "Wow... what an April Fool's joke yesterday's weather was."  A strong and sustained cold front raced in from the west... bringing strong, gusty winds... rain and even some snow at one point.  Most residents reported power going out for a few minutes during the day.  However... in some scattered areas... there were outages that lasted several hours.  At the Chautauqua County Sheriff's Dept. Dispatch Center... it was heard at one point there were more than 100 calls pending... and, the coordinator said "they handled all of them outstandingly, and professionally."  Large trees, parts of trees, and utility poles were down in several places... and, crews were still working on Sunday to repair or replace poles that were knocked down.


City man arrested for threatening another person with a knife during domestic incident...
A Jamestown man has been arrested after allegedly threatening another person with a knife during a domestic incident late last week.  City police were called to a location on the southside shortly after 3 p.m. last Friday... and, found the victim had been threatened by 23 year-old Geovany Santiago... and, feared for their safety.  Officers arrested Santiago for second-degree menacing... and, he was taken to the city jail without further incident.  He was jailed pending arraignment.


Bemus Point man, WWII veteran, celebrates 100th Birthday...
A retired Air Force veteran who took part in one of the most famous rescue missions of World War-Two celebrated his 100th birthday in Bemus Point yesterday.  Phil Wight was drafted in 1941 while a senior in High school... and wound up in the 8th Wing of the U.S. Air Force... which was heavily-involved in the "Chowhound" flights that dropped food and other necessities to the people of northern Holland near the end of the war.  Wight enjoying the attention... joking that I'm honored to be honored."  "Operation Chowhound" took place between Apr. 29 and "Victory in Europe Day" on May 8, 1945... the U.S. and it's allies were involved in flying more than 5,500 sorties and dropped an estimated 10,000 of food for thousands of starving Dutch who were still cut off by the Germans.  Some years later... Wight says he ran into a man from Amsterdam, Holland... who received some of the food they dropped.  The man expressed appreciation for what the allies did.  Wight entered and finished college when he returned... married, and had four children.  He now has numerous grand-children and great-grandchildren who were on hand for Sunday's festivities at The Lawson Center in Bemus Point. 


City man arrested after damaging windshield with piece of brick...
A Jamestown resident has been arrested for allegedly damaging the windshield on a Jeep with a piece of brick last Friday afternoon.  City police were called to a report of a disorderly person, and criminal mischief on the city's southside just after 3 p.m., and, found that 22 year-old Taylor Fish had struck the Jeep Liberty's windshield... causing damage.  Fish was arrested for fourth-degree criminal mischief, and was also found to be wanted on several outstanding arrest warrants out of Jamestown City Court.  Fish was jailed pending arraignment.


City woman arrested for threatening other person during domestic incident...
A Jamestown woman has been arrested for allegedly making threats to harm another person by way of text messages.  City police were called to an "in-progress" domestic dispute on Jamestown's southside late last week... and, were told that 21 year-old Alivia Mothersheld had made the threats to the victim.  Mothershed was at the scene... and, was taken into custody on one-count of second-degree aggravated harassment.  She was taken to the city jail pending arraignment.


City Council approves more than $300,000 in ARPA funds for Chadakoin restoration and maintenance...
The effort to clean-up and restore the shoreline along the Chadakoin River in Jamestown has received another major boost from the American Rescue Plan.  The City Council this past week approved another $327,000 in ARPA funding to restore and improve the river east of the Warner Dam and the Main Street Bridge.  Lawmakers approved the funding last week following brief comments by Chautauqua Watershed Conservancy Director, Twan Leenders.  Leenders says several projects will be assisted by the funding... the first being cleaning out the basin east of the Main Street Bridge.  He says another is dealing with two beaver dams in the area of Canal Street... and, are much of the reason for flooding on Jones and Gifford Ave. during heavy rains and ice melt.  In addition... Leenders says there are three other projects to restore riverbank areas between the Warner Dam and North Main Street.  Leenders says, because of the water level kept by the dam, those banks are in eminent threat of collapse.  


JHS Classes raised nearly $7,000 in Battle of the Classes for MHA...
Jamestown High School's annual Battle of the Classes returned to pre-COVID status last week... and raised nearly $7,000 for the Mental Health Association in Chautauqua County.  The Battle... held at the McElrath Gymnasium last Thursday... raised $6,936 for MHA.  MHA Executive Director Steven Cobb says they're grateful to JHS for the donation... adding that proceeds will help benefit their “Code Blue Warming Center” established earlier this year.  Cobb adds that "this expansion into homeless/shelter services has created new areas of need the MHA is working to directly address in our community.”  The Class of 2024 won this year's event handily... raising just over $4,100. 

Archives:

2024-02 | 2024-01 | 2023-12 | 2023-11 | 2023-10 | 2023-09 | 2023-08 | 2023-07 | 2023-06 | 2023-05 | 2023-04 | 2023-03 | 2023-02 | 2023-01 | 2022-12 | 2022-11 | 2022-10 | 2022-09 | 2022-08 | 2022-07 | 2022-06 | 2022-05 | 2022-04 | 2022-03 | 2022-02 | 2022-01 | 2021-12 | 2021-11 | 2021-10 | 2021-09 | 2021-08 | 2021-07 | 2021-06 | 2021-05 | 2021-04 | 2021-03 | 2021-02 | 2021-01 | 2020-12 | 2020-11 | 2020-10 | 2020-09 | 2020-08 | 2020-07 | 2020-06 | 2020-05 | 2020-04 | 2020-03 | 2020-02 | 2020-01 | 2019-12 | 2019-11 | 2019-10 | 2019-09 | 2019-08 | 2019-07 | 2019-06 | 2019-05 | 2019-04 | 2019-03 | 2019-02 | 2019-01 | 2018-12 | 2018-11 | 2018-10 | 2018-09 | 2018-08 | 2018-07 | 2018-06 | 2018-05 | 2018-04 | 2018-03 | 2018-02 | 2018-01 | 2017-12 | 2017-11 | 2017-10 | 2017-09 | 2017-08 | 2017-07 | 2017-06 | 2017-05 | 2017-04 | 2017-03 | 2017-02 | 2017-01 | 2016-12 | 2016-11 | 2016-10 | 2016-09 | 2016-08 | 2016-07 | 2016-06 | 2016-05 | 2016-04 | 2016-03 | 2016-02 | 2016-01 | 2015-12 | 2015-11 | 2015-10 | 2015-09 | 2015-08 | 2015-07 | 2015-06 | 2015-05 | 2015-04 | 2015-03 | 2015-02 | 2015-01 | 2014-12 | 2014-11 | 2014-10 | 2014-09 | 2014-08 | 2014-07 | 2014-06 | 2014-05 | 2014-04 | 2014-03 | 2014-02 | 2014-01 | 2013-12 | 2013-11 | 2013-10 | 2013-09 | 2013-08 | 2013-07 | 2013-06 | 2013-05 | 2013-04 | 2013-03 | 2013-02 | 1969-12