Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Olean Accused of a Decade of Sewage Neglect

The City of Olean has been accused of neglecting its sewage treatment system for over a decade. Public Works director Tom Windus said that the New York Department of Environmental Conservation has been pressing the city to make good on a 2001 order to fix problems in the sewage treatment system, which have had the potential to release untreated sewage into the Allegheny River. The city could face $200 million in fines if they don’t take action soon. Corrective legislation was on the agenda for last night’s common council meeting. 

Underage Drinking Party Busted in Allegany Town

Six local teenagers will be expected in court after Cattaraugus County Sheriff’s deputies busted an underage drinking party in the Town of Allegany. Deputies say the party took place at a residence on Family Lane Road. The six youths were issued appearance tickets for possession of alcohol by a minor under 21. Also, Christopher Shevlin was arrested for 1st Degree Unlawful Dealing With a Minor for allegedly providing the alcohol. They’ll all be due in Town of Allegany Court at a later date. 

Bradford Man Faces Rape Charges

A Bradford man is facing rape charges for an incident involving a 17 year-old girl. State Police say that 19 year-old Theodore Miller had unwanted sex with the girl at a private residence in West Branch Township in Potter County on July 10. Miller is charged with rape and indecent assault. He is currently in the McKean County Jail on unrelated charges.  

Ripley Man Struck by a Train

A local man is injured after being hit by a train Tuesday night at the South State Street rail road crossing in Ripley. Chautauqua County sheriff deputies say that 23 year-old Timothy Luke Jr. was crossing the tracks when he was struck by a Norfolk-Southern train. He was taken to UPMC-Hamot for treatment for a serious leg injury.

E. Coli Bacteria Found in Local Water Supply

A sample taken from the Daguscahonda Public Water System had failed a test for E. coli bacteria contamination, according to a statement from The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection on Tuesday. The DEP is recommending that all residents of Daguscahonda who receive their water from the public system begin boiling all drinking water immediately. According to DEP Northwest Region director Kelly Burch, the presence of E. coli bacteria is an indicator that the water may be contaminated with human or animal waste.

Innocence of Muslims Man to be Questioned About Probation Violations

The California man behind an anti-Muslim film that sparked violence in the Middle East is expected to be asked by a judge Wednesday whether he violated his probation for a 2010 bank fraud conviction. Federal prosecutors said Mark Youssef had eight probation violations, including lying to his probation officer and using aliases. If Youssef denies those allegations, a judge will then likely schedule an evidentiary hearing. Youssef has been in a federal detention center since Sept. 28 after he was arrested for the probation violations and deemed a flight risk by a magistrate judge. He went into hiding after a 14-minute trailer for the movie "Innocence of Muslims" was posted on YouTube, sparking worldwide outrage.

Successful Drug Bust Leads to Arrest

A drug bust in Cattaraugus County resulted in about 23 pounds of marijuana being seized from a home in Napoli, NY. According to the Cattaraugus County Sheriff’s office, deputies searched the home of 60 year old James Leach and found a marijuana drying room. Leach has been charged with first-degree possession of marijuana and unlicensed growing of cannabis. Leach is being held in Cattaraugus County Jail in lieu of bail. 

Energy Company Files Lawsuit Against Allegany

EverPower LLC, the developer of the Allegany Wind Project, made an announcement last week that they would be filing a law suit against the town of Allegany. Allegany Wind claims that recently released plans to remove the wind overlay zoning district would prohibit the previously approved wind farm and violate the contract between EverPower and Allegany. 

Clymer Teenager in the Manure After Drink Driving...A Horse

A Clymer teenager is accused of operating his horse and buggy while under the influence. According to State Police the 17-year-old drove the buggy while drunk and lost consciousness, resulting in the buggy crashing and causing several hundred dollars of damage to a nearby garden and truck. The teenager was arrested for fourth-degree criminal mischief.

4th Annual Pumpkin Shoot to Raise Funds for Veterans

For the fourth year in a row, instead of carving pumpkins Besecker and Coss will be launching them. The fourth annual Great Pumpkin Shoot will take place on November 4th at noon behind the Besecker and Coss store on Route 417. The pumpkin launch is a fundraiser to raise money for the Joint Veterans Van Service of Cattaraugus and Allegany Counties. The van service is run by volunteer drivers who help take veterans to doctors appointments.

Potter County Non-Profits to Receive Cash Grant

Six Potter County non-profit organisations will receive a $500 grant at the upcoming Twin Tiers Community Foundation 10th anniversary celebration. The celebratory dinner will be held on Saturday October 20th at the Coudersport golf club. To increase their chances of receiving one of the $500 grants all Potter County non-profit organisations are encouraged to attend the celebration.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Sandusky Sentenced 30 Years

Former Penn State assistant football coach, Jerry Sandusky, has been sentenced to at least 30 years in prison and no more than 60 years in the child sexual abuse scandal Tuesday morning. Judge John Cleland sentenced the 68-year-old man just three months after Sandusky was charged with 45 counts of child sexual abuse. Sandusky continues to plead his innocence and does plan to appeal. 

Chloride Causing Problems for Small Oil and Gas Producers Across Pennsylvania's Northern Tier

Hundreds of jobs could be lost and it potentially could be the end for the American Refining Group's Bradford refinery according to an article in this morning's Bradford Era. The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection is proposing a major change in the way chloride is disposed of in the Commonwealth. State Representative Martin Causer of McKean County says that changes would have a devastating effect on producers.

Cattaraugus County Sheriff Speaks Out in Support of Domestic Violence Victims

About 1.3 million women are victimized by domestic violence every year, according to the U.S. Department of Justice. Here in Cattaraugus County, statistic show that over 500 women and children are victimized yearly. October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month (NDVAM), a time for law enforcement agencies, victim assistance organizations and community leaders to work jointly to generate greater public awareness about domestic violence, prevention strategies and effective responses for victims. Cattaraugus County Sheriff Timothy S. Whitcomb wants domestic violence victims to be aware that there is vital information that can help them. It can be found through two victim notification programs offered by the Sheriff’s Office through the New York State Sheriffs’ Association Institute, Inc.  

Buffalo Courthouse to be Named After Jamestown Supreme Court Justice

U.S. Senators Kirsten Gillibrand and Charles E. Schumer announced last week that President Obama has signed their bill to name the Buffalo Federal Courthouse after Robert H. Jackson, the distinguished Supreme Court Justice raised in Jamestown. Jackson became famous for his role as chief prosecutor in the international Nuremberg Trials. 

Concern Rises as More Meth Labs are Broken Into

Authorities are on high alert as the number of methamphetamine lab related crimes rise in Allegany County, Potter County and McKean County. Allegany County has the most, with about six different labs raided just this year; one just off Main Street in Wellsville was broken into back in March and one lab actually blew up in Andover last June. During a press conference held last week by New York State troopers, residents were advised to familiarize themselves with the substances that are used in cooking the drug, which according to police is a fairly simple process.

Attica Inmate Caught Smuggling Drugs

An Attica inmate is facing more charges after trying to smuggle in drugs. New York State police say that 31-year-old Shakin Gordon was found in possession of heroin and marijuana which were wrapped in latex and plastic. He is facing charges of promoting prison contraband in the first degree among others. 

Former Coach Convicted of Child Sex Abuse Speaks Out in Video Tape

Former assistant Football Coach Jerry Sandusky will know today how long he will be spending in Pennsylvania State Prison. Even Sandusky’s own attorneys say that the 68 year old could spend the rest of his years in state prison. Sandusky released a video tape from jail on Monday protesting his innocence and pointing the finger at his accusers. In the tape he says "In my heart, I know I did not do these alleged, disgusting acts." Since his conviction back in June of 45 counts of child sex abuse, he has been held in solidarity confinement in the Center County Correctional Facility in Bellfonte. 

Cuba Bridge Renamed in Honor of Fallen Marine

A bridge in Cuba, NY has been formally dedicated to a Marine from New York who was killed last year in Afghanistan. The bridge carries Interstate 86 over State Route 305 in Allegany County into the village of Cuba. The bridge was named after Sergeant Mark Bradley who was only 25 when he died overseas on June 15 2011. The newly dedicated “Sergeant Mark Bradley Memorial Bridge was officially unveiled during a ceremony at the start of the Columbus Day weekend. 

Bradford to Spend $2.1 Million on Sewer Extension

Another sewer project is moving forward in McKean County. Bradford Township supervisors tentatively accepted a $2.1 million bid from Dave Roman for the excavation of Reynoldsville to extend sewer lines along parts of Minard run road, Rutherford run road, Browntown road, and Hedgehog lane.  The PA department of environmental protection is requiring the work as part of Bradford Township’s Act 537 sewage facilities plan.

Refinery Changes Could Put Hundreds of Jobs at Risk

Another possible pitfall has come to light for small oil and gas producers across Pennsylvania’s northern tier. This time the problem is chloride. The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection is proposing a major change in the way chloride is disposed of in the commonwealth.  State representative Martin Causer of McKean County says the changes would have a devastating effect on producers. Hundreds of jobs could be lost and it could potentially mean the end for the American Refining Group’s Bradford refinery according to an article in this morning’s Bradford Era. 

Monday, October 8, 2012

Shinagawa Speaks Out Against Free Trade Agreements

Democratic candidate, Nate Shinagawa spoke at the Stand for the American Worker Rally in Olean on Saturday, just days after Dal-Tile negotiations fell through and the announcement of 174 jobs losses are set for January. Shinagawa and other local labor leaders at the rally echoed the concern over free trade agreements that are hurting the manufacturing industry of the Southern Tier. “These agreements supported by my opponent, Congressman Tom Reed, are hurting our district and sending jobs overseas,” said Shinagawa. He went on to say, “My heart goes out to the families across the district that are hurting from manufacturing job losses." Shinagawa added that he believes that given the opportunity the "Southern Tier workforce and manufacturing can out-work and out-compete anyone around the world.” 

Congressman Tom Reed Backed by National Rifle Association

Congressman Tom Reed has received backing from the National Rifle Association Political Victory Fund. The NRA recently announced their endorsement of Congressman Tom Reed by saying Tom Reed is committed to protecting the Right to Keep and Bear Arms guaranteed to all Americans, His strong dedication and voting record have earned him an “A” rating from the NRA. Who have said that they proudly endorse him for re-election to the U.S. House of Representatives.

Transportation Security Accused of Stealing from Luggage

Last week Senator Schumer called on the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to address the recent concern that TSA agents were stealing items from traveler’s luggage at security checkpoints. Some items that were reportedly stolen include iPads, cameras, laptops and video game consoles. Now Schumer is asking for random and frequent audits conducted by undercover agents in an attempt to stop TSA agents from stealing personal property.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Governor Looking To Increase Organ Donors In New York

New legislation is being signed to increase the number people willing to be organ donors. Andrew M. Cuomo today signed a bill to boost the number of New Yorkers who register for organ and tissue donation. New York State has one of the lowest organ donor rates in the nation, with only 18 percent of adult’s enrolled donors, far less than the national average of 43 percent. The legislation, known as "Lauren's Law," adds new language to Department of Motor Vehicle application documents that is designed to encourage additional individuals to enroll with the Donate Life Registry for organ and tissue donation.

P.A. Pharmacists Celebrating American Pharmacists Month

 The Pennsylvania Pharmacists Association, in celebration of American Pharmacists Month, is continuing its series of information on the challenges and solutions to controlling pharmacy and health care costs. This second in the series explores the waste and related issues that frequently occurs when patients are forced to use mail order pharmacies.
“Mail order medications actually can contribute to increased medication waste and higher costs,” said Rob Frankil, PPA President. The National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA) has compiled many specific examples of mail order pharmacy waste which were sent in by participating pharmacies in the Dispose My Meds Program. 

TSA Workers Accused of Theft

If your looking to travel by plane this weekend, keep your valuables close so you make sure you keep track of all of the items you pack so that you don’t get them stolen… at the airport. Yesterday Senator Schumer called on the Transportation Security Administration known as the TSA to address the recent concern that TSA agents were stealing items from traveler’s luggage at security checkpoints. Some items that were reportedly stolen were including iPads, cameras, laptops and video game consoles. Now Schumer is asking for random and frequent audits conducted by undercover agents to catch the TSA agents from stealing personal property.

Gainesville Man Dead After Farming Accident

A Gainesville man is dead tonight after a fatal farming accident that happened yesterday. Thursday afternoon, NYS Police out of Warsaw responded to an agricultural accident on school road in the town of Gainesville. An 86-year-old man was harvesting potatoes when he was hit by a farm vehicle. The victim was pronounced dead at the scene. 

Correctional Officer Arrested For Contraband

A corrections officer is in custody today after authorities say that he brought in contraband to the inmates in the Lakeview Correctional Facility in Brocton. According to New York State Police, 53-year-old German Lesmes of Fredonia, NY was arrested for bringing contraband into the facility. The contraband is considered a food item, which is a violation of the NYS Correctional Services rules and regulations. The State Police, NYS Department of Correctional Services and the Chautauqua County DA’s office have been investigating Lesmes for the past 8 months. 

Man Causes Disturbance In Courtroom; Injures One

 A man had to be removed from a Ripley courtroom after he yelled more than just “I OBJECT.” Deputies say that the man became loud and abusive and attacked a person. Giustino Nasca, 21, an inmate in the Chautauqua County Jail, was in court yesterday to face some misdemeanor charges. Nasca became irate and was directing his anger towards courtroom personnel. Authorities say he then attacked a person causing minor injuries. He was charged with third degree assault and disorderly conduct following that outburst. 

Shinigawa And Other Local Leaders To Speak In Olean This Weekend

This Saturday at Lincoln Park in Olean, Congressional Candidate, Nate Shinigawa, will be speaking in solidarity to hundreds of skilled labor workers from around the Southern Tier at the “Stand for the American Worker Rally” on Saturday morning. IBEW Vice President Donald Siegel and other local leaders will also be speaking at the rally.   

Dal-Tile Company Shutting Down In Olean

174 people will go to work today at Dal-Tile knowing that they will be out of a job in two months. Dal-Tile made the announcement yesterday that they are shutting down the Olean plant and beefing up the Gettysburg plant in Pennsylvania. The tile plant has been a staple in the Olean area for years. A press conference was held in Dallas, Texas yesterday afternoon about the fate of Olean’s Dal-tile Company. The company has decided to close its Olean location and consolidate and expand operations into Gettysburg, P.A. Approximately 64 positions will be added in Gettysburg, leaving nearly 174 people jobless by the end of January 2013. 
 President of Dal-Tile John Turner Jr. said, “Though made with careful consideration, declining demand for this type of tile and our excess production capacity necessitated our decision to close the Olean facility. It was an extremely difficult decision given our employees and history at the site. However, our manufacturing operations at Gettysburg provide the capacity, flexibility and cost effectiveness that we require to meet customer needs.” The company notified their employees in Olean and Gettysburg earlier this morning. Dal-Tile is the largest manufacturer of ceramic tile and natural stone products across North America.