The Weekly Local Public Affairs Radio Program
The Community Spotlight Local Public Affairs Program airs on all five of the Media One Group radio stations each weekend.
News Director Terry Frank sits down with Government and Community officials to get the answers to your questions.
The Chautauqua County Executive appears the first week of each month and City of Jamestown Mayor appears the second week of each month. The other weeks will feature a variety of community leaders and special guests.
The Program airs on WJTN Saturday's at 8:40 A.M. and again on Sunday morning at 8:45 A.M.. Airs on WWSE Sunday's at 7:00 A.M., WHUG on Sunday at 6:30 A.M., WQFX on Sunday at 5:30 A.M., WKSN on Sunday at 6:30 A.M..
Click Episode to Listen. Right-click and 'Save Link As' to Download
Tina Scott and Tom Rankin with Prendergast Library
June 26th, 2017 03:59pm | Duration:
Our Terry Frank talks with Prendergast Library Exec. Director Tina Scott, and Library Board President Tom Rankin about the board's recent decision to sell about 40 artworks to raise funding for the cash-strapped library. Scott and Rankin says that Sotheby's Auction House personnel were on hand last Tuesday to begin moving the artwork out, and they completed work on Wed. We also talk about the need to raise revenues in the wake of 20 to 25-percent cuts the past couple of years. Library officials have been working to close a 165,000 dollar deficit in the wake of a 250,000 dollar cut from the city. We also talk with Tina Scott about recent and upcoming events.
We talk this week with National Comedy Center Executive Director Journey Gunderson about progress being made on funding, and constructing the new facility on West Second St. in Jamestown. She tells our Terry Frank that they have all the funding in place now for the approximately 30-million dollar effort. She says most of the outside work is completed, and they're beginning work on the exterior exhibits. We also talk with her about the upcoming week on Comedy at Chautauqua Inst. July 31 - August 6, 2017, and the Lucille Ball Comedy Festival on Aug. 3-6.
This week, Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi joins us to talk about the 10 projects awarded about 9.7-million dollars in state Downtown Revitalization Initiative Funding. Teresi tells our Terry Frank that he's pleased and excited by the recent announcement, but, he also expressed disappointment over the two projects that were not funded in the DRI. He also previews this week's public hearing on the proposed annexation of 4-acres of land the Board of Public Utilities' Dow St. Substation is located on from Falconer to the city. We also discuss the city's annual Summer Concert Series returning to the Allen Park Bandshell this year, beginning June 14th.
Chautauqua County Executive Vince Horrigan talks with our Terry Frank this week on a number of issues, including the good news that 10 projects will share in just under 10-million dollars in funding through the state's Downtown Revitalization Initiative. Horrigan says when the county's cities are doing well, the county is doing well. We also discuss the start of Horrigan's "100 Days of Summer Safety" which began Memorial Day Weekend. He says there will be safety programs put on during the summer months focusing on safe driving, boating and others to try and avoid tragedy this Summer.
Chautauqua Co. Office for Aging Director Mary Ann Spanos
May 29th, 2017 09:32pm | Duration:
We talk this week with Chautauqua County Office for the Aging Director Mary Ann Spanos about local activities for National Older American's Month in May. Spanos updates our Terry Frank about how their annual Plant Sale went to raise money for the OFA's Mac McCoy Fund. She says the outside funding is important with state and federal money either being cut or stagnant. She talks further about how certain programs, including the Senior retraining program, are being completely cut in Pres. Trump's 2018 budget proposal. We also talk about the potential future of Medicare.
This week, we talk with Ellicott Town Supervisor Pat McLaughlin about several issues, but, primarily the proposed annexation by the Jamestown Board of Public Utilities to move the 5-acres of land the Dow Street Substation is located on in Falconer to the city. McLaughlin says it would severely hamper the town, village of Falconer, and the Falconer School District. In particular, he says the school district would lose about 153,000 in tax revenue. A public hearing on the matter has now been set for June 12 at 7 p.m. at the Falconer Central Middle and High School. We also discuss the Ellicott Police Dept. decision to take an officer off the Jamestown Metro Drug Task Force, and renovations being undertaken at the town's Burtis Park -- just outside of Celoron.
We talk this week with Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi about several topics, including the new, 5-million-dollar Graduate to Homebuyer Program which is part of the city's Downtown Revitalization Initiative program. Teresi says the program will be able to use low-interes loans, and other means to promote homebuying by recent graduates. He adds the city should also learn by early June which projects will be funded in the DRI Program. He also talks about the some of the approximately 100 road and bridge projects the city is undertaking during this construction season.
We welcome Chautauqua Co. Executive Vince Horrigan this week to talk about a provision in the new, American Health Care Act, which was approved last Thursday. The measure includes the so-called "Collins Amendment" which prohibits states from asking local governments (counties) to pay up to a quarter of their Medicaid costs. Horrigan says -- if it's in the legislation -- it would save county taxpayers about 30-million dollars. We also discuss the first meeting of the year for the Western New York Regional Economic Development Council, and road and bridge projects in 2017.
The United Way of Southern Chautauqua County is getting ready to launch a new program designed to reduce poverty in the city of Jamestown. United Way Exec. Director Tori Irgang says they were tapped last November by Mayor Sam Teresi to head up the local Empire State Poverty Reduction Initiative. Irgang says they've done a lot of prep work to roll-out the program, and this week they'll host a special, public meeting to get input from residents on the new program, and what it will look like. The ESPRI Program provides 1-million dollars to help the local agency heading up the program put it into motion. The meeting on Wed., May 3, will run from 6 to 8 PM at the St. Susan's Center on Water Street in Jamestown.
We talk the program on the road this week to the Jamestown Board of Public Utilities to talk with General Manager Dave Leathers. The BPU begins is annual Spring Flushing of the water mains through-out it's distribution area. However, it will be done during the day-light hours after being an overnight program since the division was moved to the BPU. Leathers says they'll start as usual this weekend in Falconer. However... flushing there will occur during the overnight hours. The day-light hours begin Monday, May 1 on the city's eastside. Leathers also talks with our Terry Frank about the BPU's 3.85-million dollar coal-fired boiler dismantling project that's now underway on the board's Steele St. campus. We also discuss the BPU's LED light replacement project in the city.
We speak this week with Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi to look back on the rash of arson fires in the Greater Jamestown area last month that culminated with the arrest of 19 year-old Jonathan Young in Butler County, Pennsylvania. Teresi calls it a tragic situation all the way around. We also discuss the 2017-18 budget, and what Jamestown will see out of it. While there is no increase in General Municipal Aid, the city will receive it's 2.5-million dollars in assistance from the state to help it's bottom line while further consolidation takes place, and the city tries to implement a new, Medicare Supplimental Insurance plan for it's retirees. We also discuss the ever-present pothole problem, but, he says the "hot-patch" plant is now open, and repairs are underway.
We talk with Chautauqua County Executive Vince Horrigan this week about the great local effort in fighting the huge Falconer commercial and residential fire on West Main St. on Mar. 22. Our Terry Frank also talks with the County Exec. about the police effort to find and arrest the local man accused of setting that fire, and 11 others in the area. We also discuss the state budget -- which was still late at that time -- and his concerns over it. On the economic development front, we talk about the closing down of MVP Plastics, and the county's Industrial Development Agency not being able to recoup about 900,000 dollars in loans to the company. Horrigan says it's a difficult situation, but, adds there is still some good that's come out of it... including saving the old Sysco Building and getting a significant tenant for the property.
Meals on Wheels of Jmtn-area Director Barrie Yochim
April 2nd, 2017 08:25pm | Duration:
The man who has headed up Meals on Wheels of the Jamestown-Area for the past 17 year, Barrie Yochim, joins us on the program for the first time in that capacity. He talks with our Terry Frank about the fact their numbers have steadily increased about 10-percent each year over the past six years to 154,000 over the past year. We also discuss the recently national interest in Meals on Wheels with reports the national agency stands to lose funding in Community Development Block Grant funding. However, the local agency does not get money from that source. Yochim says they are concerned about losing money through potentilal sequestration, through, with other cuts in the offing.
Our Terry Frank talks this week with the head of the Jamestown-area's largest soup kitchen St. Susan's Center Executive Dir. Jeff Smith says they had a new record of 11,247 in January, which is a huge increase from the previous record of just over 9,800 from January of 2016. So far this year, he says they're running about 8.5-percent higher than last year's totals. He also talks about their fund-raisers, including the final "Soup and a Song" program this past weekend, and the upcoming 14th annual Basket Fair at Jamestown Community College. Smith tells us they are always in need of donations of food and cash. For more information, call them at 664-3800.
This week, we welcome 150th District State Assemblyman Andy Goodell, who won re-election to the post last November. He updates our Terry Frank about the state budget process, in which both the Assembly and Senate approved their "one-house" 201718 budgets. He and all other Republicans voted against the Democratic-majority's budget plan. He says, though, there is "broad consensus" on the mainly budgetary items, such as school aid, and health care. He adds both house budget's also include free tuition for low to middle-income students going to public colleges and universities. However, he says there are a number of non-budgetary items that are contentious... including Uber and keeping 16 and 17-year-olds out of the adult criminal justice system.
This week, we talk with Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi on three main topics... the first being how the city fared with last Wednesday's windstorm, that brought winds topping out at 69 mph in the north county, and 56 mph in Jamestown. Teresi says, thanks to a very good tree timing and maintenance programs, there was only one, brief outage in the village of Falconer reported by the Board of Public Utilities. Our Terry Frank also talks with Teresi extensively about the state Conference of Mayor's again seeking an increase in reimbursement from the state for it's Arterial Maintenance Program. The program gives 38 cities -- including Jamestown -- 85-cents per foot to maintain and plow designated state highways in the city that belong to NYS. He says they are seeking one-dollar-77 cents per foot to cover increasing expenses. We also talk about Jamestown's submission of about 13.8-million dollars worth of projects for the city's 10-million dollar Downtown Revitalization Initiative award. Teresi says there will be about 9.7-million dollars available for those projects chosen by the state.
We welcome back Chautauqua County Executive Vince Horrigan this week to talk about his recently announced decision to not seek a second-term in office. Horrigan reiterated the need to spend more time with his wife, and children and grand-children out-of-town. He adds it's only fair to give people enough time to make a decision on whether to run or not. We talk more about his State of the County Address, and what to expect in the remaining 10-months of his four-year term. We also discuss efforts to get 20-million dollars in funding for municipal consolidation and sharing of services.
Chaut. Count Office for Aging Director Mary Ann Spanos, and Chautauqua Adult Day Care Centers Dir. Frank Bercik
February 26th, 2017 07:55pm | Duration:
A proposed 12.7-million dollar cut to local Offices for the Aging are this week's program. We are joined this week by Chautauqua County OFA Exec. Director Mary Ann Spanos, and Chautauqua Adult Day Care Centers Director Frank Bercik, to talk about the impact such cuts would have. Mainly, Spanos and Bercik says the loses would be in three areas -- with the main one having transportation moved to an area requiring a 25-percent local share of funding. She says one would also put the OFA's NY Connects, one-stop phone number program in jeopardy. The OFA and CADC Centers have joined the past week to host "mock rallies" at the centers to give seniors the chance to sound off on the cuts.
Rick Huber, New Program Development Dir. at Mental Health Association in Chaut. Co.
February 22nd, 2017 02:25pm | Duration:
The Mental Health Association in Chautauqua County was the busiest it's ever been over the past year. The new director of New Program Development for the MHA, Rick Huber, says they had just over 15,000 visits last year... compared to about 7,700 the year before. Huber adds it's now his job to solicit new support for the organization to keep it viable. Huber says the vast majority of those visits are for drug addiction issues, and some are a combination of mental health and drug issues. In addition... Kia Briggs has been named as the MHA's new executive director. Huber and the MHA have been at for the forefront of trying to combat the area's Heroin and Opioid Drug crisis.
This week, Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi talks with our Terry Frank about his State of the City message, which again this year was not presented with a full-address to the City Council. Teresi did make some brief remarks at the January 2017 voting session, and as required by the city charter, delivered a written look back at 2017, and listed initiatives and other goals for 2017. One of those is working with the state Department of Transportation on a reconfiguration or redesign of Washington Street from Second St. to Fluvanna Avenue, and Fluvanna Ave. to the city line.
We welcome back County Executive Vince Horrigan this week to discuss the recent, 3-day New York State Association of Counties (NYSAC) Conference in Albany. Horrigan tells our Terry Frank that it was a "very successful" trip where he was able to learn more about the state budget situation, and a proposal that would mandate counties to hold referendum's on local plans to consolidate and merge services. We also talk about the recent, controversial decision by the Industrial Development Agency to extend a payment-in-lieu of tax agreement for the owner of Covenant Manor in Jamestown, and the official opening of the New Flyer bus component plant in Jamestown.
Chautauqua Co. Chamber of Commerce Pres. Todd Tranum
January 30th, 2017 08:20am | Duration:
This week, we are joined by the head of both the Chautauqua County Chamber of Commerce, and Manufacturer's Association of the Southern Tier, Todd Tranum. Our Terry Frank talks with him about a number of topics, including the ribbon cutting on their new expansion at the Manufacturing Technology Institute, along with new manufacturer, New Flyer Bus Company. We also highlight activities both the Chamber, and MAST having coming up.
This week, Chautauqua County Executive Vince Horrigan joins us for the first time in 2017. He discusses high-lights of the past year and looks ahead to 2017 with our Terry Frank. Mr. Horrigan says progress on the health care front, and, in energy production look very good. He cited the new partnership between the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and WCA Hospital, forming UPMC Chautauqua WCA, and money for that, and Brook's Hospital in Dunkirk from the state. Energy production will benefit from new wind turbines planned for the north county.
We hear from Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi for the first time in 2017, discussing his attendance at Gov. Andrew Cuomo's WNY State of the State message in Buffalo. Teresi talks about the governor's proposal to provide 5-million dollars in "gap funding" for the National Comedy Center project. He also provides more detail about the 2.5-mill. dollars to help the city plug a budget gap, and continue consolidation efforts. Teresi also talks about the proposal by city Development Director Vince DeJoy and himself to provide an 11-year tax abatement program for single-and two-family homes that have been vacant... and, condemned.
This week, we look back at 2016, and ahead to 2017 in the city of Jamestown with second-ward Councilman Tony Dolce. Our Terry Frank speaks with Mr. Dolce about the state helping with the city's remaining 825,000 budget gap for 2017. Dolce says it's one-time help, and is predicated on the city finding more cost savings, and consolidations to reduce costs. We also discuss development, and adaptive reuse of older buildings, and the proposed Jackson-Spring housing development on Jamestown's northside.
We do a little something different this week, as New Director Terry Frank looks back on the major stories of 2016 this week. From the controversial Chautauqua Amphitheater project moving forward, to the passing of long-time WJTN Morning Man, Jim Roselle, we provide the sounds of the past 12 months... all the way to a rash of shootings late in the year in Jamestown. Enjoy!
Officials from UPMC Chautauqua-WCA, and UPMC Hamot
December 26th, 2016 02:31pm | Duration:
This week, the president and Chief Executive Officer of the new, UPMC Chautauqua WCA, Betsy Wright, and University of Pittsburgh Medical Center-Hamot Pres. and CEO, Jim Fiorenzo, discuss the merger of WCA Hospital with UPMC. Wright says the merger made sense for the smaller, community hospital in the current health care climate, and actually began when WCA entered into an partner affiliation agreement with UPMC in August of 2012. Under the agreement, UPMC will pay off WCA's long-term debt of 25-million dollars, and assume the debt on it's pension fund. Both say the new agreement will provide WCA with the resources it needs to expand and improve programs and services.
This week, our Terry Frank speaks with the executive director of Citizen's Opportunity for Development and Equality, Inc., Patrick Morris, about CODE's revised proposal for the Jackson Spring Housing Complex. in Jamestown. The new plans called for two main structures on the city's northside -- just off North Main St. Morris says New York State Housing officials declined to award the project the way it was originally designed. He says, like with all of their other housing, income-eligible residents will have the chance to become tenants in the facilities. Morris says CODE and the Buffalo-area developer spearheading the project, NRP, will tear down eight dilapitated structures to make way for the project. We also discuss CODE's mission, and issues that have surrounded previous developments.
Our Terry Frank speaks at length this week with Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi about the recent rash of "targeted shootings" around the city. They began back on Thanksgiving morning, Nov. 24, with the death of a Buffalo man following an argument inside a South Main Street apartment that spilled out into the street. Teresi says all resourced available are being utilized by City Police and Chief Harry Snellings. The mayor adds that all 60 members of the department are working hard on cracking the case, which he believes will happen soon before any more shootings. He also discusses the recently approved, 2017 budget, which includes some emergency funding from the state to eliminate a projected shortfall for next year.
We talk with Chautauqua County Executive Vince Horrigan about Entergy Corp. decision to withdraw it's lawsuit against the state Public Service Commission regarding the NRG Repowering project in Dunkirk. Horrigan is pleased to see that obstacle removed, and the project able to move forward. He says the state -- namely through State Senator Cathy Young -- is still very committed to the project. We also discuss a proposal by U.S. Senator Kirsten Gilllibrand to expand broadband in rural areas, such as Chautauqua County. Horrigan also expressed his disappointment over the Ellery Town Board deciding to appeal a recent court decision to allow the new county landfill expansion project to proceed.
We preview this Monday night's likely vote by the Jamestown City Council on a 2017 budget with Second-Ward Republican Tony Dolce. Dolce also chairs the Finance Committee, which had led the review of Mayor Sam Teresi's proposed, 35-million dollar budget. That budget includes a .96-percent tax increase, and started with an 878-thousand dollar deficit. Lawmakers have cut that by 53,000 so far. However... Dolce says they are looking at all possible avenues to find more revenues and cuts. He says they have been talking with the state, and the state's Restructuring Board about possible ways to find savings, and utilize 5-million dollars that's available for that task. Council votes on the spending plan at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 28th.
Two officials with the Jamestown Renaissance Corp. join us this week to talk about the upcoming Christmas Parade and Holiday Celebration in the city the evening of Friday, Dec. 2. Edwin Rodriguez and Kristi Kathman say the event is coming along, but, our stretch of mild Fall Weather has led people to not think about the upcoming Christmas season. Rodriguez figures they'll again be at between 80 and 100 floats/units for the parade... but, adds they already have a number of new businesses and organizations taking part. The parade starts at 6:30 p.m. with the lighting of the city's official Christmas Tree, and will again feature fireworks at the end. Kathman says -- for the second-year in a row -- there will also be a Downtown Holiday Decorating Contest.
Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi joins our Terry Frank this week to update budget deliberations with the city council. Teresi says, by his administration's calculations, they've found another 53,000 dollars in savings in three different areas, bringing the projected deficit down to 825,000 dollars. However, Teresi says they are still looking for additional savings, possibly in some bigger dollars areas to make the shortfall more manageable. We also discuss a new, state-wide anti-poverty program the city will be taking part in, and administered by the United Way of Southern Chautauqua County. We also discuss last Tuesday's election, and the possible impact of a Donald Trump presidency.
We talk with County Executive Vince Horrigan this week on the state giving final approval to the county's 2017, 290-million dollar budget. Horrigan says the state had to "sign off" on the spending plan because it's a requirement for continuing the extra .5-cent sales tax. The final budget cuts the full value tax rate by 7-cents per 1,000 dollars, and restores the undesignated fund balance. In addition to the budget, we discuss economic development -- in particular the announcement about New Flyer coming to Jamestown -- and ribbon cutting for new the new wind farm in the towns of Arkwright and Pomfret. We also discuss the upcoming election, and what's happening locally.
Democratic Congressional candidate John Plumb (no intro)
October 30th, 2016 08:53pm | Duration:
We have our final candidate's preview this week with Democratic 23rd Congressional candidate John Plumb. Plumb is a Randolph-native who was a U-S Navy officer for 22 years, and most recently became a Captain in the Naval Reserves. Plumb is running for office for the first time, and felt it was time to use his experience to try and help the area's struggling rural communities. He says that, unlike incumbant Republican Tom Reed, he will fight unfair trade deals, and says Reed has misstated his position on issues -- including the second-amendment. The election is Tues., Nov. 8th.
We resume our look at the candidates for the 2016 Election with 23rd Congressional District representative, Tom Reed. The third-term Republican from Corning is running for another two-years because "the job is not done." Reed points out that his office has now handled more than 10,000 constituent cases, and his work on behalf of a number of local groups, and organizations from the National Comedy Center, to the West Valley Demonstration Project. We also discuss controversial GOP Presidential candidate Donald Trump, whom Reed supports. He also co-chairs Trump's New York campaign. His opponent, Democrat John Plumb, joins us next week.
A number of factors have played into the city of Jamestown reaching it's constitutional tax limit, and Mayor Sam Teresi high-lights many of them on this week's program. The Mayor tells our Terry Frank that the 35-million dollar spending plan increases the tax levy by just under one-percent, or 150,000 dollars, to the taxing limit of 23.77 dollars. However, that also leaves an 878,000 shortfall in the budget. He says contracted salaries and benefits are the major factor, along with health care costs. He says, though that -- if the state agrees -- one new proposal could save 600,000 dollars in 2017. That's an incentive for retirees in the Medicare Supplemental Insurance plan to withdraw and go to a private carrier, saving both them and the city, money. The budget is due on Dec. 1.
Chautauqua County Executive Vince Horrigan joins our Terry Frank this week to discuss more details about his proposed, 2017 budget. Horrigan says there are three key "investments" in this year's spending plan. The first is the need to use 1-million to upgrade equipment in the Public Facilities Dept. He says he saw the "critical" need for that last Winter. Secondly, he says is the need to establish a "Fly-Car" response program to suppliment local ambulance services. Three vehicles will be purchased for that. The third item is adding nine part-time, correctional services people to the county jail staff to reduce overtime. We also discuss the hiring of Celoron's Greg Carlson to be the new Veteran's Services Agency Director, and the county's newest equestrian trail openeing.
We welcome incumbant 150th state Assemblyman Andy Goodell, who is wrapping up a third-term in the legislature. Goodell touted his high-marks by the state's Business Council and others for his work as a member of the Assembly minority. The Bemus Point-area Republican also says he has stood fast against government corruption, introducing a measure against "pay-to-play" and another for pension forefeiture. He also discusses legislation that he's supported to deal with the Heroin and opioid drug crisis. He also addresses New York's business climate, and the minimum wage issue, like his Democratic opponent, Jason Perdue, did last week.
Our Terry Frank is joined by 150th State Assembly Democratic candidate Jason Perdue this week. It's the start of a few candidate forums prior to the Nov. 8 election. Perdue talks about the corruption issue, which is back in the news with the recent indictments of nine people in connection with alleged bribery and corruption in upstate economic development projects. Perdue says he supports making lawmakers full-time, and eliminating their ability to earn additional income from other employment to eliminate outside influence. However, he's against increasing legislative pay. We also discuss the Heroin and Opioid Addiction Crisis, taxes, and prescription versus recreational marijuana. Incumbant Republican Andy Goodell is our guest next week.
This week, Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi joins us to talk more about the city's 10-milliion dollar Downtown Revitalization Initiative award from the state. He tells our Terry Frank that New York state has decided on the outside consultant that'll work with the city and state to move some 5 to 8 projects to the finish line in the next couple of years. Teresi says those projects will be determined by mid-February of 2017. He also discusses the recent, one-day conference in Buffalo he took part in regarding Sustainable Economic Development, and "Smart Growth." We also talk more about his preliminary budget proposal coming up in early October.
Jennifer Gibson and Max Martin with Cultural Bridges Action Team.
September 11th, 2016 04:51pm | Duration:
This week, we talk with Jennifer Gibson and Max Martin from the Jamestown Strategic Planning and Partnerships Commission's "Cultural Bridges Action Team" to discuss to upcoming programs designed to bridge the cultural gap between Hispanics moving into the area, and other, long-time residents. This grew out of a meeting with pastors of several local Hispanic churches. There will be a program on September 22, and another over two days, October 14 and 15. for members of the Jamestown community. Martin and Gibson say there's a lot of misunderstanding, and the language barrier can be a big part of that. Many of the families are fleeing Puerto Rico, which is a U. S. Territory that's in dire financial shape, and, has accumulated a huge amount of debt.
Chautauqua County Executive Vince Horrigan (no intro music)
September 6th, 2016 02:26pm | Duration:
This week, Chautauqua County Executive Vince Horrigan joins out Terry Frank to discuss a number of issues, including the county being able to find a buyer for Empire Specialty Cheese. Horrigan says the county's Industrial Development Agency had actually begun the process a while ago when the previous owners from Conewango Valley began having financial issues. They tried to grow the company from about 55 employees to 200. A formal announcement will be made on Sept. 20. In addition... we also discuss the county's jobless rate for July, which is still above the state and regional average. A third item is the status of the county's 2017 budget proposal, which is due on or about Sept. 25. Horrigan says it will be presented on Wed., Sept. 28, at the county legislature's monthly meeting. He says the process has gone fairly well up to this point.
Jamestown Renaissance Corp. officials on $10-million award
August 28th, 2016 05:48pm | Duration:
Our Terry Frank welcomes back Jamestown Renaissance Corp. Executive Director Greg Lindquist and Senior Planner Mark Geise to discuss their roles in the city of Jamestown landing one of the state's ten 10-million dollar Downtown Revitalization Initiative grants. Both say the process actually began in January when the governor announced the initiative, but, few details, in his 2016-17 budget. More details came out in April, and the JRC, city Development Director Vince DeJoy and Principal Planner Bill Rice, and officials with the Gebbie Foundation got to work. Geise says they used a lot of data from the city's earlier Urban Design Plan, and Neighborhood Revitalization Plan. Both Lindquist and Geise, especially, said they wanted to have the best entry of the 12 to 20 that were submitted for the Western New York Regional Economic Development Council. At this point, they say they are waiting for future guidance on how to proceed from New York state.
This week, our Terry Frank previews the new school year with Jamestown School Superintendent, Tim Mains. We discuss how facilities are shaping up for the start of classes on Tuesday, Sept. 6. He says Love Elementary School is set to go after undergoing extensive renovations over the past year. The building now has a new heating, ventilation and cooling system... along with other improvements... including handicapped accessibility. He says there is some work taking place now at Bush Elementary, but, it won't require the building to be closed for classes. We also discuss the schedules for UPK, Elementary, Middle, and High School students on opening day... and, from then on. Mains says there will be a half-day for elementary through 12th grade on Sept. 6. However... UPK will not have classes until the following day, Sept. 7.
We talk about a number of topics and issues with Jamestown Mayor Sam Teresi this week. First, our Terry Frank discusses the mid-year budget update recently provided for City Council by Comptroller Joe Bellitto, who says the city is holding it's own. Teresi commended his department heads for holding the line on expenses, but, adds a drop in revenues from the Board of Public Utilities lowered the Payment in Lieu of Taxes for three divisions. We also talk about Public Works Projects, many of which are being completed on time due to the dry and comfortable weather for the first part of Summer. We discuss work taking place on North Main Street between Second and Third Streets, and part of the project being moved to next Summer. The mayor also previews the city's annual Labor Day Festival coming up on Sunday, Sept. 4, 2016.
Our Terry Frank is joined this week by Chautauqua Co. Executive Vince Horrigan to discuss a wide range of topics. One is the county's Industrial Development Agency's purchase of 66-acres of unused commercial-industrial land from Bush Industries, Inc. for development. Horrigan says the IDA will use a state grant to make infrastructure upgrades to the property, and package and market it. We also discuss county sales tax, which the state says is up 11.6-percent over the first half of 2015. Horrigan says the amount brought in is "right on target" with what the county was projecting. We also discuss the retirement of County Veteran's Services Agency Director Gary Chilcotte, and, the start of the search for a successor.
Gerry Rodeo Media Coordinator Paul Cooley joins our Terry Frank this week to talk about the upcoming, 72nd annual rodeo, put on by the Gerry Volunteer Fire Department. Cooley gives us a little history on the event, and talks about the fact nearly 200 professional cowboys and cowgirls will be on hand from Aug. 3-6 for the event. Cooley says seven of the top 25 riders will be here. He adds they're also bringing trick-riding back this year. They'll also be serving their famous, Barbecue Beef dinners each night at 5 p.m. prior to the evening's shows. Those begin at 8 p.m. each night. There'll also be a kid's rodeo on Sat. Aug. 6 at 4 p.m.
We speak this week with Chautauqua Co. Fair Board member Dave Wilson about the 134th annual fair, which runs Monday through Sunday, July 25-31. Wilson says they have a full week of activities, and a couple of new grandstand shows for this year. There'll be two State Championship Demolition Derby qualifiers on Tuesday and Sunday. This year's championship will be held at the Erie County Fair, though, due to renovations taking place at the New York State Fairgrounds in Hamburg. The pre-sale 6 dollar tickets will cost 12 at the gate this week. In addition, Poultry returns to the county fairgrounds this year after being held off-site last year due to the Avian Flu scare. For more information on the fair, call 366-4752, or go on-line to chautauquacountyfair.org.
Mayor Sam Teresi joins our Terry Frank this week to talk about "Zombie Properties," and the problem confronting the city of Jamestown, and much of the nation. Zombie Properties are those no one is taking responsibility for, where the owners have fallen behind on mortgage or tax payments, but haven't been foreclosed on yet. Teresi says it remains the property owners responsibility to take care of the property whether they live in the home or not. He adds they've had some success in getting people to take care of them. We also discuss repair and paving projects on North Main Street... and, the city's budget process... which is now moving into high-gear.