news

Friday, March 17, 2017 at 1:53 pm
posted by Howard Owens in accident, Covington, news.

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One person suffered minor injuries and was transported to an area hospital following a single-car rollover accident at about 11:45 a.m. on Route 19 in Covington.

Pavilion fire and Mercy EMS responded.

Reader submitted photo.

Thursday, March 16, 2017 at 7:03 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, news, announcements, government, Sen. Gallivan.

Press release:

Sen. Patrick M. Gallivan (R-C- I, Elma) says the New York State Senate has passed a 2017-18 budget plan that creates more economic opportunity through targeted investments in infrastructure, tax reductions, and continued fiscal discipline. The Senate proposal continues a record of restrained state spending without new taxes. Additionally, it makes sensible and important changes to a number of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s proposals that should serve as a blueprint to a final, on-time budget.

“The Senate’s budget controls the size and cost of government while at the same time helping hardworking, middle class families and businesses,” Gallivan said. “The spending plan supports economic development, provides much needed tax relief, invests in education, promotes agriculture and provides more funding for roads and bridges. It also keeps the Western New York Children’s Psychiatric Center in West Seneca.”

Reducing property taxes

The Senate’s budget proposal advances several measures to protect the significant savings provided by the School Tax Relief (STAR) program and would help small businesses save on their property taxes. 

The measures include:

    • Making small businesses with less than $350,000 in net business income and less than 20 employees eligible to receive the STAR benefit on their primary business property, saving $370 million when fully phased in;

    • Rejecting the executive budget proposal to cap the growth of the STAR benefit, saving taxpayers an estimated $272 million over the next three years alone;

    • Reversing changes made last year to the STAR Personal Income Tax Credit Program from reimbursements back to an up-front exemption effective for the 2018 – 2019 school year;

    • Addressing the significant delays of STAR payments by the state to taxpayers that occurred this year by requiring the state to postmark all advance payment STAR checks by Sept. 15, requiring the state to pay interest if they are mailed late, and reimbursing taxpayers for penalties or interest due to late school tax bill payments; and

    • Making permanent the state’s property tax cap.

Promoting economic development

The Senate budget rejects a number of onerous tax and fee increases proposed by Cuomo, including new DMV fees, new taxes on Internet purchases and a new surcharge on prepaid cell phones. In addition, to help avoid future tax increases, the Senate’s resolution imposes a statutory cap on state spending.

The Senate requires more transparency in the operations of Regional Economic Development Councils to further ensure accountability and prevent conflicts of interest in the awarding of billions of dollars in statewide economic development funds. The resolution rejects the rebranding of START-Up NY and closes the door to new applicants as of April 1, 2018, followed by an assessment to measure the program’s effectiveness.

Tax relief for businesses

In addition to creating the STAR benefit for small businesses, the Senate proposal would:

    • Expand the existing Personal Income Tax exemption for small businesses and small farms and reduce the Corporate Franchise Tax business income tax rate from 6.5 percent to 2.5 percent over a two-year period, saving a total of $466 million;

    • Increase the Manufacturer’s Real Property Tax Credit from 20 percent to 50 percent of any annual property taxes paid during the year for property owned or leased by the manufacturer and used during for manufacturing, saving businesses $150 million; and

    • Increase the MTA Payroll Tax exemption for sole proprietors from $50,000 to $250,000. 

Reforms to workers’ compensation 

The Senate has advanced a number of sensible workers’ compensation reforms, such as updates to duration caps and schedule loss of use awards. To improve the overall system, changes would be put into place to reduce frictional costs, streamline forms, improve independent medical examinations and require implementation of a prescription drug formulary by Dec. 31.

Expanding ride-sharing

The resolution provides ride-sharing companies with the ability to expand operations outside of New York City and enable new jobs to be created by offering more safe, reliable transportation options to communities and visitors Upstate and on Long Island.

Promoting workforce development

The Senate’s Task Force on Workforce Development is continuing to improve employee readiness; better meet the workforce needs of private sector employers; connect job seekers with potential employers; retrain those who have lost jobs; and help make New York State’s overall economy more robust, dynamic and resilient. 

This budget helps implement those goals by including:

    • $4 million for the Workforce Development Institute (WDI);

    • $3 million for the WDI Manufacturing Initiative;

    • $980,000 for the Chamber On-the-Job Training Program;

    • $600,000 for Statewide Youth Build programs; and

    • Increasing the current salary cap for BOCES to attract and retain qualified and skilled teachers for career and tech programs.

Keeps Western New York Children’s Psychiatric Center (WNYCPC) in West Seneca

The Senate plan includes language advanced by Gallivan requiring WNYCPC be maintained in Erie County as a separate and distinct entity, both organizationally and physically. It also requires that $14 million be used to rehabilitate the existing West Seneca facility.

Supporting local infrastructure

Historic state investment of nearly $8 billion in clean water

The Senate makes an investment of nearly $8 billion to ensure all New Yorkers have access to clean, safe drinking water by addressing extensive water quality issues and infrastructure needs. 

The measures include:

    • Creation of a new $5 billion Clean Water Bond Act;

    • Support for the proposed $2 billion for clean water infrastructure;

    • Establishment of a new Drinking Water Quality Institute;

    • Creation of the Emerging Contamination Monitoring Act;

    • $300 million for the Environmental Protection Fund;

    • $175 million in continued funding for the Water Quality Infrastructure Investment Program; and

    • $275 million in continued funding for Clean Water and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds.

Increased support for local roads and bridges

The budget proposal continues the Senate’s commitment to parity with the Department of Transportation and Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) capital plans, and ensures long-term regional balance in how transportation projects are funded. It helps local governments make necessary infrastructure improvements and create jobs by adding:

    • $91 million in non MTA capital, for a total $175.5 million;

    • $75 million for the Consolidated Local Street and Highway Program (CHIPS), for a total $513 million;

    • $50 million for the Local BRIDGE NY program, for a total $150 million;

    • $11.5 million to increase the reimbursement rate to cities for maintaining State highways;

    • $11.3 million in non-MTA downstate and upstate transit systems, and $5 million – including a $4 million executive budget restoration – for rural transportation systems; and

    • $27.5 million for the Aviation Capital Grant Program, for a total $40 million, and $2 million to provide the full state match to federal funds for aviation, totaling $6 million.

Improving higher education access and affordability

Enhanced Tuition Assistance Program (E-TAP):

The Senate improves upon the higher education proposals in the executive budget by making more middle-class families eligible for more financial aid, and giving students greater flexibility in school choice to promotes success.

The Senate invests $109 million in a new E-TAP initiative that helps students in public and independent schools by increasing the minimum TAP award from $500 to $3,000 and the maximum to $5,500. Income thresholds would also be increased to $100,000 in 2017-18; $110,000 in 2018-19; and $125,000 in 2019- 20. To be eligible for E-TAP, students would need a 3.0 grade-point average by the start of their junior year and take 30 credits over each academic year – which is a more flexible option for students unable to take a 15-credit semester as required in the executive budget proposal. 

The Senate budget proposal also includes:

    • $10 million to expand TAP to include part-time community college students; and

    • $2 million in new funding for Graduate TAP, to help students who are in combined undergraduate/graduate degree programs.

College affordability:

The Senate budget establishes a new Task Force on College Affordability; requires private colleges to develop college affordability plans with the goal of lowering costs; and creates the New York State Tax Advantage Student Loan Repayment Program. This innovative measure acts like a 401K for student debt – enabling employees to put up to $2,500 pre-tax each year into an account specifically set up by an employer to help pay student loan debt. The employer would then match the employee’s contribution and receive a tax deduction. 

The Senate also:

    • expands the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) scholarship to include private institutions;

    • increases the tuition tax credit to a maximum of $2,500 and the deduction to a maximum of $50,000 of allowable college tuition expenses, over 10 years;

    • provides $2 million in funding to support child care on SUNY and CUNY campuses to give access to students in need of care while pursuing a degree; and

    • provides a maintenance of effort provision that requires the state to fund SUNY and CUNY (State University of and City University of) at no less than the prior year’s funding level.

Making New York more affordable

Supporting fair wages for direct care professionals

The Senate provides $45 million annually to compensate direct care professionals for the important work they do to support individuals with disabilities. It addresses a lack of funding in the executive budget to help appropriately adjust salaries at nonprofits that employ workers who provide state services for individuals with autism, serious brain injury, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, and other developmental disabilities.

Expanding the Child Care Tax Credit:

The Senate provides an additional $95 million on top of the executive budget’s child care proposals to help more low- and middle-income families qualify for the state’s child care tax credits. Families making less than $50,000 would have their credits increase by 50 percent over existing amounts. In addition, the current cap on child care expenses would rise from $6,000 to a maximum of $9,000 (depending on the number of children) for families with up to five children.

Increasing the safety and availability of child care

To help working parents find affordable child care, and give them peace of mind about their child’s safety, the Senate included several budget provisions to:

    •  Increase child care subsidy funding from traditional sources to maintain the current level of $806 million;

    • Add $5.3 million to restore child care facilitated enrollment programs that help increase access to child care financial assistance, especially for moderate income families, in Monroe, Erie, Onondaga and Oneida counties, the Capital District, and New York City;

    • Require the Office of Children and Family Services (OCFS) to conduct a comprehensive study of the availability of child care for low-income working parents in the State; and

    •  Enhance the safety of child day care programs by giving OCFS greater ability to suspend or limit a license or registration to operate when public health or safety is at risk and to assess fines for violations.

This legislation also creates a comprehensive online registry of child care providers in the State that will include inspection and violation history for each.

Savings on Retirement Income:

To help more seniors save money and choose to stay in New York during retirement, the Senate increases the private pension and retirement income exclusion from $20,000 to $40,000 for single taxpayers and to $80,000 for married taxpayers, over three years. This would be the first increase to the exempt amount of private pensions and retirement since 1981 and save retirees approximately $315 million.

Supporting learning opportunities for all children

Significant education funding increases

The Senate’s education budget includes a five percent increase in school aid funding over last year, for a total of $1.2 billion, bringing the total investment in schools to a record level of $25.4 billion. 

Other highlights include:

    • Doubling the governor’s Foundation Aid proposal with $478 million in additional funding, for a total increase of more than $906 million since 2016-17;

    •  Rejecting the executive budget’s changes to the Foundation Aid formula and instead provides flexible operating aid to districts for operating expenses, which may include creation or expansion of dual language programs, after school programs, mental health services, and personnel within schools;

    • Removing a cap on charter schools and placing surrendered charters back into the pool of eligible charters;

    • Increasing facilities funding for New York City charter schools;

    • Providing statewide building aid for charters;

    • Including significant funding increases over the executive budget for non-public schools: an additional $34 million for reimbursable security costs; $15 million for non-public school safety grants;

    • increasing by $7 million above the executive budget proposal for mandated services aid; $25 million for non-public school STEM programs; $3 million to expand eligibility for STEM college scholarships to students at non-public schools; and $7.7 million for non-public school immunization compliance.

Protecting public health

Investments in battling substance abuse

The Senate’s budget proposal includes $206 million for the state’s heroin and opioid-related initiatives. This is an increase of $32 million over last year’s enacted budget, and above the approximately $200 million announced in the executive budget.

The Senate would also expand upon an initiative first proposed as a recommendation by the Senate’s Joint Task Force on Heroin and Opioid Addiction to help teens battling substance abuse. The measure increases the proposed number of Recovery High Schools from two to three – enabling more youth to find a secure learning environment to help them on their way to overcoming addiction.

Transforming health care delivery statewide

The Senate includes $300 million above the executive budget’s proposal for a total of $800 million for the Health Care Facility Transformation Program. The funding is included subject to additional details to be further outlined in the budget process to ensure appropriate regional disbursement, and appropriate disbursement among community based providers and all facilities. Further, before making the allocation, the remaining capital from last year’s budget of $195 million should be awarded.

Promoting agriculture

Restoring $12 million in agriculture support

The Senate commits significant resources to promoting and supporting agriculture in the state, including $12 million in restorations to more than 30 programs throughout the state that were cut in the executive budget. 

In addition, the budget resolution:

    • Makes the Investment Tax Credit refundable for farmers.

    • Enacts the Farm-to-Food Bank proposal that allows farmers to claim a tax credit to for produce and other farm product donations to food banks or other emergency food programs.

    • Modifies the executive proposal for state fair funding to include $10 million for local fair capital costs;

    • Adds $5 million for a competitive grant program for animal shelters; and

    • Doubles the Farm Workforce Retention Credit Upstate and further increase the credit for farms that are located in Nassau, Suffolk, or Westchester counties due to the accelerated minimum wage schedule in those counties.

Supporting veterans

The Senate budget includes a number of measures to provide valuable assistance and support to New York’s veterans, including:

    • $3.2 million for the Joseph P. Dwyer Veteran Peer to Peer Program;

    • $1 million to implement a veterans treatment court peer-to-peer service grant program;

    • $700,000 for the New York State Defenders’ Association Veterans’ Defense Program;

    • $400,000 for the NLP Research and Recognition Project for PTSD research treatments;

    • $350,000 for Legal Services of the Hudson Valley’s Veterans and Military Families Advocacy project;

    • $100,000 to expand Legal Services of the Hudson Valley’s Veterans and Military Families Advocacy project into Westchester County;

    • $250,000 for Nassau Suffolk Law Services Committee’s Veterans’ Rights Project;

    • $250,000 in additional funding for the Veterans Outreach Center in Monroe County; and

    • $300,000 for Warrior Salute.

Protecting seniors

The Senate restores cuts and adds additional resources to help seniors continue to receive long-term services and supports, such as home care, transportation and meals, and initiatives to prevent elder abuse.

Measures include:

    • Adding $5 million for the Community Services for the Elderly Program (CSE) for transportation, case management and other supports;

    • Restoring $3.35 million in the executive budget for the New York Connects program that provides free comprehensive services and supports for seniors and caregivers;

    • Providing $10 million to establish a statewide central register of elder abuse and maltreatment;

    • Restoring $700,000 for the establishment of multidisciplinary investigative teams for reports of suspected elder abuse or maltreatment, as well as including legislation that creates those teams; and

    • Adding $49,000 for a total of $951,000 for the Naturally Occurring Retirement Communities (NORCs) and/or Neighborhood NORCs.

Thursday, March 16, 2017 at 6:00 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, news, announcements, government.

Press release:

Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) released the following statement after President Donald Trump unveiled his fiscal year 2018 budget request.

“President Trump’s budget delivered a clear vision for the role the federal government should play,” Collins said. “It demonstrates that president Trump is committed to keeping the promises he made to the American people. He will rebuild our military. The budget’s $54 billion increase in defense spending is much needed, and I fully support the increase in military funding. Additionally, president Trump promised to secure our borders, and this budget lays the groundwork for building a wall and taking the necessary steps to ensure our nation’s border security.

“However, I have several concerns about significant cuts to local programs, which I believe go too far. I worked for more than two years to help write and pass the 21st Century Cures Initiative, and I fully believe that the funding guidelines established in that legislation must be followed. The $5.8 billion cut to NIH (National Institute of Health) is drastic. I will do whatever I can to ensure that the Appropriations Committee recognizes how crucial medical research is to Western New York and the millions of Americans whose lives could be saved with better medical research.

“The Great Lakes are a crucial part of Western New York’s economy. I have always fought to protect them and have voted to increase funding for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative at every opportunity. I will do the same this time around. Western New Yorkers can rest assured I will be fighting tooth and nail to restore the program’s funding.

“Agriculture plays a significant role in Western New York’s economy. This budget eliminates the Water and Wastewater loan and grant program, which helps rural areas alleviate the financial burden of maintaining wastewater programs. I have always fought hard to support this program and this year will be no different.

“Over the next few months, I will continue to evaluate this budget. Ultimately, it is up to the Appropriations Committee to fund these programs and I will be strongly advocating for Western New York’s best interests.”

Thursday, March 16, 2017 at 4:26 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, crime, news, Perry, Warsaw.
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  Charles J. Bozzette

The Wyoming County Sheriff’s Office arrested Charles J. Bozzette March 15 in connection with an alleged rape in the Village of Perry. The 34-year-old Perry man was charged with rape in the third degree.

Bozzette is accused of having sexual intercourse with a 16-year-old female at a home in the Village of Perry. 

He was put in Wyoming County Jail in lieu of $20,000 cash bail.

The Sheriff’s Office was assisted by the Perry and Warsaw police departments.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017 at 9:16 am
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, news, weather.

UPDATE 9 a.m.: Along with all school districts in Wyoming County, the following businesses and public spaces are closed or cancelled today:

    • Warsaw Public Library

    • Wyoming County State and County Courts

    • Hope Lutheran Church, Arcade

Contact us at julia@wyomingcountyfreepress.com, if your meeting or business has been cancelled.

The post will be updated as information becomes available.

UPDATE 2:30 p.m.: The Cornell Cooperative Extension of Wyoming County has cancelled its 4-H Teen Leader meeting and its 4-H Horse Bowl Practice for March 15.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017 at 5:15 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, news, education, library, Attica.

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In September, 10 Attica community members got together and formed a fundraising committee to help generate enough money to assist in the renovations of the Stevens Memorial Library, Main Street, Attica.

Since October, the committee has raised close to $63,000 toward the improvements, thanks in part by the Attica Lions Club’s donation of $10,000. The Lions Club money was left over from the Attica Walking Path fundraiser the club held in 2015 - 2016 to repair the damages to the path at the Attica Veterans Memorial Park on Exchange Street.

“It was a feeling of ‘so…we can really do this’ from the committee,” said Library Director Nancy Burns. “We received $300,000 each from the Library Construction and Library Community grants, $50,000 from Senator (Patrick) Gallivan, and $63,000 the library committee has raised so far.”

Between the grants and other donations, the Library has $700,000 of the $800,000 to complete the whole project.

Committee members Barbara Helik and Teresa Wright, as co-chairs; and Emma Edwards, Maggie Dadd, Linda Camp, Sandra Eck, Amy Meisner, Charles Williman, Chris Kipfer, and Linda Kruszka, began actively raising funds in October.

Renovations will begin at the back entrance to comply with the American Disabilities Act. A ramp will be installed along the left side of the entrance and a new glass door will be set in place. In addition to the ramp, a set of four steps will also be available. That is, of course, after several walls are removed.

“We will be raising the floor and taking out some walls,” Burns said. “The idea is to have a more open feel with easy access to new releases, magazines, DVDs and holds. There will be a seating area, and the computers will be relocated to run along the left of the ramp. It will have a more open feel to it than the hackneyed set up it is now. It will be a huge benefit for our older patrons.”

The new open space will also house the circulation desk, as well as two additional desks and an art wall that will showcase art from the Arts Council of Wyoming County and other artists.

“They will be a highlight as patrons walk through the door. And instead of spending the money to get a new circulation desk, we are going to repurpose the old one.”

In addition to saving money on the desk, new windows will be installed for not only light and safety concerns, but energy efficiency as well. 

The “children’s room” will remain virtually unchanged but for the addition of a “support” window so staff and parents can keep an eye on their youngest charges.

Not only is the library renovating the bathroom to be handicap accessible, it will be adding an additional one for convenience.

Once the circulation desk is moved from the library proper the open space will become the “program” space complete with a flat-screen TV for movies, games and presentations. The expanded area will also be used for story hour and more. Additionally, the stacks (bookshelves) will be rearranged for ease of use for people in wheelchairs.

And with all the moving of displays and desks, the library will feature new commercial carpet tile, for easy cleaning and replacement, as well as aesthetic purposes. 

Once the rear of the building is complete, renovations to the Main Street entrance will begin. 

“As you are facing the building from Main Street, the new entrance will be on the left of the building, closer to the parking lot, but with better safety measures for the little ones.”

The small porch – 12 by 15 feet – will be furnished in memory of Edwin Helak, who died April 7.

“When Edwin and his wife, Barbra, came in, one would often sit on the porch and wait for the other. So we are sort of looking at the seating as a ‘you go find a book, I’ll wait here until you’re done’ type of arrangement.”

Even with the new entrance, the concrete lions will remain sitting prominently at the front of the building. The statues will be moved to the front steps, however, and will be set on raised platforms to help preserve them. 

The lions had become a landmark in Attica after the children of the Pauly family and their neighbors would often be found playing on them in the early 1900s.

The lions have made their rounds in the northwest corner of the county. According to the Attica Historical Society, the carved monuments were first delivered by rail from Colorado to the home of Cordon Thomson at 193 Main St., Attica, in the 1800s. They were then sold in the 1900s to Samuel Blanch Ford at 285 Main St.. Then the property was sold to Anton Pauly in 1910, which included the lions. 

When the Main Street property was sold in 1978, the lions were not included in the sale. Instead, they were moved to the home of Karen Kell Acquard in Bennington, a relative of the Paulys. When Acquard and her husband decided to move to Florida around 1990, they donated the lions to the library.

They have had “considerable restoration,” courtesy of the Friends of Stevens Memorial Library, with “Ray Caryl and George Schmidt doing most of the work,” which included a permanent raised foundation.

Another addition to the front entrance will be both a handicap accessible door, as well as a standard door. There will also be an overhang to shelter patrons and the addition of four columns supports.

“We are trying to make the entrance blend in more with its surroundings. The committee worked hard to get the funding to make all this happen and we are excited for the project to start. Luckily, the library received the funding during the last grant cycle, as the governor (Andrew Cuomo) just proposed a $9 million cut to the public library system.”

The building which houses the library was built in 1823 and was home to the Stevens family. The last Stevens family to live in the home had no children of their own, and upon their death, the family gave the structure to the Village in 1893. The Village then turned the building into a library and funded it until the early 2000s.

According to Burns, sometime between 2001-2003, the library became a School District Library (NYS Education Department), catering to the Attica School District children and community.

“The proposed cut would be a huge impact to the library…it would take away the little grants that are inherent to getting programs and materials to expand services and programming at the library.”

In addition to the construction grant for the library’s renovations, Burns said the facility has received several grants last year that benefit its patrons.

They include:

    • Tech Grant up to $1,500 to bring in a new technology. Stevens Memorial Library was able to purchase a 3-D printer and new laptop to run this printer. The funding bought the equipment, however, the library purchased the extended tech and warranty support;

    • Play Spaces grant up to $900 to bring a new area of play for children. The library bought one Lego table complete with two chairs, and Legos and Duplo pieces ($700); and 

    • 1,000 books Before Kindergarten grant allowed the library to purchase quality paperback books for the kids to earn. For every 100 books a child 1 to 5 years old reads, the child can choose a book to take home and keep. Additionally, Wyoming County kids can earn an additional book every month from Project Read just by reading 15 minutes a day for 20 days.  

“These are wonderful ‘little assistances' to all the libraries that will be be lost if aid is cut to the systems in New York State. If the $9 million is taken away, the Library Systems will be back at 2000 spending levels and just surviving their costs. Libraries are education and while tuition is important to families, school help for all students is up to the public libraries when the school doors close at 4 p.m. Attica is hampered by no cable outside the village limits, so the library is very busy for homework online assignments, information gathering, and printing.”

The library doesn’t just function on budgets and grants and state funding alone, it also relies on the patrons that support it, too.

Recently, the Stevens Memorial Library became a benefactor in the Brownstone Book fund, a private foundation in New York City. The foundation was founded by a NYC couple who were interested in “fostering early reading, a love of books and encouraging parents and children to read together.” The couple wishes to remain anonymous and only asks the library to put a “Brownstone Books” sticker on each of the 100 titles they received. The collection caters to children and mostly contains picture books.

“One of the best gifts you can give your child is the time spent reading with them,” Burns said.

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Monday, March 13, 2017 at 6:23 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, crime, Warsaw, Attica, news.
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  Michael A. Young   Victoria L. Young

A couple charged last week with multiple offenses in Warsaw, garners identical charges, plus more, out of the Village of Attica.

Michael A. Young, 35, and Victoria L. Young, 22, were stopped on Main Street, Attica, March 7 for following too closely, reckless driving, and imprudent speed.

During the stop, Michael allegedly told officers that his wife was pregnant and was in labor. At that time, law enforcement allowed the couple to continue to the hospital.

Following the stop in Attica, the Youngs’ were stopped a short time later by Wyoming County Sheriff’s deputies. During the stop on North Main Street, Warsaw, deputies say the vehicle was found to be uninsured and had a suspended vehicle registration.

Although the car was registered to Victoria, deputies say Michael was driving the car and Victoria was the passenger. It is alleged that she told deputies she was 38 weeks pregnant and was in labor, at which time the vehicle was escorted directly to the hospital. 

According to the report, after being treated, it was determined that she was not pregnant and she had lied to the police about it.

Victoria was charged with falsely reporting an incident in the third degree, out of Attica, as well as from the stop in Warsaw.

In addition to the above charges, deputies say Victoria was wanted on a warrant by the Olean Police Department on a petit larceny charge. She was subsequently arrested and turned over to Olean Police.

Michael was charged out of both Attica and Warsaw with criminal contempt in the second degree, operating a vehicle with a suspended registration, and operating a motor vehicle without insurance. Attica charges also include, speed not reasonable and prudent, following too closely, and reckless driving.

Police also say there was an active stay away order of protection in place on Michael, which ordered him to stay away from Victoria. 

Both are due in the Village of Warsaw Court April 10 and in the Village of Attica Court at a later date. 

The vehicle was towed from the scene, and the license plates seized and returned to the Department of Motor Vehicles. 

See related: Law and Order: Former Perry man charged with scheme to defraud

Monday, March 13, 2017 at 4:29 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, news, weather, NYSP.

Press release:

The New York State Police would like to remind motorists to use extreme caution while traveling on all roadways from the early morning hours Tuesday, continuing into Wednesday. Avoid unnecessary travel and be alert for potential road closures. 

State Police Troop A members will be out across the region checking all major routes of travel to ensure that motorists are as safe as possible. We are asking for your assistance to make this possible. Motorists traveling in areas impacted by the snow are asked to leave with extra time to make a slow and careful drive to your destination.

The arrival of inclement weather consisting of heavy snow, with estimates of four or more inches per hour, is expected to begin early Tuesday morning, and continue through Wednesday; which will make all affected roadways slick and unpredictable.   

Take into consideration snow accumulation on the roads, the current snowfall rate, the wind, and visibility. Use your best judgment to determine if driving is prudent and allow for adjustments to your schedule to ensure a safe commute. 

Keep the following tips in mind:

    • Get the latest weather forecast before leaving with your local weather apps, monitor radio or TV stations;

    • In white-out conditions, turn on your hazard or 4-way lights to enhance visibility of your vehicle;

    • Always clean your windows and mirrors fully of any snow and ice before driving;

    • Keep a full tank of gas;

    • Ensure your fluid levels are sufficient (windshield washer fluid and antifreeze);

    • Ensure the spare tire is sufficient and you have the jack and wheel wrench;

    • Use headlights at all times to increase your visibility;

    • Drive prudently. If the conditions are adverse you should decrease your speed accordingly;

    • Look down the road for potential hazards;

    • Be observant;

    • Brake early;

    • Do not use cruise control. This decreases your reaction time to apply brakes;

    • If you do not absolutely have to go out onto the roads, then don’t;

    • Be aware of all emergency vehicles: police, fire, ambulances, town trucks, and maintenance vehicles.

If you drive off the roadway and are stuck in a snowbank or ditch, stay in your vehicle, activate your emergency flashers, and call 9-1-1. Do not exit your vehicle unless it is an absolute emergency. You put yourself at risk of being struck by another vehicle. 

Roll the windows down a few inches or turn your vehicle off if you are stranded in snow for a period of time with your vehicle running. Covered exhaust pipes can cause physical injury or death due to inhalation of carbon monoxide.

If you should become stranded on the Thruway or any roadway, know your location by being aware of your direction and mile post marker when applicable. This will help emergency personnel reach your location as quickly as possible.

Follow the New York State Police’s Twitter page @nyspolice for up to the minute information on road closures and weather alerts.

The Thruway Authority provides a wide variety of information for travelers including current traffic conditions, accidents, and lane closures. Visit www.thruway.ny.gov for more information.

Slow Down. Be Prepared. Be Safe.

Monday, March 13, 2017 at 10:07 am
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, news, weather, Bennington, Sheldon, Wethersfield, Attica.

As of this posting, NYSEG and National Grid report a combined total of approximately 25 to 30 customers are still without power.

According to their respective websites, the towns of Bennington, Sheldon, Wethersfield, and Attica are affected. 

While NYSEG is not showing an estimated time of restoration, National Grid anticipates electrical services to be restored around 10:45 a.m..

Monday, March 13, 2017 at 9:41 am
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, news, announcements, Business, education, Perry.

A message from the Perry Central School District (PCSD): 

We would like to make our local business owners and community members aware that the Perry Central School District is not soliciting funds in support of PCSD through the All American T-shirt Company. 

Its representatives worked with the district Friday to end the solicitations.

We have asked that if businesses did purchase advertising, that any payments already made be refunded. All American T-shirt agreed to do so and we thank them for working with us to correct this situation.

We greatly appreciate the support of our local businesses and community members and apologize for the confusion. 

In instances that the District is engaged in fundraising efforts, we will inform you directly. Should you receive any calls soliciting your support in the future, you can contact the district Business Office at (585) 237-0270, ext. 1001, to verify the validity of the efforts before giving any information to the caller.

Friday, March 10, 2017 at 7:12 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, weather, news, Bennington, announcements.

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Photo from Bennington Fire Company.

A message from Bennington Fire Company, Clinton Street (Route 354), Bennington, as seen on their Facebook page:

"Our little helpers have been working hard and dinner is ready! Come on in, warm up and enjoy a hot meal. We will be here until 10 p.m.."

Friday, March 10, 2017 at 6:32 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, crime, news, Warsaw, Perry, Gainesville.

Jeremiah J. Cieszynski, 50, of Warsaw, was arrested March 9 on a warrant out of Cattaraugus County for failure to pay support. He is being held at the Cattaraugus County Jail, Little Valley.

Benishio C. Coger, 21, of Albion, was charged March 9 with criminal contempt in the second degree. Perry Police report Coger was found at the home of a female acquaintance who has an order of protection barring him from having contact with her. Police allegedly found him at the residence by Wyoming County Probation when they were checking on a probationer and assisted in the investigation. Coger was put in Wyoming County Jail in lieu of $2,000 cash bail. He is due in court at a later date.

Debra A. Gross, 52, of Gainesville, was charged March 9 with aggravated unlicensed operator of a motor vehicle in the third degree, unlicensed operator, and inadequate plate lamp. Perry Police say Gross was stopped on Covington Street, Perry, following a license check which determined her driver’s license was suspended. She is due in Perry Village Court March 14.

Friday, March 10, 2017 at 10:52 am
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, announcements, law, news, Sen. Patrick Gallivan.

Press release:

Sen. Patrick M. Gallivan (R-C-I, Elma) recently announced the New York State Senate has passed legislation to end child marriage. The bill (S4407A), cosponsored by Gallivan, would prohibit the marriage of minors under 17 years of age and require 17-year-olds to get court approval for marriage.

“Surprisingly, children as young as 14 years old can get married in New York under current state law,” Gallivan said. “Too often, these children are coerced or forced into marriage with an adult, subjecting them to violence and abuse. It’s time to put an end to this practice once and for all.”

While current law states the minimum marriage age in New York is 18, children aged 14-17 may wed with parental consent, and 14- and 15-year-olds require judicial approval as well.

In addition to increasing the minimum age for marriage to 17, this bill puts checks in place to ensure that parental consent is not parental coercion. It also addresses concerns about the lack of meaningful procedures and guidelines in the current law's judicial approval process to ensure that the minor is making an informed decision based only on his or her own views and wishes.

At least 3,850 children between the 14 and 18 years old were legally married between 2000 and 2010 in New York State, and 84 percent of these marriages wed a girl to an adult man. Many of these marriages come with significant age differences, which can subsequently lead to negative effects on the child’s health and education, and an increased likelihood of domestic violence, predominantly affecting girls.

The bill passed by the Senate unanimously and was sent to the Assembly.

Friday, March 10, 2017 at 7:28 am
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, weather, news.

There are approximately 4,442 homes and businesses still without power this morning.

Varysburg Fire Department has opened up their station as a warming shelter for those who are currently affected.

Power outages reported by local electric companies as of 7:15 a.m.:

NYSEG

    • Bennington – 910 customers

    • Java – 432 customers

    • Middlebury – 29 customers

    • Sheldon – 1,341 customers

National Grid

    • Orangeville – approximately 122 customers

    • Eagle, Java, Gainesville area – approximately 585 customers

    • Varysburg and Attica area – approximately 1,023

The Emergency Shelter will be supplied and staffed by volunteers from the American Red Cross with liaison personnel available from the Varysburg Fire Department and the Wyoming County Emergency Services Office.

Anyone with questions may call the Wyoming County Sheriff’s Office at (585) 786-2255 or the Varysburg Fire Department at (585) 535-7984.

Thursday, March 9, 2017 at 5:23 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, news, weather, Varysburg, announcements.

Wyoming County Emergency Services Director Anthony Santoro and Varysburg Fire Chief James Kelly, with the assistance of the Wyoming County Health Department, have opened an Emergency Shelter at the Varysburg Fire Hall, 2446 Route 20A, Varysburg. 

Due to yesterday’s storm damage there are still approximately 6,000 Wyoming County residents without power in the NYSEG and National Grid territories, says Wyoming County Sheriff Greg Rudolph. The designated Emergency Shelter is in the heart of those areas. 

There are no estimates on power restoration and the utility companies’ state it is a multi-day event. The weather forecast indicates below-freezing temperatures for the next several days. The Emergency Shelter will be supplied and staffed by volunteers from the American Red Cross with liaison personnel available from the Varysburg Fire Department and the Wyoming County Emergency Services Office.

Anyone with questions may call the Wyoming County Sheriff’s Office at (585) 786-2255 or the Varysburg Fire Department at (585) 535-7984.

Thursday, March 9, 2017 at 4:49 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, crime, news, Warsaw, Attica, Covington.

The following were in Wyoming County Court before Judge Michael Mohun March 9.

michael_p._lantain_-_mug_shot_copy.jpg
      Michael Lantain

Michael Lantain, who is accused of a crime in Warsaw, pled not guilty to: predatory sexual assault against a child, a Class A-II felony; 11 counts of use of a child in a sexual performance as a sexually motivated felony, a Class C felony; three counts of sexual abuse in the first degree, a Class D felony; 11 counts of possessing a sexual performance by a child, a Class E felony; endangering the welfare of a child, a misdemeanor. An order of protection has been issued. The case has been adjourned to May 11 for motions. Bail was set at $100,000.

Philip Baker, who committed a crime in Attica, was sentenced to five years probation on the conviction of criminal contempt in the first degree, a Class E felony. An order of protection was also issued and he is responsible for all fees and surcharges incurred.

Aaron Gillard, who is accused of a crime in Covington, had his case adjourned to March 16.

Quinton Murphy, who is accused of a crime in Warsaw, pled not guilty to: driving while intoxicated and aggravated unlicensed operation in the first degree, both are Class E felonies; operating a motor vehicle without a court-ordered ignition interlock device; driving while ability impaired by alcohol; no inspection and insufficient headlights. The case has been adjourned to March 30 for conference and May 11 for motions. Bail continues at $2,500.

The following were in court before Mohun March 6 and 7.

Mark Maussner, who committed a crime in Attica, pled guilty to petit larceny. He was sentenced to a one year conditional discharge and restitution of $4,400, which was paid in full.

Tammy Miller, who committed a crime in Attica, pled guilty to promoting prison contraband in the first degree. Sentencing is scheduled May 25.

Thursday, March 9, 2017 at 4:25 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, crime, news, Perry, Gainesville, Sheldon, Attica, Warsaw.
rawleigh_dennis.jpg
 Dennis Rawleigh Jr.

Dennis N. Rawleigh Jr., 46, of Batavia, formerly of Perry, was charged March 7 with one count of scheme to defraud in the second degree, a Class A misdemeanor. Rawleigh is accused of not completing work he received payments for in November. At that time, he was doing business as Rawleigh’s Tear Down and allegedly received more than $15,000 in payments from a Town of Gainesville woman to perform work on two houses she owns in Perry and Gainesville. The woman reportedly told Wyoming County Sheriff’s deputies that very little work was completed on the Perry home and none on the Gainesville residence. A second victim, a male from the Town of Sheldon, reported paying Rawleigh a $3,200 down payment to tear down a barn. It is said that he attempted to pull the large barn down with a chain and his pickup truck with negative results. He is accused of making no further attempts at pulling the barn down since June 2015. Rawleigh is due in Gainesville Town Court later this month.

Daniel Thomas Henning, 36, of Attica, was charged March 8 with driving while intoxicated, driving with a BAC of .08 or higher, inadequate exhaust, driving on sidewalk, and unlicensed operator of a motor vehicle. Genesee County Sheriff’s deputies arrested Henning following a car accident on Route 5 in the City of Batavia. He is due in the City of Batavia Court April 19.

michael_a._young.jpg victoria_young.jpg
     Michael A. Young      Victoria L. Young

Michael A. Young, 35, and Victoria L. Young, 22, both of Attica, were charged March 7 with multiple offenses following a traffic stop on North Main Street, Warsaw. Victoria was charged with falsely reporting an incident in the third degree. Michael was charged with criminal contempt in the second degree, operating a vehicle while registration suspended, and operating a motor vehicle without insurance. Wyoming County Sheriff’s deputies say they stopped the pair because the vehicle was allegedly found to have no insurance and a suspended vehicle registration. Although the car was registered to Victoria, deputies say Michael was driving the car and Victoria was the passenger. It is alleged that she told deputies she was 38 weeks pregnant and was in labor, at which time the vehicle was escorted directly to the hospital. According to the report, after being treated it was determined that she was not pregnant and she had lied to the police about it. Deputies also found Victoria was wanted on a warrant by the Olean Police Department on a petit larceny charge. She was subsequently arrested and turned over to Olean Police. Police also say there was an active stay away order of protection in place on Michael, which ordered him to stay away from Victoria. Both are due in the Village of Warsaw Court April 10. The vehicle was towed from the scene, and the license plates seized and returned to the Department of Motor Vehicles. 

Thursday, March 9, 2017 at 4:13 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, news, accident, Perry.

accident_route_20a_by_airport.jpg

Wyoming County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a two-car accident on Route 20A just east of the Perry-Warsaw Airport, Perry.

A silver Subaru was parked on the shoulder of the road when the driver of a Volkswagon Beetle veered out of the lane and struck the Subaru at full speed.

The driver of the Volkswagon was cited for moving from lane unsafely.

Minor injuries were reported.

Deputies were assisted at the scene by Perry Ambulance and Perry Police.

Thursday, March 9, 2017 at 12:18 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, news, weather, Attica.

attica_storm_damage_update_1.jpg

attica_storm_damage_update-2.jpg

Photo: Power line down on North Street.

Attica Police Chief Dean Hendershott says in the 27 years he has been with the police department in Attica this was the worst destruction he has seen in that short of a time period.

As of this post, the Village of Attica remains without power, however, both crews are working diligently to rectify the issue.

North Street is now open, however, the power lines are still down. Elm Street remains closed as Village Department of Public Works crews clear the downed tree out of the roadway.

On Genesee Street, a large tree toppled onto a home. No one was injured.

The railroad crossings are operating on generators and battery backup systems, however, should those fail, the arms will be lowered and the lights will flash. Hendershott says they are working with railroad officials to ensure the safety of travelers.

“We are mainly getting calls for the elderly and checking on them. People are cold. We are working with Wyoming County Emergency Management and the Attica Fire Department for the duration of the emergency. Depending on how long the situation lasts, it is possible that we will be opening up the elementary school for emergency shelter.”

The police department is currently operating on portable radios, as their main radio is out at the station.

Hendershott says homeowners can leave tree limbs and debris at the curb and DPW crews will pick up the items.

Firefighters say the fire hall will remain open for the duration of the power outage. There is water and coffee available to residents.

Although not many people came into the fire hall last night or early this morning, emergency responders are checking on those in the community who are unable to leave their homes.

attica_storm_damage_update-3.jpg

Window blown out at Nino's Pizzeria, Market Street.

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attica_storm_damage_update-5.jpg

attica_storm_damage_update-6.jpg

Trees across power lines on Market Street (Route 98).

attica_storm_damage_update-7.jpg

Tree fell on a home on Genesee Street.

attica_storm_damage_update-8.jpg

attica_storm_damage_update-9.jpg

attica_storm_damage_update-10.jpg

attica_storm_damage_update-11.jpg

Attica DPW crew cleaning up Elm Street.

attica_storm_damage_update-12.jpg

Tree branches nearly miss a house on Main Street.

Thursday, March 9, 2017 at 6:43 am

High winds yesterday left thousands of residents without power. While power was restored to many customers, power companies report 6,350 residents are still without power as of 6:15 a.m..

RG&E customers without power: 

    • Arcade – 25 

    • Eagle – 27

NYSEG customers without power:

    • Bennington – 1,526

    • Castile – 10

    • Gainesville – 46

    • Java – 1,199

    • Middlebury – 29

    • Sheldon – 1,341

    • Warsaw – 1

National Grid customers without power:

    • Eagle, Bliss, Java, Gainesville area – approximately 589

    • Varysburg, Warsaw, Attica area – approximately – 1,557.

Power companies have been working through the night to restore electricity to county homes and continue this morning.

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