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Today's Top Stories - Monday, December 19th

Steuben Co. Legislature Meeting Today:


Appointments, landfill fees and the traditional “passing of the fruitcake” top the Steuben County Legislature’s agenda when it meets this morning. County lawmakers are expected to renew the appointments of the Elections Commissioners. Legislators also are expected to confirm the appointment of Nathan Alderman as county Personnel Officer for an unexpired six-year term ending Dec. 31, 2021. Legislators also will weigh in on measures designed to cover costs associated with disposing of cathode ray tube televisions and computer monitors (CRT’s), along with other “e-waste” at the county landfill.



First Arena Still Open, Seeking New Owner:


Despite rumors to the contrary, Elmira’s First Arena did not close this past weekend.  The Chemung County Industrial Development Agency met on Friday and confirmed that they still have control of the arena as it goes through sale negotiations.  Executive Tom Santulli says there is a party that is extremely interested and he hopes to tell the community within 30 to 60 days that it’s under new ownership.



Thousands of Wreaths Laid at Bath National Cemetery:


Braving the cold, hundreds of volunteers turned out to Bath National Cemetery on Saturday to lay over 2,000 wreaths on gravestones of service men and women as a part of Wreaths Across America.  The volunteers came from near and far, with Hornell Commander Terry Mehlenbacher mentioning one volunteer who came all the way from Buffalo to participate.



Schumer Calls for Recall of Exploding E-Cigarettes:


U.S. Senator Charles Schumer is calling on the federal government to consider recalling e-cigarette batteries and devices after reports of them exploding and catching fire.  At a press conference on Saturday, Schumer cited a story by the Associated Press that said the FDA identified 66 explosions in 2015 and early 2016, and 92 explosions between 2009 and September 2015.  Schumer called the devices “ticking time bombs.”



NY Schools Can Switch to Computer Tests This Year:


When it comes time for state testing this spring, schools across the state can ditch the old pencil-and-paper exams if they so choose.  The state Education Department is giving elementary and intermediate schools the choice to switch the state mandated English and math exams to computers.  During a pilot program last year, roughly 800 schools participated with some 60,000 students taking one “field” exam on a computer.  The state reported no major technological issues.  The English exams will be given in late March, with the math exams in early May.

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