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Today's Top Stories - Monday, June 21st, 2021

Steuben Under Severe Thunderstorm Warning This Evening
Steuben is one of five counties in the area that is under a Severe Thunderstorm Advisory until 8pm this evening. A round of scattered severe thunderstorms is expected to begin this afternoon and continue into the early evening tonight. The storm will develop from 1 to 4pm then travel eastward through our Southern Tier region. Expect damaging winds, large hail, and frequent lightning. Heavy rainfall is also possible with a risk for a possible isolated tornado. The Twin Tiers region has been upgraded to an Enhance Risk, level 3 out of 5, for the development of strong to severe storms. 


Commission on Judicial Conduct Reports Hornby Justice Resignation 
The New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct reports Justice of the Hornby Town Court, Jason Novak, resigned after being served with formal charges by the Commission. Novak did not attend any of the three judicial training programs offered by the court system between September 2020 and April 2021, and therefore was not certificated to assume judicial duties. Novak also failed to respond to four letters from the Commission regarding his training and certification status. Administrator Robert Tembeckjian said Judge Novak’s failure to complete a training and certification program “....was compounded by his failure to respond to Commission inquiries and required his departure from office.” Novak formally vacated office earlier this month on June 7th, and agreed never to seek or accept judicial office at any time in the future. 


6/26-6/27 Free Fishing Weekend in New York State
This weekend -from Saturday, June 26th continuing to Sunday the 27th, is Free Fishing Weekend in New York State. This event is the second of six Free Fishing Days to be held in New York State and is just in time for the start of summer vacation. During designated free fishing days, New York residents and non-residents can fish for free without a fishing license. The next Free Fishing Days for this year include National Hunting and Fishing Day and Veterans Day. A full list of regulations can be found in the 2021 DEC New York State Freshwater Fishing Guide.


AAA Reports Rising Gas Prices in NY State
AAA reports gas prices have risen by nearly a dollar in the past year.  The current average price of gas in New York state is $3.13 a gallon, compared to $2.23 a gallon last year-that’s up two cents in the last week and almost an entire dollar in the last year. AAA says rising crude oil prices may mean higher gas prices this month.


NY’s COVID Vaccination Rate Rises
The number of New Yorkers receiving a COVID vaccination continues an upward trend. According to the latest report, the state has achieved a vaccination rate of 70.9%. And there’s more good news…The statewide 7-Day positivity rate is now 0.38% and has declined for 76 consecutive days. Only 258 new positive cases were confirmed on Sunday.


NY Law Will Require General Hospitals Seek Planning Input from Staff
Gov. Andrew Cuomo has signed legislation requiring general hospitals in the state to seek input from nurses and other staff in creating staffing plans that are to include specific guidelines on how many patients each nurse is assigned. The first plan must be adopted by the committee and submitted to the New York State Department of Health by July 1, 2022.


Erie County Exec Rescinds Vaccine Requirement for Bills Games
Some good news for Bills fans - Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz now says he is rescinding the vaccine requirement for Buffalo Bills games and stadium events due to low COVID-19 case numbers. In a tweet, he cited low hospitalizations and good vaccination rates.


Pulteney Man Arrested After Domestic Dispute
After investigating a domestic dispute, state police arrested 41-year-old Matthew Young of Pulteney. Troopers charged Young with felony possession of a weapon and two counts of menacing with a weapon and criminal obstruction of breathing. 


Guthrie Begins to Scale Back Visitation Guidelines
Beginning today Guthrie is scaling back some visitation guidelines at its facilities. Visitors will still be required to always wear masks at all facilities, regardless of vaccination status. All patients and visitors will also still be screened for temperature and COVID-19 symptoms. Inpatients can have visitors between 7 a.m. – 9 p.m. Patients will be permitted two visitors at a time.


Cameron Man Arrested by Troopers for Forcible Touching
Troopers from the Painted Post barracks report the arrest of 40-year-old Kristopher Vosburgh of Cameron. He was charged with two counts of child endangerment and a single count of forcible touching. Court action is pending.

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