WVIN News Archives for 2020-01

Today's Top Stories - Friday January 31st, 2020

County Land Bank Corporation Meets February 5th
Wednesday February 5th is the Steuben County Land Bank Corporation Meeting at 10:30 am. On the agenda is Election of Officers and Committee Assignments,  Approval of Investment Policy, Annual Re-Adoption of All Board Policies and Project Updates on the LISC Grants for various projects in the county. In other business, they discuss a plan for use of “Unrestricted” Funds.

 

County HSH&E Committee Meets February 5th
Steuben County Human Services, Health & Education Committee meets Wednesday, February 5th at 9am. Departmental requests will be discussed for a Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner Contract, Budget Adjustment and Office for the Aging. Additional EISEP Funds will be Accepted and Appropriated for Department of Social Services. An update on the Status of Coronavirus will be given. Also on the agenda is to Fund and Reclassify the Office of Community Services and a United Way Contract worth $20,000.

 

Karrie Neurauter Released on Parole
Officials confirmed yesterday that Karrie Neurauter, the 22-year-old woman who pleaded guilty in late 2018 to second-degree manslaughter for her involvement in the 2017 killing of her mother, Michele, was released on parole from Albion State Correctional Facility. She initially plead guilty but after her father Lloyd said he psychologically manipulated Karrie for years, the court agreed to reduce the charge to second-degree manslaughter and waived her right to appeal as part of that decision. Lloyd was sentenced late 2018 to life without parole for killing his wife.

 

Campbell Man Arrested for Possession of Controlled Substance
A 22-year-old Campbell man was arrested on drug charges. On Wednesday, Joshua Stein was charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance. He will appear in court at a later date.

 

O’Mara Honored with “Highest Conservative Rating” Award
At the Conservative Party of New York State’s 53rd Annual Political Action Conference this week in Albany, State Senator Tom O’Mara and two other New York State legislators received the annual “Highest Conservative Rating” award. O’Mara and his GOP State Senate colleagues Daphne Jordan and Robert Ortt, earned the recognition after the group’s evaluation of the 2019 legislative session. The ratings were based on how state legislators voted on 25 pieces of legislation passed in last year’s session that influenced issues like economic growth, fiscal policy, crime, health, education, and public safety.

 

O’Mara Pushing for Prison Contraband Screening Process
State Senator Tom O’Mara is working with fellow lawmakers on potential legislation to direct the Department of Corrections and Community Supervision to come up with a “contraband screening plan”. O’Mara says Senate Bill S162 “is an effort to at least boost the efforts in screening for contraband.” The bill would have the Department of Corrections Commissioner  establish a contraband screening process and would make drug-sniffing dogs available to search 12 prisons weekly at random.

 

NYS Lawmakers Proposing Lowering BAC for Drinking and Driving
Two lawmakers are proposing to lower the state’s legal blood-alcohol limit for drinking and driving from .08 to .05. The bill has been introduced three times before and never made it out of committee, but the bill sponsors are optimistic this time around. Opponents say no matter what the law is, not drinking and driving comes down to personal accountability. The American Beverage Institute has called the push for a lower limit “criminalizing perfectly responsible behavior.” Right now, Utah is the only state to have lowered it to .05.

 

Environmental Debate in New York Continues
This week in Albany, New York State Lawmakers held budget hearings and faced protests from environmental and left-leaning groups who were demonstrating to criticize the lack of new solar and wind projects in the state. Groups are also pushing for the state to do more to boost electric vehicles, energy efficiency and block construction of infrastructure for natural gas. Governor Cuomo promised fighting climate change would be a top priority for 2020 agenda and proposed borrowing $3 billion for flood protection projects, wildlife habitat restoration, and construction of small renewable energy systems. New York aims to have 70% of its electricity come from renewable energy by 2030, and to become emissions free by 2040.

Today's Top Stories - Thursday January 30th, 2020

Corning Inc Foundation Gives $560K to United Way
Corning Incorporated Foundation Board of Trustees approved $560,000 worth of grants to support the United Way of the Southern Tier. Corning Inc. Foundation gave a grant of $535,000 and a special $25,000 gift to recognized Corning Inc. employees who newly donated to the United Way of the Southern Tier in the fall. Corning Inc. Foundation is a charitable contributions organization established in 1952 that seeks to make Corning communities better through support of education, human services, culture and volunteerism in Corning business locations.

 

Public Works Committee Meets Monday
Steuben Public Works Committee meets 10am the morning of Monday, February 3rd and they will be discussing in Landfill business: the City of Hornell’s Request to Waive Tip Fee for Preston Avenue Fire Debris. In Highway Business: A New York State Department of Transportation Agreement for the county to maintain a portion of County Route 60 upon completion of the NY-248 Bridge Replacement Project over Bennett’s Creek in Greenwood and Approval to buy a New Stone Chip Spreader Machine in Highway Business. In Park Business, the committee will discuss possibly having no charge to Finger Lakes Volunteer Workers to have 4 nights, 2 cabins and 1 electric and non-electric site.

 

County Educates Public to Prevent Trafficking and Raise Awareness
Noting January is National Human Trafficking Awareness Month, Steuben’s program Coordinator Lisa Baker said awareness of the issue is growing in the county, with governmental, non-profit, school and civic organizations signing up for classes on recognizing and preventing the commercial sexual exploitation of children. Human trafficking occurs when anyone is forced to perform sex acts or provide labor in exchange for anything of value. Under the state?s “Safe Harbour” program, Baker has conducted in-service sessions for the county Department of Social Services. Steuben also is providing schools and any youth-service organizations an opportunity to participate in an age-appropriate curriculum “Not A Number” which helps recognize and prevent human trafficking.

 

O’Mara Calls on Cuomo and State to End Unfunded State Mandates
State Senator Tom O’Mara Monday urged Governor Andrew Cuomo and state legislative leaders to get behind legislation to end the practice of unfunded state mandates on local governments and school districts. O’Mara is co-sponsoring legislation in the Senate that would ban any future state mandates that increase costs on local governments and school districts without providing state funding to pay for delivering the required programs and services. O’Mara said the legislation keeps attention focused on the need for New York to provide mandate relief to local governments and school districts.

 

NYSP Superintendent May Issue Subpoenas to Investigate Exploitation

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo has announced legislation in his proposed budget that grants the State Police Superintendent the right to issue administrative subpoenas as a way empower the State Police to investigate internet crimes against children. This new power, if approved, would enable the State Police to move quickly to identify and locate persons suspected of online sexual exploitation of minors by streamlining the subpoena process necessary to obtain their online records.

 

Crash on I-99 Under Investigation
A three-vehicle accident yesterday on I-99 at about 11:50 a.m. resulted in a driver being life-flighted to a local hospital according to the Painted Post State Police. Officials said I-99 was temporarily closed to traffic so police could clean up the roadway and have vehicles towed from the scene before the passing lane was reopened.The accident’s cause is currently not known and is being investigated by Troopers.

 

American Red Cross in Critical Need of Blood
The American Red Cross urges for more donations as they face a critical blood shortage. With the flu on the rise in NY state preventing some donors from giving blood and winter weather cancelling drives, the Red Cross announces the shortage and cites those factors as its cause. Those that are able to give are highly encouraged to do so. There are blood drives scheduled today 11:45 a.m. - 5:45 p.m. at Hammondsport Fire Department and 1 p.m. - 6 p.m. at Ramada of Painted Post. February 10th Campbell Savona High School holds a drive from noon to 6pm. Call 1-800-RED-CROSS for more information.

 

New York State Ranks Third on List of Wine-Producing States
Wine continues to be a major industry in the Empire State and a new study by the New York Wine and Grape Foundation found New York ranks third on a list of wine-producing states. New York’s wine business nets almost $7 billion for the economy statewide. The growing New York wine industry has created close to 72,000 jobs, the majority of which are in the Finger Lakes. The study also found wine retailers, alone, pay about $1.21 billion in wages and contribute $2.40 billion in economic activity to the state. You can read the study here.

Today's Top Stories - Wednesday January 29th, 2020

Sweet Wins Mayoral Nomination at Bath Village Republican Caucus
The Village of Bath Republican caucus was held last night and close to 200 people turned out to vote. Voters nominated Mike Sweet for Mayor, 111 to 64 over incumbent Bill Von Hagn. Karen Causer and Jeff Muller were the top two of four nominees for Village Trustee, defeating Joe Washburn and Dan Chapman. Village Justice was named Bob Plaskov. Mayor Von Hagn said he was happy to see the community get involved, proud of his 25 years in community service and happy to be able to spend more time with his friends and family.
(AUDIO: Sweet Talks Taxes and Plans as Mayor)

 

 

State Senate Candidate Danks-Burke Stops in Bath
Democratic candidate for New York’s 58th Senate District, Leslie Danks-Burke, held her 6-city Whistlestop Tour yesterday and stopped in Bath and Hornell. Danks-Burke says that we New Yorkers pay the highest taxes in the nation and are not seeing the benefits of the high rate. Danks-Burke promised she will bring more jobs to the district, if elected. She is running against Republican incumbent State Senator Tom O’Mara in November.

 


Danks-Burke (far-right in blue) watches Matt Hill introduce her at the podium...
(AUDIO: Leslie Talks Taxes and Jobs in the 58th NYS Senate District)


Ira Davenport Designated a Stroke Center
Ira Davenport Hospital in Bath has become a designated Stroke Center which means Ira Davenport can now receive and treat stroke patients. Before the designation, stroke patients had to be transported to other regional hospitals. This new change will now allow patients to receive quicker treatment closer to home. "the only protocol change that we are seeing is that we are now able to take those stroke patients now via ambulance. So, we'll be seeing more stroke patients coming in and out..." said Sarah Mattison, Assistant of Clinical telemedicine at Arnot Health. Ira Davenport received the designation on December 19th and treated their first patient 10 days later on December 29th.

 

County Legislature Approves Housing & Broadband Studies
This week’s County Legislative Meeting on Monday resulted in the approval of a housing study. Also achieved this week was the authorization of a four-county wide broadband study with Schuyler, Yates and Tioga counties as part of Steuben’s plan for shared services this year. Funds were also transferred from various county Board of Elections accounts to the voting machine capital account. The Legislature also accepted funds from United Way for increased training of providers, staff, parents and the community while providing materials like lead-free paint to reduce lead poisoning and exposure. The Legislature also supported an increase in funds statewide for Cornell Cooperative Extension.

 

County Legislature Presents Shared Service Plan
Earlier this week, the Steuben County Legislature presented its shared services plan to the public. The 3-year plan will continue sharing services between several departments across the county. Steuben County Manager Jack Wheeler says the major highlights from the plan are sharing personnel, equipment and code enforcement officers, and working to accomplish quality, rural broadband. Wheeler says the plan is intended to save county taxpayers money and projects an estimated $1.2 million in savings. The plan can be reviewed here

 

State Labor Department Releases Annual Area Unemployment Rates
Yesterday, the New York State Department of Labor released preliminary unemployment rates for local areas across the state. As a whole from December 2018 to 2019, New York’s private sector employment count increased by 97,700. However, New York’s seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate remained the same at 4% during that span of a year. Steuben County saw an increase in unemployment from 4.5% to 5% from 2018 to 2019. Officials explain the rates partially rely on results of the Current Population Survey, which contacts over 3,000 households in the state per month.

 

 

Steuben OFA Accepting Nominations for Older New Yorkers Day
Steuben County Office For the Aging announces they will accept nominations for the annual New York State Office for the Aging’s “Older New Yorkers’ Day” until February 14th. The Office For The Aging is looking for extraordinary people who are 60 and older who have made a real difference in their community. County RSVP Coordinator Christine Towner says the organization seeks “people who are the unsung ‘pillars of service’ in our neighborhoods.” Those selected will be invited to participate in the statewide celebration set for May 19th in Albany. Honorees in 2019 were Pulteney EMT Nancy Snyder and Finger Lakes SPCA and Ira Davenport volunteer Susan Arthur of Bath.

 

American Red Cross in Critical Need of Blood
The American Red Cross urges for more donations as they face a critical blood shortage. With the flu on the rise in NY state preventing some donors from giving blood and winter weather cancelling drives, the Red Cross announces the shortage and cites those factors as its cause. Those that are able to give are highly encouraged to do so. Here is a list of drives happening soon in Steuben County:

Today: 8:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. at Corning Community College
Tomorrow: 11:45 a.m. - 5:45 p.m. at Hammondsport Fire Department and 1 p.m. - 6 p.m. at Ramada of Painted Post.

Today's Top Stories - Tuesday January 18th, 2020

Danks-Burke Appears Today in Bath for Whistlestop Tour
Democratic Candidate for State Senate Leslie Danks-Burke holds a Whistlestop Tour today to promote her campaign for State Senator. The tour kicks off in Penn Yan at the Yates County Democratic Headquarters 8:30am. Danks-Burke continues the tour in Watkins Glen, then she will be in Hornell at Marino’s Restaurant 12:30pm. Danks-Burke will appear in Bath 2pm at the Bath Fire Hall then continue to Corning, Elmira and finish in Ithaca.

 

Bath Village Republican Caucus Tonight
Currently, 4 candidates have announced they are running for Village of Bath Trustee: Karen Causer, Joe Washburn, Dan Chapman and Jeff Muller. There are two trustee positions on the village board open. Robert Plaskov is running for Village Justice. For Mayor, Chamber Board member Mike Sweet is running against incumbent Bill Von Hagn. The Republican caucus will be tonight at 110 Liberty Street 6:30pm. Last week, Bath Village Democrats had their caucus and no candidates were selected. Village elections will be held March 18th.

 

Palmesano Named Leader of Republican Conference
Assemblyman Phil Palmesano will serve in a new leadership position as Assistant Minority Leader of the Assembly Republican Conference. Assembly Minority Leader Will Barclay (R-Pulaski) suggested Palmesano serve under the title. Palmesano will assume a more major role in promoting Conference priorities, managing internal operations and fostering fruitful relationships with leaders and advocacy groups across the aisle. Palmesano will continue serving as ranking member of the Energy committee as well as serving on the Corporations, Corrections, Insurance and Ways and Means Committees. Palmesano also serves on the bipartisan Legislative Commission on Rural Resources.

 

County Legislature Accepts Funding for Housing Study
The Steuben County Legislature accepted funds yesterday to fund a study looking at housing needs in the county and discover how housing needs affect economic development. The study will cost $25,000 and be covered by a recent $12,500 grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission as well as funds that are being matched by the county. The study came as a result of numerous reports showing housing is an important factor that brings in and keeps workers in Steuben county and that housing is a resource our county critically lacks. Steuben’s share of the study was approved by the Steuben Legislature’s Agriculture, Industry and Planning Committee.

 

Sheriff’s Office Arrests Seven in DWI Sweep
Steuben County Sheriff’s Office reports from January 18th – 27th deputies arrested seven  people for Driving While Intoxicated. Canisteo man Jodie Dineen was arrested in Hornellsville yesterday. Nicholas Nichols of Hornell was arrested in Canisteo Saturday. Also arrested Saturday was Corning man Chad Powers in Corning. Matthew Graham of Hornell was arrested in Hornell. Hornell man Thomas Burdick picked up a DWI charge in Hartsville. Also arrested was Michigan woman Angela Estes in Bath on I-86 and New Mexico man Patrick Bulger in Corning. All subjects were eventually released on traffic summons to appear in town courts at a later date.

 

O’Mara Encourages Residents Visit Website
State Senator Tom O’Mara reminds area residents to utilize his Senate website to share their opinions on legislation and other state government issues, especially the recently-enacted bail reform changes that O’Mara has spoken out against. The State Senator of New York’s 58th   District said: “I look forward to opportunities to keep constituents informed about legislative actions, as well as about state policies and programs impacting our local communities, families, workers, businesses, and taxpayers.” O’Mara’s website is: omara.nysenate.gov

 

Cuomo Says He’s Open to Bail Reform Changes
Governor Cuomo says he’s willing to consider changes to the new, controversial cash bail reforms implemented in recent weeks but has not endorsed or proposed any specific changes to the law. Cuomo expressed skepticism towards the “dangerousness” standard where judges determine whether a defendant is too dangerous to be released from behind bars and commented at a Friday press conference: “The dangerousness standard basically takes us back to where we were…” Cuomo also remarked that the reform is both a work in progress and he is open to changes “100 percent”.

 

Bill Offers Sexual and Domestic Assault Education to Cosmetologists
A new bill would give the cosmetology industry the advantage of domestic violence prevention education if it were to become law. Senate Bill S96 intends to amend the general business law while providing beauty industry professionals an option to take a domestic violence and sexual assault training course upon renewing their cosmetology license. The bill states the courses will be offered at least once yearly and those who take at least an hour of domestic violence and sexual assault education would receive a certificate of completion.

Today's Top Stories - Monday January 27th, 2020

Wegmans Ends Single-Use Plastic Bags Today
Beginning today, Wegmans will no longer be using single-use plastic grocery bags at all of their New York stores before the official state ban that starts March 1st. Wegmans says the point of this early action is to get all their customers to switch to reusable bags sooner to help with the environment. The Western New York based store will charge a fee of 5 cents for paper bags and will donate that money to regional food banks, so long as the store is in a county has not chosen to collect the charge. Meanwhile, Tops Friendly Markets will be selling extra-strength reusable plastic bags that can be used up to 125 times for 10 cents each.

 

Gillibrand Announces Nominees for National Service Institutions
U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand announced her nominations of candidates from the Southern Tier to three leading national service institutions. The nominees were chosen from a large group of applicants through a selection committee based on academic record, leadership potential and overall achievement. Nominated from our own Steuben County is Grace Ruland from Corning from the United States Air Force Academy. Service academies will be determining the final acceptance of the 3 nominees.

 

Cuomo Proposes Expanding of Child Tax Credit
Governor Andrew Cuomo is proposing expansion of New York State’s child tax credit to help families cover the costs of childcare. Cuomo recently released his budget proposal to expand the child tax credit to children under age four. Currently, New York state’s credit is equal to 33% to the pre-2018 federal child tax credit or $100 per qualifying child age 4 to 16. The governor says this would help about 400,000 families making $50,000 or less who are struggling with the cost of raising children. Child advocacy groups, unions, and child care providers say the allotment does not do enough to address the high cost of child care itself which can average $15,000 annually in New York. In the next few weeks, lawmakers will hold hearings on Cuomo’s budget proposal to pass a final budget by April 1st.

 

Mitrano Talks Reed and Opiate Crisis at Listening Tour
During the final stop of her five-city listening tour about the state of healthcare, Democratic Congressional candidate Tracy Mitrano talked in Geneva about the opiate crisis, Tom Reed’s possible run for governor and more to a group of about 50 people that included aides from the Reed campaign, which Mitrano welcomed. Mitano called out Reed for taking money from lobbying groups that have propagated the opiate crisis, calling for heroin dealers to be executed and accusing her of being an “Extreme Ithaca Liberal” in the 2018 campaign season despite being from Penn Yan. Mitrano promised that she would never raise taxes for the middle and working-class, if elected.

 

Danks-Burke Appears Tomorrow in Bath for Whistlestop Tour
Democratic Candidate for State Senate Leslie Danks-Burke has announced a Whistlestop Tour to kick off her campaign for State Senator. The tour kicks off tomorrow in Penn Yan at the Yates County Democratic Headquarters 8:30am. Danks-Burke continues the tour in Watkins Glen, then be in Hornell at Marino’s Restaurant 12:30pm then appear in Bath 2pm at the Bath Fire Hall then Corning, Elmira and finishing in Ithaca.

 

STAR Program to Be Withheld to Delinquent STAR payers
Governor Cuomo has announced a proposal in the 2021 Fiscal Year Executive Budget to deny School Tax Relief Program benefits to delinquent property owners. The measure would eliminate STAR benefits for homeowners that do not pay their property taxes. It would also require localities to report tax delinquents to the Department of Taxation and Finance so that a STAR credit or exemption can be withheld. Homeowners will be excluded from the STAR program until past-due property taxes are paid.

 

Millions Added to NY Highway Funding
New York State officials have announced $151 million in new funding for the renewal of State roadways impacted by extreme weather events. This State funding will support 95 paving projects and the renewal of approximately 1,000 lane miles of pavement across the state, including at least one project in every county. •$3.1 million has been awarded to renew Route 53 south from the Hamlet of Kanona to the Village of Prattsburgh in Steuben County…and $2.2 million to renew Route 53 north from the Village of Prattsburgh to the Livingston County line in Steuben County.

 

Legal Recreational Marijuana Becoming Popular
A recent poll by Sienna College says the legalization of marijuana has received the highest approval rating yet.  Governor Andrew Cuomo has said legalizing cannabis for recreational use is the kind of thing that should be included in the state budget. Currently, a bill that would legalize pot recreationally is gaining traction in the State Senate.

Today's Top Stories - Saturday January 25th 2020

 

 

Addison Fire

Fire in Addison Friday afternoon damaged a two-story home on the Jones Hill Rd.  It was reported that fire originated in the chimney, when firefighters arrived it had spread to the back of the house on the second floor.  They’re no reports injuries and the fire is being investigated.

 

Watkins Glen Executive stepping down

Watkins Glen Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Rebekah Carroll has decided to step.  The Board of Directors accepted her resignation yesterday.  Carroll said she has decided to pursue her dream of opening an accounting business.  She has been with the Watkins Glen Chamber since 2008 being named President and CEO last year.  Under her term the Chamber of has done well…growing 67% to 480 members.

And now there are four

There are now 4 announced candidates for Village of Bath trustee. Karen Causer, Joe Washburn, Dan Chapman and now Jeff Muller. Last night Village Democrats held their caucus and no candidates where selected.  There are two trustee positions on the village board up for grabs. There is also a race for Mayor…Board member Mike Sweet is running against incumbent Bill Von Hagn.  The Republican caucus will be Tuesday Jan 28th. Village elections are March 18th  Longtime Board member incumbent Jeanne Glass reportedly will not be running for election.

 

STAR Program update

Governor Cuomo has announced a proposal in the FY 2021 Executive Budget to deny School Tax Relief Program benefits to delinquent property owners. The measure would eliminate STAR benefits for homeowners that do not pay their property taxes. It would also require localities to report tax delinquents to the Department of Taxation and Finance so that a STAR credit or exemption can be withheld. Homeowners will be excluded from the STAR program until past-due property taxes are paid.

More Highway Money

New York State officials have announced $151 million in new funding for the renewal of State roadways impacted by extreme weather events. This State funding will support 95 paving projects and the renewal of approximately 1,000 lane miles of pavement across the state, including at least one project in every county. •$3.1 million has been awarded to renew Route 53 south from the Hamlet of Kanona to the Village of Prattsburgh in Steuben County…and $2.2 million to renew Route 53 north from the Village of Prattsburgh to the Livingston County line in Steuben County.

Legal Marijuana gaining traction

A recent poll by Sienna College says the legalization of marijuana has received the highest approval rating ever.  Governor Andrew Cuomo has said legalizing the drug for recreational use is the kind of thing that should be included in the state budget. There is a bill that is gaining traction in the State Senate

Dollar General Employee Arrested

An Elmira man has been arrested for allegedly stealing $1,000 from a Dollar General Store in Horseheads.  Laken Thomas was an employee at the time and has been charged with grand larceny fourth degree.

Today's Top Stories - Friday, January 24th, 2020

Bath Village Election Season Kicks Off With Candidacy and Caucuses
Currently, 4 candidates have announced they are running for Village of Bath Trustee: Karen Causer, Joe Washburn, Dan Chapman and now Jeff Muller. There are two trustee positions on the village board open For Mayor, Chamber Board member Mike Sweet is running against incumbent Bill Von Hagn. The Republican caucus will be Tuesday Jan 28th. Last night, Bath Village Democrats had their caucus and no candidates were selected. . Village elections will be held March 18th.

 

Joint Finance and Ad Hoc Office Space Committees Meet Monday
The County Legislature meets on Monday for their Legislative meeting and proceeding that regular meeting, Joint Finance and Ad Hoc Office Space Committees will hold a meeting at 9:45 am. The committee is set to discuss a purchase of real property. All Legislators are encouraged to attend and advised to mark their calendars accordingly.

 

Steuben OFA Accepting Nominations for Older New Yorkers Day
Steuben County Office For the Aging announces they will accept nominations for the annual New York State Office for the Aging’s “Older New Yorkers’ Day” until February 14th. The Office For The Aging is looking for extraordinary people who are 60 and older who have made a real difference in their community. County RSVP Coordinator Christine Towner says the organization seeks “people who are the unsung ‘pillars of service’ in our neighborhoods.” Those selected will be invited to participate in the statewide celebration set for May 19th in Albany. Honorees in 2019 were Pulteney EMT Nancy Snyder and Finger Lakes SPCA and Ira Davenport volunteer Susan Arthur of Bath.

 

Public Invited to Friday Wreaths Across America Cleanup
The public is invited today to retrieve and clean up wreaths that were laid during Wreaths Across America Day. Over 5,000 wreaths were placed on the graves of veterans last month. The cleanup event will be held today in Bath National Cemetery at the Bath VA Medical Center at 3pm. Parking will be available at the back of the Bath VA museum and no sign-up or registration is required to participate. Cleanup instructions are to be announced at the cemetery monument. Bringing a rake or broom is highly encouraged.

 

Cornell Cooperative of Steuben Requesting NY Double Co-Op Funding
Steuben County lawmakers are expected to support Steuben County’s Cornell Cooperative Extension and its sister extensions when the co-ops meet with state officials this Sunday through Tuesday, January 26th-28th to request the group’s first boost in funding in 20 years. According to Steuben’s CCE Executive Director Theresa McKinley, directors will ask the state to double the funding for all co-ops across the state from $4 million to $8 million. Increased support is needed for the county coops to assist farmers and other agribusinesses to remain competitive on the national level, says McKinley. The Steuben County Legislature meets next on Monday January 27th at 10am.

 

Food Bank of Southern Tier Announces Check-Out Hunger Dates
The Food Bank of the Southern Tier announced the start of Check-Out Hunger, the annual community-wide fundraiser at local grocery stores to collect donations for hunger relief. For 26 years, the Food Bank has partnered with local grocery retailers to raise awareness and money for hunger in the Southern Tier. Shoppers can donate $2, $3, or $5 to Check Out Hunger directly at the register and cashiers add the donation to shoppers’ checkout purchase. Save-A-Lot will be raising funds Saturday, February 29th, Tops Friendly Markets will raise money on Saturday, February 15th and Wegmans will have their day on Saturday, March 1st. Last year, area shoppers raised over $274,000 in donations.

 

Savona Man Arrested for Aggravated Driving, Child Endangerment
A 24-year-old Savona man is facing numerous charges following a traffic stop on County Road 12 in the Town of Bath. State Police arrested Darnell Barron. Barron was charged with three felony counts of aggravated driving while intoxicated with children in the vehicle. Troopers also charged him with three counts of child endangerment and operating a motor vehicle while impaired by drugs.

 

Some Steuben Trust Branches May Be Closing
Not long ago, Community Bank announced its acquisition of Steuben Trust. Yesterday, it was reported that some Steuben Trust branches would be closing, perhaps as soon as March. Steve Harriger, a public relations spokesperson for Steuben Trust in Hornell said that legal notices were published in The Spectator indicating the potential closure of Steuben branch offices in Alfred, Bolivar and Geneseo. Community Bank announced in October 2019 that it purchased Steuben Trust for $106 million.

Today's Top Stories - Thursday January 23rd, 2020

Bath Village Democratic Caucus is Tonight
A Democratic Caucus will be held 7pm tonight in the Village Board Room of the Municipal Building in Bath. The positions are open for Village Mayor, Village Justice and there are two openings for Village Trustee. All registered Democrats living in the Village of Bath are eligible to vote at tonight’s caucus. These positions are on the ballot for the Village Election set for Wednesday March 18th, 2020. Anyone interested in becoming a candidate can contact Bath Town Democratic Chairman Gary Ostrander at gmobuzz@verizon.net or call him at (607) 776-7556.

 

Sweet Calls on Legislators to Develop P.I.L.O.T. for 115 Liberty Street
Bath Mayoral candidate Michael Sweet has calling on the Steuben County Legislators to develop a P.I.L.O.T. (payment in lieu of taxes) for 115 Liberty Street that the County has announced they will be purchasing from Yunis Enterprises. Sweet explained because Bath is the County Seat, Village of Bath taxpayers sacrifice more than any other municipality in Steuben County. Sweet cites in the past three years, the county purchased several properties within the Bath Village, which have been removed from the tax roll and. Sweet says that alone has costed Village taxpayers over $13,000 annually and requires an increase in Village taxes or cutting current, important services. As Mayor, Sweet promises he will represent the interest of hard-working taxpayers of Bath.

 

Congressional Candidate Mitrano Speaking in Corning Tonight
Democratic Congressional candidate Tracy Mitrano continues her five-city listening tour tonight. Mitrano will be in Corning at the United Steelworkers Union Hall at the Nassar Civic Center Plaza from 6 to 8pm. Mitrano launched the listening tour in Dunkirk  earlier this week where she spoke about the nonprofit group RIP Medical Debt which has the mission of “eliminating more than $500,000 of medical debt at one percent of the original cost” by forgiving $10,000 in medical debts for every $100 donated to the group.

 

Cornell Cooperative of Steuben Requesting NY Double Co-Op Funding
Steuben County lawmakers are expected to support Steuben County’s Cornell Cooperative Extension and its sister extensions when the co-ops meet with state officials this Sunday through Tuesday, January 26th-28th to request the group’s first boost in funding in 20 years. According to Steuben’s CCE Executive Director Theresa McKinley, directors will ask the state to double the funding for all co-ops across the state from $4 million to $8 million. Increased support is needed for the county coops to assist farmers and other agribusinesses with the sustained effort required to remain competitive on the national level, says McKinley. The Steuben County Legislature meets next on Monday January 27th at 10am.

 

Eric Smith Denied Parole for Tenth Time
Savona man Eric Smith, who is serving a life sentence for the 1993 murder of Derrick Robie, will stay in prison, following his latest parole hearing. WENY News confirmed that the State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision denied to release 39-year-old Eric Smith for a killing four-year-old Derrick Robie of Savona when Smith was 13 years old. Smith is serving a sentence in prison of nine years to life and earlier this month he was eligible for parole. However, the parole board voted for the tenth time to deny the release of Smith and set a future parole hearing for October 2021. Smith is serving his time at medium security prison Woodbourne Correctional Facility in Sullivan County.

 

DA Baker Speaks About 911 Call to Chemung Dispatcher
Steuben County District Attorney Brooks Baker has spoken out after Chemung County 911 released an audio yesterday of a heated 911 call between Baker and a dispatcher. The call happened Saturday after Baker and his family called to help rescue a dog wandering on I-86 in Chemung County. Baker called after he picked up the dog and was seeking to be connected to Animal Control. Baker says he was told by the dispatcher to pull over on the freeway to wait for Animal Control to pick up the dog but Baker felt it was unsafe to do so with his young children as passengers during Saturday’s snowstorm. Baker called the interaction a “tense phone call” and upon the audio being released he admitted “unfortunately my temper may have gotten the better of me” but also told WETM News that dispatchers were “petty and small” for posting the phone call on Facebook. The 911 center released the audio after Baker’s wife posted about the incident on Facebook. The dog was safely reunited with its owners after they came to Baker’s house.

 

Congressman Reed Still Disagrees with Impeachment
Yesterday, Congressman Tom Reed said he believes impeachment should be a last resort when addressing a public official and that voting is the means to resolve political disagreement and corruption. Reed said: ”…regardless of how you feel about impeachment. Remember, November is right around the corner. That's where the American people speak best and that's where they speak with their wisdom and that's when they cast their vote." Reed maintains he thinks there is no “smoking gun evidence” to warrant overturning the 2016 presidential election and thinks impeachment has been politically weaponized and will do more long-term damage to the nation. Reed said of constituents who are in favor of impeachment: “I understand where you're coming from. I understand your position. Obviously I disagree with it."

 

Public Invited to Friday Wreaths Across America Cleanup
The public is invited to retrieve and clean up wreaths that were laid during Wreaths Across America Day. Over 5,000 wreaths were placed on the graves of veterans last month. The cleanup event will be held tomorrow in Bath National Cemetery at the Bath VA Medical Center at 3pm. Parking will be available at the back of the Bath VA museum and no sign-up or registration is required to participate. Cleanup instructions are to be announced at the cemetery monument. Bringing a rake or broom is highly encouraged.

Today's Top Stories - Wednesday January 22nd, 2020

Bath Democratic Caucus is Tomorrow
A Democratic Caucus will be held 7pm tomorrow in the Village Board Room of the Municipal Building in Bath. The positions are open for Village Mayor, Village Justice and two openings for Village Trustee. All registered Democrats living in the Village of Bath are eligible to vote at tomorrow’s caucus. These positions are on the ballot for the Village Election set for Wednesday March 18th, 2020. Anyone interested in becoming a candidate can contact Bath Town Democratic Chairman Gary Ostrander at gmobuzz@verizon.net or call him at (607) 776-7556.

 

Corning to Be Part of US Bike Route 11
Steuben County’s Crystal City is soon set to be connected with other communities as part of U.S Bicycle Route 11. Early this month, Corning’s City Council unanimously supported Corning to be designated part of U.S. Bicycle Route 11. Officials agree that being part of the bike route will be beneficial by connecting Corning to other communities in Western New York and beyond and promoting tourism and more in the Corning area. When completed, the route eventually continues to North Carolina. The United States Bicycle Route System (USBR) is a cycling route network that is nationally-based and was established in 1978 by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials.

 

Public Invited to Friday Wreaths Across America Cleanup
The public is invited to retrieve and clean up wreaths that were laid during Wreaths Across America Day. Over 5,000 wreaths were placed on the graves of veterans last month. The cleanup event will be held this Friday, January 24th in Bath National Cemetery at the Bath VA Medical Center at 3pm. Parking will be available at the back of the Bath VA museum and no sign-up or registration is required to participate. Cleanup instructions are to be announced at the cemetery monument. Bringing a rake or broom is highly encouraged.

 

Report Finds Community College Enrollment Declined in Finger Lakes
According to a new a report by the Times Union in Albany, enrollment at community colleges has declined across the US and New York State. The study found enrollment has decreased by 23 percent at SUNY community colleges. Corning Community College saw a decline of 21% between 2010 and 2019 while Finger Lakes Community College declined by 19%. Tompkins Cortland Community College saw a drop of 39% during the same nine years.

 

Homeless Man Behind Bars After 4 Arrests in a Week
The Steuben County Sheriff’s Office reports the arrest of homeless man Javan C. Harris for Grand Larceny. It is alleged Harris stole a cell phone from a person at the County Office Building in Bath and due to the requirements of the new bail reform he was issued an appearance ticket to appear in Bath Village Court at a later date. On January 18th it is alleged that Harris removed his clothing and grabbed a local hotel clerk then was charged with Unlawful imprisonment and Public Lewdness. Harris was also arrested for entering Top’s Market after previously being issued a trespass warning for allegedly stealing merchandise. Harris was arraigned in CAP court for the issuance of an order of protection and subsequently released back into the public as these were not qualifying charges for bail to be set. Harris was arrested, arraigned in CAP Court and held on $2,000 bail after he allegedly inappropriately touched women at Wegman’s and Walmart in Hornell. Harris was charged with 2 counts of Forcible Touching and Resisting Arrest.

 

Cornell Cooperative Extension Offers Estate Workshop
Cornell Cooperative Extension has set up a workshop for those named Executor of the decedent’s estate. The free informational workshop. The Estate Administration Survival Guide: The Probate Process is Thursday, February 13th, from  1-3 p.m. at the Steuben County Office Building Annex in Bath. Elder Law Attorney Patrick will help you learn about various types of estate administration and when each is use, Discover the steps that occur in every estate administration, Learn the three “T’s” of estate administration (Taxes, Time and Tolls) and Discover what you can do now to make the process easier for your loved ones after you pass away.
The workshop is free, but registration is required. Please call Cornell Cooperative Extension at 607-664-2300 to reserve a space. For more information on this and related topics, visit www.putknowledgetowork.org.

 

Troopers Arrest Avoca Man for DWI
State Troopers arrested 28-year-old Dakota Costello of Avoca. He was stopped on State Route 415 and charged with DWI, having a BAC above .08% and aggravated unlicensed operation.

 

Rochester Man Arrested in Hornell for DWI
Multiple felony counts have been leveled against a man during a traffic stop on State Route 36 in Hornellsville. State Police arrested 42-year-old Charles Walker of Rochester. He was charged with driving while intoxicated with two previous convictions within ten years and first-degree aggravated unlicensed operation. He was initially detained in lieu of cash bail.

Today's Top Stories - Tuesday January 21st, 2020

Palmesano Joins Food Bank of Southern Tier for MLK Service Day
State Assemblyman Philip Palmesano joined hundreds of volunteers yesterday at the Food Bank of the Southern Tier in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service. Jenn Harris, Food Bank Volunteer Coordinator says the Food Bank event was from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. and had 200-plus volunteers. Palmesano commented of the service event: “As we remember and honor Dr. King today, it is a privilege to volunteer on this National Day of Service to help an organization, the Food Bank of The Southern Tier, that does so much to provide assistance to people in need right here in our community.” In 1994, Congress passed legislation called the King Holiday and Service Act which designated MLK day as a National Day of Service.

 

Von Hagn Announces Run for Re-Election
Incumbent Bath Village Mayor Bill von Hagn announced he is running for re-election. Republicans of Bath will hold a caucus on Tuesday, January 28th 6:30pm at 110 Liberty Street to decide who will appear on the Republican ballot in November’s general election. Von Hagn will run against Bath entrepreneur Mike Sweet for the mayoral nomination.

 

League of Women Voters Hosts Annual Brunch Saturday
The League of Women Voters of Steuben County holds its annual Winter Brunch from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. this Saturday January 25th at the Mennonite Fellowship Hall on Park Avenue in Corning. Guest speakers will include Steuben County Election Commissioners Vicki Olin and Kelly Penzuil as well as Mary Thorpe of Let NY Vote. The talks will give perspective on New York’s new voting reform laws and the discussion starts at noon after a brief 11am business meeting. A potluck brunch will follow at 11:30am. Participants are asked to bring a dish to pass and their own table service.

To RSVP, check out this link: facebook.com/events/554612528719846

 

Johnson City Hemp Processing Plant Making CBD This Year
A hemp processing plant could join the existing two in our Southern Tier region. Great Eastern Hemp is reportedly renovating a former sheltered workshop in Johnson City to make CBD out of industrial hemp. Great Eastern Hemp purchased the vacant building for $2.2 million and has plans to begin processing later in this year. The first processing plant was set up by Canadian company Canopy Growth in Broome County this previous July. Southern Tier Hemp is another venture hoping to be established at a building that was once a Gannett newspaper printing plant.

 

Cuomo Announces Census Council Creation
Yesterday, Governor Cuomo announced the creation of the Census Council. The council will be co-chaired by Martin Luther King Jr. III, actress Lucy Liu and Lin-Manual Miranda. The group is meant to ensure every New Yorker is counted in the upcoming 2020 census, which Cuomo says will have major impacts on New York State. *Audio*. Cuomo also declared he will propose an additional $10 million allotted in this year’s budget to guarantee a fair, complete Census count of every New Yorker. Additional funding brings the state’s financial support for the 2020 Census up to $70 million.

 

Hammondsport Board of Trustees Meet Tuesday
The Village of Hammondsport Board of Trustees will hold a Special Meeting today at 12:10 p.m. in the Village Office on 18 Water Street in Hammondsport. The meeting is to discuss the Village’s 2020-2021 General Fund and Water Fund Budgets as well as any other business before the Board

 

Public Invited to Wreaths Across America Cleanup
The public is invited to retrieve and clean up wreaths that were laid during Wreaths Across America Day. Over 5,000 wreaths were placed on the graves of veterans last month. The cleanup event will be held this Friday, January 24th in Bath National Cemetery at the Bath VA Medical Center at 3pm. Parking will be available at the back of the Bath VA museum and no sign-up or registration is required to participate. Cleanup instructions are to be announced at the cemetery monument. Bringing a rake or broom is highly encouraged.

 

American Red Cross in Critical Need of Blood
The American Red Cross urges for more donations as they face a critical blood shortage. With the flu on the rise in NY state preventing some donors from giving blood and winter weather cancelling drives, the Red Cross announces the shortage and cites those factors as its cause. Red Cross Officials say the group has less than a three-day supply of Type O blood available. Those that are able to give are highly encouraged to do so. Here is a list of drives happening soon in Steuben County:

 

Saturday 1/25/2020: 8 am-12 pm at Addison Community Center
Thursday 2/6/2020: 1 p.m. - 6 p.m. at Arkport American Legion Post 1248
Monday 2/10/2020: 12 p.m. - 6 p.m. at Campbell Savona High School, 8455 County Route 125
Tuesday 1/28/2020: 8:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. at Corning Community College
Wednesday 1/29/2020: 8:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. at Corning Community College
Thursday 1/30/2020: 11:45 a.m. - 5:45 p.m. at Hammondsport Fire Department
Wednesday 1/22/2020: 9 a.m-2 p.m. at Henderson-Smith State Office Building in Hornell (107 Broadway)
Friday 1/24/2020: 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. at Corning Painted Post Board of Education
Thursday 1/30/2020: 1 p.m. - 6 p.m. at Ramada of Painted Post
Monday 2/10/2020: 11:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. at Victory Highway Wesleyan Church, 150 Victory Highway
Tuesday 1/21/2020: 1:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. at Savona Fire Department

 

Today's Top Stories - Monday, January 20, 2020

County Shared Services Plan Meeting Being Held in One Week
A presentation on Steuben County’s 2020 Shared Services Plan will follow the regular 10 a.m. meeting session of the county Legislature Jan. 27th.The unanimously-approved, new plan builds on the plan adopted in 2017, and carries on a long tradition of sharing services between the towns, villages and county departments. Notable savings include shared public works construction and maintenance, along with personnel costs. Among the shared county-municipal services are the costs of road repair, bridge construction, property demolition, and equipment and personnel. Steuben also will join 3 neighboring counties in a study looking to improve broadband services. The presentation is expected to begin around 10:30 a.m. on Monday January 27th in the legislative chambers of the Steuben County Office Building.

 

National Diabetes Prevention Program
Informational sessions on the National Diabetes Prevention Program (NDPP) offered by the Steuben County Public Health department are set for February. The two-year NDPP program helps participants lose weight, become more physically active, lower stress, and reduce their Type 2 diabetes risk. Participants must be at risk for developing Type 2 diabetes but not previously diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. Information on the program will be presented at noon on Tuesday February 4th in the Steuben County Annex Room A on East Morris Street, Bath. Classes are set for noon-1:30 p.m. Tuesdays beginning February 25th. The cost of the program is covered by Medicare, Medicaid and Steuben County employees participating in the county’s Wellness program. Private pay for the program in $150.
To register, or for more information on the program, qualifying blood work or other questions, call (607) 664-2438, email lwagner@steubencountyny.gov, or register online at https://steubencony.org/Files/Documents/publichealth/DPP%20Fillable%20Registration%20Form%202020.pdf

 

HUD Grants Over $1.6 Million in Funding to Southern Tier
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson announced over $1.6 million in funding for Southern Tier programs, such as Livingston Supportive Housing and Continuum of Care awards. Carson said “The grants awarded today help our partners on the ground to reduce homelessness in their communities and help our most valuable neighbors”. The funding for the Southern Tier is part of a package totaling $2.2 billion.

 

Hammondsport Board of Trustees Meet Tuesday
The Village of Hammondsport Board of Trustees will hold a Special Meeting tomorrow at 12:10 p.m. in the Village Office on 18 Water Street in Hammondsport. The meeting is to discuss the Village’s 2020-2021 General Fund and Water Fund Budgets as well as any other business before the Board.

 

Mitrano Announces RIP Medical Debt Forgiveness Program
Doctors in Upstate New York are partnering with a nonprofit to help alleviate the burden of medical debt for local residents. This was announced during a Jamestown press conference with Democratic Congressional candidate Tracy Mitrano, who called the program a “unique partnership helping district residents out from serious medical debts”. Doctors from from Ithaca and Jamestown have partnered to work with the nonprofit group RIP medical debt and area doctors so they can donate over $170,000 to the organization. The project is supposed to “eliminate more than $500,000 of medical debt at one percent of the original cost” by forgiving $10,000 in medical debts for every $100 donated to the group. RIP Medical debt reportedly help forgive over a billion dollars’ worth of debt already. Today, Mitrano launches a five city listening tour in Dunkirk and will be in Corning this Thursday from 6 to 8pm at the United Steelworkers Union Hall at the Nassar Civic Center Plaza.

 

Public Invited to Wreaths Across America Cleanup
The public is invited to retrieve and clean up wreaths that were laid during Wreaths Across America Day. Over 5,000 wreaths were placed on the graves of veterans last month. The cleanup event will be held this Friday, January 24th in Bath National Cemetery at the Bath VA Medical Center at 3pm. Parking will be available at the back of the Bath VA museum and no sign-up or registration is required to participate. Cleanup instructions are to be announced at the cemetery monument. Bringing a rake or broom is highly encouraged.

 

State Senator O’Mara to Continue Serving on Multiple Committees
State Senator Tom O’Mara will continue to serve on the Transportation Committee, Environmental Conservation Committee, and several other key Senate committees in 2020, according to a press release. O’Mara is to continue his post as the ranking Senate Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee and serve as the top Republican member on the Banks Committee. O’Mara was renamed the Senate GOP representative on the Legislature’s Administrative Regulations Review Commission (ARCC), which is a legislative oversight committee that monitors the impact of the state’s regulatory process on the economy. O’Mara said of the Environmental Conservation Committee: “I hope the committee will continue to strengthen the important foundations we’ve built over the past several years.”

 

Troopers Investigating Fatal Crash in Erin
The New York State Police report they investigated a one-car, fatal motor vehicle crash that happened Friday evening at 8:30 p.m. on Langdon Hill Road in the Town of Erin. The investigation found the vehicle was operating westbound on Langdon Hill Road when the operator lost control and went off the north side of the roadway, striking several trees.  A 17-year-old female passenger in the vehicle, Alecia I. Sedlak, was pronounced deceased at the scene while another 17-year-old female passenger was air lifted to Upstate Medical Center and one 18-year-old male passenger was air lifted to Robert Packer Hospital for treatment. The accident is still under investigation.

Today's Top Stories - January 18, 2019

Bath man arrested for larceny, other misdemeanors

Steuben County Sheriff Jim Allard reports that on January 15, 2020, Deputies of the Steuben County Sheriff’s Office arrested Nicholas J Ritchie, age 23, of Bath, New York. It is alleged that in July and August of 2019 Mr. Ritchie did knowingly steal services from the Steuben County Department of Social Services in the amount of $156.68 by Misuse of Food Stamp Benefit Card without authorization.  Mr. Ritchie was charged with one count of Petit Larceny, and three counts of Misuse of Food Stamps, all class A Misdemeanors. Mr. Ritchie was released on an appearance ticket to appear in the Village of Bath Court at a later date.

 

Crash in Erin shuts down road for hours; requires two medical helicopters

Two medical helicopters responded to the scene of a serious crash last night in the Chemung county town of Erin. The crash, which occurred around 8:45 P.M., involved multiple people. In the wake of the crash, the area near Langdon Hill Road and Staples Road was shut down for hours by first responders. As of 11:15 P.M. last night, fire trucks and police cars were still present on Langdon Hill Road. The crash is still under investigation and it is unknown at this time exactly how many were involved in the crash, or the extent of their injuries

 

Elmira College larceny suspect arrested

Elmira Police have arrested a man who stole several items from a computer lab at Elmira College. 56-year-old Michael Gyles of Elmira was arrested after stealing around $130 of gaming equipment. He was charged with petit larceny and released on an appearance ticket.

 

Multiple Southern Tier counties to receive HUD grants

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson announced over $1.6 million in funding for Southern Tier programs, such as Livingston Supportive Housing, from Continuum of Care awards. Carson said “The grants awarded today help our partners on the ground to reduce homelessness in their communities and help our most valuable neighbors”. The funding for the Southern Tier is part of a package totaling $2.2 billion.

 

Southern Tier/Finger Lakes regions receive grant to aid workforce development

As part of New York State’s historic $175 million Workforce Development Initiative, the Southern Tier will receive $3.4 million worth of grant funding to help aid in workforce development. The funding will be divided up amongst 61 state businesses, community colleges, and community-based organizations within the region.

Today's Top Stories - Friday January 17th, 2020

Bath Village Seeking Court Clerk
Bath Town and Village Court is seeking a Court Clerk. The opening is a confidential clerk position from Monday through Friday and occasional Saturdays. Computer, phone, secretarial, bookkeeping and effective communication skills are needed for the job as well as the ability to work independently. Experience with the legal system is a plus. Applicants must pass a drug screen and criminal background check and be willing to attend training and educational courses offered by Office of Court Administration. Full benefits are available and salary will commensurate with experience. Interested applicants can send a resume’ and references by January 31st to:


Bath Town and Village Court
110 Liberty Street
Bath, NY 14810

 

Blood Drive Today at County Office Building
Today there will be a blood drive at the Steuben County Office Building in Bath from 8:45am to 2pm. The need for blood is critical. Make an appointment at redcrossblood.org, downloading the free Red Cross Blood Donor app or calling 1-800-RED-CROSS. 

 

OK Man Arrested for Burglary and Other Charges
Steuben County Sheriff’s Office reports deputies arrested Jacob D. Canute from Bartlesville, Oklahoma due to multiple felony arrest and bench warrants filed in Steuben County by both the Steuben County Sheriff’s Office and the New York State Police.  Canute was held in the Washington County Jail in Oklahoma awaiting his extradition to New York State.  Deputies responded to Oklahoma and transported Canute back to Steuben County, where he was arraigned in Steuben County Court. Canute allegedly committed Burglary in the Second Degree, Criminal Contempt in the Second Degree and Possession of a Hypodermic Needle, and did not appear for his appointed court date.  Canute was also arrested on several pending charges by the New York State Police then released on his own recognizance at Steuben County Court.

 

State Labor Department Predicts Area Growth
The New York State Department of Labor released a report outlining the economic future of the Southern Tier this week. Each year, the department issues a report naming 12 significant industries in our area and last year’s leading industries were based mainly in manufacturing, health care and education. The report did predict growth in the future overall but some major industries are still expected to remain on the decline. The Labor Department predicts a 6.8% growth in jobs in our area from 2016 to 2026 and the largest growth is projected to be in ambulance services and warehouse and storage industries. From 2013-2018 jobs decreased overall by 1%.

 

Haverling Art Students Share Work with Steuben Center 
Haverling High School students returned to the Steuben Center for Rehabilitation to show their portraits of the facility’s residents for the second year. WETM reported the students created art for the residents and they were excited and appreciative to be visited by the young artists. Some students met with their loved ones but also create special art for other residents. Haverling High School art teacher Courtney Yacuzzo says the event gets better every year.

 

Hammondsport Board of Trustees Meet Tuesday
The Village of Hammondsport Board of Trustees will hold a Special Meeting Tuesday, January 21st at 12:10 p.m. in the Village Office on 18 Water Street in Hammondsport. The meeting is to discuss the Village’s 2020-2021 General Fund and Water Fund Budgets as well as any other business before the Board.

 

Corning Inc. Confirms Lay Off of Employees
Corning Inc. confirmed to WENY TV that it is laying off employees in the Corning area. According to Corning Incorporated’s Sustainability Manager these reductions are “taking effect immediately” but did not disclose how many employees were laid off “for competitive reasons”. All affected employees are reportedly receiving severance packages.

Today's Top Stories - Thursday, January 16th, 2020

Congressman Reed Named Part of NY Trump Re-Election Team
Congressman Tom Reed was named one of the six elected New York officials selected as one of the leaders of President Trump’s New York State re-election team. Reed will be working with Dutchess County Sheriff Butch Anderson, fellow Congressmen Peter King and Lee Zeldin, New York City Councilman Joe Borelli and Albany-area Congresswoman Elise Stefanik. The six officials were named 'Honorary State Chairs' to the 'New York Trump Victory' effort yesterday to 'advance the agenda of President Trump and Republicans up and down the ballot,' according to the campaign’s news release. The Empire State’s presidential primary election is April 28th.

 

Public Invited to Wreaths Across America Cleanup
The public is invited to retrieve and clean up wreaths that were laid during Wreaths Across America Day. The cleanup event will be held Friday, January 24th in Bath National Cemetery at the Bath VA Medical Center at 3pm. Over 5,000 wreaths were placed on the graves of veterans last month. Parking will be available at the back of the Bath VA museum and no sign-up or registration is required to participate. Cleanup instructions are to be announced at the cemetery monument. Bringing a rake or broom is highly encouraged.

 

Palmesano and GOP Conference Calls to Repeal Bail Reform Laws
Yesterday, the State Assembly Republican Conference called to repeal the recently-enacted bail reform measures that went into law. Assemblyman Phil Palmesano says the state Democratic leaders are to blame for what he calls “the most pressing matter facing New Yorkers at this time” and said these reforms have turned New York’s criminal justice system “upside down”. During the call for a repeal yesterday, Republican representatives were joined by families impacted by the new bail reform measures as well as law enforcement officials who are critical of the new requirements.

 

Cuomo Sending Assets to Puerto Rico After Earthquakes
Yesterday, Governor Cuomo announced more assets to Puerto Rico will be deployed to assist with emergency response efforts following a series of initial damage assessments made by Cuomo and his delegation. Eight additional engineers and utility experts from the New York State Power Authority will be deployed to address power outages caused by recent earthquakes and work to stabilize the island’s power system to help with the repeating power outages. Bilingual health professionals from the State and the Greater New York Hospital Association will be deployed to support people on the island suffering from the trauma of the disaster. Dozens of inspectors from State Fire and the Department of State will be deployed to conduct extensive damage assessments of buildings and basic code-compliance inspections of public facilities. Cuomo called on the Trump Administration to release federal funds to Puerto Rico immediately and declare a Major Disaster Declaration for the damage caused by the earthquakes.

 

Van Etten Man Arrested After Horseheads Traffic Stop
A 40-year-old man from Van Etten was arrested on drug charges following a traffic stop in Horseheads. Timothy J. Bird was charged Tuesday with seventh degree criminal possession of a controlled substance after a traffic stop on Church Street in Horseheads. He was released after being charged to appear in town court at a later date.

 

Video Shows Alleged Charter Sales Rep Lying About Empire Buyout
A new video has surfaced of  a sales tactic from an alleged Charter employee lying about Charter Communications acquiring Empire Access. The video shows a man who says he is a sales rep trying to get someone to switch to Spectrum then halfway through the interaction, the so-called sales rep lies about Spectrum buying Empire Access. Empire Access says this is not the first time this has happened to residents in the Steuben county area, as they have had numerous calls reporting similar interactions in Bath. Empire Access says they have not been sold to Spectrum and do not plan on selling themselves to the company. A representative from Spectrum’s parent company Charter Communications says: “The content of the video is not accurate and we’re investigating these apparent comments by the sales representative.” Empire Access is asking anyone who has a similar experience with an alleged sales representative to contact them by phone or email.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NOOrCz2vEEQ

 

Finger Lakes Researchers Discuss Algal Blooms at Conference
Health of the Finger Lakes was the topic of discussion at the 2020 Finger Lakes Research Conference yesterday. Researchers say people need to be aware of what's in the lakes with algal blooms being among the first topics discussed at the conference. Algal blooms have been appearing in all of the finger lakes and the blooms can not be eliminated but can be controlled and minimized by controlling nutrient flow and availability, which researchers say will make them less frequent and intense. Researchers are fighting for funding for their Finger Lakes research projects that allow them to collect data and projections of the lakes. Researchers are hoping to gain more funding throughout the year to continue studying and improving Finger Lakes ecosystems.

 

Full Circle America Offers Affordable Care for County Seniors
Steuben County’s Full Circle America has allowed nearly 30 senior citizens to remain safely in their homes while receiving services tailored to their needs, according to Steuben Senior Services Funds Inc. (SSSF) Executive Director Linda Tetor .Now helping 13 individuals stay at home, with an average age of 90, the Full Circle America (FCA) is operated by SSSF and the county Office For the Aging and readily adapts to changes in levels of care by combining basic computer “smart” technology with medical and volunteer services. Tetor recently told the county Legislature’s Human Services Health and Education Committee the county’s FCA clients have relied on Full Circle America for some 230 days at a maximum cost of $1,890 before they passed away or required other care arrangements. Individuals receive a six-month free trial followed by payments on a sliding fee scale based on income.

Today's Top Stories - Wednesday January 15th, 2020

Senator O’Mara Launches Petition to Repeal Bail Reform
State Senator Tom O’Mara has launched an online “Repeal Bail Reform” petition to give local residents an opportunity to express their opposition to the newly enacted, controversial state law. Among other provisions, the new law eliminates cash bail and pretrial detention for nearly all misdemeanors and nonviolent felony cases, resulting in the mandatory release of 90% of those arrested, regardless of their criminal history. O’Mara is encouraging Southern Tier and Finger Lakes residents who oppose the law to sign the petition on his Senate website, omara.nysenate.gov (go to the home page, scroll down and click on the “Repeal Bail Reform” icon).

 

Report Finds NY Receives Less Money Back Federally Than Any State
According to a report released yesterday by State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli, New York paid $26.6 billion more in taxes to the federal government last fiscal year than it saw returned in federal spending. The report found that it was the biggest disparity of any state in the U.S. DiNapoli said for every dollar New York generates in tax receipts, it gets 90 cents back in federal spending-much lower than the national average of $1.21.

 

Public Invited to Wreaths Across America Cleanup
The public is invited to retrieve and clean up wreaths that were laid during Wreaths Across America Day. The cleanup event will be held Tuesday, January 24th in Bath National Cemetery at the Bath VA Medical Center at 3pm. Over 5,000 wreaths were placed on the graves of veterans last month. Parking will be available at the back of the Bath VA museum and no sign-up or registration is required to participate. Cleanup instructions are to be announced at the cemetery monument. Bringing a rake or broom is highly encouraged.

 

Congressman Reed Announces Energy Innovation Tax Credit Bill
In his weekly media conference call yesterday, Congressman Tom Reed announced the Energy Innovation Tax Credit Bill as a Republican alternative to the Green New Deal intended to give small businesses tax relief for their green efforts. The bill was authored and sponsored by Reed and is what he calls "a Republican proposal to recognize that the climate is changing and innovation and the American people are going to lead the way in order to address climate change."

 

Elmira-Corning Airport Offering Flights to Myrtle
Allegiant Airlines announced the Elmira-Corning Regional Airport will offer a new, nonstop outgoing route to Myrtle, South Carolina. The new seasonal route will be offered twice a week. The company is offering one-way fares on the new route for as low as $55 to celebrate the new flight. Flights must be purchased by January 16th for travel by August 29th to enjoy this promotional offer. For more information  on flight services and baggage fees, click here. Flight days and times can be found here.

 

HEAP Filing Opportunity is Today in Corning
A HEAP filing opportunity is scheduled for today at the Steuben County Courthouse in Corning. Those needing assistance with applying for the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program can attend and applicants will be seen on a first-come, first-served basis. HEAP Applications will be accepted there. The event is from 8:30am to noon then 12:30 to 4pm at the Steuben County Courthouse at 10 West First Street in Corning.

 

Hornell PD Reports Meth Use and Arrests on the Rise
At the Hornell Board of Public Safety Meeting, the Hornell Police Department detailed the state of Hornell’s drug interdiction efforts. According to the Hornell Police Department, use of meth has gone up by 34% while heroin use increased by 1%. Based on arrests in 2019, use of cocaine and pills have gone down 18% and 12%, respectively. Hornell Police Department arrested 78 people for meth and 16 for heroin in 2019.

Today's Top Stories -Tuesday January 14th, 2020

Sunday’s Liberty Street Fire Ruled “Accidental”
The Bath Volunteer Fire Department has released a statement regarding the fire Sunday afternoon at Liberty Street. The BVFD said that the Steuben County Fire Investigation Team has determined the fire at 56 Liberty Street in the Village of Bath is of accidental nature. Though the investigation is not yet closed and the Fire Investigation team is still gathering details, they say nothing was found indicating anything suspicious. One man was rescued during the Sunday blaze.

 

Steuben Hall of Fame Nominations Being Accepted
Nominations for the Steuben County Hall of Fame will be accepted until March 31st. Over 450 outstanding people of the county have been nominated since 1976 and 145 people were inducted into the Hall of Fame. All nominees will be reviewed in early May through a special committee proposing the nominees for 2020. A reception for the inductees will follow the approval by the county Legislature in late June. Nominees may be any man, woman or child living or deceased, who has enhanced the name of Steuben County. Nominees should have resided in Steuben but may have been born elsewhere. Past nominees not inducted into the county Hall of Fame may be re-nominated.Applications and the full list of Hall of Fame honorees can be found at https://www.steubencony. org/pages. asp?PID=357; or call (607) 664-2199.

 

Bath VFD Highlights 2019 Work at Annual Meeting
The Bath Volunteer Fire Department highlighted the work done over the course of 2019 in the 2019 report at their annual meeting. Bath VFD responded to 478 total alarms last year and 135 of which were medical and rescue calls. Of those, 71 were involving motor vehicle accidents, 57 for medical assistance and three were for other types of rescues. In 2019, the Department responded to 127 false alarms ranging from broken detectors to alarms set off by minor steam or smoke from cooking. Another 78 calls were reports of hazardous conditions like gas odors, spills and leaks, carbon monoxide alarms and other situations.

 

Senator O’Mara Launches 2020 Community and Legislative Survey
State Senator Tom O’Mara announced the launch of a survey offering community members an opportunity to share their views on various regional and statewide issues. Shortly after Governor Cuomo’s State of the State Address last week, the “2020 Community and Legislative Survey” was launched to encourage input from local citizens in the area. O’Mara has offered the survey to his constituents since he was first elected to State Senate and says it gives residents an opportunity to “share their own views and suggestions on private-sector job creation, government reform, state fiscal policies including taxes and spending, mandate relief, education, public safety, transportation, health care, and additional issues including the state’s controversial new 'bail reform' law.”

 

Traffic Restored After Last Night’s Crash on I-86
Last night, it was reported emergency crews responded to a one-car collision on I-86 in Chemung County. According to WETM, the accident happened before 9pm in the Westbound lane between the exits for Elmira and Horseheads. Fire crews, police and emergency responders arrived at the scene of the crash, where one car was majorly damaged and towed. Traffic flow was restored shortly after and there were no reports of any injuries so far.

 

Wegmans Recalls Breaded Chicken Breasts
Wegmans announced it is recalling 20-ounce packages of their brand of breaded chicken breasts due to safety concerns of the possibility of undercooked chicken. The product being recalled has a “Best By” date that reads October 23, 2020 and has a UPC code of: 7789025193. The item can be returned to any Wegman’s store for a full refund. Wegman’s customers with more questions can call 1-855-934-3663.

 

NY Adoptees to Receive Original Birth Certificates Starting Tomorrow
The new state law allowing adoptees to receive a certified copy of their original or pre-adoption birth certificate when they turn 18 begins tomorrow. This new law intends to ensure all adoptees of New York will have the right to information about their birth and biological parents. Adoptees are encouraged to request their birth certificate by applying online starting tomorrow for the soonest issuance of the birth certificate. Paper applications will be accepted in person and by mail and all certificates will be issued via regular postal mail. For more information: https://www.health.ny.gov/vital_records/obtaining_birth_certificate.htm.

 

Cuomo Sets April Date for 27th District Special Election
Governor Cuomo has set a date of April 28th for special election to fill the seat vacated by former Congressman Chris Collins. The date falls on the same day as the New York’s presidential primary and critics say it will give Democrats an unfair advantage, as Republicans may not turn out to the election as heavily. Cuomo and other Democrats defend the date as the most efficient way to keep costs associated with the 27th District’s special election down.

Today's Top Stories - Monday, January 13, 2020

Bath Fire Department investigating Liberty Street fire

Yesterday, at about 1:40 PM, the Bath Volunteer Fire Department was dispatched to 56 Liberty Street for a reported structure fire. They reported on scene with smoke showing from a 3-story building, with the upper 2 floors being apartments and businesses being on the first. Bath Village Police officers were first on the scene to evacuate all tenants in the building. A male occupant was rescued from the 3rd floor of the building and taken to street level with burns and smoke inhalation. The fire crews inside were able to locate the fire and halt its progression. It was called under control at 2:29 PM and all units were clear by 5:36 PM. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

 

Chemung County Sheriff’s Office looking for larceny suspect

The Chemung County Sheriff’s Office say they are looking for a man who was caught on camera stealing a generator from a residential job site. The incident took place on Friday afternoon on Main Street in Big Flats. The surveillance video showed the suspect wearing a ring. Anyone with information is urged to contact the Criminal Investigations division at 607-737-2933.

 

5th annual Robotics Competition held at CPPHS

The 5th annual New York Excelsior Corning FIRST Tech Challenge Qualifying Tournament was held yesterday at Corning Painted-Post High School. The competition requires robots built by teams comprised of 7-12th graders, to gather and place LEGO-like blocks against a timer, partly from its own programming and being controlled by team members. Teams as close as Elmira, and as far as Buffalo, got to display their talents at the event. In total, 25 teams were in attendance this year to battle for the chance to advance to the regional championships in Utica.

 

 

Two upstate NY businessmen killed in PA helicopter crash

Authorities say two upstate New York businessmen were killed as a result of a helicopter crash in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania last Thursday night. Nobody on the ground was injured by the crash. Piloting the helicopter was high-profile developer Mark Croce of Buffalo, and his passenger was a former trustee in the Western New York suburb the two men resided in. The men were en route to Washington, D.C., from Buffalo when the crash occurred. The FAA and National Transportation Safety Board will investigate the matter.

 

NY ban on flavored vaping products blocked by Judge

A judge has barred New York State from enforcing an executive order that would have banned flavored vaping products. Acting state Supreme Court Justice Catherine Cholakis handed down the decision, saying the state Public Health and Health Planning Council overstepped their authority by issuing a ban on e-cigarettes and e-liquids flavored with anything besides tobacco or menthol. A spokesperson for Cuomo called the decision “unfortunate, but pointed out that the judge said in her ruling she understands the seriousness of the vaping issue. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have reported as of December 17th, more than 2,500 across the US have reported vaping related respiratory issues and 54 are known to have died.
 

Today's Top Stories - Saturday January 11, 2020

Hornell woman dies after heroin overdose

Hornell police say a 33-year-old woman has died from an apparent heroin overdose. The woman’s body was found inside her Ransom Street apartment. Police executed a search warrant at a home on Adsit Street. Investigators said a quantity of heroin was seized as was evidence of the sale to the victim. No criminal charges have been filed at this time.

 

Corning man arrested after making terroristic threats

Steuben County Sheriff Jim Allard reports that on January 5, 2020, deputies arrested Matthew W. Parker, age 30, of East Denison Parkway in Corning. Deputies responded to a report of a person threatening to burn, shoot and bomb a retail establishment on Silverback Lane in Erwin. It is alleged Mr. Parker attempted to coerce a civilian population by threatening to cause murder.  Mr. Parker was charged with Making a Terroristic Threat, a Class D Felony. Mr. Parker was held in the Steuben County Jail to appear in the Centralized Arraignment Court, where he was arraigned and released to appear in the Town of Erwin Court.

 

O’Mara, other republicans, work to repeal controversial bail reform law

State Senator Tom O’Mara from Big Flats and the Senate Republican conference Thursday called for repealing New York’s newly enacted bail reform law as criticisms continue to mount from regional and statewide district attorneys, law enforcement agencies, and many elected officials that the new law is dangerous and unworkable. The Senate GOP proposed a repeal amendment, which O’Mara co-sponsored, during yesterday’s Senate session.  The amendment was defeated along party lines.  O’Mara noted that the controversial bail reform law was enacted last year without the support of a single Republican in the Senate or Assembly.

 

Local Congressman pass legislation to identify cartels as terrorists

NY Southern Tier Congressman Anthony Brindisi and PA Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick introduced the bipartisan Identifying Drug Cartels as Terrorists Act. This bipartisan legislation would list seven Mexican drug cartels as foreign terrorist organizations (FTOs), as defined by section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act. In a statement, Brindisi said-quote- “Illegal drugs are terrorizing our communities and it is time we called these drug cartels what they are: terrorists,”

 

Cuomo announces plan to address issues facing veterans and law enforcement

Governor Andrew Cuomo Thursday announced the 35th proposal of his 2020 State of the State Agenda - addressing veteran and law enforcement suicides and homelessness. Under the proposal, the Governor will direct funding within the Homeless Housing and Assistance Program to be used to close the gap in veterans housing across the state. The Governor will also direct the State Office of Mental Health to partner with veterans and law enforcement organizations to coordinate on suicide prevention initiatives including new efforts to reduce the stigma of mental illness. Additionally, the Governor is announcing a new partnership between SUNY and the nonprofit Modern States to further extend the Freshman Year for Free program to veterans and active duty military families.

 

State Assemblyman appears in court for DWI charges

A state Assemblyman appeared in Victor town court where he pleaded not guilty to a DWI charge. Police said his blood alcohol level was .16%. Brian Kolb was arrested New Year’s Eve after he ditched his state-owned SUV. It happened at the beginning of his driveway. Kolb later resigned his post as minority leader. During his arraignment, the judge suspended Kolb’s Driver’s license. The court also ordered a substance abuse evaluation. He is due back in court January 23.

Today's Top Stories - Friday, January 10th, 2020

County Receives $3K Grant from United Way to Fight Lead Poisoning
Steuben County is receiving an award from United Way worth $3,000 designated to help children in danger of lead poisoning. The United Way of Southern Tier Lead Grant will increase training to providers, staff, parents and the community while providing materials such as lead-free paint and supplies to reduce lead exposure. Steuben and Chemung counties are receiving the grant from the United Way because there is a proven need to prevent lead poisoning in the area. The grant is expected to be accepted by the county Legislature at its January 27th meeting at 10am.

 

Palmesano Reacts to Cuomo’s State of the State Address
Andrew Cuomo’s State of the State Address Wednesday received negative reactions from local Assemblyman Phil Palmesano. The Assemblyman of the 58th district is most concerned about public safety being influenced by bail reform laws. * Palmesano also expressed concerned about the lack of tax talk and budget solutions in the governor’s speech. * New York State faces a $6.1 billion budget shortfall as the new legislative session starts.

 

Congressman Reed Reiterates He is Contemplating Governor’s Race
On Wednesday, Congressman Tom Reed reiterated that he is contemplating a gubernatorial run in 2022. The Congressman says numerous people across the state have encouraged his potential run. Reed also gave feedback on Cuomo’s State of the State Address and blamed Democrats and what he calls the “hard left” for downstate policies enacted under Cuomo’s leadership. Incumbent Governor Andrew Cuomo has already confirmed he will run for a fourth term as governor.

 

NYS Senate Republican Conference Calls to Repeal Bail Reform
Yesterday, the New York State Senate Republican Conference called for a repeal of the state’s newly-enacted bail reform law. During the Senate session yesterday, a proposal to repeal the amendment was struck down. The proposal was co-sponsored by local State Senator Tom O’Mara who said: “These so-called ‘reforms’ are nothing more than unlocking the cell blocks and sending potentially dangerous criminals back into our communities and neighborhoods, day after day, with no safeguards. Democrats keep shrugging off the warnings and that’s irresponsible, to say the least.”Governor Cuomo recently remarked reforms to the law are necessary, calling it a “work in progress”.

 

State Dept of Health Directed to Monitor Flu Numbers
The New York State Department of Health has been directed by the Governor to take additional steps so healthcare facilities are prepared for the rest of the flu season. The Department was directed to begin enhanced monitoring of hospitals through the Health Emergency Response Data System to ensure hospitals have the resources necessary to handle the recent spike in hospitalizations. Hospitals will be required to report flu-related information to the State Department of Health on a weekly basis. Last week, it was reported that the number of New Yorkers hospitalized with lab-confirmed influenza was up 34 percent from the previous week.

 

Empire Center Announces “DeregulateNY” Contest
Yesterday, the Empire Center announced that they were kicking off ‘DeregulateNY’, an online contest that invites users to identify the most needlessly expensive and restrictive rules imposed on people offering goods and services in New York. Interested New Yorkers can submit entries online and compete to win a cash prize and a trip to Albany. DeregulateNY encourages new perspectives of  regulatory obstacles to commerce and free enterprise, letting businesses tell their stories while helping New Yorkers decide whether these rules and regulations are working as intended.Entries may be submitted through Friday, February 14, 2020. Contest winners will be decided by a panel of judges and announced Thursday, February 20, 2020.

Today's Top Stories - Thursday January 9th, 2020

Three Arrested in STOP-DWI Crackdown
Steuben County Sheriff’s Office arrested three people in their annual Holiday STOP-DWI Crackdown. Lindley woman Melissa Campbell was arrested in Erwin for DWI, Driving with greater than .08% Blood Alcohol content, Fail to Keep Right and Failure to Use Designated Lane. Tioga, Pennsylvania man Michael Belz was arrested in Erwin and charged with DWI, Driving with greater than .08% Blood Alcohol Content, Moving from Lane Unsafely and Unlawful Possession of Marijuana. Howard Stewart of Arkport was arrested in Hornellsville for Driving While Intoxicated and Driving with .08% Blood Alcohol Content. All three people were released on traffic summons to appear in local town courts at later dates.

 

Bath Man Arrested for Forcible Touching
Steuben County Sheriff’s reports the arrest of a Bath man for allegedly touching an intimate part of a person under the age of 17. Hunter J. Lee of Steuben Street was charged with Forcible Touching and Endangering the Welfare of a Child, both Class A Misdemeanors. Lee was held in the Steuben County Jail to appear in the Centralized Arraignment Court, where he was arraigned and released to appear in the Town of Avoca Court.

 

Leslie Danks-Burke Announces State Senate Candidacy
Attorney Leslie Danks Burke announced her candidacy for State Senator Tuesday. Danks-Burke announced on her Facebook page that she will run against Senator Tom O’Mara. The Democrat ran against O’Mara in 2016 and lost the vote by only 10 percentage points. The 58th Assembly District includes Yates, Schuyler, Steuben, and Chemung counties, along with a portion of Tompkins County, which includes the city of Ithaca.

 

Bath VA Brings in Labrador George for Narcotics Detection
The VA Finger Lakes Healthcare Police System has recently implemented a canine program for narcotics to ensure safety for patients and visitors to the Canandaigua and Bath campuses. Both campuses each have a Labrador retriever dog who is narcotics detection certified and receives ongoing monthly training and annual certification. The Bath VA has employed 18-month old Labrador George, who has already had three finds since he has joined the VA.

 

Prattsburgh Woman Arrested for DWI
Police report the arrest of a 21-year-old Prattsburgh resident for driving while intoxicated. Vanessa Stephan, age 21, was charged with driving while intoxicated after a traffic stop for a failure to keep right. Police say the traffic stop occurred on South Main Street of Prattsburgh. Vanessa Stephan was determined to be intoxicated then transported to the Ontario County Jail.

 

Woman Arrested on Traffic Charges After Horseheads Incident
After an incident in Horseheads, a 25-year-old Lockwood woman was charged this week with third-degree aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle and uninspected motor vehicle after a traffic stop. Dominique Schneider was also arrested for an outstanding bench warrant for failure to appear in Chemung County’s Family Court on Child Abuse/Neglect charges.

 

Transgender Teen Suing NYS for Birth Certificate
A transgender teen from New York is suing the state for being unable to change the sex listed on his New York birth certificate is suing the state. The lawsuit was filed Tuesday in a federal court in Albany and argues that transgender minors should have the ability to change their birth certificates. Minors with documents in issued in New York City and other states currently do have the ability to get their birth certificates changed. The 14-year-old high school student was born in Ithaca and listed as “female” on the birth certificate. The lawsuit was brought by Lambda Legal and says the student was stigmatized by the birth certificate that inaccurately portrays his identity.

 

Cuomo Proposes Three-Prong Plan to Lower Prescription Med Costs
Governor Andrew Cuomo has proposed a three-part plan in an effort to lower prescription drug costs for all New Yorkers as part of the 2020 State of the State. The plan would put a $100 per month cap on insulin for insured patients. The plan would also empower the State Department of Financial Services to investigate dramatic spikes in prices of prescription drugs while the State Department would require manufacturers to show a reasonable justification for these price increases and call rebates to impacted consumers if the price is deemed unjustified. The plan also proposes to see the US import more drugs from Canada through a Prescription Importation Commission.

 

Barclay Named New Assembly GOP Minority Leader
Longtime Assembly member from Central New York Will Barclay was unanimously elected the State Assembly Minority Leader by his Republican colleagues Tuesday. Barclay will replace former GOP Minority Leader Brian Kolb after Kolb was arrested on a charge of drunk driving. The new Assembly Minority Leader said he was “very happy” to fill the position.

Today's Top Stories - Saturday January 8, 2020

Sonsire announces bid for County Court Judge

Damian Sonsire, a local attorney who served as a prosecutor with the Chemung County District Attorney’s Office for nearly seventeen years and currently works as an Assistant Chemung County Attorney, will formally announce his candidacy for Chemung County Court Judge at 5:15 pm today in the Federal Building’s Courtroom located at 200 E. Church Street in Elmira.
 

Horseheads PD looking for suspect in hit and run case

The Horseheads Police Department say they are looking for a suspect involved in a hit and run incident Tuesday night in Hanover Square. The incident occurred around 6 o’clock, and the vehicle was heading towards Old Ithaca Road. The vehicle in question is a newer styled dark pick-up truck with silver trim, and the suspect was described as a white male in his late 40’s to early 50’s, between 5’8 and 5’10, bald, and has a “larger build”. At this time, there is no word on the condition of the person hit.

 

Corning man charged with multiple sex crimes

Court action is pending for a Corning man accused of committing a sex crime. State Police have reported the arrest of 34-year-old Dale D. Button. His charges include third-degree sexual abuse, endangering the welfare of a child and forcible touching. Troopers said the alleged incident happened Sunday in the Town of Erwin.

 

Wegmans to remove single use grocery bags ahead of statewide ban

Wegmans has announced it will remove single-use plastic grocery bags from all its New York State stores on Monday, January 27. The removal of plastic bags comes ahead of a state ban that takes effect on March 1.

 

 

Scholarship competition to be held in Corning

The Miss Finger Lakes/Miss Upstate New York Scholarship Competition and the Outstanding Teen Scholarship Competition will be held at 7 p.m. Jan. 18 at the United Steelworkers Local 1000 Union Hall, located at 100 Civic Center Plaza, Corning. This is a local preliminary for the Miss New York Scholarship Organization and Miss America Scholarship Organization. Featured guest and emcee will be Miss New York Lauren Molella. Admission tickets cost $20 per person or $10 for students, available at the door.

 

Cuomo announces plan to improve Erie Canal

Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a $300 million plan to revamp the Erie Canal ahead of his State of the State address later this week. The initial phase of the redesign would cost around $165 million, $100 million of that focusing on economic development projects, including building pedestrian bridges across the canal, implementing a whitewater rafting course, and building a series of new homes along the old canal in Canastota, while the other $65 million would be put towards flood mitigation projects. The New York Power Authority is expected to vote on the funding later this month at its board meeting.

Today's Top Stories - Tuesday, January 7th, 2020

Rochester woman charged with possession of a controlled substance

The Village of Bath police department with the assistance of the State Police Major Crimes Unit, arrested 27-year old Diane S. Jackson of Rochester. She was charged with criminal sale and possession of a controlled substance. Both counts are class B felonies. The arrest stems from a Superior Court Sealed Indictment warrant from May 2018. She allegedly sold crack cocaine in a local hotel. Jackson was arraigned in Steuben County court and released without bail.

 

Former NYS Assemblyman dies at 84

A former Deputy Secretary of State and New York State Assemblyman from Belfast, who represented Allegany County in Albany, died in Florida over the weekend. 84-year-old John W. Hasper passed away Saturday at the Bayfront Hospital in Punta Gorda. He served as a firefighter, county supervisor, state assemblyman and deputy secretary of state. Funeral arrangements are under the direction of the Truesdell Funeral Home in Belfast and have not yet been finalized.

 

Steuben County Agriculture, Industry, and Planning Committee to meet

The Steuben County Agriculture, Industry and Planning Committee will meet Wednesday morning. On the agenda… Approval to Purchase Equipment for a Transit WiFi System off State Bid, and a plan to green light an InterMunicipal Agreement with the Town of Addison Relative to Code Enforcement. The Committee will also consider a resolution to support increasing the State appropriation for Cornell Cooperative Extension associations to $8 million.

 

Savona man arrested after violating order of protection

State Police arrested 33-year-old Brandon Bailey of Savona after he allegedly violated an order of protection. He was charged with criminal contempt for allegedly disobeying a court order. He’ll answer the charge in court at a later date.

 

Local law enforcement continues crackdown on impaired drivers

The holiday’s may have passed, but law enforcement is continuing their crackdown on impaired drivers. 42-year-old Kevin DeCamp of Corning was arrested after a traffic stop on Spencer Hill road by State police. He was charged with driving while intoxicated and having a blood alcohol content above .08%. He’ll eventually answer the charges in Town of Corning court.

 

Cuomo proposes change to allow sale of alcohol in theaters

If Gov. Cuomo gets his way, movie theaters in New York State could get the green light to sell alcohol. Under the Governor's proposal, adults holding tickets to movies rated PG-13 or higher could purchase alcoholic beverages, provided only one drink could be sold to a customer at a time. This proposal would be beneficial in multiple ways, providing theater operators with additional revenues, assisting in the economic development of downtowns, and providing New York craft producers with additional retail outlets. 

Today's Top Stories - Monday, January 6th, 2020

Rochester Woman Arrested on Drug Charges
Bath Police report the arrest of a Rochester woman in connection with the alleged sale of crack cocaine out of a local hotel. Diane Jackson, age 27, was wanted on a Superior Court Sealed Indictment Arrest Warrant from May 2018. Jackson is charged with one count each of 3rd-degree criminal sale and criminal possession of a controlled substance. She was arraigned and released without bail. The name of the hotel was not released.


Mike Sweet Formally Announces His Run for Bath Mayor
Entrepreneur and community activist Mike Sweet has formally announced his candidacy for Village of Bath Mayor.  Sweet has been active in local politics as a Village Trustee in the past 7 years and member of the Central Steuben Chamber of Commerce as well as owner of Bath liquor store Vines and Barrels. A businessman, Sweet wants his community’s businesses to thrive by tackling issues like assessments, taxes, loitering and poverty. Sweet said of his aspirations for mayor: “I have my own ideas and I want Bath to be the modern-day success story of how once a Village with a bad reputation made an incredible comeback.” 


HEAP Filing Workshop Tomorrow in Hornell
Tomorrow is a HEAP filing opportunity in Hornell to get help in person with a HEAP expert. The workshop will be held tomorrow at the Office for the Aging on Broadway Mall in Hornell from 8:30am to noon. You can also file a HEAP application online at www.mybenefits.ny.gov.


Former Painted Post Police Chief Yost Passes Away
Former Painted Post Police Chief Don Yost has passed away over the weekend at Arnot Ogden Medical Center. Yost lived to be 75 years old and spent 36 years in the department, serving as chief for 30 years from 1976 to 2006 when he retired. A funeral service is set Wednesday 1-3pm and 6-8pm at Haughey Funeral Home on East First Street in Corning. 


State Attorney General Calls for Review of Bail Reform Laws
New York Attorney General Letitia James has called for the new bail reform changes to be reviewed. James did not specify which parts of the new reforms she felt needed to be challenged but did say “I’m not going to negotiate in public,” and added that additional state resources will be needed to meet the demands of the new law. James also commented: “Safety should be the first priority.”


Car Accidents Involving Cell Phones Increase in NY
A rise in accidents involving cell phones has been reported in the past decade. According to New York state data, accidents involving cell phone use has increased 86% in the last ten years. In 2009, there were 650 accidents involving cell phones compared to 1,212 accidents in 2018.


Hammondsport Central School Holding Workshop Tonight
Hammondsport Central School reminds the public that they will be holding a Board of Education Workshop this evening. The meeting begins 6pm tonight at the High School Library. 


State Lawmakers Return to Albany for Legislative Session
New York lawmakers are set to return to Albany this week for the start of the new legislative session. Also happening this week in Albany is Governor Cuomo’s annual State of the State Address on Wednesday. Cuomo’s State of the State Agenda will include initiatives such as restricting vaping advertisements and a ban on single-use Styrofoam take-out containers. Medicaid spending on a $6 billion budget gap is another hot issue as well as potential legalization of pot, bail reform changes, and carbon emissions caps to fight climate change. The state legislative session ends on June 2nd this year. 

Today's Top Stories - Saturday January 4, 2020

Van Etten named new chairman of Steuben County Legislature

Steuben County Legislator Scott Van Etten was named Chairman of the county Legislature Thursday by unanimous consent. Van Etten has also been chairman of the Finance Committee for the past four years and also chairs the Steuben County Land Bank Corporation. A graduate of Corning Community College, the Rochester Institute of Technology, and Syracuse University, Van Etten was elected to the Town of Caton Board while still enrolled at CCC and later went on to become it’s youngest town supervisor. He retired after nearly 13 years working at Corning Inc in 2015 as a worldwide sales manager.

 

Truck crashes through fence at Elmira-Corning airport

A pickup truck crashed through the Elmira-Corning airport fence along Chambers Road on Friday afternoon. The driver was taken to a nearby hospital. Local fire department officials say the driver may have suffered a medical incident causing him to veer into the fence. No flights were delayed at the airport as a result.

 

Three arrested after New Year’s brawl in Horseheads

Three people were arrested after a New Year’s brawl outside the Beefeaters Tavern in the parking lot around 2:00 a.m. It is unknown where the trio were coming from prior to the incident. 22 year old Jaydon Smith of Elmira was charged with 1 count of Disorderly Conduct and 1 count of Criminal Impersonation, and 24 year old Ray-Shawn Brooks of Vacaville, CA and 22 year old Wissdum Smith of Elmira were both charged with 1 count of Disorderly Conduct. All 3 were released with appearance tickets to appear in Horseheads Village Court at a later date.

 

Bradford County man arrested for sexual abuse of a child

An unnamed 25 year old man from Bradford county was arrested in Milan, PA after admitting to producing and sharing explicit images of a child online and abusing said child in Bradford County. The suspect was identified by detectives in Washington D.C. and the suspect was later apprehended on December 30th in Milan by members of the FBI’s Philadelphia field office for his crimes related to the Production of Child Pornography and Child Sexual Abuse. The child was taken by local child protection personnel.

 

NYS ups security measures after killing of Iran’s top general

In the wake of the U.S. killing Iran’s top general, Qassem Soleimani, security has been stepped up at many of New York’s airports, utilities, transit systems, and various other high-profile locations as a means to defend against any potential retaliation from Iran. State and city leaders said there were no direct, credible threats made, but Mayor Bill de Blasio said the airstrike could bring about “new and very profound challenges”. Governor Cuomo sent National Guard personnel to city airports, city subways, buses, and commuter rails have also ramped up security measures. City police have also sharpened their watch over some prominent locations. Iran vowed “harsh retaliation” for General Soleimani’s death.

Today's Top Stories - Friday January 3rd, 2020

Van Etten Named County Legislature Chairman
The New Chairman of the Steuben County Legislature has been named. Scott Van Etten of Caton was named Chairman, replacing his longtime colleague from Campbell Joseph Hauryski who retired on Tuesday. Van Etten will leave his current committee positions behind and noted the last several years that unexpected changes imposed by state officials have been key influences in shaping the top issues in our county. Legislator Robin Lattimer from Bath was named the Vice Chair of the Legislature, who is primarily responsible for running meetings in the absence of the Chairman.

 

Several Blood Drives Scheduled for This Month
Two blood drives will be held in Bath for the month of January. The first one is at Davenport and Taylor on Tuesday January 7th from 9am to 1pm. Friday, January 17th a blood drive will be held at the Steuben County Office Building from 8:45am to 2pm. Blood drives for January are also scheduled at Savona Fire Hall on January 21st and Hammondsport Fire Hall on Jan 30th. Make an appointment by calling 1-800-RED-CROSS

 

Steuben Land Bank Corporation Reschedules 1/8 Meeting
The Steuben County Land Bank Corporation announces its meeting scheduled for Wednesday, January 8th has been cancelled.  This meeting has been tentatively rescheduled to Wednesday, February 5th at 10:30 a.m. in the Legislative Committee Room of the County Office Building.

 

Complications from Restraining Order Affects Farm Labor Law
A new farm labor law that went into effect Wednesday is being complicated by a temporary restraining order. The restraining order comes as a result of a lawsuit filed by a coalition of dairy and vegetable farmers. The new law gives farmers rights to overtime and collective bargaining units but opponents say the conditions of the law are ambiguous, lack clarity and parts of the law conflict with the National Labor Relations Act. A hearing for the legislation is scheduled later this month on January 24th.

 

Beer Tax Could Increase in NY
A new law has been proposed in the State Assembly that could increase the beer tax. A Manhattan Assemblyman proposed the bill as the bill’s sponsor and the legislation would increase the tax for beer from 14 cents per gallon to 30 cents per gallon. It is estimated that $50 million would be generated by the tax raise and the revenue would be distributed within the CUNY and SUNY school systems. However, beer distributors in the state may see a negative impact on their business as a result of the tax increase.

 

Labor Dept. Ending Sub Min Wage for "Miscellaneous" Industries
Governor Cuomo announced a Department of Labor order that ends sub minimum wage for the “miscellaneous” industries across the state. Over 70,000 tipped employees will be impacted and the Governor says this order will end confusion and outright wage theft that evidence shows robs them of tipped income they rightfully earned. Nail salon workers, hairdressers, aestheticians, valet parking attendants, doormen, tour guides, tow truck drivers and more will be affected by the measure. The tip wage for these industries will be eliminated to bring workers up to the current minimum wage and the tip wage elimination will be phased out over a one year period to help employers adjust.

 

Cuomo Kills Bill Bringing State-Owned Study of Broadband
Governor Cuomo quietly killed a piece of legislation last month that would study state-owned broadband as a solution that could address poor internet service in rural areas. Both the State Assembly and Senate had passed the measure but the Governor vetoed it due to the need for significant investment from the state to conduct the study, saying: “In order to deliver the study called for in the bill, funding must be allocated,” Cuomo said at the time.” The bill’s supporters believe corporate providers are not fulfilling their obligations to expand their service to rural areas. So far, the Governor has not mentioned improving Upstate New York’s infrastructure as a proposal for the 2020 State of the State Agenda.

 

NYS Legislature Approves Pay Raise for Governor
The New York State Legislature has approved a pay raise for Governor Cuomo. This salary increase will make the NY Democrat the highest paid Governor in the nation. Beginning January 1st, 2021, Cuomo’s salary will increase to $250,000 a year. Cuomo’s current annual salary is $179,000. Lieutenant Governor Hochul will also receive a pay bump to $220,000 a year. Both salaries haven’t changed since 1999.

Today's Top Stories - Thursday, January 2nd, 2020

Bath Village Police Report Suspicious People Looking in Vehicles
The Village of Bath Police Department reports an incident of suspicious people walking around houses and vehicles with flashlights and lights on their heads. The Department responded to the area of Robie and Allen Street early yesterday morning and attempted to stop and identify two subjects dressed in dark clothing in the area of Haverling High School, but the pair fled on foot toward Allen Street. The Village of Bath Police remind residents to lock their vehicles and store any valuable items out of sight inside your vehicle. Anyone with information or footage capturing the suspects should contact the Bath Village Police.

 

Congressman Reed Sends Letter Demanding Answers from SUNY
Congressman Tom Reed has released a sent letter to SUNY System Chancellor Kristina Johnson and President of SUNY Binghamton after a visit by economist Art Laffer to Binghamton University where he was heckled off the stage and escorted by security, preventing him from giving his speech. Press reports say the protesters did not approve of the campus Young Americans Foundation and the College Republicans, both were the groups that hosted Laffer’s talk. In Reed’s letter, he demands answers about the free speech policies of SUNY.

 

Assembly Minority Leader Arrested for DWI
New York State Minority Leader Brian Kolb was arrested and taken into custody on New Year’s Eve for Driving While Intoxicated. The Republican Assemblyman of the 131st district was arrested by Ontario County Sheriff’s Office after deputies responded to the report of a property damage crash in Victor. Kolb was taken into custody then charged with unsafe turning and a DWI with a BAC over .08% No one was injured in the crash and Kolb appears in Victor Town Court at a later date. The arrest came two weeks after a public safety statement given by Kolb advising constituents not to drink and drive.

 

Campaign Finance Plan by Commission Passed
The December deadline has passed for state politicians to block a politically-appointed commission’s plan to publicly finance campaigns in New York State. Both Democrats and Republicans were critical of the plan, but are expected to refine the details next year and will have time to make changes. The plan would have New Yorkers giving donations of $250 or less have their donations matched with public funds 6 to 1 for statewide offices like governor so a $100 donation would be worth $700.  Local donations would be matched 12 to 1 for the first $50. Voting rights groups see the plan as a leap forward but say legislators should lower the limits on political contributions and ensure the system has independent oversight.

 

New York State Tax Reforms Take Effect This Year
The beginning of 2020 brought a lot of new changes when it comes to tax break reforms. Effective yesterday, businesses in the state can receive a tax credit for providing child care facilities to employees. Tax credits will be allowed for employers hiring certain people in recovery from substance use disorders. Also receiving tax breaks in the professional world will be New York television studios that hire television writers who are women and minorities.

 

Undetectable Guns to Soon Be Criminalized in NYS
New York is soon criminalizing weapons that are not detectable by X-Ray machine or metal detector. The law takes effect on Monday, January 27th and prohibits the manufacture, sale, transport and possession of undetectable firearms, rifles and shotguns as well as the parts and components to these guns. Another new state law sets statewide standards for gun buyback programs. Municipalities and groups across the state already host programs aimed at allowing citizens to get rid of unwanted or illegal guns. However, supporters of the new law say the programs aren’t available everywhere and lack consistent standards.

 

New York Teens Can Now Pre-Register to Vote
This year, it will be easier for New York teens to prepare to vote once they reach the age to do so. Effective yesterday, New York is allowing those 16 years or older to preregister to vote before they reach age eighteen. Once someone turns 18, the State Elections Board automatically registers them to legally vote.

 

Adoptees Will Soon Be Granted Birth Certificates Without Court
This month, adoptees in New York will be able to obtain a certified birth certificate. Effective Wednesday January 15th, the new law allows adult adoptees, their descendants or legal representative to obtain a certified copy of their original birth certificate. Currently, adoptees must go before a judge to request access for their birth certificate and that access isn’t always granted. The National Conference of State Legislatures says half of the states in the US still require a court order. Critics of the new law say they are concerned about the privacy rights of birth parents.

Today's Tops Stories January 1st 2020

Jan Blood Drives in Steuben County

Two blood drives will be held in Bath for the month of January. The first one is at Davenport and Taylor on Tuesday January 7th from 9am to 1pm. Friday, January 17th a blood drive will be held at the Steuben County Office Building from 8:45am to 2pm Also blood drives at Savona Fire Hall on January 21s and Hammondsport Fire Hall on Jan 30th .  A good way start the New Year is by giving blood…the need is always there.

Bail Reform Official today

Criminal Justice reforms take effect in New York State today. One of the measures is the highly controversial bail reform act, which eliminates pre-trial bail for most criminal offenses. Beginning today, most defendants will simply be issued an appearance ticket for court despite the wave of criticism by law enforcement of the reform.

Cuomo Proposing legislation to fight robo calls

Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the 2020 State of the State Agenda's 17th proposal is a plan to fight "incessant" robocalls or nuisance phone calls. The legislative package would require telecommunication companies to deploy technology that would allow customers to block suspected robocalls and require companies to update their blocking technology. This proposal also mandate providers adopt technology that would warn consumers about potential robocalls and scams, including for out-of-state numbers. Financial penalties would be increased against companies not complying with New York State's "Do Not Call" law.

 BOCES Building in Bath no longer a public health Concern

The New York State DEC announced yesterday that the Bath Steuben-Allegany BOCES site is no longer a threat to public health. The property was formally classified as a Superfund site in 1992 when drinking water wells were sampled and 1,1,1,-TCA was detected. According to the DEC, from 1973 into the 1990's, the film wash chemical 1,1,1-trichloroethane was used and allegedly stored in the south side of the facility inside a storage room. DEC officials have not identified any significant sources of contamination on-site from the most recent groundwater sampling. 

 

New York State Populations continues decline


New York's population is on the decline according to the U.S. Census Bureau's latest update of population estimates. According to the annual data, New York's population grew by .4% or about 16 times less than the overall population growth of the US for the same time period. The Census Bureau Data also shows that over 180,000 more residents moved out of New York State than moved in from other states in the past 12 months.
 

Local legislatures make Farm Bureau’s Circle of Friends List

 

New York Farm Bureau has released its annual “Circle of Friends,” naming 77 New York State Legislators to the distinguished list. The award is an indication of the individual lawmaker’s support of New York agriculture and Farm Bureau. The “Circle of Friends” honor is based upon each legislator’s voting record on issues of agricultural importance as well as other evidence of legislative support, including sponsorship of bills that New York Farm Bureau has either supported or opposed during the most recent legislative session. Among those making the list from the state senate, Tom O’Mara…and from the state Assembly Phil Palmesano.

 New York’s  Minimum wages is going up today

The minimum wage increases today in New York State. For most areas outside of New York City and including Steuben County, the hourly minimum wage advances to $11.80. Critics have said businesses might be forced to cut hours and jobs because of the hike. New York’s minimum wage, which has been steadily increasing in much of the state in recent years, has also been blamed for contributing to a budgetary shortfall to the tune of $6 billion.

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