WVIN News Archives for 2020-03

Today's Top Stories - Tuesday March 31st, 2020

O'Mara and Palmesano Urge Cuomo to Delay Budget
Governor Andrew Cuomo and State Senate Democrats yesterday were urged by State Senator Tom O'Mara and Assemblyman Phil Palmesano to accept over $5 billion in federal assistance as a response to COVID-19. The local politicians also want to push back enacting the state budget to after this week which requires county governments and local property taxpayers to pick up more of the cost of New York's Medicaid system. The local legislators also stressed now is not the time for the state to begin requiring counties to foot a larger share of the bill for a Medicaid system costing taxpayers over $70 billion annually. 

County COVID-19 Cases Climb to 28
The total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Steuben County is now 28. The latest seven patients are from City of Hornell, Town of Erwin, two from Hornellsville, Town of Urbana, Village of North Hornell and Village of Painted Post. Two of the people are hospitalized, bringing the number of hospitalized cases in Steuben County to six.

Steuben County Man Arrested in Bradford County PA
A 29-year-old Steuben County man was arrested following an incident Saturday night in Bradford County, Pennsylvania. Joshua Lee Lewis of Cameron was arrested and charged with two felony counts of aggravated assault and two lesser counts of resisting arrest and disorderly conduct. Lewis was arraigned in District Court before being remanded to Bradford County Jail where he was unable to post a $50,000 bail. A preliminary hearing date was set for April 14th. 

Trout and Salmon Season Begins Tomorrow
Tomorrow begins New York state's trout and salmon fishing season. Spring stockings include 1.68 million brown trout, over 424,000 rainbow trout and almost 157,000 brown trout. The DEC encourages New Yorkers to enjoy these fishing opportunities to maintain mental and physical health in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis but reminds the public to follow the CDC and State Department of Health Guidelines to prevent the spread of Coronavirus. 

Siena Poll Finds Overall Approval of Cuomo's COVID-19 Response
According to a new Siena College poll, Governor Cuomo is doing a favorable job among voters across New York State. The poll found that at least 85 percent of voters from every region approve of the Governor's handling of the COVID-19 crisis with 95 percent of Democrats, 87 percent of Independents and 70 percent of Republicans supporting the Governor's leadership during the pandemic. New Yorkers overall also approved of the of the local health departments and government leaders as well as the CDC. 

 

Taco Bell Offering Free Tacos in Effort to Give Back
Taco Bell announced Sunday that they will be giving back to Americans in the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic by giving away free Doritos Locos Tacos at their restaurants today. Taco Bell's CEO announced in a letter that Drive-Thru guests of Taco Bell will receive a free Doritios Locos Taco with no purchase necessary while supplies last. The restaurant announced the Taco Bell Foundation will donate $1 million to No Kid Hungry and encourages those enjoying a free taco to donate to the foundation during their visit.

Today's Top Stories - Monday, March 30th, 2020

Two more cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed by Steuben County Public Health Department, bringing the total number of cases in the county to 21. The two new individuals are from Corning and Wayland and have been isolated and monitored by the County Health Department. Staff of Public Health say both people have no known exposure risks as they have followed public health protocols. People who have come into direct contact with the patients have been notified.

Yesterday, Governor Cuomo announced the "New York on Pause" policy keeping home nonessential workforce will be extended to April 15th as New York experiences a rise in positive tests for coronavirus and deaths from it. Cuomo urged private and public hospitals work together with a "rolling apex" coordination system. Meanwhile, the New York State Health Department is working to develop a faster, easier and less-intrusive saliva and short-nasal test for the Coronavirus that will be available for healthcare workers as soon as next week. 

For the last week, New York State Department of Labor has struggled to keep up with the demand as their phonelines and website frequently being busy and shut down. This week, the NYDOL says it will extend its hours to accomodate the sudden spike in claims with representatives working Saturdays for the first time. Officials tell the public to still expect longer-than-usual wait times. 

Governor Cuomo says the need for ventilators is still crucial after over 100 New Yorkers died from Coronavirus over the weekend.  Cuomo said that as the state seeks ventilators, he is looking to find a way to share the equipment between states. A need for space to treat patients also is growing as officials push for increased capacity at hospitals and dormitories. 

Triple A reports prices for gas in the Finger Lakes area has gone down to three cents a gallon compared to last week. The price range for gas in our region ranges anywhere from $2.20 to the $2.40's range. The national average price for gas has fallen to under two dollars.

New York Attorney General Letitia James warns the public of new coronavirus scams. A new wave of scams has scammers pose as federal agents and prey on those desperate for financial aid. James reminds residents to never give away personal information and never open e-mail links or attachments from someone claiming to be from the government. 

The Village of Bath Municipal Utility Commission is holding a special meeting tomorrow morning 9am at 7 South Avenue in Bath. The meeting will review the COVID-19 pandemic and utility operations of the Bath Electric, Gas and Water Systems and any matters that come before the commission. 

A Wayland man faces a series of felony counts after a domestic dispute reported in the Town of Bath. State Police report the arrest of 24-year-old Aaron Smith. He was charged with assault with intent to cause injury, criminal possession of a controlled substance involving a stimulant and felony possession of a weapon. All charges are high-level felony offenses. Smith was initially detained after arrest. 

Today's Top Stories - Friday, March 27th, 2020

 

Two More Confirmed Cases of COVID-19 in Steuben
Two more cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed by the Steuben County Department of Public Health. One patient is  from Cameron and the other Hornellsville. Both are being isolated and monitored by the Health Department as close contacts of the confirmed cases are investigated and identified and exposure risks are determined. The total number of cases of COVID-19 confirmed in the county is currently 13. 

Mitrano Calls for Federal Government to Prompt Medical Manufacturing
Yesterday, Democratic Congressional Candidate Tracy Mitrano released a campaign statement urging reform to prioritize health and safety "by using  the federal government to prompt the manufacturing coordination needed for medical equipment and expedited traning of technicians." Mitrano criticized Congressman Tom Reed and President Trump for calling a reopening of commerce sooner than public officials advise. At the time of her statement, 38 individuals in the 23rd Congressional District represented by Reed have been diagnosed with COVID-19.

Prattburgh Central School District Holds Monday Meeting
Prattsburgh Central School District holds a special board meeting Monday evening at 7pm via Zoom technology due to the safety of everyone and the closure of hte school. Details to view and join this meeting are posted online on the School District's website. 

Bath Accident Last Night on Faucett Road
Few details are available regarding a traffic crash that occured in Bath last night around 10:30. According to 911 Dispatchers, a car struck a ditch on Faucett Road near East Washington Street Extension. The initial report is that an elderly woman went into cardiac arrest but no other information was released by Police yet. 

State Consumer Protection Warns of Coronavirus Scammers
Consumers are being alerted by the New York State Division of Consumer Protection of scammers taking advantage of the Coronavirus crisis.. As a response to the major global event, scammers use technology to set up fake charities and pitch coronavirus treatments and work from home schemes. The public is reminded  not give out any of your personal information over the telephone. 

Arnot Health Asks for Help with Masks
Arnot Health has called on the community to help make fabric face masks in the wake of the mask shortage caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Arnot Health says the fabric masks are CDC-approved, crisis response options. Those wanting to help out can check out the Arnot Health Facebook page for mask-making instructions and call (607) 737-7004 for help to arrange deliveries. 

Today's Top Stories - Thursday March 26th, 2020

11 Confirmed Cases of COVID-19 in the County
Three more Steuben County residents have tested positive for COVID-19 according to the County Health Department. Of the three, one is from Bath, one is from Hornellsville and one from the City of Corning. Two of these cases are linked. All three are currently being isolated and monitored by the County Health Department as they investigate and identify close contacts of the confirmed cases and any exposure risks. There are currently 11 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the county.


Reed Sides With Trump on Returning to Work During Pandemic
Congressman Tom Reed agrees with President Trump that people need to be back to work as soon as possible despite the disagreement of Public Health officials. Like Trump, Reed says businesses must and can return to operation while the COVID-19 pandemic is being managed. Reed suggested the best plan is taking a regional approach where New York City business openings be delayed but the areas not hit as heavily by the virus be re-opened.


Cuomo Stresses Social Distancing For All To Prevent Virus Spread
Governor Andrew Cuomo is stressing the importance of following social distancing for everyone, even if they don't have high risk of dying from COVID-19. The Governor reminded that younger people can be hospitalized and carriers of corona virus without having symptoms or knowing it. Cuomo said young people, too, must take the same precautions to prevent spreading the virus to high-risk individuals such
as those with respiratory problems, compromised immune systems and the elderly.


Special Olympics of NY Waives State Summer Games
The Special Olympics of New York has waived this year's participation in the State Summer Games. The event planned for mid-June in the Hudson Valley region has been called off due to the coronavirus pandemic.


Cuomo Announces Mental Health Volunteer for SHF
Yesterday, Governor Cuomo announced 40,000 healthcare workers across the state signed up to volunteer working as part of New York State's surge healthcare force and 6,000 of them are mental health professionals signing up to provide free mental health services. The Governor called this spirit of volunteering "undefeatable". New Yorkers that need mental health services can call the state's hotline at 1-844-863-9314 to be connected to resources and make an appointment.


Arnot Health Seeks Cloth Masks
Arnot Health has called on the community to help make fabric face masks in the wake of the mask shortage caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Arnot Health says the fabric masks are CDC-approved, crisis response options. Those wanting to help out can check out the Arnot Health Facebook page for mask-making instructions and call (607) 737-7004 for help to arrange deliveries.

Today's Top Stories - Wednesday, March 25th, 2020

8 Cases of COVID-19 Confirmed in Steuben County
The Steuben County Health Department confirmed the county's eighth case of COVID-19 yesterday. The Health Department also reports 115 people in the county are in quarantine and being monitored. Not all those monitored currently are confiremd to have COVID-19 but have either shown symptoms, awaiting results or have other risk factors. 

 

Sixth COVID-19 Case is Prattsburgh Resident
The Steuben County Department of Health reports the sixth confirmed case of COVID-19 is a resident of Prattsburgh. The resident was staying in Monroe county prior to and since they have become symptomatic and have not returned to Steuben County since. The patient is currently isolated in Monroe County as they are monitored by Monroe County Health Department. Steuben Public Health staff will work to identify close contacts and exposure risks. 

 

CCC Confirms Student Tested Positive for COVID-19
Corning Community College officials confirmed yesterday that a CCC student has tested positive for COVID-19. The student tested positive on Tuesday and was last on campus Monday, March 16th. College officials are uncertain how and where the student contracted the virus but say they are taking "every precaution" and protocol of the County Health Department to keep their campus communty safe and healthy.

 

Cuomo Urges Trump to Nationalize Pandemic Response
Yesterday, Governor Cuomo called on President Trump to nationalize the response to the Corona Virus Crisis. Cuomo plead Trump to nationalize the effort to supply medical devices because officials have been forced with one another to compete for the scarce and desperately-needed equipment. Cuomo says the federal government should order factories to manufacture essential medical equipment like masks, gowns, ventilators and more. Cuomo stressed these supplies are "going to make the difference between life or death."

 

NYSECA Calls for Immediate Action for Elections Following Pandemic
The New York State Elections Commissioner Association has called for immediate action by Governor Cuomo and the State Legislature to protect the electoral process during the crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The NYSECA is asking the state to postpone the Democratic Presidential Primary scheduled on April 28th to be moved to June 23rd, Amend State Election law to allow Absentee Balloting during all times of declared state of emergency due to pandemic or infectious disease and give the local Board of Elections wide latitude to consolidate polling places and election districts during elections. The organization says these measures will help counties save time, county dollars and resources.

 

NYS Unemployment Website Over-Flooded With Requests
The New York State Unemployment System has been flooded with requests to receive unemployment insurance and last week began taking steps to alleviate the problem of keeping up with the demand of the Unemployment website. Over 500,000 visits were made to the platform in one day and the telephone hotline was also maxed out. The State Department of Labor reports roughly half a million people each day are trying to file online and almost as many by phone. The Labor Board attempted to use a new alphabetized version of the site without much improvement.

Today's Top Stories - March 24th, 2020

Fifth Case of COVID-19 Confirmed in Steuben County
Steuben County has confirmed its fifth case of COVID-19. County Health Department Director Darlene Smith confirmed the patient is a resident of Corning and is being isolated and monitored by the Public Health Department. Smith says Steuben County's Health Department has partnered with Yates County Health Department to monitor and investigate the case as the patient recovers and is being quarantined in the Penn Yan area. Close contacts and exposure risks of the case are currently being identified. 

 

Corning Inc Makes Layoffs
At least 367 union employees of Corning Incorporated have been laid off. Layoffs include employees at the company headquarters, Sullivan Park location and Corning Museium of glass. Monday, Corning Inc's stock price closed at 17.75. Since January, the company's stock has fallen by 39 percent.

 

Hornell Fire Displaces Family of Six
A Hornell family was displaced and a fire fighter was injured after a blaze on 45 Bennett Street on Sunday. The Hornell Fire Department responded at about 4:30pm and could not prevent the flames from consuming the two-story home. The house is inhabitable and the family with six children is being assisted by the Red Cross for arrangements and a hotel stay. The injured firefighter was released from St. James Hospital with minor injuries.

 

Reed Supports National Guard Action for Pandemic
Congressman Tom Reed says he supports the president using federal funds to mobilize the National Guard in three states, including New York, as a response to COVID-19. In a WETM-TV interview the Congressman says he agrees that the National Guard would be a great resource for relief the the midst of the pandemic. The plan would have the National Guard establish mobile hospitals to mitigate over-occupancy of hospitals. 

 

Arnot Health Seeks Community's Help to Make Masks
Arnot Health has called on the community to help in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis by making fabric face masks. The disposable standard masks  are back-ordered and in short supply due to their high demand. Arnot Health says fabric masks are a CDC-approved, crisis-response options. Those wanting to help Arnot Health can check out the Arnot Health Facebook page for mask-making instructions and call (607) 737-7004 for help to arrange deliveries. 

 

Local Hospitals Establish Coronavirus Hotlines
Local hospitals have established hotline numbers as a community resource in the midst of the coronavirus crisis. Arnot Health has a helpline for residents experiencing COVID-19 symptoms 9am to 7pm, seven days a week at 1-800-952-2662. Guthrie Helath has established an information line for updates and frequently-asked questions at 1-844-357-2840 or 1-800-836-1925. These lines will be answered seven days a week from 9am to 4:30pm and will not be used to take emergency calls.

 

Mitrano Secures Spot on Democratic Ballot
Democratic candidate Tracy Mitrano has seccured the Democratic line on the ballot for the 23rd Congressional District. The Penn Yan Democrat earned more than enough signatures petitioning to appear on the ballot in November's general election and is challenging incumbent Republican Congressman Tom Reed. Mitrano also secured lines on the ballot under the Working Families and Serve America Movement Parties. 

 

Greenwood Man Arrested After Domestic Incident
The County Sheriff's Office reports the arrest of Greenwood man Timothy Sekoll following a call for a welfare check. Sekoll allegedly unlwafully restrained a member of his family or household, intentionally damaged property and prevented them from using the telephone, intentionally causing injury to that person and endangering the welfare of someone under age 17. Sekoll was charged with Unlawful Prisonment, Assault, Criminal Mischeif charges and Endangering the Welfare of a Child. He was arraigned in Centralized Arraignment Court then released. 

Today's Top Stories - Saturday March 21, 2020

Coronavirus strikes Steuben County

There are now two confirmed cases of the Coronavirus in Steuben County, one in Bath and one in Hornellsville. Officials in Steuben County say the coronavirus patient in Bath recently attended a large gathering at the Bath Volunteer Fire Department with over 100 people, and recently visited the Fred & Harriett Taylor Health nursing facility. Both individuals are now in quarantine. No additional information regarding the age or gender of either patient has been released. Currently, 16 people are in either mandatory or voluntary quarantine in Steuben County and over 20 tests have been administered.

 

Steuben County warns of COVID-19 related scams

There has been a substantial increase in scams related to COVID-19 involving seniors in the area…that’s according to Steuben County Office For The Aging Director Patricia Baroody. She says her office wants to warn seniors and the public to watch out. Baroody said “This is critical -- these scammers focus on spyware and malware and products that claim they can cure this virus. The Director said scammers also are attempting to steal the direct financial support that individuals will be receiving as part of the federal aid package.

 

Cuomo executive order puts more pressure on businesses

More pressure is on New York businesses as nearly 1,800 more people have contracted the coronavirus in the state. On Thursday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed another Executive Order mandating business’ that rely on in-office personnel to decrease their in-office workforce by 75 percent. Exemptions will be made for essential service industries. In other state action… New York State mortgage servicers must provide 90-day mortgage relief to mortgage borrowers impacted by the novel coronavirus and state-chartered banks have been directed to waive ATM fees, late fees, overdraft fees and fees for credits cards. the Governor confirmed 1,769 additional cases of novel coronavirus, bringing the statewide total to 4,152 confirmed cases.

 

Broome county reports cases of COVID-19

Broome County now has two confirmed cases of the coronavirus. Pending cases have climbed to 117, up significantly from just earlier this week. Broome County Transit is now offering free rides to all passengers.

 

Pres. Trump rolls out $1 billion stimulus package amongst COVID-19 crisis

The coronavirus pandemic is bringing economies all over the world to their knees -- as global quarantines, border closures, and lockdowns force millions to hunker down, workers are fired, and many left with little to no financial resources to make ends meet. President Trump and Congressional leaders are now planning a $1 trillion stimulus package.

 

Brindisi issues statement as the Coronavirus hits the House of Representatives

Southern Tier Congressman Anthony Brindisi released a statement Thursday regarding the news that two members of the House of Representatives tested positive for COVID-19. The congressman said that…Last week, he was in contact with Congressman McAdams who recently tested positive for COVID-19. Out of an abundance of caution and on the advice of the Attending Physician of the United States Congress, Brindisi said he will self-quarantine until Friday, March 27. He tells us he is not exhibiting any symptoms and remains in good health. He will be teleworking from his home.

Today's Top Stories - Friday March 20th, 2020

County Confirms Second Case of COVID-19 
The Steuben County Public Health Department confirmed this morning it has received notification a Steuben County resident from the town of Hornellsville tested positive for COVID-19. The individual is the second confirmed case in the county and is currently being isolated and monitored by the County Health Department.  Public Health staff is investigating and identifying close contacts of the confirmed case and any exposure risks.  Individuals with exposure risk are currently being quarantined and monitored for symptoms. Public Health Director, Darlene Smith says: “The best action that people can take is to stay home and limit contact with others to slow or stop the spread through the community.”


Seniors and Public Warned of Rise In COVID-19 Scams
Steuben County Office For The Aging Director Patricia Baroody warn seniors and says seniors and the public should watch out due to the increase in scams related to COVID-19 involving seniors in the area. Baroody says this message is critical because scammers focus on spyware and malware and products that claim they can cure this virus. According to Baroody, scamers also are attempting to steal the direct financial support that individuals will be receiving as part of the federal aid package.


Steuben Legislative Committee Meets Monday
When the Steuben Legislative Committee meets  Monday at 10am they will discuss issues like Authorizing the Steuben County Legislature to Conduct Committee and Full Board Meetings by Teleconference during the COVID-19 State(s) of Emergency Adoption of Senate Bill S7816 and Assembly Bill A9796 Extending Steuben County’s Mortgage Recording Tax, Requesting the Adoption of the Senate and Assembly Bill Extending the Additional One Percent (1%) Sales Tax for Steuben County and Authorizing the Acceptance of the New York State 2019-2020 Public Safety Answering Points Operations Grant.

 

Mitrano Warns Collapse of Loan Debt Bubble and Middle Class
At a press conference call Democratic Congressional challenger to the 23rd District Tracy Mitrano warned that we are on the verge of a student loan bubble that will unfold economically similar to the home mortgage crisis of 2008. Mitrano proposed student loan debt relief to remediate the possible collapse. Mitrano also expressed her concern for the quality of life for the working and middle class due to the rising costs of necessities like healthcare, insurance and internet despite wages remaining stagnant.


Congressman Reed Announces Economic Revival Package
Today, Congressman Tom Reed announced that he and the rest of the Problem Solver’s Caucus has created a Coronavirus Response Health Crisis and Economic Revival Package. The package proposes Immediate, Direct Financial Payments to Individuals, low-or-zero interest Bridge Loans for Businesses, Allow Individuals and Businesses to Defer Mortgage Payments and Rent as well as Loan Deferral and Forbearance. The package also seeks to provide additional regulatory relief at FDA and CDC for market-based testing solutions and essential supplies, enact childcare assistance policies and regulatory relief to provide childcare coverage during term of crisis and enact applicable measures to strictly enforce anti-price gouging measures. The package also proposes passage of a significant infrastructure package which would stimulate job growth and allow for borrowing at historically-low interest rates.


Democratic Candidate Mitrano Praises Trump’s Releif Efforts
Democratic Congressional Candidate Tracy Mitrano held a press conference call with the to discuss current events due to the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19). Mitrano expressed her support for financial relief option of $1,000 per month proposed by President Trump that would support and prioritize community over industry. Mitrano noted that in the middle of this coronavirus crisis, our healthcare and other systems must improved and noted: “While the political issues will always be there,right now is not the time to focus on them. It is the time to focus on the community and public Health.”

Today's Top Stories - Thursday March 19th, 2020

Community Bank and Steuben Citizens Close Branch Lobbies
Community Bank, N.A. announced it will close all branch lobbies today and operate solely via drive-through. Steuben Citizens FCU made the same decision yesterday. Both banks have done so as a result of the coronavirus outbreak. Community Bank NA says all branch lobbies will be available by appointment only, including locations with and without drive—thru.

 

County Offices Closed to Public Walk-ins
Steuben County offices will remain closed to public walk-ins until Wednesday, March 25 to promote social distancing efforts and to comply with onsite staff reduction requirements for local governments. The public can call to each department to schedule appointments for services.

 

Bath Man and Campbell Man Wanted by Sheriff
Steuben County Sheriff’s Deputies are looking for a man whose last known address was at 18 W. Steuben Street in Bath. A warrant has been issued for 26-year-old Tony A. Cole. He is wanted for felony criminal possession of a controlled substance. Deputies are also actively looking for 51-year-old Jonathan N. Cook. Deputies say his last known address was Forty Dollar Road in Campbell. He’s wanted on a warrant for attempted second-degree forgery.

 

Hammondsport Board of Education Moves Meeting to Next Week
Hammondsport Central School Board of Education announces it has moved the regular meeting scheduled for yesterday to Wednesday March 25th 7:30am at the High School Library.

 

Walmart and TOPS Change Store Hours
Beginning today, Walmart stores will be open from 7am to 8:30pm. The chain has also shut down its Auto Care centers temporarily to focus on stocking and cleaning. Walmart also announced from March 24th to April 28th every Thursday will be an hour-long senior shopping event for customers 60 and older an hour before stores normally open. Tops will also open their doors exclusively to seniors from 6:00 – 7:30 am every Tuesday and Thursday.

 

Cuomo Orders Non-Essential Businesses Work From Home
Amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced he will issue an executive order directing non-essential businesses to implement work-from-home policies effective Friday, March 20th.  The Governor confirmed 1,008 new cases of novel coronavirus, bringing the statewide total to 2,382 confirmed cases in New York State.

 

Cuomo Joins Governor’s Regional Coalition to Fight COVID-19
Governor Cuomo has joined the Governors of New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Connecticut to form a regional coalition to combat COVID-19. The four governors announced all four states will close indoor portions of retail shopping malls, amusement parks and bowling alleys by 8pm tonight. The action is intended to limit crowd capacity and prevent the transmission of coronavirus.

 

Cuomo Announces USNS Comfort to Be Deployed
Yesterday, Governor Cuomo announced the USNS Comfort will be deployed to New York harbor and will arrive in April. The USNS Comfort is a 1,000-bed hospital ship with 12 fully-equipped operating rooms. Cuomo says utilizing the ship will significantly increase New York’s hospital surge capacity. Cuomo meets leadership of the Army Corp of Engineers today to discuss ways to increase hospital capacity in New York.

Today's Top Stories - Wednesday March 18th, 2020

Finger Lakes VA Adopts No-Visitors Policy
Officials say the VA Finger Lakes Healthcare System has adopted a policy of no visitors for all inpatients amid the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak. No one under eighteen will be allowed in the medical centers and should not accompany loved ones to appointments but officials say exceptions will be made in “compassionate cases” when patients are in hospice at the last stages of their life. Additionally, the VA is screening everyone who comes to medical centers, as well as the Community Based Outpatient Clinics.

 

Sheriff’s Office Suspends Visitation and Non-Essential Entry
In accordance with Steuben County’s declared state of emergency the Steuben County Sheriff’s Office today began suspending visitation and non-essential public entry to the Steuben County Jail until further notice.  Although the Public Safety Building will remain open, it is encouraged that anyone that has non-emergency business with the Sheriff’s Office, or business that can be conducted in a non-face to face setting, do so without entering the Public Safety Building. 

 

Steuben County Offices Closed to March 25th
To promote social distancing efforts and to comply with onsite staff reduction requirements for local governments, Steuben County offices will remain closed to public walk-ins until Wednesday, March 25th. County Courts will open tomorrow at 9 a.m. for emergencies only at the County Courthouse in Bath. All court appearances are cancelled and will be rescheduled.

 

Bath Municipal Building Closed
The Village and Town of Bath Municipal Hall is closed until further notice to help reduce the potential spread of Covid-19. For Town of Bath’s tax collection, payments can be mailed to: PO Box 327 Bath, New York 14810. Mailed payments must be postmarked by March 31st. Payments can also be made online at paylocalgov.com/steubencounty.

 

Hornell May Implement Curfew Under State of Emergency
Hornell Common Council met this week and discussed the possibility of implementing a curfew for those under eighteen to follow in the upcoming weeks of the school dismissal. Years ago, a curfew was in place but later repealed due to unconstitutionality. Mayor Buckley says he contacted the City Attorney to talk about implementing a temporary curfew in light of the state of emergency.

 

The Fred & Harriett Taylor Memorial Library Temporarily Closed

The Fred & Harriett Taylor Memorial Library in Hammondsport will be temporarily closing through at least April 12th. This date is tentative as it continues to assess the need for social distancing.


Two Confirmed COVID-19 Cases in Allegany County
As of yesterday Allegany County Department of Health (ACDOH) tested 37 new individuals for COVID-19. The total of tested individuals in Allegany County is now 47.  Allegany County confirmed cases remains at two who are at home recovering. All 37 tested Allegany County individuals are being isolated/quarantined until their test results are known. 

 

Red Cross Facing Blood Shortage
The Red Cross continues delivering vital services to communities affected by COVID-19 but now faces a severe blood shortage due to the extreme number of blood drive cancellations during this coronavirus outbreak. Earlier this week it was reported about 2,700 Red Cross blood drives have been canceled across the country, resulting in 86,000 fewer blood donations.

Today's Top Stories - Tuesday March 17th, 2020

Comedy Night Postponed
WVIN will postpone its comedy night scheduled for the end of this month. Upon the Clemens Center in Elmira closing until April, WVIN has cancelled its Comedy Night Event scheduled for the evening of March 31st. WVIN will keep you updated once a date is rescheduled for the event.

 

St. James Opens New Hospital Despite State of Emergency
St. James Hospital announced yesterday as a precaution to address the potential outbreak of COVID-19 it will begin to reschedules some patient appointments and redeploy resources to ensure the treatment of acute care needs at its hospitals, clinics and physician offices. The hospital is in lock-step with the University of Rochester's week and a half implementation preparation process. The hospitals have limited inpatient visits to zero. The St. James Facilities opened their new facility at the normal time of 8am today.

 

Village Elections Delayed to April
The New York State’s governor’s website released a statement saying that to avoid the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Cuomo issued today and executive order to delay village elections statewide until the April 28th primary election.

 

Avoca Begins School Dismissal Today
Avoca  school dismissed students beginning today. Yesterday was a half-day for students as Superintendents met for a conference day.

 

Bath VFD Holds Awards Dinner
Saturday evening the Bath Volunteer Fire Department held its annual awards dinner with a Hawaiian theme at the Bath station. Most members were present along with some Bath Village officials, local business owners and representatives from neighboring departments. Many won awards including:
Firefighter of the year for 2019: Greg Glashauser
Firefly of the year for 2019: Shari Baroody,
Junior Firefighter of the Year 2019: Erica Mills,
Life Saving Award and Medals: Captain Kyle Lisefski and Firefighter Jeffery Robinson,
Firefly Lifetime Achievement Award 2019: Shari Baroody and Deidra Conrad,
and Most Improved Junior Firefight Award: Coby Causer.

 

NY Shuts Down Public Access to Capitol
?New York has shut down public access to its Capitol building following the positive tests for coronavirus by two Democratic legislators from New York City. The rest of the state's lawmakers met in Albany yesterday. Governor Cuomo wants the President to authorize the military to take emergency action and build temporary hospital facilities in student dorms or on military bases.The budget deadline for the next fiscal year is March 31st.

 

Hornell May Implement Curfew Under State of Emergency
Hornell Common Council met last night and discussed the possibility of implementing a possible curfew for those under eighteen to follow in the upcoming weeks of the school dismissal. Years ago, a curfew was in place but later repealed due to unconstitutionality. Mayor Buckley says he contacted the City Attorney to talk to him about implementing a temporary curfew in light of the state of emergency.

Today's Top Stories - Monday March 16th

EZ Rider Sharing Program Closed Today
Office for the Aging Director Patty Baroody announced that the EZ Rider Van Shopping Program has been closed for today as the group follows the county’s lead to close and limit activities as a precautionary safety measure to prevent spread of coronavirus.

 

BVFD Cancels All March Events

The Bath Volunteer Fire Department announces that all fundraisers, breakfast and bingo events have been cancelled for the month of March. The Fire Department has made this decision following the recommendations of the CDC and New York State directing large gatherings be discouraged. A decision for the Fire Department’s April activities has not yet been determined but will be released in the future.

 

Wind Farm Approved for Canisteo
The New York State Board on Electric Generation Siting and the Environment granted approval to Canisteo Wind Energy, LLC to build and operate a wind farm with 117 wind turbines in Steuben County. The Canisteo Wind project will consist of up to 117 wind turbines with an underground collection system and substation for infrastructure in the Towns of Canisteo, Cameron, Greenwood, Jasper, Troupsburg and West Union. The facility will be built on 25,000 acres of privately-owned land and will create direct jobs, revenues for participating landowners and local governments through a PILOT program.

 

Tom Reed Says Economy is Strong Despite Pandemic
In a Media Call about the Coronavirus, Congressman Tom Reed says there is no need for the public to panic and is actually optimistic about the market and says the economy is the “strongest it’s ever been.” Reed also reiterated that the bipartisan bill he supported has passed and the federal $8 billion package will deliver relief and access to virus prevention to the public.

 

Prattsburgh Town Board Cancels Tonight's Meeting
The Prattsburgh Town Board has cancelled its meeting for tonight to follow the county in precautions to prevent sickness.

 

Village of Cohocton Plans Tax Cap Meeting
The Village of Cohocton may want to or need to raises taxes beyond the state’s authorized limit. The village has scheduled a public hearing for 7 p.m. on next Wednesday March 25th at the village office. The hearing is on a proposed local law overriding the tax cap for the fiscal year that begins June 1st .

 

BEGWS Announces Warden Street Main Replacements Next Week
Bath Electric, Gas and Water Systems will resume replacing the gas main and services on Warden Street, from Hudson Street to Geneva Street. For safety reasons, Warden Street will be closed. Local access for emergency vehicles will be maintained during construction. The intersections of Hudson/Warden, Shannon/Warden, and Geneva/Warden will be closed periodically as Bath Electric, Gas and Water Systems cuts the pavement and replaces the gas main at and/or across these intersections. Work is scheduled to begin the week of March 23rd and last through the spring.

 

Brush Burning Ban Begins Today Through May 14th 
The NYS DEC says a statewide ban prohibiting residential brush burning begins today and runs through May 14. With spring approaching, DEC is reminding residents that conditions for wildfires are heightened in springtime when most wildfires occur. Open burning of debris is the largest single cause of spring wildfires in New York State.

 

State of Emergency in Steuben Effective Wednesday
Steuben County Manager Jack Wheeler says a State of Emergency has been declared effective Wednesday. In addition, ALL Steuben County schools will close Wednesday, March 18 through April 12. Wheeler says the actions are “precautionary” noting that there have been no confirmed COVID-19 cases in Steuben. Wheeler and Public Health Director Darlene Smith have met with school superintendents to develop a unified plan for an extended dismissal of students.

 

Two In Allegany County Test Positive for COVID-19
Two individuals from Allegany County have tested positive for COVID-19. One is a male in his early 20s and is recuperating at home and the other is a five-year-old male, who is also recovering at home. Allegany County follows Steuben County in the dismissal of students beginning March 18th through April 12th.

Today's Top Stories - Saturday March 14th, 2020

Campbell Man Arrested for Hate Crimes
Steuben County Sheriff’s Office reports deputies arrested 19-year-old Campbell man Trenton Storms after responding to multiple reports in Campbell of arson and vandalism containing racial epithets. Deputies and Investigators observed two areas of burnt grass, destroyed grave markers, spray painted signs, roadway, bridges and vehicles.  It is alleged that Mr. Storms intentionally damaged property of another and did so as a hate crime and charged with Criminal Mischief in the Fourth Degree as a Hate Crime, five counts of Criminal Mischief in the Fourth Degree, Cemetery Desecration and Arson in the Fifth Degree. Storms was released on an appearance ticket to appear in Campbell Town Court at a later date.  Future arrests are expected in this case.

 

Painted Post Man Arrested for Reckless Driving, DWI
Steuben County Sheriff’s Office reports the arrest of Painted Post man George M. Berne for DWI and reckless driving after deputies were notified of a vehicle allegedly leaving the scene of a collision in the Town of Bath.  Deputies observed a vehicle matching the description of the vehicle, with front end damage, operating at an extremely high rate of speed on State Route 415 in Campbell then attempted to stop the vehicle, which then accelerated to an even higher speed and collided with a guide rail on State Route, coming to a stop due to vehicular damage.  Berne allegedly recklessly operated the vehicle while in an intoxicated condition and charged with Reckless Endangerment in the First Degree, Criminal Mischief in the Third Degree, Driving While Intoxicated and Operating a Motor Vehicle with a Blood Alcohol Content Greater than .08%.  Mr. Berne was arraigned in the Centralized Arraignment Court and released.

 

Boys Basketball State Championship Postponed
After initially banning appearances for fans, it was announced this week that the Regional Boys Basketball Schedule Set for today at Buffalo State College was postponed as a result of the Coronavirus. This means the Avoca Tigers Versus Sherman Wildcats State championship boys’ basketball game planned for this afternoon on WABH will be rescheduled in the future. No date has yet been reset for the match but stay tuned to WVIN and WABH as details emerge. 

 

Hornell’s St. Patrick’s Parade and 5K Cancelled 
Hornell mayor John Buckley says that the St. Patrick’s Day parade planned for today is cancelled due to the governor banning any public gatherings of 500 or more people. The YMCA’s Run For The Shamrock 5K race scheduled for 9am today has also been cancelled. 

 

Wegmans Will Close for Cleaning and Re-Stocking
Wegmans announced it will begin to close all of its New York locations so staff can restock items and clean the store. The announcement was caused by the recent rise in shoppers stocking up on groceries and essentials in case of a quarantine for the Coronavirus. Instead of their usual 24-hour schedule, all Wegmans stores in the Finger Lakes will be open daily 6am to midnight until further notice.

 

Funeral Today for Avoca Teen
The funeral for the Avoca teen killed last week in a State Route 415 crash is set for today. Calling hours for Chris O’Dell begin 10am at Wallace Wesleyan Church. The funeral begins at noon. Anyone wanting to make a donation to help the O’Dell family can call the Wallace Wesleyan Church at (607) 566-2590.

 

Academic All-Stars Cancels Rest of 2020 Season
It was announced yesterday by Academic All-Stars Coordinator Mary Harris that the Academic All Stars competition has been cancelled for the rest of the 2020 season. 

Today's Top Stories - Friday March 13th, 2020

Cuomo Bans Gatherings of Over 500 People
Governor Cuomo announced a statewide ban of gatherings of more than 500 people, effective today beginning at 5 p.m. For gatherings under 500 people, there is a mandate to reduce the seating capacity by half.Updates on other closures in the county will be available on Steuben County’s website at www.steubencony.org.

 

Pilot Consent Resolution Proposed  at Canisteo Board Meeting
At this week’s Town of Canisteo Board Meeting, there was a unanimous agreement to approve the road use agreement. A pilot consent resolution was proposed regarding the Canisteo Wind Power as suggested to the Town Board by the IDA. The Pilot Consent Resolution will be discussed at the Board’s April meeting. 


Alfred U and St. James Take Steps to Prevent COVID-19
Alfred university says they want all students who are returning to the A.U. campus on or around March 22nd, to self-certify that they have not been to high risk areas and that they do not have the corona virus. St. James hospital is restricting patients to having only one visitor at a time.

 

Hornell’s St. Patrick’s Parade and 5K Cancelled 
Hornell mayor John Buckley says that the St. Patrick’s Day parade is cancelled due to the governor banning any public gatherings of 500 or more people The YMCA’s Run For The Shamrock 5K race that had been scheduled for 9am Saturday, has been cancelled. 

 

County Management Takes Precautions to Avoid COVID Spread
Although there are currently no Steuben County cases of COVID-19, Public Health officials and County management are taking steps to limit the potential spread of the disease. Effective March 13, all congregate meal sites in Steuben County are closed. Meals on Wheels will deliver those meals to individuals at their homes. 


Funeral is Tomorrow for Avoca Teen
The funeral for the Avoca teen killed last week in a State Route 415 crash is set for tomorrow. Calling hours for Chris O’Dell begin 10am at Wallace Wesleyan ChurchA benefit last night raised money for the late teen’s medical and funeral bills. Anyone wanting to make a donation to help the O’Dell family can call the Wallace Wesleyan Church at (607) 566-2590.

 

Boys Basketball State Championship Postponed
After initially banning appearances for fans, it was announced yesterday that the Regional Boys Basketball Schedule Set for tomorrow at Buffalo State College was postponed as a result of the Coronavirus. No date has yet been reset for the match. 


Today’s Stand Up for Recovery Event Cancelled
Steuben County officials announced yesterday that the Stand Up For Recovery event set for this morning has been cancelled. County Manager Jack Wheeler said the event was cancelled to keep with the state's policy of "social distancing" to prevent or slow the spread of COVID-19. Steuben County also has put in place social distancing measures in response to the state's policy.

Today's Top Stories - Thursday March 12th, 2020

Mitrano Makes Town Hall Stop at Dormann
Democratic Congressional Candidate Tracy Mitrano made a stop at Dormann Library for her Fighting to Save the Middle Class Town Hall 6pm last night to talk to district voters about issues that impacted them. Issues Mitrano highlighted as priority include the constriction of the middle class, rising costs of healthcare that restricts the income of many working Americans and the high debt and interest rates for educational loans. The Penn Yan Democrat welcomed residents to share their concerns and experiences as voters. Mitrano continues her Town Hall tour in Elmira today and tomorrow in Ithaca.

 

Howard Town Board Discusses Plan for Highway Trucks
Last night at the Howard Town Board Meeting the big discussion was regarding the options to purchase Town of Howard Highway Trucks. Multiple avenues and options were discussed to purchase trucks of varying brands and conditions. Raised in general discussion was the idea to buy trucks one at a time every two or three years and coming up with vehicle costs as part of five and ten-year plans. Board members will discuss the details of the purchase at next month’s meeting after getting quotes from the county and other information needed to make a decision about purchasing new and used trucks. Next month the Board will also discuss the roof repair project of Highway Department Building #01.

 

Reed Comments on Coronavirus Crisis
Yesterday in his weekly media conference call Congressman Tom Reed touched upon the developments in the coronavirus outbreak. Reed mentioned he met at a White House meeting then referenced and praised the recent bipartisan approval by Congress of $8 billion to help prevent coronavirus.  Reed also said media and leaders should resist fear tactics and instead act as a “calming voice” in the midst of the coronavirus crisis.

 

County Clerk Adds $10 Fraud Prevention Fee to Deed Transfers
The Steuben County Clerk’s Office is adding a $10 fee to deed transfers or “conveyances” as a response to the state’s efforts to prevent fraud around property deeds. The $10 charge is to cover a new state requirement notifying the person the deed is being transferred from by mail. Fraud schemes often involve property owners being unaware a deed has been transferred to another person and tend to target senior citizens. This change will only affect residential properties.

 

Third Annual “Stand Up for Recovery” Tomorrow Morning
The third annual “Stand Up for Recovery Day” takes place tomorrow morning at 10am on the Steuben County Office Building’s third-floor atrium. The event aims to change the negative perception and stereotypes of addiction with a “meet and greet” opportunity for the public to speak with those recovering from substance abuse addiction, a panel presentation and information from area agencies offering support for addicts and their loved ones. The event is a collaboration of Addiction Awareness of Steuben County, Friends of Recovery- Steuben, Steuben Prevention Coalition - Opioid Committee, and Steuben County.

 

State Brushfire Ban Begins Monday
Monday begins a statewide ban that prohibits residential brush burning continuing through May 14. With spring approaching, the DEC reminds residents conditions for wildfires are heightened in springtime. DEC will post a Fire Danger Map rating forecast daily for the 2020 fire season on DEC’s website. Currently, fire conditions in most of the state are low risk.

 

Bath Man Convicted for DWI
Bath man Bradley Wonderling was convicted yesterday in Steuben County Court for driving while intoxicated and aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle for a June 2019 incident in the City of Corning. Based upon the investigation by the Corning Police Department the jury found the defendant guilty of all charges. Sentencing is scheduled for 10 a.m. on Monday April 27. Wonderling faces up to four years in prison on the conviction.

 

Avoca Beats Prattsburgh 60-56 in Last Night’s State Qualifier
Avoca Tigers will take it to the state boys’ basketball championships after last night’s 60-56 victory over Prattsburgh Vikings in the far west regional qualifier in Bath. WABH will broadcast the state championship game as the Tigers face the Sherman Wildcats Saturday afternoon at about 1pm.

 

Today's Top Stories - Wednesday March 11th, 2020

Canisteo Tractor-Trailer Blocks Roads and Causes Power Outages
After a tractor-trailer rollover in Canisteo, 136 NYSEG customers were left without power for some time and a portion of County Routes 31 and 36 were blocked off. A truck carrying potatoes brought down power lines along the road. Steuben County’s Sheriff’s Office reports no injuries from this accident.

 

WABH Broadcasts Section V Basketball NYS Qualifier Tonight
Tonight will be a big evening for boys’ basketball in Steuben County as the Avoca Tigers take on the Prattsburgh Vikings for the Section V, Class D, New York State Qualifier. The Tigers are 22-1 and Vikings have a record of 18-5 this season. Our sister stations WABH 1380 AM and 100.3 FM will begin their live coverage by Tanner Saunders at approximately 6:45pm tonight.

 

Funeral and Benefit Scheduled for Avoca Teen
Funeral Services are set for this Saturday at Wallace Wesleyan Church for the late Chris O’Dell who passed away in last week’s accident on State Route 415 in Avoca. Calling hours begin at 10am with a funeral service beginning at noon. Tomorrow night will be a benefit at Wallace Wesleyan Church from 4:30 to 6:30pm. All proceeds cover funeral and medical costs for the late Avoca teen.

 

Hornell’s Griffin to Receive NYSEDC’s Lifetime Achievement Award
City of Hornell IDA CEO Jim Griffin has been announced as the recipient of the New York State Economic Development Council’s Lifetime Achievement Award when they hold their annual meeting at the Otesaga Resort Hotel in Cooperstown May 20th to the 22nd. Griffin served in the military and has worked for 48 years at the head of Hornell’s economic development arm.

 

Sheriff’s Office Reports K9 Received Protective Vest from Nonprofit
Steuben County Sheriff’s Office reports their K9 officer Twiggy has received a bullet and stab protective vest thanks to a charitable donation from Massachusetts non-profit Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. The vest was embroidered to commemorate Deputy Pete Knapp who passed away in 2006. Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. is a 501c(3) charity whose mission is to provide protective vests and other assistance to dogs of law enforcement and related agencies throughout the country.

 

Hornell Intermediate School Evacuated After Fire
After a small classroom fire yesterday morning, the Hornell City School District’s Intermediate school was evacuated according to the district’s Facebook page which reported the fire was extinguished by the principle and fire departments had responded to the school. Due to the smoke inside, students at the intermediate school were transported to the high school for the rest of the day.

 

Last Day to Skate at Corning's Nasser Civic Center Rink
The Corning Leader reports today is the last day of the season that the public can skate at the Nasser Civic Center Ice Rink in Corning. According to Parks and Recreation officials of Corning, the rink is open from 10am to 5pm today on its final day of the skating season. The cost for admission and skate rental is $1 for each. The ice rink has been open since November.

 

Households Will Begin Receiving Census Invitations Tomorrow
Beginning tomorrow, households all over country will begin receiving letter invitations from the US Census Bureau to complete the 2020 Census Form online or by phone, including households in Steuben County. Staring March 26th, a postcard reminder will be mailed leading up to Census Day 2020 on April 1st .

Today's Top Stories - Tuesday March 10th, 2020

Town of Urbana Meeting Today
Today at 4pm is a special Town of Urbana Board meeting at 8014 Pleasant Valley Road in Bath, NY regarding Urbana’s waterfront pier project.

 

County Youth Bureau Dinner Honors Youth Service
The annual county Youth Bureau Board’s dinner Friday at the Bath Country Club honored Lita Brown for the Gary S. Pruyn Youth Service Worker of the Year and Kerry Elasser with the Champion for Youth award. Both women received plaques from the board, and official state recognition presented by state Legislature liaison Mike Palmesano. County Youth Bureau Coordinator Bill Caudill also spoke of the bureau’s accomplishments in 2019, including substance abuse prevention programs, 13 summer recreation programs, the biannual Youth in Government and the annual Youth Leadership Summit. The bureau also expects to look for ways to improve post-graduate opportunities for Steuben youth.

 

New York State Coronavirus Cases Climb to 142
New York currently leads in the country in diagnosed coronavirus cases after the number of positive cases jumped from 105 on Sunday to 142 yesterday. Most cases have been in Westchester county. Earlier this week, Governor Cuomo declared a state of emergency for New York state due to the outbreak. No cases have been reported in Steuben County.

 

City of Hornell Welcomes New Business to Old Courthouse
On Saturday, the City of Hornell welcomed three new businesses downtown. Officials from the City of Hornell, Hornell Partners for Growth, Assemblywoman Marjorie Byrnes’ were officially introduced to the businesses of: Twin Tier Chiropractic & Wellness, Roots Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Academy and Valle Boxing Club during a ribbon cutting ceremony and open house event.

 

Bradford Fire Dispatches a Dozen Departments
Firefighters from Steuben, Schuyler and Yates and more than a dozen fire departments responded yesterday morning to a massive multi-building fire on Kelly Hill Road close to Bradford and near the Steuben/Schuyler County line. The flames destroyed a barn utilized as a wood shop as well as a garage. A home and milk parlor near the wood shop were damaged as well. Other nearby buildings were spares. Fire officials said the lack of available water was a big problem. Four firefighters were injured when oil splashed on their faces while battling the flames. They were all transported to a hospital. The fire was brought under control after about three hours. The preliminary investigation suggested the fire was sparked by a wood stove.

 

New York will Provide Hand Sanitizer to Combat Price Gouges
New York officials have announced the state will provide alcohol-based hand sanitizer to New Yorkers free of charge. To help combat price-gouging and ensure New Yorkers have access to this vital prevention method, the state will produce up to 100,000 gallons of hand sanitizer each week in 1.7 oz., 7 oz. and gallon bottles. The hand sanitizer will be made available to residents free of charge, and distribution will be prioritized by the most impacted and high-risk communities.

 

Failure to Pay Fines May Not Result in Suspension of NY License
Failure to pay a fine may not result in suspension of license if a new proposal passes that would end the practice of suspending licenses for people who don’t pay fines in New York State. According to a study, the main reason for suspended driver’s licenses was due to unpaid tickets. Proponents of the change say without them, offenders can’t drive to work, school or even court and creates a difficult to break cycle especially when heavy fines are used to penalize minor offenses. Those who commit crimes like vehicular homicide and those with hefty points on their license would be not be eligible to end their suspensions.

Today's Top Stories - Monday March 9th, 2020

Steuben Democrats Endorse Danks-Burke for Senate
Committee Chairman Shawn Hogan announces Steuben County Democratic Committee’s endorsement of Leslie Danks Burke in her campaign for State Senate in the 58th District. Danks-Burke called it her honor to have the full backing of the Steuben County Democratic Committee. She’s running against Republican incumbent Tom O’Mara.

 

Prattsburgh and Avoca Make Sectional Wins
Two big Section V wins this weekend at the Blue Cross Arena for the Prattsburgh Vikings and Avoca Tigers boys’ basketball teams. In the Class D1 Finals the Tigers defeated Genesee Valley 80-58 to win their first sectional title in 30 years. The Vikings took down Elba in the Class D2 title 72-64. Avoca and Prattsburgh face off in a state qualifier at Bath-Haverling this Wednesday.


One Person Injured in Hornellsville Crash
State Police said one person was injured Saturday afternoon in a two-vehicle crash on State Route 36 at the I-86 Exit 34 westbound on ramp in Hornellsville. Troopers didn’t say who was hurt but they listed the drivers as 27-year-old Tessa M. Harris of Whitesville and 63-year-old Kim Renee Careri of Lockport.

 

Village of Cohocton Seeks Village Maintenance Supervisor
The Village of Cohocton seeks a Village Maintenance Supervisor for hire. The full-time supervisory position requires a minimum of 42 hours per week. Applications are due by March 25th.

 

WETM Hosts Phone Bank to Answer Coronavirus Questions
Friday evening Steuben County Health Department officials participated in a phone bank at WETM studios to help viewers answer questions about the Coronavirus. Though the Southern Tier region has a low risk for someone to test positive for Coronavirus, numbers in the state continue to rise. Call the New York State Coronavirus help line at 1-888-364-3065 with any questions.

 

Avoca Woman Arrested for Threats
State Police report the arrest of 31-year-old Alicia R. Howe of Avoca following an incident Saturday in the Town of Bradford. Howe was charged with stalking-threatening injury and aggravated harassment for allegedly communicating threats. She was initially detained.

 

State of Emergency Declared in NY for Coronavirus
The number of coronavirus cases in New York state increased to a count of 105 yesterday and Governor Cuomo predicts the numbers will continue to rise. States of Emergency are now in place for New York and Pennsylvania. The growing number of confirmed coronavirus cases was cited as the cause by both governors for the declarations.

Today's Top Stories - Saturday March 7, 2020

Addison Man Sentenced for Threat to Kill Congresswoman Omar
The Addison man who threatened to kill a Minnesota Congresswoman was sentenced Friday to 12 months plus one day of prison before being put on supervised released for three years.  Patrick Carlineo Junior was arrested last April then charged with threatening to assault and murder a United States official while she was engaged in the performance of her official duties. Carlineo threatened Congresswoman Ilhan Omar through a phone call he made to her Washington, DC office where he left his name and contact information.

 

Congressman Reed Visits Haverling Student Artists
Congressman Tom Reed visited Haverling High School kick off the annual Congressional Art Competition for our 23rd Congressional District. Reed visited an art classroom and met with the students to discuss their art pieces then sat with them to get a personal drawing lesson from the young artists. Reed’s visit was to encourage students to enter the annual Art Competition that happens each spring and first began in 1983. Interested students submit their entries to their representative’s office to be voted on by panels of district artists who select three winning entries to be displayed one year at the US Capitol.

 

Tops and Wegmans Limit Hand Sanitzer Purchases

Wegmans and Tops have placed restrictions on the purchases of hand sanitizer at their stores. Like surgical masks, the coronavirus has helped create a shortage of hand sanitizer in the past few weeks which prompted Wegmans to put a limit on the amount of hand sanitizer that can be bought at once to three per customer. Tops recently released a statement saying they will also implement a restriction of three purchases per customer.

 

Corning City Council Vote to Increase Penalties for Meth Charges
The Corning City Council voted 8-0 at this month’s meeting supporting legislation introduced by State Senator Tom O’Mara to combat methamphetamine crimes. The measure was introduced in January and targets meth-related crimes locally and across New York State by increasing the criminal penalties significantly for the manufacture, sale and possession of meth. The council also accepted a $22,500 Steuben County STOP-DWI grant.

 

Corning City Council Approves Stormwater Pipe Project
At its monthly meeting for March, the Corning City Council voted 6-2  to approve a transfer worth $1.4 million for the second phase replacement of a 60 inch stormwater outfall pipe adjacent to Denison Park. Both phases of the project will be completed by T& R.

 

Finger Lakes Wine Joins Global Wine Origin Alliance
Yesteday, the Wine Origins Alliance announced that the Finger Lakes Wine Alliance and Seneca Lake Winery Association and two other groups have joined its global coalition that aims to protect wine place names and eliminate trading barriers in the industry that include removing all tariffs on wine. The Wine Origin Alliance includes 29 organizations from 10 countries.

 

NYSAC Announces Month-long Celebration of Women’s Suffrage 
The New York State Association of Counties has announced that, in partnership  with the Association’s Women’s Leadership Council, it is launching a monthlong celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, which guarantees and protects women’s constitutional right to vote. During this month, the Association will also recognize the contributions of women in New York county government. To celebrate this historic milestone, the Association of Counties is encouraging counties across the state to pass resolutions honoring the 100th anniversary.

 

Southern Tier Remembers the Late Amo Houghton
Corning Incorporated leaders and the Southern Tier are mourning the loss of 93-year-old Amory (Amo) Houghton Jr. Houghton passed away Wednesday at his home in Corning. He served  our region in the House of Representatives for nine terms and as a chairman and chief executive officer for Corning Incorporated from 1964 until 1983. Among his numerous accomplishments, Amo led the recovery efforts after Hurricane Agnes flooded the Southern Tier area in 1972, he initiated Corning’s first LPGA event in 1976, and he supported the expansion of the Corning Museum of Glass in 1980.

Today's Top Stories - Friday March 6th, 2020

Southern Tier Remembers the Late Amo Houghton
Corning Incorporated leaders and the Southern Tier are mourning the loss of 93-year-old Amory (Amo) Houghton Jr. Houghton passed away Wednesday at his home in Corning. He served  our region in the House of Representatives for nine terms and as a chairman and chief executive officer for Corning Incorporated from 1964 until 1983. Among his numerous accomplishments, Amo led the recovery efforts after Hurricane Agnes flooded the Southern Tier area in 1972, he initiated Corning’s first LPGA event in 1976, and he supported the expansion of the Corning Museum of Glass in 1980.

 

One Teen Dies in Avoca Crash
Steuben County Sheriff's Office reports that in the tragic one-vehicle crash Tuesday on State Route 415 in Avoca three of the passengers aged 16-18 were immediately transported for medical treatment and one was treated and released at the scene. The 18 year old passenger, Christopher O’Dell of Avoca, later succumbed to his injuries while receiving emergency treatment from a local medical provider. The 16 year old passenger is in critical but stable condition in Rochester, New York and the 17 year old passenger was treated and later discharged at a medical provider in Dansville. The investigation is continuing into determining the contributing factors of the crash and continuing to collect information and evidence relating to the investigation.


Cuomo Confirms Coronavirus Case Count During Breifing
During a briefing on the novel coronavirus, Governor Andrew Cuomo Thursday confirmed 11 additional cases of novel coronavirus, bringing the total to 22 confirmed cases in New York State. Of the 22 individuals who tested positive for the virus, one resides in Nassau County, three reside in New York City and 18 reside in Westchester County (Cuomo). In response to the growing number of cases, the Governor activated the statewide Emergency Operation Center in Albany, as well as two Emergency Operations Center outposts in Westchester County.


Shareholders Approve Merger of Community Bank and Steuben Trust
Community Bank System, Inc. announced that the Shareholders of Steuben Trust Corporation, at its Special Shareholders Meeting held Tuesday, overwhelmingly voted to approve the proposed merger of Steuben with Community. Steuben reported that more than 98% of the votes cast were voted to approve the Merger. The acquisition is expected to close during the second quarter of 2020, pending regulatory approval and other customary closing conditions. Community acquits Steuben for $109 million in company stock and cash.


Congressman Reed Supports $8 Billion to Fight Coronavirus 
Congress has approved $8.3 billion worth of funding to fight the coronavirus outbreak in the U.S. and local Congressman Tom Reed is among those supporting the bill. Reed and the 13 other members of the House Problem Solvers Caucus met with Vice President Mike Pence and Reed says they voiced their backing for a “clean bill”. Reed says he is supportive of this bipartisan bill. (AUDIO) About two dozen people have confirmed cases of Coronavirus here in New York state and almost all of the cases are in Westchester County.

 

Reed Endorses Ensuring Lasting Smiles Act
The Problem Solvers Caucus Thursday formally endorsed the bipartisan Ensuring Lasting Smiles Act, which will close an insurance loophole so that children born with congenital anomalies such as ectodermal dysplasias can get the medically-necessary treatments that they need. Problem Solvers Caucus Co-Chairs, Reps. Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ-05) and Tom Reed (R-NY-23) brought the bill to the Caucus for endorsement.


Two Arrested for Impaired Driving
Steuben County Sheriff's Office arrested Juan Duran, age 45, of Elmira following a vehicle stop on South Hamilton Street, in the Town of Erwin. Duran allegedly operated a motor vehicle while impaired due to drug use. It is further alleged Duran had a previous conviction for DWAI by drugs in the past ten years. He was charged with DWAI and inoperable plate lamps then arraigned in the Centralized Arraignment Court and released. Deputies also report the arrest of 23-year-old Rachel Terry of Canaseraga following a vehicle stop in Corning. Terry allegedly operated a motor vehicle intoxicated then charged with  Aggravated Driving While Intoxicated; Greater than .18% Blood Alcohol Content and Driving While Intoxicated. Terry was released on Traffic Summons to appear in Corning City Court at a later date.

Today's Top Stories - Thursday March 5th, 2020

State Route 415 Accident Under Investigation
There were multiple injuries in an accident on State Route 415 in Avoca yesterday afternoon when a car rolled over numerous times and struck a utility pole at around 4:15pm. On scene radio reports indicated one person was in the road and another trapped in the vehicle. Bath Heavy Rescue was dispatched to the scene along with advanced life support. A portion of Route 415 was shut down during rescue operations and cleanup. Steuben County deputies are investigating this crash. 

 

Two Recent Bath Fires Ruled Accidental
Two recent Bath fires now have causes determined. Monday’s fire on County Route 10 at David Havens’ Alignment and Auto Service was determined as accidental after the owner had taken ashes from his woodstove and put them in a barrel then strong winds that morning blew embers into a box and ignited the blaze. The Halsey Street fire on February 15th was determined to be accidental and to have started from an electrical malfunction in the kitchen.

 

GTSC Announces Over $300K to Southern Tier Traffic Safety Projects
The Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee announced over $28.6 million is available to improve traffic safety in New York. Through the highway safety grant program, funds are provided to local, state and not-for-profit agencies for projects to improve traffic safety and reduce deaths and serious injuries from crashes. Our Southern Tier region will be awarded $342,209 for these highway and traffic safety initiatives.

 

Legislators Unite to Protest Cuomo’s Medicaid Plan
Steuben County legislators united with state lawmakers yesterday to protest against Governor Cuomo’s plan shifting Medicaid costs back onto county taxpayers. The plan has the state absorb Federal Medical Assistance Percentages (FMAP) funds that counties now receive and also force counties to pay any Medicaid expenses in excess of the state’s budgeted Medicaid cap. The governor says the plan would reduce the state’s looming $6.1 billion budget deficit while he blamed the counties for mismanaging the state’s mandated Medicaid system -- the most extensive and expensive programs in the nation. “The counties are not to blame for the Medicaid deficit…” that’s what county Manager Jack Wheeler told the county Legislature’s Human Services Health and Education Committee.

 

O’Mara and Local Officials Join in Albany for “Local Roads Matter”
Over 700 local and county highway superintendents and highway department employees representing nearly every region of New York State have been in Albany this week for their annual “Local Roads Matter” advocacy campaign. State Senator Tom O’Mara of Big Flats was one of the organizers. Eighty-seven percent of New York State’s roads and over half of its bridges are owned and maintained by local governments.

 

Addison Woman Arrested Following Domestic Incident
Steuben County Sheriff Jim Allard reports deputies arrested 21-year-old Addison woman Brianna Graves following a report of a domestic violence incident in Woodhull. Graves allegedly struck and choked a member of her family or household who was under the age of 17 and was charged with Assault in the Third Degree, Criminal Obstruction of Breathing and Endangering the Welfare of a Child. Graves was arraigned in the Centralized Arraignment Court then released.

Today's Top Stories - Wednesday March 4th, 2020

Painted Post Man Arrested for Growing Pot Near High School
A 22-year-old Painted Post man was arrested Friday on an indictment by the Steuben County Grand Jury for allegedly operating a marijuana distribution and processing center less than 100 yards away from the Painted Post High School. Tylor Cavallaro was charged with first degree criminal possession of marijuana, a class C felony. Corning Police reported they seized over 20 pounds of pot and about $20,000 in cash following a search of the house with a Search Warrant by the Corning City. Cavallaro will reappear in Steuben County Court at a later date and could face anywhere from probation to 5.5 years in state prison if found guilty in Steuben County Court.

 

Local Lawmakers Call on Cuomo for More CHIPS Funding
Today in Albany State lawmakers that include Senator Tom O’Mara and Assemblyman Phil Palmesano meet with county and town highway superintendents to call on Governor Cuomo and legislative leaders to increase state funding for local roads, bridges, and culverts through the CHIPS program. The primary concern of the group is the ongoing deterioration of local roads, bridges, and culverts. Several reports have highlighted the decline of New York infrastructure and the impact it has on taxes, economic development and motorist safety in the past few years.

 

Palmesano Reminds Local Students of Scholarships
Assemblyman Phil Palmesano reminds local students and their families that the deadline to return applications for the annual New York Conference of Italian-American State Legislators scholarship program will be the close of business on Friday March 13th. Students residing in the 132nd Assembly District can receive a scholarship application by contacting Palmesano’s District Office at (607) 776-9691. A total of four scholarships will be awarded, each totaling $4,000. Two will be awarded based on academic achievement and two will be athletic scholarships.

 

US Court Will Not Hear Trappler Case
The highest court in the US has ruled it will not review a state Appellate Court decision denying Alice Trappler an appeal on her convictions for murder, burglary and conspiracy. Steuben County resident Trappler was sentenced in 2013 to 25 years to life in prison for the conviction for her role in the death of Daniel Bennet in his Dix home. Bennett was killed by Trappler’s ex husband in 2012. The prosecution maintained Trappler conspired with Borden to kill Bennett in the midst of a custody battle over Trappler and Bennett’s then-infant daughter.

 

Elmira PD Reports Missing Teen
Elmira Police seek the public’s help in finding a missing teen. EPD Officials report 16-year-old Coby Barnes was last seen at his grandmother’s house on West Third Street over one month ago. Barnes left his grandmother’s home and did not come back or tell anyone where he was heading and it may be possible he is staying in vacant homes nearby. Coby is described as a 5 foot 9 inch tall, 130 pound white male. If you know of his whereabouts or who he is please call (607) 735-8600.

 

CCC Forms Emergency Program Cut Task Force
Corning Community College Faculty announce they will form an emergency task force 2 weeks after the announcement of the school’s program cuts to five or more academic programs due to a decline in student enrollment.  The crisis committee’s mission is to raise awareness about the consequences of the administration's planned cuts. This group  will also meet with community stakeholders to facilitate a positive resolution to the crisis. 

 

County Officials Say Coronavirus Risk is Low
The risk of catching the novel Coronavirus in Steuben County currently remains very low…that’s according to county Public Health officials. County Public Health Director Darlene Smith says that “Although two cases have been confirmed in New York, there have been no cases in Steuben County, and the individual undergoing voluntary quarantine two weeks ago was cleared.”

 

St. James Hornell Hospital Moving Soon
In less than two weeks, a Hornell hospital will be moving. On March 17 at 8 a.m., operations will cease at St. James Hospital’s location at 411 Canisteo Street. All St. James clinical and non-clinical services will transfer immediately to the new facility at 7329 Seneca Road North in Hornellsville. This includes the Emergency Department (ED). During the ensuing two weeks – through March 31 – St. James will collaborate with local emergency services agencies and will have a team of EMS providers at the Canisteo Street Emergency Dept. location around the clock, to evaluate and transport patients to the new ED on Seneca Road. Additionally, the City of Hornell and other surrounding ambulance agencies, if needed, will assist with inpatient transports and any other scheduled patient transports from the existing Canisteo Street location to the new hospital.

Today's Top Stories - Tuesday March 3rd, 2020

Academic All-Stars Continue Competition
Last night in Academic All Stars Action Corning Black beat Hornell 49-38 and Corning Gold cleaned up Haverling 73-52 both for the Large School Division. Under the Medium Large School Division, Campbell Savona scored 37-31 over Addison while Canisteo Greenwood beat Alfred-Almond 57-38. In the Medium Small School Division, Naples beat Jasper-Troupsburg 45-9 and Avoca beat Arkport 36-18. The Small School Division had  a Bradford win over Prattsburgh 22-10 and Hammondsport scoring 46 over Canaseraga's 17 points. The next competition will be next Monday evening at 6:30 at Corning HS, Canisteo-Greenwood, Jasper-Troupsburg HS and Bradford Central School.


Corning Man Arrested After Incident
Steuben County Sheriff's Office reports deputies arrested Christopher E. Burks, age 41, of Corning.  It is alleged that Mr. Burks violated a duly served order of protection by contacting a protected person via phone and threatened that person. Burks is charged with Aggravated Harassment in the Second Degree and Criminal Contempt in the Second Degree. He was arraigned in the Centralized Arraignment Court and released. Two days later, he was arrested again due to a violation of probation warrant issued by the Corning Town Court. Mr. Burks was arraigned and remanded to the Steuben County Jail.


Steuben S&WCD Updates Ag, Industry and Planning Committee
The Steuben County Soil and Water Conservation District (S&WCD) brought in $15 from outside sources for every $1 the county budgeted for projects in 2019 and completed 63 projects. In 2019, the County Soil and Water Conservation District received nearly $897,000 from state grants in 2019 and more than $1.8 million in federal funds. That year, the county budgeted $180,000 for county S&WCD projects with additional funds of $75,000 earmarked for stream bank projects. As the deadline comes closer for the state's 2023 deadline for Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFO) manure storage facilities, the department has another four applications, after which the state requirement for farms with more than 300 mature animals will be met.


Rochester Woman Arrested for Using Benefit Card
Steuben County Sheriff's Office reports deputies arrested Tammy L. Zugnoni, age 56, of Rochester . It is alleged that between April 2018 and June 2018,  Zugnoni used another person’s benefit card issued by the Steuben County Department of Social Services and as a result obtained benefits which she was not entitled nor authorized to receive in the amount of $1011.80. Ms. Zugnoni is charged with one count of Grand Larceny and issued an appearance ticket to appear in the Village of Bath Court at a later date.


CCE Offering Estate Workshop Next Week
Cornell Cooperative Extension of Steuben County is offering their financial workshop "Don’t Let Your Estate Plan Sink" from 1-3 p.m. Friday March 12 at the Steuben County Office Building Annex, 20 East Morris Street, Bath.The free workshop will be led by Patrick J. Roth, Esq. CPA who will help you see if your plan covers contingencies you haven’t thought of or that may not have happened yet. The workshop is free but please reserve your space by calling 607-664-2300. For more information visit PutKnowledgeToWork. org.


Bath Man Arrested in Corning
A 38-year-old Bath man was arrested after an incident in Corning. Ronnie Lewis of Old National Hotel was charged with petit larceny and criminal possession of a controlled substance. He will appear in court at a later date to answer to these charges.


Fire Reported and Controlled Monday on County Route 10
A three-alarm fire in Bath Monday activated nearly a dozen departments. Bath and Bath VA were first alerted just after 10 a.m. to a blaze at a repair shop at 63-97 County Road 10 in Bath. When the first units arrived, they reported heavy smoke conditions with flames showing. Nine other departments were requested to the scene…but firefighters made an aggressive attack and had the flames knocked down within 20 minutes. There were no initial reports of injuries. The cause of the blaze is under investigation.


Hornell Man Arrested After Traffic Stop
A Hornell man faces a multiple of charges after he was pulled over on State Route 415 in the Town of Bath. State Police arrested 26-year-old Assadd H. Brown. He was charged with felony aggravated driving while intoxicated with children in the vehicle. Troopers also charged him with two counts of child endangerment, first-offense DWI and having a blood alcohol content above .08%. He’ll appear in court at a later date.

Today's Top Stories - Monday March 2nd, 2020

First Case of Coronavirus in NY Confirmed in Albany
The first positive test for Coronavirus in New York was confirmed by Wadsworth Lab in Albany for a patient in her late-30s who contracted the virus while traveling abroad in Iran. Officials said yesterday she was isolating at home. Last week, Governor Cuomo called for the legislature to pass a $40 million emergency management authorization to confront the coronavirus outbreak but says: "There is no reason for undue anxiety." Cuomo also says New York state will offer its own testing for coronavirus right away which should take pressure off the CDC.


Justice Wants to Streamline Local Courts for Efficiency
Administrative Judge for the 7th Judicial District Craig Doran is endorsing a plan to improve efficiency of local courts. The plan is to merge multiple courts into a single state Supreme Court. Doran contends child support, custody, domestic abuse, and guardianship are all handled by different players in the court system which Doran believes this structure "accomplish[es] nothing, except further traumatize suffering people..." This new plan would have a single judge handle all of the cases and streamline low-end municipal courts.


DOT Announces Bridge Construction on County Route 56
The New York State Department of Transportation is advising motorists of potential delays beginning this week, as construction activities resume on to replace the bridge deck along County Route 56 (White Wagon Road) over Interstate 86 in the Town of Chemung, Chemung County. The completion of the project is anticipated to be later this fall. Motorists may experience minor travel delays as County Route 56 is reduced to a single lane with alternating traffic controlled by a temporary signal.

 

Plastic Bag Ban Penalties Begin in April
New York State’s single-use plastic bag ban may be in effect, but the penalties for stores that issue them will not be implemented right away. According to the Associated Press, New York State will wait until April 1st to assess fines to retailers giving out the banned bags due to an ongoing lawsuit brought by convenience store owners and bag manufacturers. Stores violating the ban after April 1st will face a warning for the first infraction, a $250 fine for the 2nd, and $500 for any additional violations in a calendar year.


Troopers Say Scam Callers Claim They are from DEA
State Police are warning everyone to NEVER give out Social Security Numbers over the phone. Troopers say calls have occured in the area where someone claims they are a member of the Drug Enforcement Administration. The caller tells residents their Social Security Numbers are being suspended. Police say this is undoubtedly a scam, and that the DEA has no connection with Social Security matters.


Baron Winds LLC Filing Petition to Amend Turbine Height
Later this week, Baron Winds LLC is expected to file a new petition with the New York State Board on Electric Generation Siting and the Environment. Baron Winds want to amend wind turbine locations, access roads and electrical collection and for an increase in Turbine height. Last September, Baron received a certificate from the siting board to construct a 242 Mega Watt wind-powered electric generating facility in the Towns of Cohocton, Dansville, Fremont and Wayland.


Fremont Fire Department Applying for Grants
The Fremont Volunteer Fire Dept. #1 intends to file an application for funding consideration with USDA, Rural Development Community Facilities program to purchase a new or used tanker, water truck, & firefighting related supplies. Public comments were accepted at the Department’s Sunday night meeting, however, written comments can also be sent to the Fremont Fire Department.


O'Mara Announces Farm Laborers Wage Board
State Senator Tom O’Mara has voiced strong opposition to any move by the state’s newly created “Farm Laborers Wage Board” to roll back the current 60-hour threshold requiring farmers to pay their employees overtime. The overtime threshold was part of a comprehensive “Farmworkers Fair Labor Practices Act” enacted by Governor Cuomo and the Legislature last year. O’Mara voted against the Act and singled out the Wage Board provision for particular opposition. The three-member board has the power to change the law without the Legislature’s approval.

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