BREAKING NEWS

BREAKING NEWS

The OBSERVER’s View

Need for skilled labor grows

A number of high school students will be crossing the stage starting this evening through Sunday. One question facing every graduating student is what’s next. Some students will choose college, others will choose the military. Most of those remaining will go straight to the workforce. ...

waterfront Festival brings lake spotlight

After a one-year hiatus, the Great Lakes Experience was back — though it seemed like it had never left. Sure, it was situated in a new location at the lot between the Clarion and Tim Hortons, but the displays from past years were very much the same. Also evident was the enthusiasm for the ...

TLC’s boost from Butler

TLC Health Network in Irving is losing a valuable asset. The hospital announced last week that Scott Butler, chief operating officer, accepted a chief executive officer position in Evansville, Ind. Butler faced plenty of adversity while he was here. He joined the organization when it was ...

Don’t inflate the numbers

Politicians, who like to blame the messenger for reporting items of local significance, need to be more honest to the people they serve. In an article regarding the resignation of Fredonia village Trustee Marc Ruckman, Mayor Athanasia Landis did not need to inflate numbers about the village ...

CITY LIBRARY: Budget hike another slap

Formerly the Dunkirk Free Library, the most recent financial documents available through the Internal Revenue Service 990s show tremendous stress for the organization. In 2014, the library ran a deficit of $45,866. It became worse the next year. In 2015, the library’s operating deficit hit ...

HIGHS AND LOWS: Some of the best, worst of the week

Here are some of the best — and worst — of the week: BEST TRACK AND FIELD — There were some very talented track and field students this year. First and foremost, we congratulate Dunkirk’s Emilee Hanlon for winning the state title in high jump for Division II. The high school junior ...

Zoning Board approval was correct

Recently the Dunkirk Zoning Board of Appeals approved Todd Ellman to construct a three-bay car wash at the corner of Doughty and Bucknor streets. That area is not zoned for commercial use. Zoning boards need to be careful when voting on businesses in non-commercial districts. But this one ...

ZOAR VALLEY: Repair to road is pricey

Is the fix worth it? That is the question local and Erie County officials need to figure out before fixing the horrendous Zoar Valley Road. As noted in the Sunday OBSERVER, it is not a fun ride — even for someone who represents that region. “It was a ride from hell,” said Erie County ...

Drugs: Accuracy needed on overdosing

The depths of Chautauqua County’s drug problem may be worse than thought. In late April, Dr. Victoria Hall, a Centers for Disease Control field officer, presented research from her team’s review of death records in the Minnesota Department of Health’s Unexplained Death surveillance ...

DUNKIRK: Get vacations under control

Use it or lose it. That is how a majority of private-sector businesses treat vacation time for their employees over a 12-month period. Not so in the public sector. Just look at the city of Dunkirk. At a recent personnel committee meeting, officials talked about how those working for the ...

VOLUNTEERS Fire agencies facing reality

Community firefighting is starting to feel the heat regarding a lack of volunteers coming through the ranks, as noted in recent conversations and meetings. On June 2, Chautauqua County Executive Vince Horrigan outright discussed too many governments and fire departments in this county of ...

highs and lows: Some of the best, worst of the week

Here are some of the best — and worst — of the week: BEST FUN WEEKEND AHEAD — There’s a lot going on today and Sunday. Dunkirk is holding its first ever Spring Festival (a reboot of the Wreck and Roll festival), Merit Winery in Forestville is holding its Strawberry Festival, ...

VETERANS: Agency stuck in the ‘70s

It probably should come as no surprise that the Department of Veterans Affairs has been relying on an ancient computer program to manage electronic health records. Named VISTA (for Veterans Information Systems and Technology Architecture), the basic system appears to have been in use since ...

Wider walkway is needed

Chautauqua County is considering accepting a state grant of $588,000 in order to widen Dale Drive in Cassadaga, to make it more friendly for pedestrians. In order to do this, though, the county would need to cover a 20 percent share, which totals $147,000. There’s been some talk of at ...

Development: Impressive idea got lost

Shovel-ready sites were a key phrase during the administration of County Executive Mark Thomas. Thomas, who served in the role from 1997 to 2005, made these locations a priority. Under his leadership, the county invested in the Chadwick Bay Industrial Park in Sheridan and Stoneman Industrial ...

Big fine puts kink in plan

The $4.9 million fine levied in 2013 by the state Education Department against the Panama Central School District has always been troubling. In 2013, the state fined Panama $4.9 million for paperwork errors on building projects completed in 2002 and 2005. Fining a school district for ...

Chautauqua County: Six leaders of significance

It was a historic gathering of sorts. The six men who have held the position of Chautauqua County executive recently came together at the Robert H. Jackson Center in Jamestown to reminisce and discuss the importance of the position that was created in the 1970s. Members of this select club ...

DUNKIRK Fieldbrook is true partner

No one can question the loyalty of Fieldbrook Foods to Dunkirk or northern Chautauqua County. In the last year, the plant has added more than 100 new jobs while increasing its ice cream production. That hike is so great, it needs a place to store the inventory. Enter Great Lakes Cold Storage, ...

HIGHS AND LOWS: Some of the best, worst of the week

Here are some of the best — and worst — of the week: BEST SPECIAL ATHLETES — Once again, SUNY Fredonia was the site of the annual Special Olympics. Hundreds of students were there, participating in the various events. Maureen Bialaszewski has been organizing the event for 29 years. ...

Program has local value

If President Donald Trump’s proposal to eliminate the Community Development Block Grant program is accepted by Congress, it would not be the first time Washington has attempted to rein in federal spending on the backs of thousands of local governments. It happened a few decades ago when a ...