Highs and Lows: Some of the best, worst of the week

Here are some of the best — and worst — of the week:


DISPATCHER RECOGNITION — We want to salute Steven McAninch. The senior dispatcher with the Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office has been awarded “Emergency Communicator of the Year” by the New York State Sheriff’s Institute. Last summer, McAninch helped save the life of a woman that had threatened suicide. We thank him for his service in doing his job, which helped officers in Cattaraugus County locate a woman who swallowed a number of pills and appeared to have made some cuts to her body before sharing her story on Facebook.

HOCKEY HUMANITARIAN — Congratulations goes out to Fredonia State hockey Blue Devil junior Luke Rivera. He has been nominated for the 2018 Hockey Humanitarian Award for his work organizing the annual Fredonia Stroke Awareness Game. There were a total of 11 men and women spanning all levels of college hockey that received a nomination. The finalists will be announced in February. Rivera’s inspiration for the Stroke Awareness Game has been his mother Dana, now fully recovered from a stroke eight years ago. The annual Stroke Awareness Game, held this season against Potsdam, has raised over $20,000 for The Foundation of Kaleida Health.

BANNING X-LITE RAILS — Losing a teenage daughter has to be extremely difficult. Steven Eimers turned the loss of his daughter Hannah into action, working to ban X-Lite Guardrail products around the United States. Hannah, who was born in 1999 in Fredonia, died in November, 2016 in Tennessee when her vehicle left Interstate 75, crossed into the median and struck the guardrail. The guardrail broke apart and speared the cabin of the car, killing Hannah instantly. Steven has been working with state Sen. Catharine Young to ban X-Lite Guardrails in New York. It was announced this past week that the state Department of Transportation is in the process of removing all X-Lite Guardrails on state roads and will be done well before the end of the year. Young is also working on legislation to ban the guardrails from county and local roads as well.


IDA WIND TOWER PILOT — The Chautauqua County Industrial Agency has approved a Payment In Lieu Of Taxes for the 126-megawatt Cassadaga Wind Farm Project. PILOTs are used to provided industries lower taxes, in exchange for development. Why offer lower taxes to wind farm companies? If they want to build them in Chautauqua County, they should not get a tax break. Offering a PILOT to a new business or factory makes sense. But who wants wind towers covering our community outside of a small number of landowners? If they’re going to ruin our landscape, they shouldn’t get a tax break to do it. Residents don’t want these towers. The IDA shouldn’t make it any easier to bring them to the local area.