The OBSERVER’s View

Enforcement is the worry

Regardless of how you feel about new restrictions on gun ownership, ask yourself this: Who would be enforcing them? The same FBI that failed to act on warnings Nikolas Cruz was dangerous, allowing him to slaughter 17 people at a high school? The FBI that cleared Dylann Roof to buy the guns he ...

County: Early alarms sound off

By all accounts, Chautauqua County’s fly car system has been a winner in all areas but one — its budget. County legislators learned recently revenues in the program are significantly less than budgeted. Even with lower expenses than budgeted, the program ran at a $255,000 deficit in ...

Resource Officers: Simple answer to who pays

After the horrific school shooting in Florida, it seems like a no-brainer — add a school resource officer to as many districts as possible. But the politics and nuances behind the effort makes you want to cringe, especially in Dunkirk and Fredonia. Taxpayers in these districts are already ...

HOCKEY: Devils provide some excitement

There is finally some hockey to be proud of in Western New York and it is courtesy of the Fredonia Blue Devils. After upsetting nationally ranked Oswego on Saturday, the Devils (13-10-4) will head to Geneseo this weekend to take on the Knights for the State University of New York Athletic ...

SCHOOLS: There’s no room for confusion

Gun control and the Second Amendment are the hot topics since the school shooting in Florida earlier this month. Both sides are making their cases — and it’s an issue that deserves communication. Locally, however, the concern with our schools and violence is real. A threat in Forestville ...

RIPLEY Schools: Questions over quick actions

The Ripley Central School board left us speechless last week. In the course of one meeting, the district accepted the resignation of its superintendent, hired a new interim superintendent, heard a consultant’s report that suggested creating a separate position of school principal and then ...

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

Here are some of the best — and worst — of the week: BEST ¯ ATHENEX MOVES AHEAD — The construction of the cancer drug manufacturing plant means a lot to the Dunkirk-area economy. We are glad to see the company get through another layer of red tape. Hopefully the next tape being cut is ...

SHOOTINGS: Teen’s history was red flag

We doubt any reasonable person, regardless of beliefs on Americans’ Second Amendment rights, would argue about the significance of a single number involving Nikolas Cruz, the 19-year-old who massacred 17 people at a Florida high school. The number is 39. It is the number of times Broward ...

Eagles: A spectacle in our skies

On Page 1 Wednesday, an excellent photo by Brian Hobbs is something many around the lake have come to expect in the winter months: a view of a bald eagle. Hobbs’ photo was taken behind Bart’s Cove and gave readers a glimpse of the proud bird. This time of year, Point Gratiot is one of the ...

Area roads: Getting the bumps out

Spring-like temperatures on Tuesday brought some relief to area roads. Crews in Dunkirk and Fredonia were out filling potholes on streets here and there. It’s an effort that is greatly appreciated by local motorists. There are other roads, however, that still need attention. But the problem ...

NEW YORK STATE: Tax gimmick is headache

It’s ironic that Democrats have a record of wanting to tax those with higher earnings to pay for programs to help others. Now, as a reaction to the federal tax reform bill, Gov. Andrew Cuomo is proposing a major overhaul to the state’s tax system to protect those with higher ...

SALES TAX: Small hike adds up slowly

Last month, state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli reported sales-tax revenues went up in Chautauqua County in 2017. Of course, that’s good news in a couple of senses. First, it seems as though we are buying more in the county. Second, it boosts our governments, which prove on a regular basis ...

Naysayers send wrong message

Chautauqua County Executive George Borrello is keeping his word as he continues to meet with key leaders of businesses that have a presence here. As we noted last month in this corner, relationships are everything — and why not reach out to those who are the engines of our economy? While ...

Great Lakes: More protection for resource

President Donald Trump’s 2019 budget proposal is both right and wrong when it comes to an ongoing project to clean up the Great Lakes. Trump proposes to slash federal funding for the project by about 90 percent. That could jeopardize progress already made in dealing with pollution, invasive ...

Inmates: Why reward with tablets?

When did it become cool for prison inmates in New York state to have better access to things than people who haven’t broken the law?’ We’ve heard for the past couple of years about free college educations for prison inmates. Now, the Department of Corrections and Community Supervision ...

Forestville: Policy needs another look

Friday morning was problematic for many associated with the Forestville Central Schools. On Thursday evening, the superintendent received a call about a potential threat from a county sheriff’s deputy. After many of the children arrived at the school the next morning, parents received a ...

IDA FUNDING: A question worth $50,000

Applause to Legislator Christine Starks, D-Fredonia, for seizing on a key question regarding tourism in Chautauqua County. Members of the county Legislature’s Planning and Economic Development Committee were discussing a $50,000 agreement with the county Industrial Development Agency for ...

SCHOOLS: Grad rates part of the story

Recent graduation rates are not a true indicator of the failings — or successes — for area school districts. The recent report, issued by the state Education Department, found the overall county graduation rate slipped from 84 percent to 83 percent. That’s not bad, but there is plenty of ...

DISTRICT ATTORNEY: Woes continue for the office

Chautauqua County District Attorney Patrick Swanson is struggling, to say the least. During the last 13 months, in major county cases, his office has offered plea deals in two homicide cases while also losing a murder case involving Barbara J. Redeye, who was found innocent in the death of ...

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

Here are some of the best — and worst — of the week: BEST WEATHER WARRIORS — In the Cassadaga Valley School District, the population is around 7,500 people. But this community was responsible for about 750,000 votes to get WKBW’s Andy Parker to visit Sinclairville Elementary School ...