Here are some of the best - and worst - of the week:
VOLUNTEER FIREFIGHTERS - A major fire took place in Fredonia this week. Hills Trucking on Webster Road, near Route 60, caught fire. Thick black smoke could be seen miles away. Although Fredonia does have a few paid firefighters, the bulk of those at the scene were volunteers. The building may have been destroyed, but there were no serious injuries reported and firefighters were able to contain the fire from spreading. We salute those who rush out to scenes like Monday's, with a willingness to serve and protect others.
LAKE SHORE PHASE I - The emergency room at Lake Shore Hospital has received a makeover as part of a $2.6 million project. On Thursday, an open house was held for Phase I, which included private rooms, a larger trauma room, and a negative air flow room if someone needs to be isolated/quarantined. The next phase will include work on the triage room, a registration area, a waiting area, a director's office and an access center. So far, about $1.9 million has been raised. Donations are still being sought.
SHAVEN HEAD - There's probably not too many adults that are willing to shave their heads for their employment. But that's what Northern Chautauqua Catholic School PE teacher Andrew Hamilton did. Hamilton agreed to dye his hair purple and later shave it after the students raised more than $1,000 for cancer research. He also had his beard and legs shaved as well. Now that's dedication!
REVENUE VS. TAX - This past week the Chautauqua County Legislature has once again agreed to keep our sales tax 7.5 percent by seeking the higher .5 percent rate. Still, even with keeping the additional half percent, Chautauqua County's sales tax rate is the lowest in the area. Cattaraugus County's sales tax is at 8 percent. Erie County's (N.Y.) sales tax is 8.75 percent. There's only five counties in the state with a lower sales tax rate. But when four Jamestown legislators opposed the higher rate, County Executive Greg Edwards said they were "voting for the removal of almost $530,000 in revenue in the city of Jamestown." That's because sales tax is shared with municipalities. The "revenue" he is referring to is our taxes. Revenue sounds nicer, but taxes is what it really is.