The OBSERVER’s View

HELPING HAND Taking aim at boosting numbers

Many organizations, especially small-town fire departments, could use a few good volunteers. But as our society becomes less personal and more technological when it comes to relationships, numbers continue to decline. Over the weekend, many departments held events that coincide with RecruitNY ...

MAIN CONNECTOR: Central Avenue is unwelcoming

Central Connection is an excellent initiative when you consider the community benefits. Last November, a memorandum of understanding was reached between the village of Fredonia, the city of Dunkirk and the State University of New York at Fredonia. It was a historic day of sorts. According to ...

CENSUS: County still on wrong path

There is no question Western New York and Chautauqua County are more upbeat about the future than it was in 2010. But don’t tell that to the U.S. Census. Our most recent numbers show we have plummeted even more in the last year, falling to 127,939 residents in 2018. While some are quick to ...

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

Here are some of the best — and worst — of the week: BEST PLAYING WHERE BISONS PLAY — Every school in the local area was on spring break this past week. But some varsity sports teams were able to use the week to play ball in some special places. The highlight was probably Gowanda ...

terror Very sad sights in Sri Lanka

Only about 7.5 percent of Sri Lankans are Christians, but even that tiny number apparently is intolerable to Muslim extremists. On Easter Sunday morning, as many of the country’s Christians were celebrating Easter, the terrorists slaughtered nearly 300 of them in a series of church bombings. ...

Hanover: No speedy answer to accidents

Is there any possible answer to reducing the number of accidents on Dennison Road? Linda Kingsley, who has reported numerous accidents near her home where the road curves, has made requests for a lower speed limit than 55 mph to the town of Hanover, but it is out of their hands. New York ...

In gratitude: County offers appreciation

When Catharine Young left her role as state senator for the 57th District in late February, there was a sense of shock from area leaders as well as her constituents. No one really saw it coming. So it was fitting that earlier this month at the Lakewood Rod & Gun Club, our region and the ...

Dunkirk: Two cities renew relationship

A French connection was revived earlier this month when two city officials got together in Washington, D.C. City Mayor Wilfred Rosas met with French sister city Deputy Mayor Karima Benerap to “rekindle the relationship” that dates back to World War II. After the city in France was ...

TOBACCO Cuomo should sign smoking age hike

All that stands between New York raising its legal smoking age from 18 years of age to 21 years of age is Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s approval. Chautauqua and Cattaraugus counties have already increased the smoking age in an effort to keep tobacco products out of high schools. Officials reasoned ...

EASTER: Our most joyful day

There was alleged “fake news” two millennia ago, too. Jesus Christ was no more than a political troublemaker, a social revolutionary, claimed those in power. He was not the Messiah in whom some had faith, they insisted. So they put an end to the revolution — or so they thought. They ...

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

Here are some of the best — and worst — of the week: BEST EGG HUNTS — Some young children had a great time last weekend at SUNY Fredonia for Kappa Sigma’s annual egg hunt. If you missed it, there are some more today. Laona is hosting a community egg hunt at 10 a.m.; Park United ...

Notre Dame de Paris: More than timber and stone

Committed Christians believe in an all-powerful God whose majesty and beauty cannot be comprehended, much less matched. Yet on rare occasions, humans are moved to incredible feats of creation as testaments of the depth of their faith. More than 850 years ago, on an island in the Seine River ...

lunches Can’t force students to eat

There are many people who are up in arms over the U.S. Agriculture Department’s decision to change federal nutritional standards for breakfasts and lunches served to schoolchildren. The rules that have some so up at arms scaled back standards requiring that only whole grains be served, ...

Use caution: Take a brake behind wheel

Warmer temperatures mean a rush to the outdoors. It also means as motorists, we need to be a bit more cautious. Wintertime is simple. We slow down due to slush and snow. Springtime? We seem to lose that defensive driving. There is plenty of reason to give it a brake. Construction season is ...

spring break Yes, we still have calendar issue

You may have noticed that a number of schools are on a two-week break, which started this week. While that is welcome for many, it does not solve a problem of working together. The Board of Cooperative Educational Services calendar is not the same as those districts, including Dunkirk and ...

Pay RAISES Public service and a price

Voters do not get to approve raises for their representatives. Even if they did, we’re not quite sure how they would vote. Representatives and people always seem more generous when the money is not coming right out of their pockets. But the pay raise for the state governor and lieutenant ...

SCHOOL BUDGETS: Fredonia takes lead on reserves

Board of Education members in the Fredonia Central School district did a commendable thing. With a comfortable fund balance, members decided to do the right thing: keep the tax rate flat. “Basically what the state has told us is, we’re fat. We’re obese,” said board member Brian ...

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

Here are some of the best — and worst — of the week: BEST FISHING SHOW SUCCESS — A special thank you to the hundreds of people in the community who came out this year to the OBSERVER’s annual fishing show. There were dozens of vendors, multiple presentations, volunteers and more. ...

Security, Mixed messages stall process

Homeland Security Secretary Kristjen Nielsen’s resignation early this week had tongues wagging all over Washington and in the news media. Why did she step down? Personal differences between her and President Donald Trump? One of those power struggles among White House aides? Frustration that ...

new york budget Upstate wins in school aid

Those who believe downstate and upstate New York need to be separated might be surprised to know just how aid distribution works out for schools. While downstate has the majority of New York’s population, about 60 percent, it only receives about 52 percent of the aid for education, according ...