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The OBSERVER’s View

DUNKIRK Crisis needed one message

There was some unneeded anxiety last week in the city of Dunkirk. When the Department of Public Works closed on Wednesday afternoon, many were asking questions. Some of those individuals were residents while others were workers, even those in City Hall. While the matter is something that is of ...

COLLEGES Strict policies must be followed

Many U.S. colleges and universities are preparing to reopen for the fall semester, with in-person classes scheduled widely. It is understandable that many students, parents and college officials are on edge. Science is on their side in a way. COVID-19 seems to be most dangerous for older ...

HOSPICE: Campaign worth area’s support

Chautauqua Hospice and Palliative Care helps hundreds of families in our community through a family’s most heart-wrenching times each year. For one man recently, the thought of facing the end of his life without his hospice caretaker was too much to bear and the man tried to wander away. ...

COVID-19: Too long a wait for test results

As colleges and schools prepare for a possible reopening in late August or early September, testing for COVID-19 has become a more important issue. How do educational institutions keep everyone safe and will there be enough tests for all students and staff? It is an issue the United ...

Dunkirk: Council driving debate in city

Common Council is setting the agenda when it comes to what is getting the attention in the city of Dunkirk. In meetings over the last two months, there has been discussion on overtime, opposition to wind turbines and the approval of having a paralegal become a union position. While we do not ...

COUNTY: Restructuring deserves look

County Legislator Terry Niebel, R-Sheridan, is on the right track when it comes to the county’s 2021 public safety budget. When the County Legislature’s Public Safety Committee met last week, Niebel suggested some major restructuring to the county Probation Department and the Sheriff’s ...

Hoping for handout while on spending spree

Marsha Beach, city fiscal affairs officer, did not mince words when addressing Dunkirk Common Council on July 7. Financially, she painted a bleak picture. There is a severe cash flow problem, she said, and the city could end up having to borrow money to make ends meet. Think about that. A $24 ...

GOWANDA Village full of gratitude

Gowanda, through a ceremony last week, proved once again that not only is it a caring community, but a grateful one as well. In unveiling a new helicopter pad and rescue truck, the elected officials, volunteers and those in attendance offered their thanks to former state Sen. Catharine ...

CHURCH: New guidelines are a start

Pope Francis is telling Roman Catholic leaders they must do what most people—including the overwhelming majority of the church’s faithful — would do without being told: report cases of sexual abuse of children and vulnerable adults to the police. A long awaited manual of guidance from ...

GOVERNORS Not relenting on power grip

Neither Gov. Tom Wolf nor Gov. Andrew Cuomo in New York state want to give up their emergency powers. Similar executive actions last week provide proof why they should do just that. Both governors took steps to limit bars and restaurants as coronavirus cases climbed in some parts of ...

FUNDING Helping our local shops

Businesses that were forced to close during the COVID-19 crisis from March to early May are definitely deserving of some assistance. In Dunkirk a number of businesses were recipients of a portion of $190,000 that was distributed by the city’s Planning and Development Department in federal ...

FREDONIA: ‘New experience’ boosts village

Small Business Revolution, as noted in last weekend’s OBSERVER, did not make a return trip to Fredonia as was planned earlier this month. Due to COVID-19, the cast and crew decided the show would be done remotely instead. “It certainly is a new experience. It’s amazing that we were ...

SCHOOLS: Masks are part of the solution

It is good news that schools in Chautauqua County should be able to open in September with at least some form of in-person learning. Now, the hard work begins. School districts have until July 31 to submit reopening plans to the state Department of Education. There is much yet to be ...

GOWANDA: Nice honor for big job

Like many superintendents, Dr. Robert Anderson of Gowanda Central Schools has had his hands full since March. Not only has he been busy communicating with parents and students regarding the COVID-19 crisis, he also made sure the district distributed tens of thousands of meals to those in need ...

SCHOOLS: President wrong to promote rush

President Donald Trump is threatening to withhold some federal funds from education institutions, both K-12 and colleges and universities, if they do not reopen soon for the fall semester. Some governors also have issued blanket reopening schedules for their public schools. This is misguided, ...

PORTLAND: Green light on the turbines

Never mind the due diligence the Portland Town Board was taking with wind turbines. New York state is so bent on having renewable energy that it is bypassing those impacted the most by it: the local residents. In Wednesday’s OBSERVER, EWT spoke of its plans to begin building turbines in the ...

SILVER CREEK Correct verdict on village court

Silver Creek may be taking the lead in starting a countywide trend. Earlier this month, the Village Board voted to dissolve its court by the end of 2020. Village Mayor Jeffrey Hornburg, in a show of leadership and common sense, said it no longer is viable for the antiquated policy to ...

CLINIC: Communication no guarantee

A town hall meeting to address the methadone clinic that is expected to come to Dunkirk in the future at Third and Main streets did little to reduce any community anxiety. As part of the electronic gathering, Engenio Russi, executive director of Hispanics United, gave a brief history and ...

Dunkirk: Looming deficit is no big worry

What were Dunkirk Common Council members thinking? With every warning light flashing bright red, council members unanimously approved a $7,500 raise for a paralegal in the city attorney’s office despite a possible $1 million deficit created by the COVID-19 pandemic and warnings from the ...

ECONOMY: Area seeing major gains

Momentum continues to be seen in regard to economic development in the northern part of Chautauqua County. Within the last month, ECR announced it was investing $2 million into its plant on Middle Road, Fieldbrook Foods expansions and renovations are well underway and hopes continue to be on ...