Archives for June 2017

Vacant House Fires

There were two early morning vacant house fires yesterday in the Olean. Authorities are investigating and have labeled both as suspicious. The Olean Times Herald reports the first fire was at 324 North 13th at 1:30 am, and the second call for the other vacant home came in two hours later. The Olean Police Dept and Olean Fire Dept saide that a burning can of gasoline was discovered at the first house fire. The investigation continues.


The whole point of trapping mosquitoes is to identfy them and get specimens to see if they are carriers of diseases like the West Nile Virus, but they need to show up in order to do that. The Cattaraugus County Health Department’s summer mosquito surveillance program is six weeks into the program, and they haven’t caught hardly any mosquitoes. The Salamanca Press reports that traps are being set by the county health department, but summer just started and it might take some time before they can get those specimens they need.

Water Main Breaks

Erie County Water Authority officials are blaming warmer weather and aging pipes for a series of water main breaks. Crews spent yesterday repairing a half-dozen lines that burst when warmer temperatures caused pipes to expand. Most of the breaks were fixed by the end of the day.

Avent gets 25 Years

A Tonawanda man will spend at least 25 years behind bars for killing his girlfriend. Erie County prosecutors say John Avent was sentenced yesterday to life in prison, with parole possible after 25 years. Avent was convicted of second-degree murder in last year’s stabbing death of 51-year-old Roberta Rybinski.

Drug Crisis

Niagara County is preparing to join other governments in blaming drug makers for the opioid crisis. County officials are planning a lawsuit against companies they say misled doctors about the addiction risks of their painkilling drugs. Erie County has already filed a similar lawsuit, seeking to recoup money spent fighting the crisis.

Bomb Sniffing Dogs & Artpark

There’s no word yet what caused two bomb sniffing dogs to react to concert equipment at Artpark. New York State Park police say the park was closed down for a short time last night after the K-9s detected possibly dangerous materials near the stage. Visitors with tickets for the Tuesdays in the Park concert were left in line while police determined the park was safe for the show to go on.

Central Terminal

Researchers will soon begin taking a closer look at possible uses for the Central Terminal. Buffalo city officials say the Urban Land Institute will spend next week studying the train station and interviewing public and private sector officials about restoration efforts. The panel will come up with a master plan for the east side landmark and determine how it would be paid for.

Salamanca School District Passes Project

The Salamanca City Central School District passed its proposed capital project by a 306-174 margin Tuesday night. The almost 28 million dollar project is expected to have no impact on local school taxes. The Salamanca Press reports that is also will be paid for through aid from New York State and a reserve fund at the district, that’s what the district officials confirmed. Robert Breidenstein, the district superintendent, said that the community will be involved in the design of the project with the architects and engineers.

Arrests in Salamanca

Melanie Cummings, 38 of Little Valley was arrested by the Salamanca Police Dept and was charged with driving while intoxicated, aggravated driving while intoxicated and several vehicle and traffic violations following a stop in the city. She is due back in court at a later date.

The Salamanca Police Dept also arrested Kacy Ferguson, 21 of Olean. She was arrested on a bench warrant issued by the New York State Park Police. She was turned over to their agance for processing without incident.

Step Schedules

Last week, a resoluntion abolishing all existing step schedules for non union city employees was approved, by the Common Council, for those who were hired after June 14th. The Salamanca Press reports that all non union employees currently on the step schedules would finish them out, and the resolution will only apply to new hires.