Drugged driving impacting the Southern Tier

first_imgVESTAL (WBNG) — Police say the issue of drugged driving goes hand-in-hand with the opioid crisis in the Southern Tier. “I just thanked god that there was nobody on the side of me and I could swerve and get out of the way and then when I pulled over and said my little prayer and looked back, I just saw cars,” said Jones. Vestal Police say as the drugged driving issue continues to grow, it’s looking to add more officers in that role. This year the department has made 18 driving while ability impaired arrests. Police say the driver was on drugs, which reminded Jones of something she knows all too well, an epidemic that is now affecting the roads. “Just because overdose deaths are down, I don’t think it means that overdoses are down and I don’t think it means that the use of these drugs are down, and nor does it mean that the use of these drugs and then driving has decreased. I think it’s the opposite,” said Lieutenant Streno. While police acknowledge it’s a major problem, “There is a simple solution. Don’t do drugs and drive a motor vehicle. It is that simple,” said Lieutenant Streno. Vestal Police say the issue is actually getting worse. That’s an estimated one arrest, about every two weeks, in the Town of Vestal alone.center_img Also known as a DRE, that officer is trained to evaluate drivers and determine what type of drug they’re on and what influence it has over them. Vestal Police has had to take some extra steps to deal with the issue. “Driving while under the influence of drugs has become such a problem that we have an officer who’s been specially trained. He’s federally certified as a drug recognition expert,” said Lieutenant Streno. “So how I feel about it not only as a citizen of the community, but also of somebody who has a loved one, I am pissed. I am really angry over this, and this has to stop,” said Jones. “It’s a tremendous increase over the last year or two,” said Vestal Police Lieutenant Christopher Streno. The DRE who works with Vestal Police is only one of four in Broome County. A crash in Vestal on Tuesday made for a close call for Rebecca Jones of the Town of Maine, who says she was driving on State Route 26 at the time of the incident.last_img read more

New restrictions passed on controversial wind turbine project

first_imgWhile residents won this battle, the war isn’t necessarily over yet. The New York State Siting Board is expected to make a decision on the project on December 16. “I’m totally against it, I’m hoping that these restrictions will limit the amount, and my hope is that they will go away,” said McGibney. “This was a great little town, and it’s very sad. While I have a lot of respect for those men who work here, it’s us who live with the consequences of this,” said Joanne McGibney, a member of the Broome County Concerned Residents (BCCR). “We have a working relationship with Calpine, who is the developer on this project. If they can just go ahead and build this project, they’re going to build it with 100 percent local union labor, so it’s going to not only be union labor, but local labor right here in Broome County,” said Michael Dundon, president of Laborers’ Local 785. Calpine has developed a plan, known as the Bluestone Wind Project, to construct more than 25 wind turbines through the Towns of Sanford and Windsor. center_img The project, some say, will have a benefit on the community. DEPOSIT (WBNG) — Residents, fighting what seemed an uphill battle against Texas-based developer Calpine, all to keep wind turbines out of eastern Broome County. In a Town of Sanford board meeting, new restrictions were introduced to limit the distance turbines can be placed from personal property, and noise frequencies. Those restrictions passed, giving residents a new hope for the future. last_img read more

Windsor High School students learn what it’s like to be teachers first-hand

first_imgAs a part of the class, students learn the basics behind teaching as well as spend 30 hours observing teachers at work in our area. “It could either be the deciding factor on if this is what you want to do or if you don’t want to do, it’s just kind of a head start that not many people have the opportunity to do,” said Segrue. Thursday, WCHS’ students observed teachers at Jennie F. Snapp Middle School in Endicott. Students are in WCHS’ Foundations of Education course which is a SUNY Broome Fast Forward class. Upon completion of the course they not only receive high school credit, but also three credits at SUNY Broome. “It’s really like in the moment when you have to learn should I say this, should I not? It’s really like you have to do it in order to become a good teacher,” said Launt. ENDICOTT (WBNG) — Windsor Central High School students observed local teachers in Endicott Thursday as a part of a program for students interested in a teaching career. Fellow classmate Andrew Segrue says the class also gives students a jump on figuring out their future career. Launt says the class also provides a boost when students move on from high school to college, saying, “we’re going to know what to expect.” Student Kristen Launt says the in-classroom observation time really gives her a taste of working with children face-to-face. last_img read more

Garnar meets with other County Executives in Albany

first_imgGarnar also said he spoke with the other community leaders regarding this year’s $6 billion budget deficit. While in Albany, the County Executive met with other County Executives, discussing potential impacts the governor’s plans could have on their respective communities. They include New York State investing in upstate airports, and battery research programs located right here in Broome County. “Counties have a very direct relationship with medicaid spending and things like that. Very much what the state does impacts the counties. We’re very much in tune with what’s rolled out in the budget, so a lot of what was discussed was based on that,” Garnar said.center_img (WBNG) — Broome County Executive Jason Garnar traveled to Albany on Wednesday for Governor Andrew Cuomo’s State of the State address to see what will be addressed for the local area. Despite his concern about the budget, Garnar expressed excitement for a number of the Governor’s initiatives.last_img read more

Taylor Garbage vows to rebuild plant after massive fire

first_img(WBNG) — Taylor Garbage says it plans on rebuilding its recycling plant in Apalachin after a large fire destroyed it on Jan. 3. Over 600 tons of material burned in the blaze. On the evening of Friday January 3, a fire quickly swept through Southern Tier Recycling’s (STR) plant in Tioga County. Despite valiant efforts by the Apalachin Fire Department and many other area fire departments, the $4.5 million, 30,000-square-foot facility was a total loss.  Fortunately, the facility was closed at the time of the fire and there were no injuries.  Investigators currently believe that the fire was ignited by a crushed lithium battery or a discarded mobile telephone.  To allow the uninterrupted collection and processing of area recyclables, STR repurposed its adjacent waste transfer station for recyclables on the following Monday, January 6.  STR is pleased to report that recyclable volumes received at the transfer station are consistent with previous volumes despite the force majeure conditions.  This process will continue until the new facility is constructed, equipped and opened.  STR believes that the $5 million reconstructed facility will be operational in the fourth quarter of this year. There are scores of recycling facilities nationwide that experience similar fires as STR from crushed batteries.  Once a spark is ignited, the contents of the building, paper and plastics provide the fuel to destroy the facility even with the presence of fire suppression equipment in the building. However, STR emphasized that despite this unfortunate event, the company is making every accommodation possible to continue the smooth operation of services until the new facility is up and running. Robert Taylor Jr., president of Southern Tier Recycling, stated, “The loss of the Southern Tier Recycling facility was a devastating event in the history of our company; however, the area’s recycling programs will continue to be unimpeded and all of our recycling partners across the region should continue business as usual, as we will.” The full statement can be read below:center_img In a statement sent to 12 News, Taylor Garbage President Robert Taylor Jr. says the company is working to ensure its customers are unaffected by the fire. Thirty different departments responded to the fire on Jan. 3. Apalachin Fire Chief Mike George told 12 News that the fire at the facility was the largest in “Tioga County modern history.” Presently, STR has to accept and load the incoming volume to be delivered to other merchant facilities.  It is now paying to have the recyclables transported between 80-100 miles to other facilities in the region and is paying $110 per ton to the facilities to process its material.  Previously, STR accepted the material and used its own equipment to process and then sell the sorted material.  Exacerbating the situation is the worldwide market price depression for recycling products as a result of China’s, the world largest purchaser of recyclable material, forbidding the importation of much of the United States’ recycling.  This has caused a glut in the market and has driven commodity prices down, in some cases to unprofitable levels and even where there is no revenue at all received for some commodities. While the interruption caused by the fire is truly unfortunate for the residents of the Southern Tier, STR is moving as quickly as possible to support the area’s recycling program’s return to normalcy. Previously, STR covered its expenses by marketing its sorted material to world markets.  This allowed STR to accept most of the incoming material at no charge to its customers.  Instead of selling its material, it is now paying approximately $157 per ton to get Southern Tier’s recyclables processed and available to the market.  This is an untenable situation; the company cannot afford to continue this practice for any extended period.  On an interim basis, STR will be charging a fee to accept recycling until the new facility is open.  However, other recycling plants in the Northeast like STR are currently charging between $100-$135 per ton for processing only.  Should STR not reopen and no other facility with adequate capacity opens in the area, residents of the Southern Tier area could find themselves paying $160 to $200 per ton to have the recyclables used again.last_img read more

Gilbertsville-Mount Upton School hosts dairy give away

first_imgThis giveaway is available to anyone who would like to pick up the products. The event runs from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and it will be held at 693 State Highway 51 in Gilbertsville. GILBERTSVILLE (WBNG)- The Gilbertsville-Mount Upton Central School District has announced that on Wednesday they will be giving away dairy products. The event is being put together by the school’s principal Heather Wilcox and Cafeteria Supervisor Susan Selbeck. They also said that there will be a drive-through distribution process to ensure everyone stays safe and healthy and that people are to stay in their vehicles until they receive their products. In a Facebook post they said, they will be giving away free gallons of milk, yogurt, cheese, ice cream and eggs while supplies last. “We are extremely grateful for the donations from our local dairy farmers and dairy processors to help support families in our school district,” “These are challenging times for all of us and our school district wants to do everything possible to help students and families during this time.” They said that Dairy Farmers of America Inc. teamed up with companies such as Dean Foods Company, the American Dairy Association North East, Chobani, Cabot Creamery Co-operative, Hershey’s and Huff to donate these items to the community. In a statement by the school’s principal Heather Wilcox she says,last_img read more

Broome County reports 5, previously unknown COVID-19 deaths

first_imgOn Tuesday, the county reported 27 residents and 17 staff members tested positive for the virus. To see where cases are located in the county, click here. (WBNG) — On Wednesday, Broome County Executive Jason Garnar reported five more people have died from the coronavirus than what was previously reported. Additionally, Garnar reports there are 145 active cases of the coronavirus and 341 people have recovered. Broome County May 27 coronavirus update Masks will be handed out from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. for persons 70 years of age or older. Willow Point He says previous updates did not include these numbers due to communications issues from the New York State Department of Health to the county health office. Coronavirus numbers and discrepancies: Mask distributioncenter_img Garnar says he is unsure how many staff members have tested positive for the virus on Wednesday, but says he “thinks” at least one person has recovered. The unreported deceased were four females and one male. All were at least 70-years-old. County officials say they are “doing their best” to ensure the information they have aligns with information from the state. Garnar announced 38 Willow Point Nursing Home residents tested positive for COVID-19, Wednesday. There are about 250 residents at Willow Point nursing home. Thursday is the last day masks will be handed out at the Broome County Senior Center at 2801 Wayne St. in Endicott. Including the previously unreported dead, the total number of deaths in the county is 41. Anyone who needs a mask after Thursday may contact the Senior Center for assistance.last_img read more