Here are some of the best - and worst - of the week:
GOWANDA FEMA MONEY - 2009 flood created a lot of damage and hardship, especially in Gowanda and Silver Creek. For what ever reason, the Federal Emergency Management Agency was withholding funds for Gowanda. U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer got involved, lobbying on the village's behalf. Finally, the village received a check for $191,065. Better late than never.
CHOPPED STAR - Congratulations to Dunkirk High School graduate Kyle Bernstein for her appearance on "Chopped" on the Food Network. The TV show is a competition between chef contestants. Although she didn't win Tuesday, it still made us proud to have someone from the local area competing.
FIREFIGHTER VISIT - Firefighters from Gerry, Stockton, Lily Dale, Sinclairville and Cassadaga all visited students at Cassadaga and Sinclairville elementary schools. When firefighters put on their masks it's easy for children to be scared. By having these types of visits, younger children learn that firefighters are here to help, not harm, us.
STATE MANDATE EXCUSES - A report this past week issued by the New York State Association of Counties says state mandates are adding up for local governments. But the real problem with mandates is the constant shift back and forth. Local municipalities complain that the state gives them too many unfunded mandates. So their solution is to have the state take care of these costs. But the state is short on funds, just like towns, villages and counties. Instead, government needs to learn to work together to lower costs, instead of this constant lobbying to shift costs back and forth. Whether it's coming out of our state taxes or our local taxes, it's still a tax..