Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

Thumbs up to all of the Falconer businesses who are finding a way to keep their doors open in the wake of the arson fire that destroyed half a block of buildings on Main Street, Falconer. Employees of Roots Salon have been invited to work from the Forbici salon on Foote Avenue and Better Life Nutrition will reopen down the street in Falconer. Other business’ storefronts haven’t had to move, but they need the community’s support as much as Roots Salon and Better Life Nutrition. The Blue Fin Pet Shop, Falconer Vac Shop, Servis Plumbing and Heating and Phil’s Auto Plaza have all seen business decrease since the fire while the damaged buildings are demolished. “This whole little corner is going, and we’re one of the few constants in this. We are here,” Dan Magara, Blue Fin Pet Shop owner recently told The Post-Journal. Fire may have changed the way Falconer looks, but we hope the community won’t let the fire destroy long-standing businesses too.

Thumbs down to yet another arson this week not set by a serial arsonist who set five fires in five hours March 23-25 in the city. On Tuesday, firefighters responded to a fire at 206 Charles St. that was later ruled to be an arson. Unlike the previous rash of arsons, this week’s fire was not in an abandoned or vacant house, though the person living in the home was in a nursing home when the fire was set. Unfortunately, the person no longer has a home to which he can return because the fire damage left the house “pretty much a total loss,” according to Roger Sigular, Jamestown Fire Department battalion chief. It’s good that the suspected serial arsonist has been found, but that doesn’t mean Jamestown’s arson problem has been solved.

Thumbs up to the National Comedy Center for nearing its $25 million financing goal for the National Comedy Center. Tom Benson, center chairman, recently said all of the funding necessary could be in place by April 15 — though that depends on the New York state budget being passed. If the $5 million Gov. Andrew Cuomo had in his budget proposal for the National Comedy Center makes the final state budget and the center receives $5 million in Federal New Market Tax Credits, all of the funding will be in place. Benson also announced that the Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation granted the National Comedy Center $3 million. It will be good for both downtown Jamestown and Chautauqua County as a whole to have the National Comedy Center up and running; so add the center to the long list of reasons why state legislators should wrap up the state budget sooner rather than later.