The Jewish Community Center in Vestal was evacuated yesterday around 10:45am after a bomb threat. Vestal Police say the threat was called directly to the JCC. The building was searched, and it was determined that the threat was a hoax. Police say dozens of JCC’s across the country received a similar call yesterday. The building was back open at 1pm. Vestal Police are providing the local information to the FBI to assist in their national investigation.
Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo and AARP are teaming up to offer free document shredding services in Vestal on Saturday. According to the Assemblywoman’s office, a document shredding truck will be parked near TGI Fridays in the Vestal Town Square Mall from 10am until 2pm on Saturday, or until the truck is filled. Those who utilize the free service can bring up to three bags of documents for shredding.
A Vestal home is a total loss after an early morning fire this morning. The home at 139 Gardner Road in the Town of Vestal erupted just after 1:30am. Residents were home at the time of the fire, however, managed to escape safely. The Vestal Fire Department, Town of Binghamton Fire Department, and Vestal Police Department were all on scene. An investigation into the cause of the fire is ongoing.
There was a large police presence along the Susquehanna River in both Vestal and Endicott yesterday. According to authorities, Vestal Police were attempting to arrest an individual who was wanted on an arrest warrant when the individual jumped into the river. New York State Police, Broome County Sheriff’s Deputies, Vestal Police, and Endicott Police lined the river for the next 20 minutes as the suspect swam from side to side attempting to flee. A Vestal Police officer eventually jumped into the river to apprehend the suspect. No additional information has been released at this time.
Unused structures across the Southern Tier continue to come down as local leaders continue their fight on blighted properties. In Binghamton, the former city Department of Public Works building was torn down yesterday. The building, which was built in the 1920’s has sat vacant off of the Brandywine highway for a decade.
In Vestal, the former Ken Wilson Chevrolet Showroom is set to be torn down. The unique-looking building at the intersection of Route 434 and Shippers Road in Vestal was sold to a developer last year. Plans are now being drafted to turn the property into a shopping complex. That endeavor would be expected to take up to a year, including demolition and construction.
Vestal firefighters and police responded to a report of a hazmat situation at a business on the Vestal Parkway yesterday. First responders were called to Columbian Financial Group at around 1:30pm after an employee in the mail room opened an envelope containing white powder. After several hours on-scene, the powder was determined to be sheet rock dust.
Westbound traffic on Old Vestal Road in Vestal will be closed for the next two years. Traffic heading west on Old Vestal Road between Murray Hill and Bunn Hill Road will now have to use the Vestal Parkway. The on-ramp to Old Vestal Road from Route 434 will be open to local traffic only. The lane closure comes as construction crews continue to update the Binghamton-Johnson City Joint Sewage Treatment Plant.
A local businessman has donated $40,000 to Binghamton University’s Educational Opportunity Program. The head of Upstate Shredding, Adam Weitsman, donated the money to Binghamton University to help promising college students with financial assistance. The students receiving Educational Opportunity money come from economically challenging backgrounds, and might not have the means to attend college otherwise.