January 2018 Column by Erie County Legislature Chairman John Mills

Happy New Year! Wishing you all a very happy and healthy 2018.

I want to remind all pistol permit holders that if you received your permit prior to January 15, 2013 you must re-certify with the New York State Police by Jan. 31, 2018. If you do not re-certify, your permit may be revoked. Anyone who wants assistance with the re-certification process is encouraged to attend the outreach that I have scheduled with County Clerk Mickey Kearns. The Pistol Permit Outreach will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 19 at the Concord Public Library, 18 Chapel St., Springville.

If your license was issued on or after January 15, 2013, the deadline to re-certify is five years after the date the license was issued. More information can be found here: https://troopers.ny.gov/Firearms.

It has already been a rough winter for most of my district with heavy lake effect snow impacting driving. To assist drivers in preparing for the long winter ahead, the Department of Public Works has created a “Road Closure” link on its website to show if county roads are open, closed or under caution. You can find the tab at www2.erie.gov/dpw. I also encourage everyone to download Erie County’s ReadyErie Preparedness app. This provides critical information and emergency alerts through push notifications, locate Erie County’s emergency shelters, view up-to-date evacuation route maps, and create a personalized Emergency Preparedness Plan by answering five basic questions. You can find information on the app at: www2.erie.gov/emergencyservices/index.php?q=ReadyErie.

Let’s hope that weather cooperates for Sunday, Jan. 28 when the county will host Winterfest from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Chestnut Ridge Park. Free family fun includes arts and crafts, chain saw carving demonstrations, marshmallow roasting, sledding (weather permitting), snow sculpture contests (weather permitting) and hay rides ($5 per adult; $3 per child). Concessions will be available to purchase. You can find additional information about this event at www.erie.gov/parks. Also, find up-to-date conditions on winter activities, including the toboggan chutes, on the Parks’ website under the tab, “Winter Sports.”

As always, if you ever have a question about a county matter, please contact my office at 858-8850 or email john.mills@erie.gov.