Alleged Drug Dealers’ Arrests May Curb Local Trade

The recent arrests of three local men associated with a cocaine-trafficking ring will make a “significant dent” on the drug trade in Tompkins County, District Attorney Gwen Wilkinson told The Ithaca Journal last Tuesday. Curtis Echols of Rochester, said to be the ring’s leader, along with his sons, Curtis McCool and Darrell L. Bailey, have been charged on about 30 counts of drug trafficking.
According to The Journal, Echols allegedly distributed cocaine to both Bailey and McCool, in addition to Kelly Keefe, an Ithaca resident who was arrested on charges of alleged ties to a cocaine ring two weeks ago.

TCAT and Workers’ Union Reach Deal

Tompkins Consolidated Area Transit announced early Friday morning that it had reached a tentative agreement with the United Auto Workers over contracts for its workers. The deal was the result of 17 consecutive hours of negotiations. Though the agreement — which specifies the salaries and benefits of all TCAT drivers and mechanics — still has to be formalized by the United Auto Workers on October 5, workers will continue to work under old contract conditions until the vote.

City of Ithaca Considers Banning Smoking in Many Outdoor Areas

25,500 deaths in New York State every year are attributed smoking, according to the City of Ithaca’s Resolution: Support for Tobacco-Free Zones and Other Voluntary Steps to Reduce Smoking.
Citing this statistic as one reason to support tobacco-free zones, the Ithaca Common Council’s En­vironment and Neighborhood Quality Committee considered legislation in July 2007 for smoke-free outdoor public spaces.
Currently, a subcommittee of the Community and Organ­izational Issues Committee is considering setting smoking restrictions on several public spaces, including playgrounds, city-owned parks, the area within 25 feet of public building entrances and — most recently — the “inner T” of the Commons.