LITTLE VALLEY — A recent security problem in the Cattaraugus County Jail has ended the practice of inmates making noise by clanging a tin cup across the jail cell bars.

Sheriff Timothy Whitcomb said jail personnel recently discovered an inmate had crafted a weapon out of a steel bowl and handle.

“We’ve been using the cups for as long as I can remember,” Sheriff Whitcomb said. “We took them out of service as soon as we realized someone had fashioned a weapon out of one.”

The cups were replaced with washable plastic cups, the sheriff said. Silverware is now also made out of washable plastic, he said.

Rather than dispose of the metal cups and silverware, they were donated to Cattaraugus Community Action, which will use them in its culinary arts program and soup kitchens.

Members of the Public Works and Public Safety committees approved the donation.

IN OTHER NEWS, Public Works Commissioner Joseph Pillittere told members of the Public Works Committee that the low bid for a new fuel depot at the Allegany Highway Barn on Seventh Street came in lower than expected, at $331,802.

After subtracting $46,550 for engineering and construction specifications, the county will have about $121,422 left from the $500,000 set aside for the project and cleanup of gasoline- and diesel-contaminated soil outside the Allegany Highway Barn, Commissioner Pillittere said.

“We estimated it would cost about $120,000 for the cleanup, less if we did part of the work ourselves,” he said.

Most of the work is expected to be completed in the spring. The new fuel depot will be located on the north side of the highway barn, while the current depot is on the south side near Seventh Street.

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