From the “bit of good news” department:

On March 31, Carole Rau of Olean went to Walmart for a few items. When she arrived back home, she realized she didn’t have her purse.

“I must have accidentally left it in a cart, which I’ve never done before,” she says. “I was so scared and upset that it was gone forever.”

She went back to Walmart to tell customer service that she had left her purse after shopping.

“The girl went in the office and came back with my purse!” Carole says. “I was so happy and thanked God all the way home for the kind and honest person who turned it in. ... What a blessing that person; there aren’t enough words to say thank you and how much I appreciate I appreciate their kindness and honesty.

“Thank you again, so much!”

WITH APRIL and warmer weather here, the beginning of outdoor projects in underway. As homeowners and contractors plan for those projects, April’s designation as National Safe Digging Month is a reminder Dig Safely New York uses to ensure safe digging practices.

Dig Safely New York, the first one-call center of its kind in the nation, serves 55 counties in Upstate and is “the 24/7/365 connection” between project coordinators and public utilities.

The homeowner or contractor can contact Dig Safely New York, either by phone by dialing 811 or through its online Location Request platform Exactix, which can be found at Once the location request for the dig project is submitted, Dig Safely New York will contact all utilities that have underground facilities located on the property.

The various utilities will then visit the site and properly mark all underground lines and pipes within the project area. All homeowners and contractors have to do is wait two full business days, not including the day they called, for utilities to respond.

They should also note that their location request will expire 10 days from their designated start date.

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