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People who sell or use water-balloon slings are about to have their wings clipped as Cattaraugus County officials take steps to ban the "wingers" which have been aimed at some unsuspecting vacationers.

Water-balloon wingers are described as oversized elastic rubberized inner-tube slings that are pulled back to launch water balloons.

One Salamanca woman complained that the wingers are often tied between two trees and pulled back by four people launching a balloon aimed at a boat 500 feet from shore at the Onoville Marina. The woman said her family was victimized by a winger at the campgrounds.

The complaint brought replies from Sheriff Jerry E. Burrell that he will urge his deputies to on the lookout for the perpetrators.

County Attorney Dennis V. Tobolski said a 1976 law that governs activities at the county-owned marina prohibits the use of wingers.

Jeffrey W. Davis, marina manager, said a campground host recalled the wingers were popular several years ago but had declined. "Once we are made aware that a safety-related problem exists, we are quite effective in dealing with it. Had the patron informed a member of the staff or one of the campground hosts, this problem would have been quickly resolved," Davis said.

Legislators on the Public Works Committee called for further inquiry into a new state law that could require the county to collect state sales tax on the $2 parking fee at the marina. They said the fee should be increased to cover any tax.

An update on the new cattle barn at the fairgrounds in Little Valley noted it will be ready by fair time in July.

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