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June 14, 2018 - 11:50am
posted by Billie Owens in elba, batavia, news, Oliver's Candies, notify.

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Oliver's Candies is poised to triple its confectionary manufacturing capacity as it begins operating its kitchen in a newly acquired Elba facility, located at 100 S. Main St. (Route 98).

By this time tomorrow, all the stoves there will be fired up and cooking. It also has a 1,000-square-foot retail store at the front of the property that sells candy, ice cream, coffee and country-style Americana crafts.

The move is a seismic shift for the 80-year-old, renowned local chocolatier and purveyor of colorful ribbon candy, unique sponge candy, and other award-winning sweets.

The entire factory will be based in Elba. The iconic Swiss-chalet-style Batavia store on West Main Street will expand its food service and retail space into the former candy-making areas at the back of the store.

"We've been busting at the seams in Batavia for a couple of years now and we've talked about building onto the existing building (in Batavia)," said Oliver's co-owner and Vice President Jeremy Liles this morning. "We looked at expanding here, but the Tonawanda Creek was problematic and the option was just too expensive."

As it turns out, "We didn't choose Elba, Elba chose us."

He explained that his company owns commercial properties in several locations in Genesee County. They looked at property in Le Roy and Corfu, but the drive time didn't work. The Elba option was only a six-minute commute from Batavia, and although it required an extensive overhaul, Liles said they acted quickly to seize the opportunity.

That was in November.

"It called to us, and we acted fast," he said. "It had a cute barn for the store, loading docks, smooth concrete. We converted the inside; insulated it; added central heat and air-conditioning, put in steel walls that are easy to clean, new hoods for the ovens. Redid the roofs, which were pretty worn. It's nice."

The structure was built as a warehouse; it has served as a produce stand and an ice cream stand and a barn sale site.

The remodeling, relocation of cooking operations, and overall expansion plans will cost Liles "more than I ever wanted to pay" but the growth potential is enormous; it is a shrewdly calculated risk.

"It's very scary -- I've got to sell a lot of candy now," Liles said. "It's a huge change, huge growth, but a lot of opportunity there."

A groundswell of corporate and wholesale customers is driving the expansion. Liles said they are providing a large catalog company with private-label candies and are growing sales in Virginia, North and South Carolina, and are looking at an opportunity in Georgia.

While they are concentrating on manufacturing for the foreseeable future, Liles' vision for the Batavia store is that it keeps its rustic charm and expands the ice cream and coffee customers' seating areas, with great big picture windows overlooking the Tonawanda Creek, with a beautiful roaring fireplace, too.

About a month ago, Oliver's started offering its own custom-roasted coffees. Liles would like to partner with a bakery to sell pastries to go with that coffee in Batavia and Elba. Liles' wife, Sandy, operates the Elba retail store.

"My big dream is to have a drive-thru at both stores," he said.

Liles said now is the company's "quiet time" but by late fall he expects to hire at least two people. And "if Elba takes off," possibly more in both the manufacturing and retail operations.

Meanwhile, there are some cosmetic finishes still needed in Elba, including staining and painting on the outside, and landscaping.

"We've come a long way; it's not 100 percent yet, but we'll get there," he said. "The upstairs is not being used yet. But we have some ideas for the space, like at Christmastime.

"I love doing all this. It's fun, exciting but also very scary."

Top photo: Master candymaker Doug Pastecki and Jeremy Liles.

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June 14, 2018 - 9:10am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, news, notify, batavia, pembroke, corfu, Pavilion.

Dustin L. Landin, 39, of James Street, Batavia, is charged with two counts of criminal sale of a controlled substance, 5th. Landin is accused of selling a quantity of a controlled substance to an agent of the Local Drug Task Force on two occasions. He was jailed on $2,500 bail.

Antwan Maurice Maye, 35, of 10th Street, Butner, N.C., is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, criminal possession of marijuana, criminal use of drug paraphernalia, 2nd, and speeding. Maye was stopped for allegedly speeding on Ellicott Street Road in Pavilion at 2:51 a.m. Tuesday by Deputy James Stack.

Jeanna Marie Hattaway, 31, of West Main Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny and criminal possession of a controlled substance. Hattaway allegedly stole $114.09 worth of merchandise from Walmart at 3:01 p.m. on Tuedsay. At the time of her arrest, she was allegedly found in possession of a controlled substance without a prescription.

William Richard Kapelke, 36, of Hutchins Place, Batavia, is charged with trespass and aggravated unlicensed operation, 3rd. Kapelke was arrested following an investigation into a theft at Walmart reported at 3:01 p.m., Tuesday.

Edwin L. Stancliff, 39, of Corfu, is charged with menacing, 2nd, harassment, 2nd, and criminal possession of a weapon, 3rd. Stancliff is accused of menacing a person with a weapon at 10:30 p.m. Tuesday in the Town of Pembroke. The case was investigated by State Police. Stancliff was jailed. No further details released.

June 13, 2018 - 11:09pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in muckdogs, batavia, sports, baseball.

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Here's a reason to come out to Dwyer Stadium to see the Batavia Muckdogs this season starting Monday: To see if Sean Reynolds can develop into a big, powerful Major League first baseman.

At 6' 7" and 220 pounds, Reynolds (top photo), a fourth-round draft pick last year from Redondo Beach, Calif., projects as a power bat in the middle of the Miami Marlins line up someday. He's not there yet, however, so he's back in Batavia for a second season to see if he can harness his big swing and make more consistent contact.

Muckdogs Manager Mike Jacobs (second photo) thinks Reynolds is one of the good reasons fans have to settle into a seat at Dwyer Stadium in 2018.

"Hopefully he continues to make strides," Jacobs said when asked to single out some of his best players. "He should be able to do some good things here."

He also likes what he sees in Demetrius Sims. Described in scouting reports as a shortstop with blazing speed, Sims is also in his second stint with Batavia but Jacobs said he should make games exciting for fans.

In all, there are nine players on the roster who are on a second tour with the Muckdogs, which Jacobs said is a good thing. It should mean better quality baseball.

"That's going to help the guys who are here for the first time," Jacobs said.

The pitching should be better and the defense should be better.

"The main thing is, they will be prepared to play every night," Jacobs said. "That’s for sure. We’re prepared to play fundamentally sound baseball and hopefully, the offense will take care of itself."

Among the returning players, for those who are fans of Ivy League baseball, is Harrison White, whose degree is from Yale and acquitted himself well in Batavia last season, hitting .280 with 21 walks, 12 RBIs and 15 runs scored.

Also on the roster is Trevor Rogers, the Marlin's number-one draft pick in 2017. He's a 6' 6" left-handed pitcher but so far he's a Muckdog on paper only. He isn't in town yet and Jacobs said the way things work, just because he's currently listed on the roster doesn't mean he will wind up in Batavia.

For the returning players the changes at Dwyer, with the team under new ownership and management, is exciting, Jacobs said.

They noticed the changes as soon as they arrived at the ballpark.

"You want to be proud of where you play," Jacobs said. "You want to be proud of your facility. You want to be proud of your home every day. There’s still a long way to go but there are things in progress. They put a whole new infield in. It’s not quite to where we need it yet but it’s getting close. Like I said, they redid the clubhouse, cleaned it up, put in some new carpet, and some paint, and like I said, just watching the players walk in and look at that, they’re pretty excited just about that, so I think they’re excited to get going."

Game time Monday is 7:05 p.m.

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June 13, 2018 - 6:17pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in City Schools, news, batavia, schools, education.

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Carson Watts -- Outstanding Student Award

Carson had a phenomenal year of growth in kindergarten. From September to May, Carson improved in English Language Arts skills, growing 77.46 percent, to an astounding score of 94.8 percent on the regional assessment. Not only are Carson’s academic achievements impressive but he is a caring, hard-working student, who is a good friend to others, offers help, and compliments his peers. We are so proud of Carson!  

Nominated by Mrs. Amerine.

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Chase Turner -- Outstanding Student Award

Chase had a phenomenal year of growth in kindergarten. From September to May, Chase showed growth in English Language Arts skills, growing 45.08 percent! Chase is hard-working and pays close attention to details. He has grown as a reader and writer, and shows that he really cares to always do his best. His handwriting is among the nicest in the classroom, and he is always trying to improve. He loves learning, and we love seeing him grow!

Nominated by Mrs. Amerine.

Casey Richardson -- Outstanding Student Award (no photograph available)

Casey also had a phenomenal year of growth in kindergarten. From September to May, Casey showed growth in English Language Arts skills, growing 57.81 percent! Casey has worked very hard this year to learn all her letters and sounds, and just recently became the newest member of the classroom Alphabet All-Stars. She continues to work hard, is determined, and loves learning. We are proud of you, Casey!

Nominated by Mrs. Amerine.

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Clara Pierce -- Outstanding Student Award

Clara has also had a phenomenal year of growth in kindergarten. From September to May, Clara showed growth in English Language Arts skills, growing 60.11 percent! Clara is a very caring and is a good friend to others. She works hard and is an eager learner. We are excited to see her grow.  Good job, Clara!

Nominated by Mrs. Amerine.

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Myloh Kemp -- Outstanding Student Award

Myloh had a phenomenal year of growth in kindergarten. From September to May, Myloh showed growth in English Language Arts skills, growing 52.02 percent! Myloh has worked very hard this year to learn all his letters and sounds, and is becoming a good reader, and even better writer! He pays attention to details, and ensures that he takes the time to listen to and produce each sound he hears as he writes, and is learning more and more sight words. He is a good friend to others, and he really loves learning. We are proud of you, Myloh!

Nominated by Mrs. Amerine.

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Superintendent Chris Dailey read the following letter for senior Michal Lullo, who finished her term as student ex-officio member of the school board:

Dear Mikey:

It has been a pleasure to have you serve as the Ex-Officio Student Representative on the school board for the 2017-18 school year. On behalf of the Board of Education Members and the Batavia City School District, I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you.

The input you brought to the meetings was a true expression of your professionalism, care and knowledge in regard to the student activities. Your high regard for the welfare of the student population is a sure sign of your support for our schools and community. You have strong presentation skills evident through good articulation and explanation of the topics discussed.

Thank you for the time you devoted to the district. It is my hope that you will consider continuing to serve your community after graduation. Good luck with college and your future endeavors.

Take Care of BCSD!

June 13, 2018 - 5:44pm
posted by Billie Owens in Alabama, news, notify, batavia, Grand Jury.

Winston A. Lockhart Sr. is indicted for the crime of second-degree burglary, a Class C violent felony. It is alleged that on Jan. 16 on Holland Avenue in the City of Batavia, Lockhart knowingly entered or remained unlawfully in a dwelling with the intent to commit a crime.

Ricardo Sampel Sr. is indicted for the crime of criminal contempt in the first degree, a Class E felony. It is alleged that on April 24 in the Town of Alabama that Sampel, in violation of a duly served order of protection, was in the presence of the protected party. In Special Information filed by the District Attorney, Sampel is accused of having been convicted of criminal contempt in the second degree, a Class A misdemeanor. The Special Information states the defendant was convicted on April 5 in Town of Alabama Court for violating a stay away family offense order of protection and that was within five years of the crime alleged in the current indictment.

Matthew D. Grant is indicted for the crime of driving while intoxicated, as a Class E felony. It is alleged that on Jan. 10 in the Town of Batavia, the defendant drove a 2017 GMC bearing an Ontario, Canada, license plate on the Thruway while intoxicated. In count two, he is accused of DWI, per se, as a Class E felony, for having a BAC of .08 or more at the time. In count three, Grant is accused of aggravated unlicensed operation in the first degree, another Class E felony. In count three, it is alleged that Grant knew or had reason to know that his driver's license was suspended, revoked or otherwise withdrawn by authorities and he was operating the vehicle under the influence of alcohol or a drug. In count four, he is accused of consuming alcoholic beverages in a motor vehicle, a vehicle and traffic violation, and he allegedly did so while on a public highway. In count five, he is accused of moving from lane unsafely, a vehicle and traffic violation. In count six, Grant is accused of leaving the scene of an incident without reporting, another vehicle and traffic violation. It is alleged in count six that he drove the GMC and had cause to know that he damaged property -- a 2015 Ram truck belonging to another person -- and he allegedly failed to stop, and when no police officer was in the vicinity of the accident, he failed to report the incident as soon as physically able to do so at the nearest police station. In Special Information filed by the District Attorney, Grant is accused of having been convicted of DWI, as a misdemeanor, on Jan. 10 in Town of Henrietta Court and that conviction was within 10 years of the crimes alleged in the current indictment.

June 13, 2018 - 5:41pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news.

Members of the City Council responded favorably Monday night to a proposal by Police Chief Shawn Heubusch to purchase four additional cameras to mount in local neighborhoods that are sometimes trouble spots.

Such a camera may have produced vital evidence in a murder and shooting case on Central Avenue last month and Huebusch said the one camera the department owns has proven popular with residents wherever it's mounted.

"We've received a lot of positive feedback around the camera," Heubusch said.

City Council had already approved $3,300 for a second camera but after the Central Avenue incident and a community meeting in Kathy Briggs' ward two weeks ago, support has grown for additional cameras.

"I support the chief on this because this is a quality-of-life issue," Briggs said. "People need to feel safe in their neighborhoods."

With five cameras, the cameras will be mounted in more neighborhoods but they're also easy to move; a process, he said, that requires a bucket truck and a couple of the city's DPW workers and a couple of hours time.

While the cameras are not monitored all day every day, they do record events if evidence is needed and they act as a deterrent, the chief said. They also provide some peace of mind to residents who want quieter neighborhoods.

Heubusch had already sought estimates from three different vendors to supply the cameras and is now asking the council to approve purchasing four at $5,000 to $8,000 each.

The total request is for $28,000 -- the $3,300 already in the budget, about $5,000 from drug asset forfeiture funds, and $20,000 from the dedicated reserve fund.

The council will be asked to vote on a resolution approving the expenditure at its next business meeting.

"I don't care where we have to get this money but we have to get it for these cameras," said Councilwoman Rose Mary Christian.

June 13, 2018 - 5:19pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia PD, news, notify, batavia.

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Adding a heavily armored vehicle to Batavia PD's fleet of vehicles isn't about taking on a more military appearance, said Chief Shawn Heubusch. It's about saving lives. Even just one life. And at a price the city can afford: free.

Heubusch is preparing a proposal for the City Council so the police department can request a decommissioned, heavily armored vehicle from the U.S. military known as an MRAP, which stands for Mine-Resistant, Ambush-Protected.

"Do we need a military vehicle?" Heubusch said. "No. We need a Lenco Bearcat. We can’t afford a Lenco Bearcat so what we’re asking for is permission to go and ask a decommissioned MRAP to keep our guys out of harm's way when they enter a hostile situation."

The armor can stop penetration by a .50-caliber round and withstand heavy explosives.

"It’s not the military vehicle necessarily that we need," Heubusch said. "What we need is the ballistic protection."

Law enforcement agencies across the country are lining up for these vehicles as the military takes them out of service and gives them for free to law enforcement agencies and even fire departments.

A Lenco Bearcat costs $250,000. The MRAP is free. It can also do something the Lenco Bearcat can't do: drive into high water to assist in rescues.

"Are we getting shot at every day? Absolutely not," Heubusch said. "But the cost of these vehicles compared to the cost of someone’s life is incomparable."

The vehicle would be used by the county's Emergency Response Team, which is headquartered at Batavia PD. Heubusch discussed the idea briefly with the City Council at Monday's meeting and in response to questions said maintenance of the vehicle would be comparable to a snow plow or dump truck and that while no special license is required for a police officer to drive it, there is a recommended instruction course for drivers of the  vehicle.

He'll bring forward a formal proposal for the city to submit an application for the vehicle at a future council meeting.

Heubusch acknowledged that some people might view obtaining such a vehicle as "militarization of civilian police" and he understands the optics of it but said that is a secondary concern.

"We certainly understand that aspect of it, but the brass tacks of it is, if it can save a life, it can save a life," Heubusch said. "I don’t care what it looks like, nor should anyone else if there’s an active shooter in your neighborhood and we need to get you out of your house so no one is injured in your home."

He added, "we’re not going to be patrolling in this vehicle. It’s not an offensive vehicle that is going to have gun turrets mounted on it or anything like that by any estimation. It’s vehicle that would be used, again, as a rescue vehicle, whether it’s to rescue a police officer or civilians from a hostile situation or a natural disaster."

June 13, 2018 - 5:12pm

Above is Ethan Hutchins, a 2018 Holowach Scholarship winner, with Julie Donlon, GVEP assistant superintendent.

Submitted photo and press release from the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership:

Le Roy -- Since 1988, the Gary Hammond Golf Tournament has helped to raise funds for the Holowach Memorial Scholarship Fund. To date, more than $112,000 in scholarships have been awarded.

Holowach Scholarships are given annually to assist outstanding career and technical education students with college expenses. The selection process includes written application, teacher recommendations, and a personal interview with the selection committee. Selection criteria includes citizenship, financial need, dedication to and achievement in his/her chosen field.

The Holowach Memorial Scholarship Fund is named for Charles “Chuck” Holowach, Ed.D., who served as the District Superintendent of Livingston-Steuben Wyoming Board of Cooperative Educational Services from March 1982 until his untimely death in December 1988.

The golf tournament is named in honor of Gary Hammond, a retired assistant superintendent for the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership, who served the district for 16 years.

This year’s Genesee County Holowach Scholarship recipients are noted below.

$2,000 -- Batavia CTE Center

Ethan Hutchins is a Health Careers Academy student from Notre Dame who will attend St. John Fisher’s Nursing program. Ethan is a member of the National Honor Society, National Technical Honor Society, and Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA), 4H, and prom committee at his school.

Ethan is also a member of the Notre Dame chorus, and is HOSA Vice President for his class, and secretary for his class at school. He has received numerous awards including Breakfast of Champions, Most Improved-Volleyball, and Scholar Athlete.

$1,500 -- Batavia CTE Center

Paige Perry is from Attica Central Schools and a student in the Health Careers Academy Program. In the fall, she is set to attend Niagara University where she will major in Biology. At her home school, Paige is involved in many activities including Student Government, 4-H, Envirothon, Soccer, Track, Ski Club, Pulse Academy, We Care Club, and Spanish Club. She is a member of National Honor Society and President of the Ski Club.

$1,000 -- Batavia CTE Center

Kim Davis is a Health Careers Academy student from Pavilion Central Schools. She plans to attend Nazareth College and major in Physical Therapy. Kim is active in many sports, clubs, and activities at her home school including soccer, basketball, track, and Girls Service League.

She is a member of National Honor Society, serves as Student Government Class Treasurer, and also serves on Youth Court. dKim has earned many awards and much recognition including Honor Roll, Scholar Athlete, Music Award, MVP-Basketball Tournament, Coaches Award, and the Livingston County Athletic Association All-Star Award.

###

The Genesee Valley Educational Partnership, based in Le Roy, operates as a Board of Cooperative Educational Services offering shared programs and services to 22 component school districts located in Genesee, Wyoming, Livingston and Steuben counties in New York State.

June 13, 2018 - 4:58pm
posted by Billie Owens in GLOW YMCA, batavia, news, charity, Strong Communities Campaign.

Press release:

The GLOW YMCA on Tuesday announced a second year of record-breaking support as they raised just over $106,000 in its annual Strong Communities Campaign, exceeding a $104,000 association goal.

“We had so much incredible support," said Rob Walker, CEO of the GLOW YMCA. "We couldn’t have done it without our volunteers, members, vendors, staff and community supporters. I would like to publically thank the 559 contributors that helped us exceed our goal."

Walker offered special thanks to Joseph Bellardo, Elizabeth Skakowski, Lance Mark, Wayne Purdy and Christopher White, all of whom volunteered their time, treasure and efforts to lead this year’s campaign.

The Genesee Branch specifically raised $45,113 or 101percent of its 2018 goal. With 85 new donors and 194 renewed donations we had 279 very generous donors help us to achieve this year’s campaign record.

The money raised helps the YMCA meet its charitable mission by offering scholarship support to children, families and seniors in our community that otherwise could not afford to experience the many benefits of the YMCA.

“The Genesee County YMCA is dedicated to identifying the needs of our community and helping to be a part of the solution,” said Jeff Townsend, YMCA executive director. “In 2017 we supported over 650 children, adults, families and seniors with YMCA scholarship assistance.

"So far in 2018, we are on target to help over 700 individuals and families in our community.”

As a leading nonprofit for strengthening community, gifts made to the annual Strong Communities Campaign help the Y advance programming and services that support youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. More importantly, 100 percent of gifts made will make a direct impact on the residents in our communities.

To find out more about how you can help volunteer for the Annual Campaign at the Y or to make a donation that will have a meaningful, enduring impact right in your own community, visit www.glowymca.org or call the GLOW YMCA at 344-1664.

June 13, 2018 - 4:43pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in weather, news, batavia.

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Reader John Michaels submitted this photo of a tree down at the Terrace Apartments.

June 13, 2018 - 3:48pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news.

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A reader reports this bicycle was stolen from his father about 1 p.m. yesterday. It was parked in front of the laundry on Ellicott Street in Batavia.

If found, spotted or you have information to help lead to its recovery, call Batavia PD at (585) 345-6350.

June 13, 2018 - 1:58pm
posted by Billie Owens in animal abuse, animal rescue, pets, news, batavia.

A dog is locked in a car with the windows up in the Walmart parking lot in Batavia. It is described as a red Honda Pilot, which is an SUV, parked in row 10. An animal control officer is responding.

June 13, 2018 - 11:10am
posted by Howard B. Owens in City Fire, batavia, news.

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City Council President Eugene Jankowski, right, congratulations former firefighter Jeff Stevens on his retirement after 20 years of service to the City of Batavia during Monday's City Council meeting.

Below, Councilwoman Kathy Briggs reads a proclamation from the Council recognizing Stevens for his service.

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June 12, 2018 - 6:45pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, news.

A transformer blew up -- or had some kind of meltdown -- on Center Street, resulting in a power outage. National Grid is notified and asked to respond in emergency mode; no ETA. The transformer was leaking oil or fluid, which reportedly got on a vehicle parked near it.

The vehicle was moved to a parking lot. Center Street was closed at East Main and School Street. City fire and police responded. The city fire assignment is back in service. Not sure if the roadway is reopened.

June 12, 2018 - 3:57pm

Press release:

Genesee County Office for the Aging will be distributing Farmers’ Market Coupons to income-eligible seniors, 60 years of age and older.

The coupon booklets will be available at 2 Bank St., Batavia, on the following dates/times:

  • 10 a.m. -- 12 p.m. on Tuesday, July 10
  • 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. on Thursday, July 12 
  • 1 -- 4 p.m. on Monday, July 23
  • 10 a.m. -- 12 p.m. on Wednesday, July 25

**Before these dates, if you live in senior housing, a flier will be posted about when the Office for the Aging will be at your location.

Anyone 60 or older in your household can have a coupon booklet; you must still be income eligible and the booklet must be given to each person individually.

Coupons will be given out on a first-come, first-served basis, until they are gone.

If you have any questions call please call 343-1611.

  • You must be age 60 or older. Please bring ID.
  • If you reside in public/subsidized housing, you qualify regardless of income, but please bring proof of address.

***  2018 Income Guidelines  ***

Household of 1 = $ 1,872/mo.

Household of 2 = $ 2,538/mo.

Household of 3 = $3,204/mo.

June 12, 2018 - 2:50pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Walnut Street, Tonawanda Creek, batavia, news.

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Erik Saluste is looking for some help from the city in keeping people off his property at 5 Walnut St., Batavia.

He said trespassers are a huge and consistent problem. 

His property backs up to the Tonawanda Creek and he doesn't want people on his land when they want to sightsee, fish, or kayak on the creek.

"People think that all the houses on Walnut Street, Route 98, that back against the creek allow public access," told the City Council last night during public comments. "There is no public access. My property line extends to where the creek ends. I’ve posted no trespassing signs on my property."

He said he's had to call police about trespassers four times already this year.

He said he brought the issue to the City Council four years ago and nothing happened. He said he applied for a building permit to install a fence on his property line and it was denied.

He took that as the city asserting easement rights but he said the city has no easement rights. The state has easement rights 50 feet in from the creek and that he was told he could build structures within the easement, but if the state needed the structures removed for flood control measures he would have to remove the structures.

Interim City Manager Matt Worth said he will need to research it but he believes the state might be concerned about a fence catching tree limbs and other debris that could contribute to a flooding issue.

Saluste thinks a fence from the footbridge to 1 Walnut might help alleviate the problem and said he would be willing to help pay for it. He said the problem is a huge privacy and liability issue for him.

"You do have to realize that until I have satisfaction in this area I’m going to continue to call Batavia Police Department every time I have somebody (trespassing)," Saluste said. "I’m not going to confront them anymore because they’ve almost become physical on certain occasions and I don’t want that to happen."

The council instructed Worth to look into the issue further.

UPDATE: Felipe Oltramari, county planning director, brought this to our attention:

Per DEC’s website (https://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/8371.html): “If a waterway is navigable in fact, the right to public navigation authorizes a boater to get out of the boat to pull it around obstacles or to get around obstacles by portaging over private property, so long as the portage is by the most direct and least intrusive safe route possible.”

This property is right at the dam so a kayaker or canoer could come ashore legally on Mr. Saluste’s land for the purposes of getting around the dam while navigating the creek.  

PHOTO: Screen grab from county's GIS map, shows, from the top, 1 Walnut, 3 Walnut, and 5 Walnut.

June 12, 2018 - 1:02pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in DeWitt Recreation Area, fire, batavia.

A grass fire is reported at DeWitt Recreation Area on the north side of the pond.

Access would be behind WNY Concrete.

City fire responding.

UPDATE 1:04 p.m.: A dispatcher got WNY Concrete on the phone and confirmed it is behind their building but they don't know if the fire department can get to the location from behind their building.

UPDATE 1:06 p.m.: City crew on scene at WNY Concrete confirms there's no good access from that location.

UPDATE 1:07 p.m.: Best entrance, a crew member reports, probably behind Upson Maybach.

UPDATE 1:16 p.m.: There are several small fires. Firefighters are extinguishing with water cans now.

UPDATE (By Billie) 1:43 p.m.: They ended up using a tanker to put out the fire. The assignment is back in service. Parks personnel on at the scene.

June 11, 2018 - 6:38pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in M&S Tactical Solutions, batavia, news, business.

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The chaos, confusion and emotions of a mass causality situation had a serious impact on students who went through the simulation at M&S Tactical last night, said owner Jeff McIntire.

Participants in the simulation first sat through a class, "Active Assailant Awareness for the Concealed Carrier," before confronting a realistic scenario dealing with several shooting victims.

The goal was to give those with concealed carry licenses practical tips and the psychological experience on what to do both to deal with the threat of an active shooter and how to assist victims.

The class focused on the Observe, Orient, Decide, Act (OODA) loop. They also received instruction what to do once law enforcement arrives on scene.

After dinner, a New York State Certified Tactical Paramedic taught field expedient first aid using supplies in which they would have readily available to them, as not every average citizen carries with them a tourniquet, an occlusive dressing, or hemostatic gauze.

"One by one, class participants entered the company's Active Home Invasion System and were confronted with the aftermath of a mass casualty shooting," McIntire said. "Chaos ensued and they were tasked with finding and triaging patients to either attempt to save or give some sort of potential life-saving intervention to using the skills they were just taught."

In the training room, participants found about a dozen role players covered in blood. Some of the role players were injured while others were just covered in blood. M&S Tactical staff assigned each role player a specific character to portray. Some acted as severely wounded people with injuries to the femoral artery, sucking chest wounds, gunshot wounds to the head, and other injuries. Children ran around hysterically screaming for their mother, and requesting each student to help them.

"This class was able to reach into the souls of each participant," McIntire said. "The environment created was all too near reality."

Photos and information submitted by Jeff McIntire.

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