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July 1, 2015 - 10:45am
posted by Lisa Ace in Senior trip, holland land office, batavia, ny.
Event Date and Time: 
August 18, 2015 -
9:00am to 5:00pm

HOLLAND LAND OFFICE MUSEUM AUGUST 18TH. 2015
ANNUAL SENIOR BUS TRIP TO THE HERCHELL CAROUSAL MUSEUM AND RIVIERA THEATRE
LUNCH AT CRAZY JAKE’S
BUS DEPARTS FROM
THE HOLLAND LAND OFFICE MUSEUM AT 9:00 AM
ADMISSION: $40.00 PP INCLUDES LUNCH
FOR RESERVATIONS CALL 585.343.4727

June 30, 2015 - 5:34pm
posted by Traci Turner in batavia, fundraiser, campbell family.

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A Go Fund Me page has been created to help the family of David Campbell, a Batavia father who drowned in a work-related accident.

So far, the page, "A Community to Help the Campbell's"  has raised more than $15,000 by 207 people in six days. The goal amount is $18,000. The page was created by Melissa Blaisdell.

According to the description on the page, the fundraiser was started to assist with the daily needs of his wife, Renee, and their three children, Harper, age 6, Camille, age 4, and Harlan, age 2. Members of the community wanted to do anything they could to help his wife and kids and make sure the family knew they are not alone.

If you would like to donate to the family, click here.

Campbell was a construction worker for The Pike Company and drowned while working in a boat under the Inner Loop bridge in Downtown Rochester on June 24 the Democrat & Chronicle reported. When Campbell was working, the boat tipped over in the Genesee River and his safety line trapped him under water. 

He was a 31-year-old Batavia resident and a 2001 graduate of Alexander Central School. According to information supplied by Michael Tomaszweski Funeral & Cremation Chapel, he enjoyed going on vacations to the mountains with his family, camping, snowmobiling and four-wheeling.

"He accomplished much in only 31 years, touching the lives and hearts of everyone he came in contact with; friends, neighbors or strangers," his obituary stated. "His infectious smile and selfless attitude will forever comfort those left behind."

June 30, 2015 - 3:30pm
posted by Traci Turner in batavia, Batavia Youth Bureau, parks and recreation.

The Batavia Youth Bureau will kick off its annual summer program to provide children with fun activities and a nutritious lunch next week.

The free summer recreational program runs weekly from July 6 to Aug. 16 at five locations in Batavia. The locations are Lions Park, Williams Park, Lambert Park, Farrall Park and John Kennedy School. Children ages 6-14 who live in the city or the town can participate in the program.

According to Toni Funke, program coordinator at Batavia Youth Bureau, approximately 500 children attend the program every year. Funke thinks the program is a great opportunity for children to engage in activities including crafts, games and field trips as well as receive a healthy meal at lunchtime. 

The meals are sponsored by the Niagara County Youth Bureau. The menu varies daily and each meal comes with fruit, milk and juice.

Although the recreational program is for children, youth ages 18 or younger can receive a free lunch at any of the five locations.

The Batavia Youth Bureau will be holding an open house at 5:30 p.m. on July 1 at Lions Park for parents who want to pre-register their child for the recreational program. However, parents can register their child at any time during the program.

June 30, 2015 - 11:23am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Centennial, batavia, downtown, BID.

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Press release:

Batavia Business Improvement District (BID), sponsor of the Centennial Arts, an outdoor arts display that took place on Tuesday, June 16th announces the winner of the People’s Choice Award.

More than 20 artists set up their works of art for display and for sale in Jackson Square. Those who attended the event were able to vote for their favorite artist or display as a People’s Choice Award. The winner of Centennial Arts was Susan Hoak, of Batavia, whose up-cycled furniture was considered “unique and creative” by several customers.

The Centennial Arts event was an effort to celebrate the City’s Centennial year as well as bring about awareness of the talented artists that are within the local region. Most artists were from Genesee County and one was from Warsaw. Pictures of the event can be see on the Downtown Batavia Business Improvement District Facebook page.

“Shop Local, Shop Downtown.” Sponsored by: Batavia Business Improvement District.   or more info  contact the B.I.D. Office at 585-344-0900 / visit  us at www.DowntownBataviaNY.com. or  like us on Facebook at DowntownBataviaBusinessImprovementDistrict.

June 29, 2015 - 7:28pm
posted by Traci Turner in batavia, art, books, Literature.

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Connie Boyd and Dave Bateman, her son-in-law, show off a new little free library they setup at 16 Montclair Ave. in Batavia last week.

Bateman built Boyd the box for a holiday gift. One of her favorite TV shows is "Doctor Who" so he customized the box to resemble a tardis, a police box the doctor travels around in. The tardis even comes with a working light on top.

Boyd wanted to have a little free library of her own after seeing a box on Washington Avenue. She loves the concept of sharing her favorite novels with neighbors. The purpose of a little free library is to have people take a book from the box and leave one in return.

"Not everyone is able to get to the library so I wanted to make books accessible to everyone and encourage reading in my community," Boyd said.

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There are about 20 adult books in the box. Boyd said her neighbors have already been adding and borrowing from the collection. She plans on adding books for children soon.

June 29, 2015 - 7:23pm
posted by Traci Turner in batavia, bike trail.

The preliminary design phase for the Ellicott Trail project, a bike and hiking path in Batavia, has been completed. 

According to Joseph Neth, project manager and engineer technician for the Town of Batavia, the proposed trail will begin at Pearl Street in the City of Batavia and extend east to Seven Springs Road in the Town of Batavia. The trail will be between 4.3 and 4.6 miles long and 10-feet wide. The trail will have both on- and off-road segments. Existing pavement will be used where feasible, and the off-road segments will be composed of stone. 

The trail will cross both public and private land. According to Neth, the project has received letters from private land owners stating they were open to the idea of the trail crossing their land.

"The trail will create an alternative form of transportation," Neth said. "It connects some of the historic and commercial areas of the city and the town. The trail will be a recreational form as well and that's something we don't have yet in Genesee County."

The steering committee held an informational meeting earlier this month to get input from the community on the preliminary draft. Only three members of the community showed up to hear the committee's presentation. Although the period for public comment has ended, the committee will still accept comments on the project throughout the rest of the process.

The next step is to submit a draft report to the Department of Transportation for approval in August. The project has been approved for approximately $1,000,000 in federal grant funding administered by the DOT. The preliminary design phase cost $69,000.

After the draft report is approved, the project will go through a final design phase and then contracts can be prepared so the project can go up for bid. If the project continues on schedule, trail construction will begin in 2017.

June 29, 2015 - 10:16am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, corfu.

Nateeka M. Gibson, 26, of East Main Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Gibson is accused of stealing a bottle of liquor from West Main Wine and Spirits at 4:31 p.m., May 17. Gibson was identified as the suspect after a surveillance photo appeared on The Batavian.

Wendy Sue Pritchard, 39, of MacArthur Drive, Batavia, is charged with grand larceny, 4th. Pritchard allegedly committed thefts from Walmart twice in one day, Thursday, totalling $1,343 in value. She was jailed on $1,000 bail. Also arrested and jailed on $1,000 bail on the same charge was Warren Thomas Cotton, 38, of Minneck Road, Lockport.

Heidi Lynn Harder, 40, of Montclair Avenue, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Harder allegedly stole property from Walmart with a value of $695 on Thursday.

Jocelyn T. Carson, 24, of Rodney Avenue, Buffalo, is charged with confinement of a companion animal in a vehicle during extreme temperature. Carson allegedly left a dog in a vehicle for at least an hour with no water around 6 p.m., June 20, at 9993 Alleghany Road, Darien.

Jonathan David Knauss, 21, of Depot Street, Corfu, is charged with petit larceny, operation of an unregistered motor vehicle, no front license plate, unlawful removal of registration plate and driving without insurance. Knauss allegedly stole a license plate from a vehicle and affixed it to another vehicle. He was stopped at 2:41 a.m. Sunday on West Main Street Road, Batavia, by Deputy Joseph Corona.

Andrew Ziemba Perdock, 28, of Dowd Road, Fillmore, is charged with petit larceny. Perdock is accused of shoplifting from Kohl's Department Store. Also arrested was Scott Logan Marsh, 19, of Main Street, Mount Morris. Perdock was also charged with petit larceny for allegedly stealing from Dick's Sporting Goods.

A 17-year-old of Holland Avenue (name withheld by Batavia PD) was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear and to abide by a release under supervision contract. He was jailed on $5,000 bail.

Scout A. Marble, 20, of Birchwood Drive, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear on an aggravated unlicensed operation 3rd chage.

Christopher G. Landry, 41, of Howell Road, Fairport, is charged with criminal contempt, 2nd. Landry alleged violated a complete stay away order by sending text messages to the protected party.

James A. Mitchell, 37, of Center Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Mitchell is accused of stealing cash from his employer, The Little Ridge Restaurant.

Darrell Smith, 48, of La Salle Avenue, Buffalo, is charged with criminal contempt, 2nd, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, criminal possession of stolen property. Smith was arrested on a warrant and jailed on $10,000 bail or $20,000 bond.

Nina M. Kelso, 31, of Columbia Avenue, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear on a failure to care for an animal case.

Joseph Antwon Fletcher, 18, of South Main Street, Mount Morris, is charged with violation of probation. Fletcher was arrested on warrants.

Tonya L. Buzzell, 32, of East Main Street, Batavia, is charged with criminal trespass, 2nd, and disorderly conduct. Buzzell allegedly refused to leave a residence on Ellicott Street at 11:28 p.m., Friday.

Jesse A. Russell, 25, of Basom, is charged with aggravated unlicensed operation, 2nd, operating while registration suspended, unlicensed operator, inadequate muffler and unlawful possession of marijuana. Russell was stopped by a trooper on Route 33, Batavia.

June 29, 2015 - 9:20am
posted by Lisa Ace in Independence Day 5K, batavia kiwanis, batavia, ny.
Event Date and Time: 
July 4, 2015 -
9:00am to 12:00pm

Batavia Kiwanis Independence Day 5K to be held on July 4th at Centennial Park at 9:00am. To register go to: Score-this.com

June 28, 2015 - 5:06pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Silver Shoe Farm, batavia, agriculture, horses, carriage driving, sports.

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Silver Shoe Farm, on Pratt Road, Batavia, hosted today its 8th annual carriage driving competition, drawing drivers from throughout the region.

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June 27, 2015 - 9:45pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia.

Medics is being dispatched to an address on Lewis Place, Batavia, for a male who has been sprayed in the eyes by a skunk.  

June 27, 2015 - 11:28am
posted by Billie Owens in Event, batavia, richmond library.
Event Date and Time: 
July 23, 2015 -
6:00pm to 8:30pm

Sponsor:  Richmond Memorial Library, 19 Ross St., Batavia

Event:  Reel Discussions

Date & Time:  Thursday, July 23rd at 6 p.m.

Come view the movie and join us for a group discussion afterward. This month’s movie is “American Sniper." Navy SEAL Chris Kyle is sent to Iraq with only one mission to protect his brothers-in-arms. However, his reputation is also growing behind enemy lines. He is also facing a different kind of battle on the home front. But upon returning to his wife and kids, Chris finds that it is the war he can't leave behind.

June 27, 2015 - 11:25am
posted by Billie Owens in Event, comic books, batavia, richmond library.
Event Date and Time: 
July 22, 2015 -
7:00pm to 8:00pm

Richmond Memorial Library, 19 Ross St., Batavia

Event: History of Comic Books

Date & Time: Wednesday, July 22 at 7 p.m.

June 27, 2015 - 11:19am
posted by Billie Owens in Event, brisbane, richmond library, batavia.
Event Date and Time: 
July 20, 2015 -
7:00pm to 8:00pm

Sponsor: Richmond Memorial Library, 19 Ross St., Batavia

Event: Meet the Brisbanes: Talk by Larry Barnes

Place: Richmond Memorial Library

Date & Time: Monday, July 20 at 7 p.m.

City Historian Larry Barnes will present “Meet the Brisbanes,” a free talk at Richmond Memorial Library. The Brisbane Family was one of the earliest families in Batavia and was filled with interesting, although eccentric, personalities. As we “Escape the Ordinary” this summer, find out how these Batavians led extraordinary lives.

June 27, 2015 - 11:12am
posted by Billie Owens in events, batavia, richmond library.
Event Date and Time: 
July 16, 2015 -
2:30pm to 5:00pm

Event:  Children’s Room Summer Reading Club Movie -- "The Incredibles"

Place:  Richmond Memorial Library

Date & Time:  Thursday, July 16th at 2:30 p.m.

Come view the movie and join us for a group discussion afterward. The movie for this Children’s Room Summer Reading Club Movie is “The Incredibles.” An action-packed, animated adventure about the mundane and incredible lives of a house full of superheroes. For more information, call the library at 343-9550 or log onto www.batavialibrary.org

June 27, 2015 - 11:08am
posted by Billie Owens in events, batavia, richmond library.
Event Date and Time: 
July 9, 2015 -
6:00pm to 8:30pm

Sponsor:  Richmond Memorial Library, 19 Ross St., Batavia

Event:  Adult Summer Reading Club Edition of Reel Discussions

Date & Time:  Thursday, July 9th at 6 p.m.

Come view the movie and join us for a group discussion afterward. The movie for this Adult Summer Reading Club Edition of Reel Discussion is “The Avengers.” Marvel makes cinematic history as it unites the super hero team of a lifetime. For more information, call the library at 343-9550 or log onto www.batavialibrary.org

June 27, 2015 - 8:40am
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, accident.

A motorcycle accident is reported on the westbound Thruway at mile marker 387.6. The rider of the bike is conscious. Town of Batavia Fire Department and Mercy medics are responding.

June 26, 2015 - 9:37pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Stafford.

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When offered a ride in a Polaris Slingshot this evening, I accepted of course, as a matter of journalist obligation, a reportorial call of duty. 

The report: What a blast.

John G. (he didn't want to give his last name for publication) picked up his new trike in Rochester yesterday. He was parked near Tops talking with a friend when I happened by.

He took me for a spin down Main Street.

The three-wheeler is 1,500 pounds with a 180 hp engine, so it really moves. Like a mullet (business up front, party in the back), the Slingshot has the look of a sports car (if your car is a Starfighter) ahead of you as it zooms down the road with the feel of a motorcycle pushing from behind. On turns and acceleration (and, man, can it accelerate) it reminds you of a top-end sports car, but with the rumble and heft of a powerful bike pushing you along.

"It's just as much fun to drive slow as drive fast," John said.

We turned a lot of heads -- including a couple of police officers on patrol -- going down Main Street.

When we parked back at Tops he said, "If you wait around 20 minutes, we'll have 20 people here, about one arriving a minute."

The words were barely out of his mouth when two people on motorcycles pulled up beside us, and a minute later, two more people walked up, as I pulled away, I looked in my rearview mirror and saw more people walking up.

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June 26, 2015 - 6:43pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia.

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A truck bearing a wide load caused a traffic snarl on Ellicott Street shortly after 6 p.m. when the driver found it more difficult than anticipated to maneuver his rig onto Harvester Avenue. The cargo was apparently intended for a business on Harvester. The driver eventually got the load moved enough to allow traffic to pass, but no word on whether the puzzle of how to get it down Harvester was eventually solved.

June 26, 2015 - 5:34pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in GCEDC, Batavia Downs, business, batavia.

Dealing just with hard numbers -- setting aside speculation on hoped-for new revenue and "the multiplier effect" of jobs created -- the tax abatement plan approved Thursday by the Genesee County Economic Development Center Board for a new hotel at Batavia Downs should be profitable for taxpayers, according to data obtained by The Batavian from a GCEDC staffer.

The abatements will save developers about 11.5 percent on their $5.49 million investment, and the new taxes the project generates will be about a 100-percent return to taxpayers, if you accept the notion that the project doesn't get built at all without the tax incentives. If not, it's at least 42-percent return.

By law, the developer must certify that the project requires a tax break to be feasible, according to Rachael J. Tabelski, marketing and communications director. That is a requirement for all projects considered by the GCEDC.

"We have to trust the applicant that when they say this project won't be a viable project without the tax incentives," Tabelski said.

ADK Hospitality, the hotel's developer, will save $638,000 in taxes over the next 10 years, but it won't be getting off totally free. The hotel's owners, over the next 10 years, will pay $1.1 million in various taxes.

Tabelski was quick to point out that the $638,000 in tax breaks is not money taken from taxpayers. It's just money that isn't paid to the government; money that doesn't exist if the project isn't built. Thus, the $1.1 million in taxes ADK will pay over the next decade is all new revenue for schools, the county and the state (but not the Town of Batavia, which doesn't have its own tax on property).

That figure doesn't include sales tax generated by the hotel, or any anticipated increase in sales tax generated by the hoped-for increase in business at Batavia Downs. It also doesn't include employment taxes generated by the anticipated $600,000 in payroll for 25 full-time equivalent new hires at the hotel. 

The developers told the GCEDC Board that the project would generate a total of $2.8 million in tax revenue between now and 2025, but there isn't a breakdown available on what categories of taxes comprise that total. It likely covers fire district, property, bed tax, sales tax and payroll tax.

The $1.1 million in hard numbers we have includes:

  • $56,000 paid to the Town of Batavia Fire District;
  • $550,000 paid in county bed taxes;
  • $500,000 paid in property taxes over the life of the PILOT.

A PILOT is a tax break given to developers of projects that industrial development agencies, such as GCEDC, believe will create or retain jobs. It is a reduction in taxes on the increase in assessed value of a property.

Let's say a property is valued at $100,000. A business ads a new wing to its building and increases the assessed value to $150,000. The business continues to pay all property taxes on the initial $100,000 in assessed value, but gets a reduction in taxes on that additional $50,000. PILOT agreements vary, but typically, there would be no taxes due the first two years of the increase, and then taxes would be incrementally increased every two years until the 10th year, when the property owner is paying the full tax bill on the increase in assessed value.

In the case of the hotel property, the developers are buying land from Western OTB, which is currently tax-exempt and has no assessed value. It will be assessed next year, and its assessed value will go from zero to whatever that assessed value is, and the PILOT will be calculated based on that increase, unless the project is not yet completed, in which case there will be only a partial assessment with a full assessment to come during the next annual assessment period after the project's completion.

The PILOT on this project is worth $300,000. The remaining abatements are for the mortgage tax on the purchase and on the sales taxes due on material purchased during construction.

As for the multiplier effect, that's a controversial notion to some, but the idea is that if you create a new job and pay that person money, they will spend some amount of that money locally, and the churn of that money will help pay other people's wages, lifting everyone's boats. That $600,000 in new payroll could be worth millions in economic growth locally.

These figures also don't include wages paid to construction workers and purchases made from local vendors -- if any -- during construction.

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Contact: Howard Owens, publisher (howard (at) the batavian dot com); (585) 250-4118

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