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April 1, 2016 - 5:14pm
posted by Billie Owens in weather, news.

From the National Weather Service in Buffalo:

A winter weather advisory is in effect here from 5 p.m. Saturday, April 2, through 5 a.m., Sunday, April 3.

The advisory is for snow and blowing snow, with accumulations three to six inches. The greatest snow totals will be across the hills south of Buffalo.

Winds -- northwest at 15 to 30 mph with gusts up to 40 mph. Visibility under a half mile at times.

Snow will accumulate on roads and create slippery driving conditions.

A winter weather advisory is normally issued for a variety of winter weather conditions such as light snow, blowing snow, sleet, freezing rain and wind chills.

While the weather will be significant, the word advisory implies that severe weather is not anticipated.

April 1, 2016 - 11:22am
posted by Billie Owens in crime, Darien, batavia, news.

Kendra Marie McGuire, 25, of Bryant Street, North Tonawanda, is charged with fourth-degree grand larceny. She was arrested and issued an appearance ticket for April 26 in Darien Town Court. It is alleged that she stole cash and coins valued at more than $1,000 from a residence on Richley Road in Darien in November of 2012. The case was investigated by Sheriff's Deputy Chad Minuto.

Daniel Joseph Kish, 44, of Payne Avenue, of North Tonawanda, was charged with aggravated unlicensed operation, 3rd, and unsafe turn/failure to signal at noon on March 17. He was arrested on the charges March 31 after turning himself in on an arrest warrant out of the City of Batavia. Kish allegedly missed city court for prior alleged traffic violations. Bail was set at $250 and he did bail himself out at city court. He was released and is to reappear in city court on May 18. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Michael Lute.

April 1, 2016 - 8:39am
posted by Billie Owens in news, batavia.

rossturkey.jpg

Photo by Jim Burns.

A dead turkey on Ross Street this morning has been tying up traffic. No word if it's been removed yet.

March 31, 2016 - 4:10pm
posted by Billie Owens in accident, Stafford, news.

A motor-vehicle accident is reported east of Transit Road at 6248 Main Road, Stafford. A person is said to have a minor neck injury. State Police are on scene. Stafford Fire Department and Mercy medics are responding.

March 31, 2016 - 4:05pm
posted by Billie Owens in Milestones, byron, bergen.

Press release:

Earlier this month, 23 students from the Byron-Bergen Jr./Sr. High School were inducted as new members of the National Junior Honor Society (NJHS). They proudly joined the 30 standing members of the school’s NJHS.

The NJHS program highlights the well-rounded students at Byron-Bergen. Inductees are selected based on their high standards of scholarship, citizenship, service, leadership, and character. All members are required to demonstrate their achievements in each of these areas. The 2016 new members are:

7th Grade

8th Grade

Nicholas Baubie

Bianca Brumsted

  (not pictured)

Emily Chaback

Jonah Clare

Richard Denson

Joshua Fleming

Eden Goff

Sara Goodman

Hope Hersom

 

Kelly Ireland

Colby Leggo

Gavin Lewis

John Mercovich

Bryanne Puma

Alaura Rehwaldt

Joshua Swapceinski

Xavier Thomas

Matthew Zwerka

Elizabeth Donnelly

  (not pictured)

Kyle Foeller

Chad Green

Caleb Sharpe

 

9th Grade

Sabastian Pawlukewicz

 

NJHS President Abby Vurraro addressed the audience and told of a recent meeting with her idol Jennie Finch, the University of Arizona NCAA softball champion and Olympic gold medalist. Vurraro shared Finch’s motto of “Dream and Believe.” She challenged her fellow members to “be determined to push the limits even if no one believes you can.”

The induction ceremony featured two additional guest speakers: Byron-Bergen Math teacher Tiffany Luksch; and Social Studies teacher Bryan Kavanaugh.

Luksch shared examples of how individuals with drive and determination are “able to overcome adversity and challenging circumstances with strength and resilience.” She told the stories of several young activists, including education advocate Malala Yousafzai; 14-year-old feminist Julia Bluhm, who challenged "Seventeen" magazine to portray real women; ambitious 13-year-old Neveah Mosher, who challenged herself to read over 300 books a year; and Jack Andraka, a high school sophomore who invented a new method to detect pancreatic cancer. She then shared a personal story of a current student at Byron-Bergen who has also overcome great challenges.

Kavanaugh’s speech continued the empowering message. He shared a quote he had placed on his classroom whiteboard from one of the most powerful businesswomen in the country, NBCUniversal Cable Chairman Bonnie Hammer: “The biggest mistake to me is complacency.” Kavanaugh applauded the students for their accomplishments so far in life, but also challenged them to not become complacent and always strive to improve.

As part of the induction ceremony, each new inductee received a certificate and pin, and the distinct honor to be a part of the National Junior Honor Society. Over a million students participate in NJHS: https://www.njhs.us/. Membership not only recognizes students for their accomplishments, but also challenges them to develop further through active involvement in school activities and community service.

March 31, 2016 - 3:40pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, byron, bergen, news.

Press release:

The Genesee County Local Drug Enforcement Task Force, comprised of officers from the Genesee County Sheriff's Office, Batavia Police NET officers, and the Le Roy Village Police Department, concluded an investigation into the sale of marijuana in the towns of Bergen and Byron.

Cody D. Mayer, 23, of Lake Avenue, Bergen, was arrested and charged with two counts of criminal sale of marijuana, 3rd, a Class E felony, and one count of criminal sale of marijuana, 4th, a Class A misdemeanor.

On March 30, Mayer was arrested by a uniformed deputy of the Genesee County Sheriff's Office at the County Jail, while he was incarcerated for a separate charge, on a Genesee County Grand Jury indictment warrant. It is alleged that Mayer sold a quantity of marijuana to an agent of the Drug Task Force while in the towns of Bergen and Byron.

Mayer was jailed without bail.

The District Attorney's Office and uniform members of the Sheriff's Office assisted the Task Force members with the investigation.

March 31, 2016 - 3:28pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, batavia, drug task force, news.

Press release:

The Genesee County Local Drug Enforcement Task Force, comprised of officers from the Genesee County Sheriff's Office, Batavia Police NET officers, and the Le Roy Village Police, concluded an investigation into the sale of "crack" cocaine in the City of Batavia with the arrest of a City of Batavia woman Wedesnday afternoon.

Jennifer M. Moore, 30, of Tracy Avenue, is charged with two counts of criminal sale of a controlled substance, 3rd, a Class B felony, and two counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance, 3rd, also a Class D felony.

The defendant was arrested on Wednesday afternoon on a Genesee County Grand Jury indictment warrant by the Drug Task Force and uniform officers from the City of Batavia PD. She was jailed without bail. The investigation is continuing into the sales of illicit drugs from the defendant's residence with further charges and arrests pending.

Task Force members were also assisted in the investigation by the District Attorney's Office.

March 31, 2016 - 3:15pm
posted by Billie Owens in alexander, news.

A tree fell, broke a utility pole and took down power lines at 9680 Beaver Road, Alexander. The location is between Dodgeson and Beaver roads. Alexander Fire Department is responding.

UPDATE 3:18 p.m.: "We've got primary wires down," says a first responder on scene. "Be advised they are off the road. They're just laying across the driveway of a house." National Grid is being informed.

March 31, 2016 - 2:50pm
posted by Billie Owens in Town of Batavia Fire Department, Harley Raffle, news.

Press release:

As a public safety, not for profit agency, the membership and Board of Directors of the Town of Batavia Fire Department, Inc., strive to conduct all of our activities above board and fully compliant with all Federal, State and local laws. 

With recent events, we have decided that it would be prudent to fully examine our fundraising activities to make sure that they are compliant with all applicable rules, regulations and laws.

A thorough examination will take time to complete. With our largest fundraiser scheduled for just a few months down the road, we have decided it would be best to suspend our very popular Harley-Davidson Motorcycle Raffle, until we are completely satisfied that we are in full compliance.

We would like to thank all our past supporters including our sponsors, our vendors, and the volunteer members and significant others who sell tickets and work the event.

Most importantly, we would like to thank those who have supported us financially by purchasing tickets and attending our raffles. You have made this event successful every year.

We will not be commenting further until the examination is completed and a decision has been made on future fundraising efforts. 

March 31, 2016 - 11:46am
posted by Billie Owens in muckdogs, batavia, news, reading program.

Press release:

The Batavia Muckdogs today announced the start of their reading program, designed to promote reading amongst the youth of the local communities. Along with the help of New York’s 529 College Savings Program, 2016 will mark the fourth year of the “HIT THE BOOKS with the Batavia Muckdogs” reading program.   

As part of this program, the Muckdogs have provided various schools and libraries across local counties with customized bookmarks. On the back of these bookmarks, children can have a parent, guardian, teacher, or librarian initial each time they complete a book. When a child completes 10 books, they can redeem the bookmark at the Dwyer Stadium box office for a FREE TICKET to any Sunday-Thursday Batavia Muckdogs’ game!

In addition to the free ticket, the child will also receive a prize courtesy of New York’s 529 College Savings Program. If a child reads 20 books, they will be entered into a drawing to win a backpack with school supplies, provided by New York’s 529 College Savings Program; along with the opportunity to throw out a first pitch at a Muckdogs game. 

In addition to the many participating schools, bookmarks will be made available to children at the following local libraries:

  • Richmond Memorial Library (Batavia)
  • Lee-Whedon Memorial Library (Medina)
  • Byron-Bergen Public Library
  • Haxton Memorial Library (Oakfield)
  • Hoag Library (Albion)
  • Pavilion Public Library
  • Woodward Memorial Library (Le Roy)
  • Holley Community Free Library

Any questions about the reading program, bookmarks, or redeeming for tickets can be answered by Josh Swan, at 585-343-5454, ext. 1005.

March 31, 2016 - 11:37am
posted by Billie Owens in hawley, news, sex offenders.

Press release:

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) today chastised entrenched Assembly leaders for blocking legislation he introduced that would establish several additional protections for our children from sex predators.

Hawley authored legislation to prevent Level 2 and Level 3 sex offenders from obtaining employment in amusement parks, and another bill requiring certain sex offenders to report their employment addresses. Both were blocked from being voted on by the Assembly Majority.

“I am extremely disappointed that legislation to protect our children and improve public safety was met with such disregard by the Assembly Majority,” Hawley said. “There is absolutely no excuse for ignoring measures that would prevent sex offenders from striking again and provide safeguards for our children.

"This is yet another example of the futility of Albany politics. Ideas that would benefit us all often die because they aren’t top priorities of the speaker and his New York City cronies. Assembly Majority members should be ashamed of themselves.”

March 31, 2016 - 11:24am
posted by Billie Owens in news, batavia, DeWitt Recreation Area, Earth Day.

Press release:

Earth is a Wild Blue Planet! On Saturday, April 23, celebrate Earth Day (nationally recognized on Friday, April 22) by helping with habitat cleanup at DeWitt Recreation Area, making awesome crafts out of recycled materials, and taking home your own live tree seedling!

It is located off Cedar Street in the City of Batavia.

Sign up for the naturalist-guided Blue Planet Hike, Helping Hands for Wildlife, habitat checkup, and catching Clean Water Critters by calling 585-344-1122.

Learn about aquatic habitats, the wild animals that live there, and how you can help them! Grab a friend or sign up as a group!

Schedule of Activities at DeWitt Recreation Area, Saturday, April 23:

  • 9 – 11 a.m. -- Park Cleanup Projects: Helping Hands for Wildlife
  • 11 a.m. to noon -- Wildlife and Water: A Blue Planet Hike
  • Noon to 1 p.m. -- Habitat Checkup: Water Monitoring Activity
  • 1 – 2 p.m. -- Clean Water Critters

Ongoing -- 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. --  Special Guests, “The Incredible Journey" game and Earth-Friendly Crafts!

Special guests include: Genesee County Soil and Water Conservation District, Genesee County Youth Bureau/AmeriCorps, Batavia Youth Bureau, Department of Environmental Conservation Fisheries, GLOW Region Solid Waste, ACORNS and more!

Scouts may earn requirements for the following projects by signing up for Earth Day Activities: Webelos Naturalist 11 and 12, Daisies Between Earth and Sky, Brownies The Wonders of Water, Juniors Animal Habitats badge, Cadettes Breathe Journey, Boy Scouts Bird Study Merit Badge 1. Sign up for Helping Hands for Wildlife and leave the park better than you found it!

Celebration is FREE! Please pre-register for activities by calling 585-344-1122.

To register call (585) 344-1122. For more information visit the Web site at http://www.co.genesee.ny.us/departments/parks/, or contact Shannon Morley at [email protected] or (585) 344-1122. 

March 31, 2016 - 11:16am
posted by Billie Owens in accident, news, Alabama.

A car vs. pole accident with minor injuries is reported on Lewiston Road. Alabama fire and Mercy medics are responding. The driver is out complaining of knee pain.

UPDATE 11:30 p.m.: Occupants are out. Wires are down. National Grid will be notified of the damaged pole.

March 31, 2016 - 11:01am
posted by Billie Owens in Le Roy, music education, news, Milestones.

Press release:

The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Foundation has designated Le Roy Central School District as one of the 2016 Best Communities for Music Education.

This designation is awarded to district and school music education programs "for outstanding efforts by teachers, administrators, parents, students and community leaders who have made music education par of the core curriculum."

Le Roy has been awarded this honor 10 times in the last 11 years. The Le Roy music program supports over 360 students in chorus and over 210 students in band district-wide.

According to Mary Luehrsen, NAMM Foundation executive director, the Best Communities designation brings "hard-won visibility to music classes, programs and departments that are keeping music education alive in our schools.

The school district congratulates the Le Roy Music Department -- Lindsay Buckel, Jessa Dechant, Dan DeLuca, Jackie McLean, Brad Meholick, Matt Nordhausen -- students, parents and school community on their hard work and dedication to music in Le Roy!

March 31, 2016 - 10:45am
posted by Billie Owens in crime, batavia, news.

Timothy J. Wood Sr., 27, of Liberty Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree harassment. He was arrested at 3:34 a.m. on March 28 as the result of an incident that occured at a residence on West Main Street on March 26. He was released on an appearance ticket and had a court date on March 29. The case was handled by Bataiva Police Officer Eric Foels, assisted by Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk.

Michael S. Garrett, 25, of South Main Street, Batavia, is charged with DWI, DWI with a BAC of .08 percent of higher, and having an unregistered motor vehicle. The charges stem from a traffic stop condiucted at 1:56 p.m. on March 20 in the area of West Main Street and Dellinger Avenue. His vehicle registration was found to be expired and after field tests, he was arrested for DWI. Garrett was issued an appearance ticket and released to a sober party. He is due in city court on April 13. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Chad Richards, assisted by Sgt. Daniel Coffey.

March 31, 2016 - 6:45am
posted by Billie Owens in news, UMMC, crime.

From our news partner WBTA:

Surgical equipment with an estimated value of nearly $300,000 has been stolen from United Memorial Medical Center and offered for sale on the popular Internet auction site eBay, WBTA and The Batavian have learned.

Batavia Police detectives are conducting a criminal investigation, the results of which are expected to be presented to the Genesee County Grand Jury in April.

Batavia Police Chief Shawn Heubusch declined  comment noting “it is an ongoing investigation.”

United Memorial Medical Center, now part of the Rochester Regional Health System, said through a spokeswoman, “UMMC is cooperating with the police.” The hospital declined further comment.

It has been learned that the prime suspect in the case is a former employee of UMMC.

Law enforcement and sources within the hospital say that the former employee, a woman, worked in the hospital's purchasing department. She resides in Livingston County.

A health care professional with knowledge of the surgical inventory, said one of the stolen items was a laparoscopic camera. A complete system consisting of the camera and related equipment, can sell for $20,000.

No arrest has been made. Law enforcement is waiting for the case to be presented to the grand jury.

A check of eBay reveals a huge market for surgical equipment. Under the category of medical and surgical equipment, there were 18,584 listings. A local doctor familiar with the market said, “you would be amazed to learn what kind of (surgical equipment) is available on eBay.”

The Web site also has a category for “used medical equipment” which contained 1,968 listings.

March 30, 2016 - 1:43pm
posted by Billie Owens in accident, batavia, news.

A car versus pedestrian accident with injuries is reported at 8157 State Street Road, Batavia. There are two occupants in the vehicle. Law enforcement is on scene. Town of Batavia Fire Department is responding along with Mercy medics.

UPDATE 1:47 p.m.: The patient is being transported via ambulance to the Genesee County Airport hangar and will be flown to a hospital by Mercy Flight.

March 30, 2016 - 12:11pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, steve hawley, medicaid cap.

Press release: 

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) today announced his staunch opposition to rumors that the governor and legislative leaders plan to eliminate the Medicaid Expenditure Cap for counties in the 2016-17 Enacted State Budget. New York already spends more in Medicaid than any other state, more than $54 billion, and is the only state in the nation that forces a majority of the expenses onto counties.

“I am outraged at the thought of the governor ending the expenditure cap for counties,” Hawley said. “Over one-third of our entire state budget is spent on Medicaid, and now the governor and his New York City cronies want upstate to pay even more because they can’t get their finances in order. That is absolutely outlandish.

"Our counties cannot afford any more expensive Albany mandates. Eliminating the cap would cause expenses to be passed down to homeowners in the form of higher property taxes. Downstate’s tax and spend mentality is out of control and I plan to fight tooth and nail against this injustice.”

Local leaders have also expressed concerned regarding the proposed elimination of the Medicaid Expenditure Cap for counties.

“New York State is the only state in the nation that forces this kind of expense onto localities,” said Orleans County Chief Administrative Officer Chuck Nesbitt. “We sit here and relatively quietly eat the false narrative that evil local government is the cause of high property taxes in New York State and now we have to watch as the state prepares to open the flood gates again of unfunded mandates and let it fall right on the heads of local property taxpayers.”

UPDATE 3:55 p.m.: Within the last hour, a press release was issued by the New York State Association of Counties on the issue of the Medicaid proposal in the State budget.

A statement by NYSAC President William E. Cherry on the Medicaid Proposal in the Final State Budget Agreement:
 
"County leaders have been assured by the Governor that the final 2016-17 State Budget will not change the hard cap on local Medicaid costs, nor will it add additional costs to counties and county taxpayers. The budget will put additional emphasis on policing the integrity of the State's public health insurance program, which has been a long-time focus of county governments dating back to its inception in 1966. County officials will continue to work with the state to identify ways to control costs, identify savings, and promote an efficient Medicaid program; after all, it is a taxpayer funded program, and that is who we collectively work for." 
           
The New York State Association of Counties is a bipartisan municipal association serving the counties of New York State. Organized in 1925, NYSAC's mission is to represent, educate, advocate for, and serve member counties. www.nysac.org 
March 30, 2016 - 11:55am
posted by Billie Owens in genesee county women's republican club, news, batavia.
Press release:

The Genesee County Women’s Republican Club (GCWRC) is excited to announce the 2016 Spring Breakfast. It will take place on Saturday April 9th at the Dibble Family Center located at 4110 W. Main Street Road, Batavia. The breakfast begins at 9 a.m. and registration is requested by April 4.

“Supporting women and Republican candidates in politics and government is important and I encourage anyone that wants to be involved in our community decision making process to attend this event,” said Rachael Tabelski, president of the Women’s Republican Club.

“For too long members of our community have missed opportunities to participate in civic engagement, and the GCWRC is looking to change this."

Not only will participants enjoy a hearty breakfast, but will learn about new initiatives that the GCWRC is undertaking and have the opportunity to network with local, state and federal representatives and their staff.

Participants will also hear from Donna Saskowski, executive director of the Genesee ARC who is the guest speaker of this year’s event. The Genesee ARC is the Club’s Caring for America 2016 charity.

The cost of breakfast is $20 for members and $25 for non-members. Checks can be made out to GCWRC, mailed to Treasurer Michele Smith at 20 Canterbury Lane, Bergen, NY 14416.

If you have a question or want to learn more about the GCWRC, contact Rachael Tabelski, 558-409-4008 or at r[email protected]

March 30, 2016 - 11:45am
posted by Billie Owens in byron, news, adults with developmental disabilities.

Due to changing circumstances and the diminished availability of volunteers, the Genesee County Dances for Adults with Developmental Disabilities has decided to only hold one dance per year, according to dance coordinator Pat Iamon.

With the help of many, many dedicated volunteers, the dances have been sponsored by Byron Ladies Auxiliary and held at the Byron Fire Hall.

The dances, always well-attended with fun, timely themes, started back in 2002 as part of an internship project by Iamon, then a student at SUNY Brockport. This “one-time” event grew into monthly dances from September through May. Last year, the dances were cut back from nine to three.

They provided much-needed community-based fun for all of Genesee County’s adults with developmental disabilities living at home, in group homes or  in facilities.

“Circumstances have changed for us and sadly it’s time that we cut back on the dances to one per year," Iamon said. "Our volunteers are mostly retired and some of us head South for most of the winter; so rather than stop the dances all together, we decided to cut back to one great dance per year."

She plans to make the announcement at the next dance -- the PJ Dance from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 12th at the Byron Fire Hall.

As always the dances are open to all individuals with developmental disabilities ages 13 and up living in Genesee County. Anyone wanting more information on the dances can call Pat Iamon 245-2918 or Laura Platt 548-2245.

These are photos submitted from previous dances and published on The Batavian.

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Original content available for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons license.
Contact: Howard Owens, publisher (howard (at) the batavian dot com); (585) 250-4118

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