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June 2, 2013 - 10:37pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, bergen.

A person in a blue pickup truck was seen on Jericho Road, Bergen, smashing mailboxes.

The caller attempted to follow the truck, but it took off at a high rate of speed and the caller was not going to attempt to keep up with it.

It was last seen on Creamery Road.

June 2, 2013 - 5:37pm

The state law meant to curtail tax breaks by IDAs for retail developments should be defined as narrowly as possible, according to Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli.

If IDAs broadly interpret the law and push through subsidies for projects that should be outside its scope, then reforms may be necessary, DiNapoli said.

"They should certainly interpret it as narrowly as possible," DiNapoli said. "Having not been a Legislator at the time, I can't overly interpret on their behalf the intent. But what I think we'll do with IDAs that are too broadly interpreting that exception is, we'll make recommendations and work with legislators to tighten up that definition, if that seems necessary to curtail the use of IDA incentives for retail."

DiNapoli was in Batavia this afternoon for a meet-and-greet fundraiser hosted by the Genesee County Democrats at Larry's Steakhouse.

Throughout a six-minute conversation with The Batavian, DiNapoli made it clear he doesn't believe IDAs should be, as a general rule, handing out tax incentives to retail projects.

Asked whether retail chains really wouldn't come to a community unless they get tax breaks, DiNapoli said "that probably varies from community to community," but went on to explain the problem, as he sees it, with such IDA incentives.

"The kind of retail projects we've seen in recent years are the kind of projects that in the long term do not promote the kind of job creation and economic development that would really make a lasting difference in a community," DiNapoli said.

"I continue to have very healthy skepticism of the value of such incentives. As we always point out, there is a cost to the communities that isn't fully realized, so it underscores that the kinds of economic development (undertaken) should be of greater significance, more long lasting, have a transformational impact, and retail doesn't really provide that."

In early May, the Genesee County Economic Development Center Board approved $1.8 million in tax incentives for COR Development to remodel the vacant space at Batavia Towne Center formerly occupied by Lowe's Home Improvement.

The package includes a reduction in property taxes and forgiveness of state and local sales taxes on building material and store fixtures.

The state law prohibits IDAs from giving away state sales tax money unless certain findings are made (there is no law that prohibits other tax breaks for retail projects). The potential findings are that the project is in a highly distressed area, is a tourist destination or will provide goods and services not readily available to area residents.

It was on the last exception that the GCEDC board based its decision on. There was no evidence presented at any public meeting to substantiate the finding.

The only known tenant at the time of the vote was Dick's Sporting Goods.

Genesee County has five small retail outlets that sell sporting goods, four of which are locally owned.

Among the arguments put forward by GCEDC CEO Steve Hyde in support of tax breaks for COR is that he needs that Lowe's space filled in order to attract major corporations to projects such as WNY Stamp and the Genesee Valley Agri-Business Park.

"I'm not sure I buy that argument," DiNapoli said. "I'm not in a position to judge that, but that argument is a stretch."

DiNapoli acknowledged that interpretation of the law is largely left up to the local IDAs.

"Even the report we put out every year (on IDAs in NYS), even that is limited by the fact that it's self-reported information," DiNapoli said. "As people have pointed out, IDAs, as well as other authorities in New York, tend to operate with a level of autonomy that I think doesn't provide a maximum opportunity for accountability.

"As you point out," he added, "there are certain exceptions and there certainly there isn't any easy way to clamp down on an IDA that might be too generous in interpreting that exception."

June 2, 2013 - 4:40pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, weather.

A tree limb down on North Lyon has knocked out power for a section of the city and town, including three traffic lights and police have asked that drivers be reminded to treat the intersections as four-way stops.

The limb down was reported at 12:30 p.m.

According to Sgt. Jason Davis, Batavia PD, National Grid has asked that rather than using city workers to cut up the tree that a National Grid crew do it. The company's tree-cutting crew is not on yet on scene and there's no ETA for its arrival.

Once the tree is out of the way, work crews will need to replace up to three utility polls.

According to National Grid, power should be restored by 6 p.m.

Nearly 440 customers in Batavia are without power.

The vehicle and traffic code requires drivers to treat an intersection with its traffic lights out as a four-way stop.

Davis wants to remind drivers to use caution at and approaching the affected intersections, which are on West Main Street and West Main Street Road (Town of Batavia) at River Street, Tops Plaza and Lewiston Road.

Time-Warner customers in the area are also without phone and Internet service.

UPDATE 7:03 p.m.: New ETA for power restoration is 10:30 p.m.

UPDATE: Power restored about 10 p.m.

June 2, 2013 - 2:51pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, fire.

A tree near the roadway is reported to be on fire at 8173 State Street Road, at the dead end. Town of Batavia Fire Department is responding.

UPDATE 2:54 p.m.: The chief reports that a portion of the tree fell into power lines.

UPDATE 2:58 p.m.: The chief says there's nothing the fire department can do there and the town's assignment is back in service. National Grid is notified. Part of the tree is dangling on a primary power line and the homeowner is advised to remain clear of it.

June 2, 2013 - 2:44pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, business, City Slickers.

Two Buffalo Bills players were at City Slickers on Saturday night to mark the restaurant's first anniversary.

Pictured are Shaun Vaccaro, of Fullblast Productions, Patrick Kelly, of Fullblast, Bills defensive back Crezdon Butler, Bills defensive back T.J. Heath and Fullblast owner Tim Walton.

June 2, 2013 - 2:00pm
posted by Billie Owens in animals, Darien.

Didn't catch the address, but a caller to dispatch reports that two very large Newfoundland dogs, "Newfies," are sleeping on her porch. They are nice and friendly but she has never seen them before and has no idea who their owner is.

An animal control officer is responding.

UPDATE 2:27 p.m.: We believe the Darien address is 1402 Erie Road.

UPDATE 2:33 p.m.: The officer has picked up the pooches and is taking them to the Genesee County Animal Shelter.

June 2, 2013 - 1:45pm
posted by Billie Owens in Deal of the Day.

With the switch over to a new, more secure ad server, the cost of serving ads has gone up significantly. To help offset this cost, we've adjusted the price on some deal of the day items. Restaurant and food establishment deal of the day gift certificates are now priced at 40-percent off the face value.

Batavia Downs Grandstand Bar and Grille, 8315 Park Road, Batavia, NY: A full menu, salad bar and drinks in one of the region's most popular entertainment venues. We have a $25 gift certificate for $15. (Must be new or current Players Club member to redeem.)

Dave's Ice Cream, 3872 W. Main Street Road, Batavia, NY. Dave's offers only locally purchased products, including Perry's hard ice cream in a wide variety of yummy flavors, with a wonderful assortment of toppings and homemade waffle cones. Different soft-serve flavors are offered weekly. We have a $10 gift certificate for $6.

Alex's Place, 8322 Park Road, Batavia, NY: People come from all over the region for a fine dining experience at Alex's. It's best known for its ribs, of course, but Alex's seafood is also a favorite of the restaurant's diners. We have a $25 gift certificate for $15.

Settler's, 353 W. Main St., Batavia, NY: Settler's has a 25-year history of serving great, affordable breakfasts, lunches and dinners to Batavians. We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Alabama Hotel, 1353 Lewiston Road, Basom, NY: A historic and legendary tavern and restaurant. The Alabama Hotel is famous for its fish fries, but also serves a variety of top-quality entrees, featuring Certified Angus Beef. Now with expanded hours. We have a $25 gift certificate for $15.

Jagged Edges Salon, 4140 Veterans Memorial Drive, Batavia, NY: Jagged Edges Salon is a walk-in and appointment salon for men, women and children. It is a fun, welcoming salon that offers all hair care services including cuts, color, highlights, lowlights, perms, styling/updos, treatments, and facial waxing. Hours are 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday. We have a $20 gift certificate for $10.

T.F. Brown's, 214 E. Main St., Batavia, NY: T.F. Brown's is a great place for a good meal, good friends and to catch up on what's going on in the sports world. "If it happens in sports, it happens at Brown's." Stop in and check out our Jumbo Chicken Wings, Roast Beef on Weck and Friday night fish fry. The original family spaghetti sauce still adorns all of our Italian specialties. The other popular selections from our menu range from Super Salads, butcher cut Strip Loin and South of the Border items. We offer daily lunch and dinner specials as well as a full adult and children’s menu. We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Santino's Pizza, 2 Main St., Oakfield, NY: We're pizza and a whole lot more! Voted #1 pizza in Genesee County in blind taste test! Santino's features pizza, wings, subs, wraps, ice cream, and more! We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

The Enchanted Florist, 202 E. Main St., Batavia, NY: Whether you need just the right gift or a memorial or just want to brighten your own home or workplace, The Enchanted Florist can put together just the right floral arrangement for you. We have a $20 gift certificate for $10.

Bourbon & Burger Co., 9 Jackson St., Batavia, NY: Batavia's newest burger joint offers more than two dozen different types of tasty hamburgers. Our menu also includes a variety of sandwiches, appetizers and an extensive beer list, plus a full bar. We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Alli's Cones & Dogs, 7063 Lewiston Road, Oakfield, NY: Full breakfast, lunch and dinner menu; all-you-can-eat salad bar; ice cream served year-round; eat-in or take-out. We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Viking Valhalla Restaurant & Rose Garden Bowl21 Buffalo Road, Bergen, NY: Open for lunch Monday through Sunday, and dinner Friday and Saturday evenings. Dinner favorites are our succulent prime rib and Friday fish fries! We are always happy to help plan your special occasion -- wedding, shower, rehearsal dinner, stag party, graduation, company function, banquet, family or class reunion. We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Spirits, 78 Lake St., Le Roy, NY. Le Roy's favorite sports bar, where fun and good food are always on tap. Come try one of our many delicious burgers that we have to offer, as well as our HUGE Bomber Sandwich, homemade chicken fingers made to order, and the all-time favorite Dumpster Plate with many choices. We deliver. We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Ficarella's Pizzeria, 21 Liberty St., Batavia, NY: Dine-in, drive-thru or delivery. Featuring fresh, hearth-baked pizza since 1985, plus wings, pasta and more. We have a $20 gift certificate for $12. (Good only at the Batavia location.)

Bohn's Restaurant, 5256 Clinton St., Batavia, NY: Fine dining in an atmosphere of casual elegance. Lunch and dinner, steak, prime rib and seafood. Ask about Bohn's catering services and banquet facility. We have a $25 gift certificate for $15.

Sweet Ecstasy Bakery & Cafe, 201 E. Main St., Batavia, NY. A retail and special-order bakery and cafe located in Downtown Batavia inside Seymour Place. Offering a wide variety of items such as cookies, filled cupcakes, quick breads, pies, breakfast pastries, daily. On Fridays, Sweet Ecstasy Bakery offers fresh artisan bread like baguettes, sourdough and rye starting at noon. The custom cakes are out of this world with 3D characters or gorgeous wedding cakes to suit any budget. For all your sweet treats, we have a $10 gift certificate for $6.

The Color Salon, 35 Center St., Batavia, NY: Our attention to detail, combined with the focus on precision haircutting techniques will ensure that your hair will be your best accessory when you leave The Color Salon. We offer all hair care services including cuts, color, highlights, up-dos, as well as waxing services. We carry products such as KMS and Paul Mitchell. Now available: Bella Taylor purses! We have a $25 gift certificate for $12.50.

Greg'ry's Bakery, 13 N. Lake Road, Bergen, NY: The bakery offers a variety of the finest cakes, cookies, pies, cupcakes, breads, breakfast and lunch sandwiches and so much more. Each treat is made the same as it has been for decades and baked right here. Come in and sample some for yourself! We have a $10 gift certificate for $6.

Daphne's Restaurant & Lounge, 241 Swan St., (Off Rt. 63/Ellicott St.) Batavia, NY. Daphne's is destined to become a favorite for any who enjoy something special in a dining experience. Formerly the old St. Nick's Social Club, now unrecognizable to those who used to frequent the club, Daphne's provides you with a warm, inviting atmosphere and decor, which complements the array of wonderful dishes. We offer homemade seafood and pasta dishes, meatballs that are addicting as well as large salads, hot sandwiches & homemade potato chips. Fresh desserts are prepared in our own kitchen (tiramisu has been the top seller so far). We have a $20 gift certificate for $12.

Smokin' Eagle BBQ & Brew, 9 Main St., Le Roy, NY. The kind of downhome, laid-back and comfortable place that just feels right. Open daily for lunch, dinner and drinks, this eatery and bar features a variety of eats and drinks that are outstanding. Specializing in smoked meats -- each meat is dry rubbed with a proprietary mix of seasonings, then smoked slowly in their on-site smoker for maximum flavor and tenderness. With a variety of appetizers, burgers, sandwiches, wraps, combo platters and entrées, there's always plenty of choice for even picky eaters. Great food, frosty brews and some of the best folk around call the Smokin' Eagle BBQ & Brew their favorite -- make it your favorite today! Don't forget to ask about our catering! We have a $20 gift card for $12.

Oliver's Candies, 211 W. Main St., Batavia, NY: Oliver's, a Batavia landmark, offers the finest chocolate and confections in the area. We have a $20 gift card for $12.


June 2, 2013 - 12:30pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia.

Strong winds have brought down utility poles, live wires and a large tree, which is across the roadway and completely blocking traffic at 44 N. Lyons St. in the city. The fire department is responding. National Grid has been advised.

Also, a transformer reportedly blew up or is on fire at Oak Street and Richmond Avenue, creating a power outage in the area.

The traffic signals at West Main Street and Lewiston Road are out as a result of the power outage.

June 1, 2013 - 5:56pm
posted by Billie Owens in weather.

A severe thunderstorm is moving into the area and the National Weather Service has issued a special weather alert until 6:45 p.m. The storm is capable of producing quarter-size hail, strong, gusty winds and very heavy rain. The storm was located near Oakfield and is heading in a northeasterly direction.

June 1, 2013 - 4:04pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in thebatavian, Sponsored Post, advertisement, The Batavian Club.

Join The Batavian Club today and receive a free vinyl print of a photograph by Howard Owens of Genesee County. See the slide show below for available choices.

The prints will be made by Vinylsticks, a Batavia business that creates all manner of signs, prints, decals and stickers. 

Use the PayPal buttons below. After you complete your order, please e-mail [email protected] with name of the picture you want (mouse over the photo in the slide show to see the name).

Or, you can phone in your credit card number and details to (585) 250-4118 during normal business hours, Monday thru Thursday.

To join by mail and pay by check or credit card, download this form and mail it to us. Be sure to specify on the form which picture you want. Titles are in the upper left.

To learn about the club, visit the club's new Web site.

Annual membership, no recurring payment, $60


Annual membership with automatic recurring payment of $50 per year



June 1, 2013 - 3:17pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Arts & Crafts, business, Artisan Market at Harvester.

The Artisan Market at Harvester opened today with more than a dozen artisans participating.

The goal is to create a space that attracts artists and customers for their creations from throughout the region.

"When people come in they're going to know this is not commercial, it's not buy-sell, it's not a craft show, it's not a flee market. It's an artisan market," said Lucie Griffis, the market's manager. "We want bring a little of the artistic life from other areas to right here."

The market is open Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will host two-day events on first Fridays and Saturdays later this year. 

There is an area with tables and chairs for people to sit and enjoy entertainment acts, from jugglers to musicians. Local charities are welcome to use the space for their food-sales fundraisers (chicken BBQs, pulled pork, hot dogs and hamburgers, etc.) for free.

Top photo: Sharon Jahnke Long works on a portrait of Julliette Yates.

Author and weaver Bridgette ni Brian.

Dave Watson with his guitars.


June 1, 2013 - 2:45pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, politics.

David Houseknecht, of Scottville, with his sister Sherry Bateman, of Elba, with his van, which is covered with red, white and blue political magnets of his own design with messages such as "Stand with Rand," "America Needs Another Ronald Reagan" and "Obama and Holder, Fast and Furious Bros." 

All the signs were made for him by Batavia Sign Company, he said.

The van was parked outside Settler's Restaurant this morning.

"America's at a crossroads," Houseknecht said. "We need freedom more than ever. We need to speak about it. We need to talk about it. We need to live it. I ain't socialist and I ain't politically correct, either."

June 1, 2013 - 1:51pm
posted by Robin Walters in batavia, Care-A-Van Ministries.

Care-A-Van has begun their weekly summer cookouts at Austin Park. This past Thursday, they served 415 free dinners to the community. Each week there is a different guest Pastor giving a short message, music by the Care-A-Van band, free dinner, local churches and agencies offering their services and much more.  Dinner is served every Thursday beginning at 6:00 PM. All are welcome. This weekly event is a great way to bring the community together to share in an awesome time of fun, food and fellowship.  Ride to Recovery is on site every week fixing kids bikes for free. Truth Ministries participates by handing out free flip flops to children and their parents. The Salvation Amy as well as local churches are on hand to meet with folks and pray with them.   Care-A-Van encourages other local agencies and churches to come out and particpate in these weekly outings. Care-A-Van can be reached at 585-343-0328.


June 1, 2013 - 1:20pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, accident.

A two-car accident with minor injuries is reported in the area of 260 State St., Batavia.

One person is requesting evaluation.

City fire and Mercy EMS responding.

June 1, 2013 - 10:56am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Genesee Cancer Assistance, DeWitt Recreation Area.

Genesee Cancer Assistance hosted a 5K race this morning that started and ended at DeWitt Recreation Area on Cedar Street. The event is combined with a chicken BBQ, chance auction and balloon release.

We'll post race results after we receive them.

June 1, 2013 - 10:48am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Liberty Street.

A thief threw a rock through a window door at the Sherwin-Williams store on Liberty Street, Batavia, some time overnight and made off with an undisclosed amount of cash from a safe in the office.

The store is open today.

Batavia PD is not releasing any further information at this time.

June 1, 2013 - 10:44am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Genesee ARC, garbage collection, bativia.

Genesee ARC crews were out and about this morning picking up garbage. It's the last day of a 28-year run for ARC as the contracted trash collector for the City of Batavia. From now on, residents are required to arrange for their own garbage collection with a private hauler. ARC is going into competition with five other companies that will provide trash service.

May 31, 2013 - 11:30pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Le Roy.

An investigation by the Local Drug Enforcement Task Force into alleged marijuana cultivation in Le Roy has led to the arrest of a woman following a raid of a home on East Main Street near North Street.

Officers from multiple agencies participated in the raid and as a precaution, administrators of Wolcott School were asked to have students shelter in place.

Taken into custody and issued an appearance ticket was Sara Schimley, 23, of East Main Street, Le Roy

Schimley is charged with unlawful growing of cannabis, a Class A misdemeanor, and unlawful possession of marijuana.

The investigation is ongoing and additional charges may be pending.

Participating in execution of the search warrant were uniformed officers from Le Roy, the Sheriff's Office and State Police.

The search allegedly uncovered a quantity of marijuana and equipment used to grow marijuana.

May 31, 2013 - 11:18pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Le Roy.

A Pavilion resident already in custody for allegedly for possessing a stolen truck was charged today with burglary following an investigation by Le Roy PD.

The initial arrest of Bryan M. Hargrave, 26, of 7273 Morrow Road, Pavilion, came Saturday by the Sheriff's Office.

Earlier that day, a box-style work truck was reported stolen from a West Main Street, Le Roy, location. A deputy located the truck in Bethany and Hargrave was arrested.

On the morning the truck was reported stolen, Le Roy PD received a report at 12:30 a.m. of a forced-entry burglary in progress at a business on Lake Street.

Investigators developed a suspect, but the man could not be located at that time. 

With Hargrave in custody on the stolen property charge, Le Roy PD continued to investigate the Lake Street burglary.

Today, Hargrave was charged with third-degree burglary and a first-time DWI misdemeanor.

May 31, 2013 - 11:00pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in schools, education, alexander.

Alexander Elementary School hosted a community "Picnic in the Outdoor Classroom" this afternoon, which featured a chance for parents and children to explore the park together.

The state police also provided a bycicle helmet fitting booth for children. Above, Trooper John Szymkowiak fits 4-year-old Anna, of Darien, with a helmet.





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