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February 17, 2016 - 9:46am
posted by Howard B. Owens in DeWitt Recreation Area, batavia, oakfield-alabama, news.

Next winter, you might be able to play outdoor hockey, or just ice skate, at the Dewitt Recreation Area on Cedar Street in Batavia.

The plan for the county park has always included the idea of installing an outdoor ice rink at the park, but the construction has never been funded.

At yesterday's Public Service Committee meeting of the County Legislature, Highway Superintended Tim Hens said the Oakfield-Alabama Central School District is ready to donate an outdoor ice rink to the county.

The district purchased the rink some years ago with grant money, and though it proved popular when put into use, hasn't been used in recent years and the district doesn't plan to put it to use in the future.

The rink comes with 50 pairs of ice skates.

The committee agreed by consensus to allow Hens to accept the donation on behalf of the county.

The rink will likely be installed in the depression area in the middle of the walking path at the front of the park, which is the area originally designed to eventually contain a rink.

February 17, 2016 - 9:31am
posted by Howard B. Owens in county building #2, news.

County Building #2 got some water damage Monday, but the situation could have been worse if a member of the county's IT staff hadn't showed up for work that day -- President's Day -- to put in some overtime on a work project.

On a day of single-digit temperatures, a pipe froze and then burst, causing flooding throughout about 50 percent of the building.

If not for that employee, County Manager Jay Gsell said, the flooding wouldn't have been discovered until staff showed up for regular work hours on Tuesday morning.

The water spread through the building as just a thin layer, pooling in areas of floor depressions, and had to be squeegeed out. About 18 members of the Town of Batavia Fire Department turned out for the job.

Gsell said that volunteer effort was a big help in building cleanup.

However, there are storage shelves -- mostly belonging to history department -- with water still standing under them.

Highway Superintendent Tim Hens said contractors from ServePro will provide an estimate to finish the drying out process. He estimated the bid will be from $20,000 to $40,000 and he asked the Public Service Committee yesterday to authorize the contract on an emergency basis.

He expected the building's heaters to be running full force overnight to help dry out the building.

While no historical records or artifacts were damaged in the flooding, continued moisture is a threat to records and if it gets into the walls it could lead to mold and mildew problems.

There was flooding under the false floor in the county's server room, but all of the cables and connectors are encased in waterproof coverings so no equipment was damaged.

February 17, 2016 - 9:15am
posted by Howard B. Owens in genesee county, news.

Genesee County is set to make new vehicle purchases for the Highway Department and Sheriff's Office after the Public Service Committee recommended approval Tuesday of the proposals.

At its next full meeting, the County Legislature is expected to approve purchase of:

  • An asphalt paver from Ilton CAT, 4610 E. Saile Drive, Batavia, for a total amount not to exceed $169,900;
  • A 2017 Model GU713 Mack cab and chassis, in conformance to Onondaga County bid specifications, from Beam Mack Sales, Rochester, in a amount not to exceed $156,743.37;
  • Five 2016 SUV law enforcement vehicles from Van Bortel Ford, for a total purchase price of $113,955, including trade-in on four 2013 Ford sedan interceptors and a 2009 Chevy Impala.

The committee also recommend approval of five vehicles being declared surplus and sold at auction. The vehicles are a 2009 Ford Focus, a 2008 Jeep and three 2009 Chevy Impalas.

February 16, 2016 - 5:10pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, Milestones.
Mario Rosales, of Batavia, above right, was awarded the Sea Cadet Recruit of the Year for the Sullivan's Division, stationed in Buffalo.
This award was given at the annual banquet.
Mario attended Sea Cadet Recruit boot camp at the Great Lakes Naval Base in Illinois in July and attends monthly drills at the Naval Park in Buffalo. Sea Cadets also participate in community service, color guard, and other leadership activities.
The purpose of the United States Sea Cadet Corp is to foster a sense of service, dedication and leadership in America's youth.
Mario is a student at Batavia Middle School and a member of the track and cross-country teams. He is the son of Mario and Gretchen Rosales, of Batavia. He is the grandson of Alfred and Sue Rosemark, of Elba, Vicki Brownell, of Albion, and Antonio and Virginia Rosales, of Mexico.
February 16, 2016 - 4:55pm

Submitted photo: Sheriff Gary Maha of Genesee County, center, proudly displays the Sheriff Grover Cleveland Award. He is only the fifth Sheriff to receive this prestigious statewide award. Sheriff James Voutour of Niagara County, left, and Sheriff Ron Spike of Yates County made the presentation on behalf of the Sheriffs’ Institute.

Press release:

Sheriff Gary Maha of Genesee County has received the New York State Sheriffs’ Association Institute's most prestigious award, the Sheriff Grover Cleveland Award.

On only five occasions has the Sheriffs’ Institute leadership presented the highest honor that can be given a sitting New York State Sheriff -- the Sheriff Grover Cleveland Award.

The previous winners – in order – are Sheriff James Bowen, Saratoga County, Sheriff John York, Livingston County, Sheriff Kevin Walsh, Onondaga County and Yates County Sheriff Ron Spike. (All but Sheriff Spike are retired.) Between those four men, they have served almost 125 years in the Office of Sheriff. When you add Sheriff Maha’s tenure as Sheriff the total jumps to over 150 years in the Office of Sheriff.

Maha became a Genesee County Deputy Sheriff in 1967. Two years later he was promoted to Senior Investigator. In 1977, he was promoted to Chief Deputy in charge of criminal investigations. In January of 1988, he was appointed interim Sheriff. He has since been elected to seven terms as Sheriff.

His accomplishments and contributions to public safety are not limited to Genesee County. Sheriff Maha has been very active in both state and national issues dealing with public safety.

On the local level particularly noticeable contributions under Sheriff Maha’s tenure has been the implementation of the state-of-the-art Enhanced 9-1-1 Emergency Communications Center, the very effective joint drug task force with the City of Batavia and Village of Le Roy police departments and the positive culture of cooperation that has been built amongst all the county law enforcement agencies and law enforcement officers working in Genesee County.

Sheriff Maha is a past president of the New York State Sheriffs’ Association and currently serves as chairman of that organization’s Executive Committee. Governors from both parties have appointed him to criminal justice committee’s and councils including the Law Enforcement Accreditation Council, New York State Interoperable & Emergency Communications Board and the New York State Committee on Counter Terrorism.

On the national level Sheriff Maha is very active with the National Sheriffs’ Association. He serves as vice-chair of the National Sheriffs’ Criminal Justice Information/Technology Committee and is a member of the organization’s Homeland Security Committee.

Sheriff Maha is a graduate of the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Va. He holds an associates degree in Political Science and bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice.

“Sheriff Gary Maha, who is the state’s longest-tenured Sheriff, is known not only in New York State, but at the national level as a 'Sheriff's Sheriff', said Sheriff Ron Spike, Yates County, upon presenting the Sheriff Grover Cleveland Award to Sheriff Maha.

(Maha announced last month that he will not seek reelection when his term expires Dec. 31, ending his 27-year run as Genesee County's top cop.)

February 16, 2016 - 1:45pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in weather, batavia, news.


At least a foot of snow has fallen in parts of Genesee County, and in some places more, according to various weather reports. And it's still coming down. Slow and persistant.

Above, Steve Ognibene clears his driveway.


Kibbe Park.


The tracks along the side of the Harvester Center.


William Morgan, Batavia Cemetery.


Harvester Avenue.


Landon Coles and Rebecca Salvaterra clearing snow on East Avenue.

February 16, 2016 - 8:27am
posted by Howard B. Owens in weather, batavia, news.


As predicted, heavy wet snow hit Genesee County this morning, making for a tricky commute.

We've received notification of closings for GCASA and BOCES.

Above, the westbound Thruway from State Street Road.


  • Grace's Kitchen in Le Roy tonight is cancelled.
  • The UMMC Urgent Care in Le Roy is closed.
  • Bergen Town Hall is closing at noon.
  • The Section V boys basketball playoff game in Pembroke tonight has been rescheduled. Pembroke will play Gananda tomorrow at 5 p.m. The Lady Dragons will play Avon tomorrow at  7 p.m., as originally scheduled. The cost is $4 per person per game.


Main and Oak.


Main and Court.


Looking east down Main Street, Downtown.


City Firefighter Christine Marinaccio shoveling in front of the Fire Station.

February 16, 2016 - 7:30am
posted by Howard B. Owens in kelly for kids, community action of Orleans & Genesee.


Press release:

Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback and Buffalo Bills legend Jim Kelly awarded more than $190,000 in grants to area charities at his foundation’s annual grant luncheon two weeks ago. Among the 34 organizations to receive funding from the Kelly for Kids Foundation were two Batavia-area charities: Genesee ARC and Community Action of Orleans/Genesee.

The Kelly for Kids Foundation is a not-for-profit organization which aims to distribute grant money to WNY charities to assist children in need. More than $5 million has been distributed to disadvantaged and disabled youth since the foundation began in 1987. Their largest fundraiser throughout the years has been the Jim Kelly Celebrity Golf Classic, held at Terry Hills Golf Course and Banquet Facility in Batavia. This celebrity tournament brings in thousands of charity dollars which are later distributed to deserving organizations.

Both Genesee ARC and Community Action of Orleans/Genesee were nominated by Terry Hills to receive grants at the Jan. 19th luncheon due to their important work with Genesee County youth. Genesee ARC assists children with special needs through various programs, including a therapeutic horseback riding service. Community Action provides educational, emotional and financial support to disadvantaged families.

The Jim Kelly Celebrity Golf Classic is scheduled to celebrate its 30th anniversary on Monday June 6th at Terry Hills Golf Course.

February 15, 2016 - 2:30pm

The 20th Annual Betty Ellison Memorial "Strike Out for Crossroads" bowling tournament that began last Friday and ran over the weekend will continue this week.

Starting Friday night at 6 o'clock at the Mancuso Bowling Center, 214 E. Main St., Batavia, the fundraising fun continues.

Saturday start times are 3 and 6 p.m.; Sunday 1 p.m.

The team fee is $100.

For additional information call: Cindy (585) 993-0584 or Tara (585) 409-0136.

February 15, 2016 - 10:16am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news.

Megan C. Westbrook, 35, of Elmview Avenue, Lackawanna, is charged with driving while impaired by drugs, passing a red light and moving from lane unsafely. Westbrook was stopped at 12:13 a.m. Feb. 4 on Main Street, Batavia, by Officer Eric Foels.

Bradley W. Howard, 25, of Academy Street, Mayville, is charged with violation of probation. Howard was placed on probation for a DWI conviction. He allegedly absconded from probation immediately and failed to notify probation of a change of address. He was jailed on $5,000 bail.

Joseph William Freeman, 31, of Platten Road, Lyndonville, is charged with petit larceny. Freeman allegedly stole two cases of beer from Tops.

Jason C. Lusk, 35, of Collegeview Drive, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant. Lusk turned himself in to Batavia PD.

Beaky S. Kamagy, 29, of Fowlerville Road, Piffard, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .18 or greater and moving from lane unsafely. Kamagy was stopped at 1:23 a.m. Feb. 6 on Ellicott Street Road, Batavia, by Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk.

Davis Alexandre Prince, 20, of Ullswater Cresent, London, Ontario, Canada, is charged with trespass. Prince was allegedly trespassing on College Village property at 8:52 p.m. on Friday.

Jennifer Margaret Shaffer, 33, of Exchange Street, Attica, is charged with petit larceny. Shaffer was allegedly caught shoplifting from Walmart.

Sharon Denise Rawleigh, 45, of Benedict Street, Perry, is charged with petit larceny. Rawleigh was allegedly caught shoplifting from Walmart.

Caroline Marie Burgess, 47, of Benedict Street, Perry, is charged with petit larceny. Burgess was allegedly caught shoplifting from Walmart.

February 15, 2016 - 9:43am
posted by Howard B. Owens in weather, news.

The National Weather Service is predicting from 4 to 8 inches of snow tonight and has issued a winter storm warning for a 24-hour period starting at 7 p.m.

The storm total could hit 15 inches.

Heavy, wet snow is expected from this storm, which could make travel hazardous and lead to power outages.

The most difficult travel conditions could hit during Tuesday morning's commute hours.

February 14, 2016 - 2:24pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in music, batavia, entertainment.

Carmen Del Plato shared this with us, a song for Valentine's Day written by John Del Plato and performed by Anthony Del Plato.

February 14, 2016 - 2:19pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Muckdogs, baseball, sports.


We're less than a week away from the annual Batavia Muckdogs Hot Stove Dinner hosted by the  Genesee County Baseball Club.

Above, Travis Sick, general manager, with Diane Hawn and Russ Salway, hold a few of the items that will be up for auction at the dinner.

The dinner is from 4:30 to 8 p.m., Saturday, at the Sacred Heart Church Hall, 17 Sumner St., Batavia.

Tickets are $25 for adults and $15 for children 12 and under.

The evening will begin with a cocktail hour followed by a buffet dinner at 5:30. 

The night also features live and chance auctions of baseball-related memorabilia (including signed bats and balls), work by local artists, and gift certificates from a variety of local businesses.

Tickets may be purchased in Batavia at Dwyer Stadium, Gerace’s Hair Care, the Williams Law Firm and the office of Dr. Alan Barcomb.

February 14, 2016 - 4:48am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia.

It's minus 12 degrees outside and there are reportedly five or six people fighting, and three trying to break it up, in the traffic circle, South Main and Oak streets, Batavia.

Batavia PD is responding.

UPDATE 4:49 a.m.: A dispatcher tells a responding officer that the caller is not very cooperative, that she won't come outside and that "everything is calm now."

February 14, 2016 - 4:46am
posted by Howard B. Owens in alexander, news.

A car has reportedly driven into a shed at 9540 Halstead Road, Alexander.

The driver is said to be stuck in the vehicle, but not injured.

Alexander fire dispatched.

UPDATE 4:52 a.m.: A chief on scene reports that a family member there; the driver is out of the vehicle and in the family member's car, so Alexander's engine does not need to respond. However, the ambulance is requested to the scene for a sign-off.

February 14, 2016 - 4:29am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy, news.

A water pipe has reportedly burst at an apartment complex at 8542 W. Bergen Road, Le Roy.

A dispatcher was trying to talk a person through how to shut off the water while Le Roy fire was being dispatched. The person may have gotten it shut off.

Le Roy fire is responding.

UPDATE 4:34 a.m.: The water is shut off and Le Roy fire is back in service.

February 13, 2016 - 7:55pm
posted by Billie Owens in fire, batavia, news, Le Roy.

An attic fire is reported at 25 Hutchins St. in Batavia. City firefighters are responding.

UPDATE 8:02 p.m.: Command on scene reports this is a two-story, multi-unit dwelling and that both upstairs bedrooms are on fire.

UPDATE 8:17 p.m.: Fire is out. Checking for extensions.

UPDATE 8:18 p.m.: Capt. Bob Fix praised the residents for quickly pinpointing the fire location and contacting emergency dispatch. The residents said they were in the basement and repeatedly tried replacing a blown fuse. Subsequently, they smelled smoke and then they found a fire in the attic.

UPDATE 9:26 p.m.: City fire is back in service.

February 13, 2016 - 7:50pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia HS, Notre Dame, hockey, sports.


Notre Dame beat Batavia 6-3 in a regular-season hockey game today at Falleti Ice Arena.

The hometown rivals will face off again next weekend in a first-round sectional playoff game.






February 13, 2016 - 4:07pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in GSO, Genesee Symphony Orchestra, music, entertainment, batavia, GCC.


About 20 young musicians joined the Genesee Symphony Orchestra today to sit next to the members of the orchestra playing the instrument of their choice during a rehearsal for tomorrow's concert at Genesee Community College.

Tomorrow's concert is called "Flutes and Flourishes" and will be conducted by Nicholas DelBello, one of the four finalists for a permanent appointment as conductor.

Guest artist is Christine Baily Davis on flute, with performances by the Buffalo Brass Choir and Miranda DelBello.

Concertgoers are invited to arrive at GCC's Stuart Steiner Theatre at 3 p.m. for Meet the Orchestra. The concert begins at 4 p.m.

The show includes pieces by Mozart, Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, Franz Doppler and Ottorino Resphighi.

Tickets are available at the door, or purchase online. Click here.








To purchase prints, click here.




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