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April 26, 2017 - 11:24am
posted by Howard B. Owens in GCC, theater, arts, entertainment, news.

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Press release:

Genesee Community College’s Stuart Steiner Theatre will be transformed into the deep jungle allowing audiences to follow three cheeky monkeys. Seeno, Hearno and Sayno journey toward wisdom as they swing through the trees without a care, learning to survive as humans encroach upon their idyllic world. Three Wise Monkeys is presented by GCC’s Forum Players Children’s Theatre Ensemble and features one show only on Friday, April 28, 2017at 7 p.m. Audiences of all ages will enjoy watching Seeno, Hearno and Sayno in their quest to find their lost baby monkey, Dono, and return him to his rightful place—all while eating bananas, of course!

Tickets are $8 for adults, and $5 for seniors (55+) and students (16+) and GCC faculty/ staff. GCC students with ID are $3, and GCC alumni with ID will receive a $2 discount on adult ticket. To reserve seats contact the GCC box office at [email protected] or (585) 345-6814.

Cast and crew:

  • Maryanne Arena, Artistic Supervising Director, Leroy
  • Jessica Skehan, “Dono”, Holley
  • Taylor Renee Wilson, Narrator, Cheektowaga
  • Mikayla Godleski, Stage Manager
  • Benjamin Martis, Sayno, Curacao
  • Pedro Phellipe, Seeno, Jundiai, Brazil
  • Valentine Strange, Costume Designer, Alden 14004
  • Becka Naber, Dancer
  • Xochitl Rosario, Dancer
  • Tillison Pease, Sound Designer, York
  • Emily Carey, Narrator
  • Spencer Henley, Hearno/Tiger, Akron
  • Kaylee Koch, Lighting Designer, Alexander
  • Celeste Brownell, Hearno/Tiger, Batavia
  • Brie Cummings, Backstage/Projections, Bath
  • Gabriel Grey, Backstage, Batavia
  • Robert Reiss, Director, Batavia
  • Ed Hallborg, Technical Director,
  • Tara Pocock, Choreographer
  • Clare Francis, Narrator, Alexander
  • Kandice Green, Backstage

Photos by Maureen Spindler

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April 26, 2017 - 11:10am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, news.

Press release:

For the second consecutive year, the City of Batavia is proud to announce national award recognition as one of the Healthiest Companies in America by Interactive Health, a national leader known for its personalized wellness solutions. The City is one of 156 companies across the country being recognized for helping employees make significant and sometimes life-saving changes to improve their health.

With the help of strategic and flexible wellness initiatives, the Healthiest Companies in America recipients have accomplished tremendous success, achieving participation rates in excess of 70 percent and a low-risk health score for their total population based upon rigorous and clinically sound health evaluations.

Participants in Interactive Health’s wellness program receive a thorough health evaluation to identify risk and learn about their health status. Through a combination of rapid outreach, connection to personal physicians and tailored resources, a personalized course of action is delivered to the participant resulting in improved or maintained health. 

The City of Batavia employees and their spouses had a participation rate of 98.2% in the wellness program last year. “This is continued recognition through our wellness program that City employees and their families are proactive about making healthier lifestyle choices,” said City Manager Jason Molino. “We continue to see results from the program with greater productivity and in general a happy and healthier workforce.”

“This increase in healthy lifestyle choices is a win-win for the City and its employees in terms of cost avoidance,” explains Dawn Fairbanks, Human Resource Specialist. “The healthy employee typically costs approximately $362 per year. This healthy rating equates to approximately 88% of current employees. In contrast the unhealthiest employee may cost as much as $23,191 per year.” Last year 50 City Employees and spouses improved their score and 33 remained the same. 

April 26, 2017 - 10:52am
posted by Howard B. Owens in City Fire, batavia, news.

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At the end of seven days on the job, City Fire's new chief Stefano (Steve) Napolitano said he likes what he sees -- he likes what he sees of the City of Batavia and he thinks the local fire department is filled with good people from the rank and file up to the line officers.

"This city is very well served by the men and women of this department," Napolitano said. "I can tell you that in seven days of being here, talking with them, of working with them, meeting them, watching them, listening to them, this city is very well served by these fine men and women here."

He said the department was in good hands for the past 16 months with Dan Herberger serving as interim chief and he takes over a department that is in good shape. Right now, he's getting to know department policies and procedures, but he doesn't anticipate any big changes in operations.

"I don’t see any need to change anything and if were are gong to change anything it will be consensual among officers and the rank and file to see where we can improve, what we can improve and what services we can offer," Napolitano said.

The rise to chief comes after a 25-year career in Herkimer that took him from a rookie firefighter to assistant chief. Over that span he attended more than 600 career-related classes and earned a master's degree in executive fire service management.

A lot of young firefighters start out thinking they would like to rise to the rank of chief, but Napolitano stuck with the career path. This is his first chief assignment.

"It's a great feeling when you finally get here on one aspect and it’s a huge unnerving feeling on other aspect knowing that you are responsible for the lives and property of 15,000-plus people and the men and women in the fire department,"  Napolitano said. "I’m responsible not only to the citizens but to these men and women and these men and women’s families to make sure that our firefighters are safe and that they get home at the end of their tour. "

Napolitano said he recognizes his fiduciary responsibility to manage taxpayer money well and make sure it is spent wisely and to its proper purpose. He's also motivated, having worked hard to make it to the top, to work hard at being the best chief he can be.

"It's a great feeling being here," Napolitano said. "I feel I've accomplished a goal, but my goal is not just to have the position, but to excel at the position, to enhance the department."

Napolitano isn't married. He has a lady friend in Herkimer with a son who is a junior in high school, so she's staying in Herkimer for the time being and they'll spend weekends together. He's rented an apartment in town and is getting settled in.

His friend and Napolitano's family were part of the decision on whether to take the job in Batavia, he said.

"She and the rest of my family were definitely behind me taking the position," Napolitano said. "I made sure. I said I’m not going to do this unless you guys are supporting me. I don’t think a person is anything without their family. I’ve got a good support system."

He said he's enjoyed exploring the city, getting to know the local restaurants and finding out more about the community.

"I've really enjoyed myself so far," Napolitano said. "The city's a cute city. It's a cute city with a lot of amenities. I think it's just going to keep getting better and better."

April 26, 2017 - 6:38am
posted by Howard B. Owens in City Fire, batavia, news.

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Anne Stefaniak, City Fire's first female firefighter, who joined the department April 13, 1997, is retiring.

A farm girl from Attica, Stefaniak said she grew up a bit tom-boyish and thought becoming a firefighter -- with its physical work, problem-solving requirements and helping-people aspect, would suit her. She wasn't trying to do anything special.

"I wasn’t trying to cause waves or blaze trails," Stefaniak said. "I just wanted a chance to do something I thought would fit me and I would really want to do, and I was right. I love it. I still love it to this day. I’ll miss it terribly."

Yesterday, barring an emergency call between now and Saturday, was Stefaniak's last official day of duty.

She's retiring right at 20 years, she said, because it will allow her to devote more time to her youngest children, two daughters who are juniors and seniors at Batavia HS, and health concerns associated with being a firefighter.

"Cancer rates so much higher for firefighters," Stefaniak said. "Twenty years is long enough to poke that bear and take that risk."

Growing up on a farm prepared her well for the job, she said.

"I’ve never been a girly girl, like prissy, do my hair, do my nails or makeup and you definitely can’t be that way if you are in this job," she said.

She said it's always been in her nature to try to get through, get around, get over barriers and obstacles, which is part of what's involved in firefighting, but it's also a job that involves people and helping people, and that appealed to her, too.

"I like to help if I can and this gives you an opportunity to do that," Stefaniak said. "I feel really blessed."

Stefaniak said there were some adjustments members made when she joined the department and that wasn't always easy.

"I think it was rough on the guys, too," Stefaniak said. "It’s a small town and they never thought they’d have to work with a girl."

It was the older department members who welcomed her into the fold first, she said.

"n the long run, the oldest guys became my best friends because they were very much, if you can do the job, then welcome," Stefaniak said. "If you can’t, get out. That’s how they treated any new guy."

Since she didn't set out to be any kind of example, she just wanted a chance to be a firefighter, she didn't think much about that aspect of what she was doing, but looking back, she's proud to have been in that position.

"When people tell me it made an impression, yeah," she said. "I didn’t realize at the time or even until I hear it, but yeah. It’s probably good they didn’t tell me that ahead of time because I would have felt like pressure to be that (a role model), but it was like just good to do my thing and find out after the fact."

April 26, 2017 - 6:13am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Deal of the Day, advertisement.

Reminders of how the new Deal of the Day program works:

  • To make purchases, you must be registered. This is its own registration system, separate from the main registration for The Batavian.
  • Once registered you must be logged in.
  • You click on the orange button, if the item is not sold out, and it takes you to a PayPal button. This allows you to pay either with your PayPal account or with a credit card/debit card. The login for PayPal is completely separate from our accounts.
  • The first person to successfully complete the PayPal transaction wins the gift certificate.
  • You are eligible to buy the same item only once in a four-month period. We use the registration system to track this for you so you don't have to.
April 26, 2017 - 6:04am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy, le roy hs, schools, education, news.

Press release:

Le Roy Jr.-Sr. High School was awarded a Silver in the national rankings of U.S. News & World Report, placing in the top 10.3% of schools in the country. In New York State, the Oatkan Knights ranked 170 (moving up 10 spots from last year) out of 1,270 high schools and are among 206 schools who were awarded either Gold or Silver. U.S. News & World Report started ranking schools in 2007; last year was our first time being awarded a medal, winning a silver.

Each year, U.S. News & World Report releases its annual Best High Schools rankings awarding Gold, Silver and Bronze medals to top performing public schools at both the state level and national level. The 2017 rankings include data on more than 22,000 public high schools across the country. The report’s criteria are based on overall performance of students on state tests, participation and performance on advanced placement exams, and graduation rates. The goal of these rankings is to provide an unbiased picture of the top performing schools and how well those schools serve all of their students. There were 500 high schools or 2.4% that received Gold medals; 2,109 or 10.3% of schools earned Silver and 3,432 or 16.8% took home Bronze. 

"As an entire district and school community, we are thrilled and excited to receive this prestigious recognition. This is just one of the many examples of the hard work and dedication from our administrators, teachers, support staff, and students that occur on a daily basis. We are proud and will look to build off this positive trend upward as we shoot for the gold!" -Merritt Holly, Le Roy Central Schools Superintendent 

“The Silver Medal reflects our community’s commitment and dedication to offering an innovative school experience for all students. It also represents a growing number of students who desire to challenge themselves and use this school as a launching pad to their college and career aspirations. We are very fortunate to have such a dedicated staff throughout our entire district that goes above and beyond the call of duty every day growing our Oatkan Knights!”  -Tim McArdle, Jr.-Sr. High School Principal 

April 26, 2017 - 5:58am
posted by Howard B. Owens in sports, track and field, byron-bergen, alexander.

In track and field yesterday, Alexander beat Byron-Bergen 83 2/3 to 57 1/3 in boys and 72-69 in girls.

Boy's results:

Long Jump

BB

Brandon Burke

21’7.5”

Triple Jump

BB

Brandon Burke

44’5.5”

Shot Put

BB

Paul McDermott

35’10

Discus

Alex

Zach Jasen

112’9”

Pole Vault

BB

Justin Hannan

9’7”

High Jump

BB

Brandon Burke

6’8”

4x800

Alex

Anderson Bradshaw,

Ben Slenker,

Bryce Davis,

Trevor Zauner

9:44.4

110H

BB

Phelps

18.8

100

Alex

Terrez Smith

11.4

1600

Alex

Trevor Zauner

5:34.4

4x100

Alex

Chris McClinic,

Terrez Smith,

Job Smith,

Tyler Cook

47.1

400

Alex

Job Smith

55.1

400H

BB

Phelps

1:06.1

800

BB

Kropf

2:21.0

200

Alex

Tyler Cook

23.9

3200

Alex

Trevor Zauner

12:03.8

4x400

BB

Phelps, Gardner, Swaps, Burke

3:47.2

Girls results:

Long Jump

BB

Olivia George

16’0”

Triple Jump

BB

Kelsey Mauer

28’10”

Shot Put

BB

Olivia George

33’4”

Discus

Alex

Nicole Hume

75’5”

Pole Vault

BB

Reanne Dressler

9’7”

High Jump

Alex

Lauren Hume

4’9”

4x800

BB

Dressler, Fuller, Gonyea, Caballero

12:45.2

110H

Alex

Hailee Lowe

17.6

100

Alex

Olivia George

12.8

1500

Alex

Lauren Hume

5:41.9

4x100

Alex

Hailee Lowe, Hannah Cline, Macie Riggs, Lauren Schmieder

54.7

400

Alex

Olivia George

1:03.6

400H

BB

Morgan Fuller

1:20.1

800

BB

Siomara Caballero

2:46.6

200

BB

Miriam Tardy

28.2

3200

Alex

Katie Rebmann

13:37.2

4x400

BB

Caballero, Dressler, Rehwaldt, Gonyea

4:40.7

April 25, 2017 - 10:06pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, bergen, news.

There is a report of smoke coming from the building at Liberty Pumps, 7000 Apple Tree Ave., Bergen.

Bergen fire and Le Roy fire dispatched.

Mercy EMS asked to start in that direction.

UPDATE 10:09 p.m.: A chief on scene reports light, hazy smoke.

UPDATE 10:13 p.m.: Le Roy going back in service. Churchville had also been requested to the scene, but Churchville can go back in service.

April 25, 2017 - 9:44pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Genesee County Bar Association, news.

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The Genesee County Bar Association made a $2,500 donation -- $500 each to Genesee Justice, the YWCA, Justice for Children Child Advocacy Center, Youth Court and CASA. The funds come from membership dues paid by association members.

April 25, 2017 - 9:06pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Torrey Farms, agriculture, elba, business, news.

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Maureen Torrey, co-owner of Torrey Farms in Elba, was at the White House today along with other representatives of the country's farmers, for the signing by President Donald J. Trump of an executive order aimed at boosting agriculture and rural communities (Full text of the order).

Torrey said the farmers also met with the president and his staff and there was a productive, positive discussion about labor, infrastructure, research, trade, NAFTA, Canada and Western NY dairy.

Torrey is pictured on the far left, back row.

UPDATE: Here's a related press release from the NYS Farm Bureau:

New York dairy and vegetable farmer, Maureen Torrey from Genesee County, joined 13 other farmers from across the country for a roundtable discussion yesterday with President Donald Trump and Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue. American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall was a part of the discussion as well on issues the White House believes are most pressing for American agriculture.

Following the roundtable, President Trump signed an executive order that acknowledges a reliable, safe, and affordable food, fiber and forestry supply is critical to America’s national security, stability and prosperity. The order also establishes an interagency task force, to be chaired by Secretary Perdue, charged with identifying legislative, regulatory and policy changes that would enhance American agriculture, rural economic development, job growth, infrastructure improvements, technological innovation, energy security and quality of life in rural America. The report from the task force is due within 180 days.

“It is an honor to have a representative of New York agriculture invited to play an integral role in the roundtable discussion at the White House,” said David Fisher, New York Farm Bureau President.  “Farm Bureau looks forward to working with the administration and Congress on issues like trade, farm labor and regulatory reform, with the goal of boosting American agriculture and increasing access to New York-grown food.”

The event is an historic occasion, as it is believed the last time a group of farmers met with a U.S. president this early in an administration was prior to the election of Ronald Reagan in 1980.  

It followed the swearing-in of newly confirmed Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue. New York Farm Bureau is supportive of Secretary Perdue and is pleased to see him finally in place as the head of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

“Secretary Perdue is one of us. He grew up on a dairy farm, raised row crops, and was an agri-business owner. It is important to have someone in this position who understands trade, immigration and a whole host of other issues that are vital to a farmer’s success. Secretary Perdue spoke about having the opportunity to visit New York during his confirmation hearing, and New York Farm Bureau would like to personally invite him to our great state to showcase the opportunities and challenges that exist for our diverse membership,” said Fisher.

April 25, 2017 - 8:24pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, news, Alabama.

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A person died in a one-car crash in the area 7681 Alleghany Road, Alabama, at about 5 p.m. today.

State Police have no details on the accident available now and the name of the victim is not yet available.

The accident is under investigation.

Alabama fire responded to the scene.

Pembroke and Indian Falls were both dispatched for traffic control, but Pembroke was canceled soon after the dispatch and Indian Falls cleared the scene about 20 minutes later.

UPDATE: The driver is identified as Joseph Manley, 19, of Albion. He was driving a 2006 Ford F250. He was traveling northbound on Route 77 and crossed the southbound lane and struck a tree on the west side of the roadway. Manley was pronounced dead at the scene by Coroner Jeffrey McIntire. (Photo provided by State Police.)

(Initial Report)

April 25, 2017 - 6:19pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in steve hawley, news.

Press release:

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) is criticizing the governor for not including $4.6 million in SAFE Act funding within the 154 items he vetoed late last week. The funding has yet to be used because the SAFE Act was enacted four years ago, and those funds could be used more appropriately to rebuild infrastructure and fund schools in Western New York.

“I am disheartened by Gov. Cuomo’s failure to cease funding for the SAFE Act,” Hawley said. “I voted against the Capital Projects budget bill, which contained millions to fund the unconstitutional SAFE Act, and I continue to stand in opposition.

“The high number of vetoes makes it clear that there is massive waste in the budget,” Hawley continued. “The governor vetoed millions to fund workforce development, various grant programs and environmental projects across the state but doubled-down on his fight against law-abiding gun owners.

"Funding for the SAFE Act hasn’t been used since its inception, so it should have been eliminated from the budget. We need a budget that’s free of waste and only utilizes funds to benefit New Yorkers.”

April 25, 2017 - 6:13pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in pets, animals, batavia, news.

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We told you about Roamer yesterday, the German shepherd pup belonging to Don Mengs. Roamer ran off into the woods near Country Max and went into the DeWitt Recreation Area. Roamer is still missing. It's possible somebody has found him and still has him. If you see Roamer, contact Don at (716) 698-6096.

April 25, 2017 - 6:06pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Deal of the Day, advertisement.

Reminders of how the new Deal of the Day program works:

  • To make purchases, you must be registered. This is its own registration system, separate from the main registration for The Batavian.
  • Once registered you must be logged in.
  • You click on the orange button, if the item is not sold out, and it takes you to a PayPal button. This allows you to pay either with your PayPal account or with a credit card/debit card. The login for PayPal is completely separate from our accounts.
  • The first person to successfully complete the PayPal transaction wins the gift certificate.
  • You are eligible to buy the same item only once in a four-month period. We use the registration system to track this for you so you don't have to.
April 25, 2017 - 5:58pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, batavia, news.

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We do not have any new information about the fire at this time.

UPDATE: Bob Tripp, 1st assistant chief for Town of Batavia, and scene commander yesterday, said the cause of the fire is still undetermined, but it appears to be electrical in nature. There was still electricity going to the barn complex and a portion of the barn has been damaged by the wind. That may have caused a line to short out and yesterday's wind fanned the sparks into flames.

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April 25, 2017 - 5:09pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, news, Alabama.

A car into tree accident is reported in the area of 7681 Alleghany Road, Alabama.

The initial call was for possible entrapment and possible serious injury, but units have just been told they can respond non-emergency.

Traffic is shut down at MacAlpine Road and at Ledge Road and Route 77.

Alabama fire and Mercy EMS dispatched.

Fire police from Pembroke and Indian Falls requested to assist with traffic.

UPDATE 5:22 p.m.: Indian Falls is back in service.

April 25, 2017 - 4:40pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, batavia, news.

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Here are a few photos from the fire this afternoon on Oak Orchard Road, Batavia.

The first two are by Frank Capuano. The others are reader submitted.

I was at the fire and will have photos posted later.

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April 25, 2017 - 4:29pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in DePaul, Batavia Square Apartments, planning, zoning, news.

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A plan to build apartment complexes on East Main Street drew a full house to Monday's City Council meeting, but the project, aimed at people in vulnerable populations, got mixed reviews from the 23 speakers.

The City Council was being asked to move forward a resolution to rezone the properties at 661, 665 and 679 E. Main St. Most of the location is a former State Police barracks.

The area is currently part of an industrial zone. The council is being asked to consider rezoning it to Commercial, or C2.

This would allow the project from DePaul, known as Batavia Square Apartments, to move forward, but it would not mean the project is approved.

City Attorney George Van Nest reminded council members they were being asked to consider a rezoning proposal, not the actual project that inspires the consideration.

“You really need to center on the question, does this zoning change make sense, notwithstanding some of the considerations that may have been out there or questions about other uses or other studies that are not specifically germane to the question of zoning itself," Van Nest said. "The petition is for rezoning that is at the behest of the City Council legislatively.”

There was a public hearing on the rezoning issue, but comments during to hearing had to be just about the rezoning issue. Since many of the 23 speakers at the meeting wanted to talk about more than just zoning, they took to the podium during the public comments section of the council meeting.

About half of the speakers favored the project, and of those, about half worked, have worked for DePaul or were families that have benefitted from DePaul's services.

Opposition came from people concerned about adding more rental apartment units to the city and how that would impact the current population and private-property landlords. They also raised the issue the amount of taxes DePaul would be paying while the new apartments would lead to the use of city services, such as police and fire.

The council voted by a narrow 5-4 margin to move the resolution for the zoning change to its next business meeting.

"If it's to be believed that 50 percent of the residences in the City of Batavia are rentals, then the question is, why do we need more rentals?" Chuck Ruffino said.

He referenced a study being done on the county's housing stock, designed to help planners understand local housing needs. Ruffino said the council shouldn't move forward without more information.

"We really don’t have good information on which to make this decision, because once you make that decision, the agenda is set," he said. "You can’t take it away. It’s done. Thirty years, tax exempt."

Russ Romano raised concerns about the number of rentals already in the community, the need for the housing study to be completed, and the seeming shortage of housing for people in the workforce. He also questioned the wisdom of changing the zoning.

"I question the fact that you can make this change in zoning when it goes against the current zoning law of being zoned industrial," Romano said. "I think it's dangerous and in your comprehensive plan it has not changed."

John Gerace said he doesn't believe anybody in the community is against housing for people on disability or against veterans or seniors, but he did question the need for it now, especially housing that is tax-break subsidized.

He calculated that at $25 million for construction, each of the 80 units would be worth more than $300,000.

"I would like to live in a $325,000 apartment," Gerace said.

Since subsidized rents are available to many potential tenants, Gerace said he's concerned that current landlords will lose out.

"It will be a drain on the local economy, on local landlords who bought property and have been paying property taxes right along and have vacancies right now," Gerace said.

George Galliford said it would be unfair to local landlords to allow this project to move forward.

“It seems to me that it’s very unfair competition for landlords who have been conscientious, paid their taxes, done what they needed to do and are never ever given any kind of favor," Galliford said. "Thirty years is a long time. Those payments in lieu of taxes are to me are a joke. They should be much, much more than what they are. It’s unfair competition."

John Roach said he thought it was premature for the City to move forward with project approval. 

He said the current vacancy rate in the city is 7 percent and that 5 percent is considered ideal. He said the county is projected to lose 9 percent of its population in coming years.

Adding more apartment units will just put more financial pressure on existing landlords, he suggested, and if those properties move off the tax roles, "it will just put more pressure on the rest of us."

The DePaul project also had its defenders.

Stacy Falkowski (top photo), a Batavia resident, said life is getting harder for her elderly parents, especially now that her father has Parkinson's disease. She described the difficulties she and her mother have caring for her father in her parent's current commercial apartment.

She said her father has fallen more than once in the bathroom and they're lucky he hasn't been seriously hurt; no broken bones, but there has been blood to clean up.

“It’s pretty tough to deal with every single day of the month,” she said.

The planned DePaul housing complex, with its amenities for the elderly, the disabled and other vulnerable adults, along with greater social opportunities, would be great for her parents.

Most of the people who would move there, she said, are already local residents and to counter the argument against the lower taxes paid by DePaul, she said our local older residents had earned this sort of amenity.

"These people are paying taxes, and they’ve lived in the City ofBataviaa for many years and paid a lot of taxes, school taxes, property taxes," Falkowski said.

Colleen Gillam, from Waterport, said her 25-year-old son currently lives in a DePaul apartment in Batavia and for the first time in his life, he's living on his own and doing very well. She said for people like her son, the kind of housing DePaul provides is hard to come by.

"I think with this coming into your community it will only benefit you and the families who live here and in the surrounding areas," she said.

Chris Syracuse, a longtime employee of DePaul said when DePaul comes into a community, they do so humbly and with an eye toward building a beautiful facility that the community will be proud to see.

"Never in 27 years have I ever had somebody say to me, ‘I regret DePaul coming into my community,' " Syracuse said.

After the council discussion and before the vote, City Manager Jason Molino addressed some of the issues raised during the meeting.

He said the area had been zoned industrial for 50 years. Before that, it was considered a business district, which is similar to today's commercial zone. Over the past half century, there has been no industrial activity in the area. The train tracks that would have supported industrial activity, and supported the Trojan tractor factory in the area, were removed in the 1960s or 1970s. Over the past 50 years it's been mixed commercial and residential with some light manufacturing.  

During that period, industrial growth in the city has taken place around Graham, Treadeasy, and O-AT-KA, and future industrial growth is more likely to take place in the greenfield developments outside of the city. The East Main Street area of the city isn't likely to attract any industrial development.

"It hasn’t happened in the past 50 years, and it’s not likely to occur in that specific area," he said.

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Mark Fuller, project developer.

April 24, 2017 - 6:34pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in VA Hospital, batavia, news.

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The VA Hospital honored its volunteers today with a luncheon at the Quality Inn & Suites in Batavia.

The volunteers with the most hours, more than 1,750 were Phyllis Scharader, Robert J. Shepard, Douglas Titus and James Yoder. Pictured with three of the top volunteers above is Danielle Bergman, assistant medical director, on the right.

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The volunteers with at least 20 years of service were also honored, though not all could make it to the luncheon. The volunteers with at least 20 years are Helen Batchelor, center of the photo, with 31 years, Emerson Campbell, Joshua T. Dickens, Joseph Flynn, Joseph Guppenberger, 31 years, Robert Jurewicz, Lee Kauffman, Robert Mellody, Anthony Palmer, 32 years, Robert Radley, and John Scott, with 31 years.

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The Elks from Brockport made a $1,500 donation to the VA Center.

April 24, 2017 - 6:02pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in circus, garden brothers circus, batavia, Falleti Ice Arena, news.

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Garden Brothers Circus have brought to town clowns, jugglers, magicians, acrobats, stunt riders and everything else that goes with a professional, touring circus.

Including elephants.

This is the last tour that elephants will be included in the Garden Brothers Circus, so miss the show at 7:30 p.m. at Falleti Ice Arena and maybe you miss your last chance to see a circus with elephants.

These pictures are from the 4:30 p.m. performance today (no elephant pictures because I couldn't stick around until the end of the 90-minute show, but from what I saw, this is a circus well worth seeing).

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