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July 3, 2016 - 7:03am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Alabama.

A two-car, head-on accident is reported on Bloomingdale Road at Sandhill Road, Alabama.

Unknown injuries.

Alabama fire and Mercy EMS responding.

UPDATE 7:04 a.m.: Multiple injuries reported. An additional ambulance out of Medina requested to the scene. 

UPDATE 7:11 a.m.: It's not Mercy originally dispatched, but Akron. No additional Mercy ambulances available. Another agency's ambulance, as the third ambulance, is requested to the scene.

UPDATE 7:33 a.m.: A passerby informs a deputy of a car fire somewhere on Feeder Road. Alabama fire dispatched while a deputy responds to be identify the location. At the accident, all patients transported. Fire crew remains on scene awaiting tows.  

UPDATE 7:36 a.m.: Apparently, vehicle located, no need for fire.  

July 2, 2016 - 9:26pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, Le Roy.

A tractor may have caught on fire between two barns, causing a barn fire at 8427 Gully Road, Le Roy.

Le Roy fire responding.

Pavilion and Stafford also dispatched. The city's Fast Team also dispatched.

UPDATE 9:34 p.m.: Units are being put back in service.

July 2, 2016 - 5:04pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Ramble Music & Arts Fest, music, entertainment, batavia, news.

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Hundreds of music fans and musicians swarmed into Downtown Batavia today for the annual Batavia Ramble Music and Arts Fest, held in Jackson Square and at a stage set up at School and Center streets.

In all, 40 music acts were scheduled to perform. The last act goes on at 8:40 p.m., so there's still time to see the show.

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July 2, 2016 - 3:37pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, alexander.

A motor-vehicle accident with unknown injuries is reported at Darien Alexander Townline Road and Buffalo Road, Alexander.

Alexander fire and ambulance, along with Darien ambulance dispatched.

July 2, 2016 - 11:31am

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The 2016 summer season of concerts in Jackson Square kicked off Friday night with performances by St. Joe's of Batavia Brass Ensemble (its 85th Reunion) and the Mighty St. Joe's Alumni Corps (with an interlude covering the history of the bugle, featuring members of the ensemble).

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July 1, 2016 - 10:31pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Stafford.

A car has reportedly hit a tree in the area of 7292 Byron Road, between School Road and Fotch Road, Stafford.

Unknown injuries.

Stafford fire and Mercy EMS dispatched.

UPDATE 10:37 p.m.: Occupant is out of the vehicle and being evaluated by EMS. Damage to front end of the vehicle.

July 1, 2016 - 8:57am
posted by Howard B. Owens in City Schools, batavia, schools, education, news.

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Patrick Burk, right, will continue to serve as school board president during the 2016-17 year, and Jessica Maguire-Tomidy will serve as VP. Madison Moore, left, is the student, ex-officio member for the year.

The district board held its annual meeting this morning at the district office. The meeting included approving the board calendar, appointment of committees and appointment of key district staff. Chris Dailey was reappointed as district superintendent.

July 1, 2016 - 7:19am
posted by Howard B. Owens in weather, agriculture.

Genesee County is officially in a moderate drought condition and it's having an impact on our local farmers. The Batavian's news partner, 13WHAM produced this story.

The map below of the Northeastern United States shows where it's considered "unusually dry" (in yellow) and where moderate drought conditions (tan) exist.

We got less than an inch of rain in June, two inches below average and the fourth lowest rainfall total for June since the 1940s.

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June 30, 2016 - 1:41pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in downtown, batavia, news.

City officials expected the governor's office to announce today the winners of the statewide contest for grants to assist in downtown economic development, but City Manager Jason Molino said this afternoon that he's received word not to expect the announcement today.

The city is competing with other municipalities in the Finger Lakes Economic Development region for a $10 million prize.

June 30, 2016 - 1:07pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Concert Band, music, entertainment, batavia, news.

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With a flourish of patriotic favorites and classic pops pieces, the Batavia Concert Band opened its summer season at Centennial Park on Wednesday evening with Josh Pacino conducting.

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June 30, 2016 - 12:53pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Richmond Memorial Library, batavia, news.

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In a ceremony at the Richmond Memorial Library yesterday, two original works by Roy Mason were dedicated to the memory of Ted and Rosemary Surowka, who both dedicated many years of service to the library and the NIOGA library system.

Director Bob Conrad said library officials have been looking for a way to honor the Surowkas after Rosemary's death a year ago and when they realized one of the Mason paintings at the library had hung in Ted's school district office for 30 years, before Rosemary had it moved to the library after his retirement, it seemed natural to rededicate the paintings in their honor.

Plaques will be affixed to the wall next to the paintings.

Ted, who died in 2001, was the business administrator for Batavia City Schools for 36 years and served on the NIOGA Board of Trustees. Rosemary was a trustee of the library from 1995 to 2011 and board president from 1997 to 2011.

Mason is a significant American artist who worked mainly in watercolor. He moved to Batavia as a child when his father took over a family label-making business. After pursuing a career as an artist for a time, he returned to Batavia to work in his father's business. He retired in 1959 and moved to La Jolla, Calif., (San Diego County) and lived there until his death in 1972.

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Martha Spinigan, director of the library for 28 years, said both Ted and Rosemary were steadfast in their work for the community and support of the library. Ted was a force behind moving the library expansion forward and getting it completed in the 1970s.

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Beth Stich, current board president, read two resolutions dedicating the paintings.

June 30, 2016 - 9:21am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Bethany, news.

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A two-car accident is reported at Ellicott Street Road and East Road, Bethany, with injuries.

The accident is not blocking.

Bethany and Stafford fire departments and Mercy EMS dispatched.

UPDATE 9:24 a.m.: A first responder reports traffic is backing up.

UPDATE 9:30 a.m.: Photo submitted by Jordan Fleming showing the wheel from the passenger vehicle jammed under the tires of the tractor trailer.

June 30, 2016 - 8:17am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news.
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     Antoine Clark    Kristina Kretchmer

Agents of the Local Drug Task Force report that they interrupted a crack cocaine sale in progress in the parking lot of Walmart on Wednesday afternoon and took two Rochester residents into custody.

Arrested were Antoine T. Clark, 32, of Lake Avenue, Rochester, and Kristina M. Kretchmer, 34, of White Swan Street, Rochester.

Uniformed deputies of the Sheriff's Office assisted in the arrest.

Clark is charged with criminal sale of a controlled substance, 3rd, criminal possession of a controlled substance, 3rd, criminal possession of a weapon, 4th, and unlawful possession of marijuana.

Kretchmer is charged with criminal sale of a controlled substance, 3rd, conspiracy, 4th, criminal possession of a weapon, 4th, unlawful possession of marijuana and aggravated unlicensed operation, 3rd. 

Both suspects were arraigned in Batavia Town Court and Clark was held without bail and Kretchmer was held on $5,000 bail.

June 29, 2016 - 10:17am

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The Corfu-Pembroke Community Band celebrated its 30th season last night with a concert at Darien Lakes State Park.

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June 29, 2016 - 9:51am
posted by Howard B. Owens in baseball, sports, Pavilion.

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The Pavilion U-10 baseball team had its best post-season finish in a decade, coming in second in a tournament held in Perry.

Pictured are: Christopher Doody. Mason Gilkes, Cole Harding, Grayson Harding, Landon Stoddard, Case Cummings, Zach Tillotson, Cameron Beck, Noah Hudson, Tyler True, Evan Kingdon, Ryan Williams, and coaches, Brandon Gilkes and Jason Tillotson, and head coach Tim Kingdon.  Coach Michelle Forti was unavailable for the photo.

Photo and information submitted by Ed Doody.

June 28, 2016 - 10:09pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in sports, elba, baseball, news.

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Photo and story submitted by Drew Muehlig.

A four-run fourth inning was the difference as Elba downed Chili 8-4 Saturday to win the youth major league baseball championship.

The Lancers were leading 4-2 heading into the fourth, but the insurance runs in that big inning proved to be the difference. Zach Howard led off the inning with a single, scoring on Randy McIntire’s double on the very next pitch. Jake Engle added an infield single and then Nate Esten connected on a two-out single to score McIntire, putting runners on the corners. Brendan Thompson then sent a hard grounder through shortstop that took a tremendous bounce over the approaching fielder. Thompson took advantage, stretching the hit into a triple to score two runs putting the Lancers up 8-2.

Chili would score two runs in the top half of the sixth but their comeback fell short.

Elba’s CJ Gottler struck out nine in earning the win on the mound while Howard fired seven strikeouts to collect the save. Gottler and Zach Marsceill had huge run-scoring singles to keep Elba in the game early. Anthony Zambito also singled for the Lancers, who finish the year at 15-1. 

Photo: Front row -- CJ Gottler, Anthony Zambito, Zach Howard; second row, Frank Warriner, Jake Engle, Randy McIntire; third row, Tyler Kauffman, Brendan Thompson, Gage Chamberlain, Arron Wyder, Nate Esten, Caden Muehlig, Zach Marsceill; back row, coaches Drew Muehlig, Brian Engle and Vern Howard.

June 28, 2016 - 2:00pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news.
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      Randolph Zickl

Updated at 2:22 p.m.

Randolph Zickl, the 81-year-old attorney, charged with grand larceny 2nd for stealing $75,000 from a former client, pled guilty to the charge in County Court on Friday, The Batavian has learned.

Since police departments only release information on arrests, and not court activity, that information wasn't available in the initial press release.

The guilty plea was uncovered by our news partner 13WHAM in a conversation with the Erie County District Attorney's Office and confirmed by The Batavian through a local source. 

Zickl will be sentenced Sept. 20.

Through court sources, 13WHAM learned that Zickl's victim was the widow of a client who died and Zickl handled the estate. He reportedly double-billed the client and then continued to withdraw money from the victim's account over a three-year (not two as previously reported) period.

If Zickl is able to make full restitution by Sept. 20, he will likely receive a probationary sentence.

He also resigned from the New York State Bar Association.

Because Zickl has two sons working the Genesee County District Attorney's Office, the Erie County office handled the prosecution and Zickl appeared in Genesee County Court, but an Erie County judge presided over the case.

Previously: Respected local attorney accused of stealing from elderly client

June 28, 2016 - 1:46pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in 1366 Technologies, business, STAMP, news.

A Boston-based company that has picked Genesee County for the location of its silicon wafer plant announced a major strategic move today that officials say will provide a tremendous positive impact on cash flow.

Wacker Chemie, a supplier of highly purified silicon, is making a $15 million equity investment in 1366 Technologies through the supply of the silicon that will be used by 1366 to manufacture its advanced silicon wafers.

The silicon wafers will be manufactured in a plant at the Science, Technology & Advanced Maufacturing Park (STAMP) in the Town of Alabama through a process that officials with 1366 say will greatly reduce the cost of solar power.

The partnership will also include a technical collaboration between the two companies. Wacker Chemie will provide expertise in silicon as well as facility design, engineering and construction.

“We see the potential for the Direct Wafer technology to provide an excellent contribution to accelerate global solar adoption," said Ewald Schindlbeck, president, Wacker Polysilicon. "1366 has developed a commercially valid answer to a longtime manufacturing challenge. We’re eager to add our high-quality products and bring our expertise to the effort.” 

Frank van Mierlo, CEO of 1366, said the partnership is a good sign for the future adoption of his company's groundbreaking solar wafer solution.

“Commercial traction is gained when technical success and financial support are established within the industry," van Mierlo said. "This partnership with the world’s most technically advanced silicon provider clearly demonstrates market acceptance for the Direct Wafer technology. Wacker’s silicon is the best in the industry and has been a crucial competitive edge for Wacker’s customers. It will do the same for 1366."

The manufacturing solution developed by 1366 offers a significant advantage over traditional ingot-based production technologies, according to company officials. The process makes wafers in a single step, pulling them directly from molten silicon instead of today’s multistep, energy- and capital-intensive approach, resulting in significant wafer production cost savings.

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

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