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August 28, 2011 - 1:02pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Oakfield.

A man from Oakfield suffered minor injuries after his motorcycle struck a deer on Hutton Road, Oakfield, at 10:30 p.m., Thursday.

Following the accident, David Hendershott, 21, of Orchard Park Road, Oakfield, was transported by private vehicle to UMMC.

Hendershott was north on Hutton Road, near Duck Pond Road, on a 2008 KMCU when his bike struck the deer. Hendershott was thrown from the bike and the motorcycle came to rest on the east shoulder of the roadway.

The accident was investigated by Deputy Joseph Graff.

August 28, 2011 - 12:52pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, accident.

A driver who said she didn't see another car coming, attempted to make a U-turn on Route 5 near Powers Road, Batavia, leading to a two-car accident. This happened at 6:19 p.m., Friday.

The drivers of both cars suffered non-life threatening injuries and were transported to UMMC by ground ambulance.

Amanda M. Scherer, 18, of Beach Road, Cheektowaga, was driving west on Route 5 when she attempted the U-turn. Her car was struck in the back left quarter panel by a 1999 Honda SUV driven by Mary F. Doktor, 49, of Boyce Road, Corfu.

Scherer, who was driving a 2011 Toyota sedan owned by West Herr Toyota in Williamsville, was cited for allegedly making an illegal U-turn.

Steven J. Raimondi, 18, a passenger in Scherer's car, was not injured.

The accident was investigated by Deputy Brad Mazur.

August 28, 2011 - 12:40pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, accident, Oakfield.

A driver was charged with unlawful possession of marijuana after being involved in a motor vehicle accident on Albion Road, Oakfield, at 2:58 p.m., Saturday.

The driver made a left turn into a drive and told Deputy Timothy Wescott that she had time to beat the southbound car that struck her 2006 Toyota.

The driver of the other car, a 1999 Chevy SUV, Lawrence E. Rebert, of East Shelby Road, Oakfield, was transported by ground ambulance to UMMC with minor injuries.

Charged with UPM and failure to yield the right of way was Andrea C. Rosone, 30, of Albion Road, Oakfield.

The accident occurred in the area of 6478 Albion Road, Oakfield.

(Initial Report)

August 27, 2011 - 1:05am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, elba.

A Rochester man heading westbound on Lockport Road reportedly said he was looking at his GPS and didn't see a stop sign at the intersection with Route 98 before his pickup truck slammed into the minivan of a Albion resident.

Neither driver was seriously injured.

David Youngman, 55, of Yankee Court, Rochester, was cited for alleged failure to stop for a stop sign.

His truck struck a minivan driven my Marcia Zambito, 59, of Allen Road, Albion.

Zambito was taken to UMMC by ground ambulance with a complaint of pain in her leg and arm.

Youngman was transported to Strong Memorial Hospital, because he's a Rochester resident, with a complaint of chest pain.

(initial report)

August 27, 2011 - 12:45am
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, Le Roy.

A fire that destroyed a barn on West Bergen Road, Le Roy, on Friday night, remains under investigation.

It was spotted by a neighbor just before 8:20 p.m., who alerted the owner, Brian Boneberg, who then called 9-1-1.

The blaze was small when it was fist spotted, but spread quickly.  

By the time Le Roy Chief Mike Sheflin arrived on scene, the barn was fully involved.

The structure was less than 100 feet from a house and Sheflin praised the volunteer crews who kept the flames from spreading.

"We had a fast response from our firefighters and we were able to control the fire quickly," Sheflin said.

Strong water flow from the nearby hydrants also helped the responding departments swiftly beat back the flames, Sheflin said.

No injuries were reported.

Besides Le Roy, responders included Pavilion and Caledonia. Stafford filled in at Le Roy's hall and York filled in at Pavilion's hall.

Le Roy Ambulance was also at the scene.

(Initial Report)

Photo below submitted by a reader.


August 26, 2011 - 7:30pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in business, liberty pumps, bergen.

Press release:

Bergen NY, August 24, 2011 – For the fifth year in a row, Inc. Magazine has named Liberty Pumps to its annual ranking of the 5000 fastest-growing privately owned companies in America.

This year the firm placed No. 3745 – its highest ranking yet. The list represents the most comprehensive look at the most important segment of the economy – America’s independent entrepreneurs.

The companies on this year’s list report having created over 350,000 jobs in the past three years, and aggregate revenue among the honorees reached $366 billion, up 14 percent from last year.

In the past three years Liberty has added 33 jobs to support sales growth of over 40%.

"Liberty Pumps is pleased to be recognized by Inc. as one of the fastest growing private companies in America.  Everyone in our entire organization has helped play a part in this success. Our ability to provide exciting new products, fueled by an aggressive sales and marketing team and then backed by a high level of service to the customer- has resulted in this tremendous honor for our company" said Charlie Cook, President and CEO of Liberty Pumps.

In addition, the company, which manufactures sump, sewage and other types of pumps for residential and commercial use has also been cited as a Rochester’s Top 100 Company 10 out of the past 12 years.

Complete results of the Inc. 5000, including company profiles and a list of the fastest-growing companies that can be sorted by industry and region can be found at

August 26, 2011 - 7:25pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in weather.

While no part of tropical storm Irene -- surely, you've heard about it by now -- is expected to reach Genesee County, National Grid is mobilizing all of its resources to respond to the potential havoc the storm could bring to the state's power system.

Reader Paul Schwartzmeyer spotted this caravan of National Grid line trucks heading east on the Thruway through Genesee County this morning.

We also received this press release from National Grid. The power company says the storm could disrupt natural gas and power transmission in Upstate New York.

Press Release:

ALBANY, NY -- National Grid is actively preparing for the potential effects of Hurricane Irene, which meteorologists currently expect to reach the northeast this weekend.

Depending on Irene's track, portions of National Grid's Upstate New York service area could experience damaging winds, heavy rain and flooding that could cause power outages and affect the natural gas delivery system.

National Grid already has activated its storm emergency plan, which includes calling in extra crews; pre-staging crews and materials to areas anticipated to be most severely impacted; reaching out to customers, including those on life support, to urge them to prepare for the storm; identifying low-lying, flood-prone areas and facilities for monitoring and potential isolation; holding multiple planning calls; and ensuring that key areas such as operations and customer call centers are appropriately staffed.

National Grid also is reaching out to state, regional and local officials to inform them of advance plans and keep the lines of communications open before, during and after the storm.

"We know that our customers always depend on us to restore their electricity or gas service as quickly as possible, and especially during major storms," said Ellen Smith, National Grid chief operations officer.

"We are hard at work preparing for whatever Irene may bring and will keep our customers informed throughout this event. We also want our customers to be ready for Irene, and urge them to start preparing now so they will be safe during and after the storm."

National Grid offers the following tips for customers to minimize inconvenience and maximize safety in the event that storm-related service interruptions do occur:

Keep National Grid's power outage reporting number handy -- 1-800-867-5222 (Upstate New York) -- in case it's needed.

Natural gas customers should call 1-800-892-2345 to report gas emergencies for Upstate New York.

Customers also can stay in touch with National Grid by following the company on Facebook, Twitter and on our website

Power outage information also is available on the company website at At the site, go to "Outage Central," and select your state.

Listen for important announcements on television and radio from emergency officials about possible evacuations or other emergency procedures.

Keep a number of working flashlights, extra batteries and at least one battery-operated radio since National Grid provides news media with timely information regarding service restoration efforts.

If you depend on electric-powered life-support equipment, such as a respirator, make sure that you have notified National Grid. If you have a medical emergency always dial 9-1-1.

Prepare a family emergency kit that includes, at least water, a three-day supply of food, a can opener, first-aid kit, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation, wrench or pliers to turn off utilities, local maps, cell phones with chargers, prescription medications and glasses, matches in a waterproof container, paper and pencil.

Customers using generators should make sure their wiring system is disconnected from the system before operating the generator. When using a portable generator, make sure the main circuit breaker in the electric service panel box is in the "off" position.

If you have a fuse box instead of breakers, pull out the main block, remove the fuses and reinsert the empty block. This is necessary to prevent your generator's electricity from going back into the system, which could endanger the lives of line crews and your neighbors. Also, it's required by the National Electrical Code.

Be sure to only use generators outdoors. Exhaust fumes contain poisonous carbon monoxide and can kill or cause serious injury.

Before lowering a TV antenna or satellite dish, make sure to turn off and unplug the TV, and avoid power lines.

Turn your refrigerator and freezer to their coldest settings ahead of time to keep food fresh longer in the event of a power outage.

Prepare your business by securing the exterior of your building. Inside, cover and move equipment and furniture to a secured area. Protect data with backup files. Make plans for supplies and services so that you are prepared to work with limited supplies of cash, water, sewer or power for at least two weeks.

National Grid is an international energy delivery company. In the U.S., National Grid delivers electricity to approximately 3.3 million customers in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Rhode Island, and manages the electricity network on Long Island under an agreement with the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA).

It is the largest distributor of natural gas in the Northeastern U.S., serving approximately 3.4 million customers in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Rhode Island. National Grid also owns over 4,000 megawatts of contracted electricity generation that provides power to more than one million LIPA customers.

August 26, 2011 - 7:05pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in alexander, Route 20.

Press release:

The Route 20 bridge over Tonawanda Creek in the Town of Alexander will close on Monday, Aug. 29, to undergo steel repair work for approximately three weeks. 

The structure is located between Route 98 and Brookville Road. A detour is posted directing motorists to take Route 98 south to Stroh Road to Sandpit Road back to Route 20. All local traffic will be permitted up to the work site on both sides.

Work includes general repairs to the floor-beam connections and other steel components of the structure.

For real-time travel information, call 511 or visit <>.

August 26, 2011 - 6:51pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, consolidation.

Press release:

Please be advised that Batavia City Council will hold a meeting with the Batavia Town Board on Wednesday, Aug. 31. It will begin at 7 p.m. at the Batavia Town Hall, 3833 W. Main St. Road, to discuss the City / Town Charter Task Force consultant's recommendation.

August 26, 2011 - 6:47pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

Two Rochester residents were charged with various offenses Thursday after the Local Drug Enforcement Task Force initiated a traffic stop on the car they were in.

Arrested where Abdullah H. Shareef, 30, of Locust Street, and Michael D. Brewer, 41, of Grand Avenue.

Shareef was charged with unlawful possession of marijuana, aggravated unlicensed operation, 3rd, plus unregistered, uninsured and uninspected motor vehicle.

Brewer was charged with unlawful possession of marijuana.

Both suspects were issued appearance tickets.

August 26, 2011 - 6:44pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, elba, Le Roy.

Sara K.L. McCabe, 26, of Lincoln Avenue, Le Roy, is charged with felony DWI, aggravated DWI (children under age 15 in the car), driving without an interlock device and consumption of alcohol in a motor vehicle. McCabe was stopped by Le Roy Police on Thursday after a witness complained of seeing a person in a car consuming alcohol. McCabe was jailed on $10,000 bail.

Geoffrey Charles Saxton, 28, of North Byron Road, Elba, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08, failure to reduce speed and moving from lane unsafely. Saxton was charged following a one-car accident at Mullen and Morganville roads, Stafford, at 11:59 p.m., Monday.

Shuvon J. Williams, 36, of 5 Lewis Place, Batavia, and Rochelle V. Tomlin, 35, of 2 Lewis Place, Batavia, are charged with petit larceny. Both are accused of shoplifting from Tops Market on Wednesday.

Barbara Jean Alessi, 52, of Rand Street, Rochester, was arrested on a warrant stemming from a petit larceny charge. Alessi is accused of stealing from a business on Lewiston Road. She was taken into custody by the Rochester Police Department and turned over to the Genesee County Sheriff's Office.

August 26, 2011 - 6:34pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

Batavia police are looking for two males allegedly involved in a fight behind the board of education building on Washington Avenue.

One is described as wearing a white shirt and red shorts and the other male is reportedly wearing a blue shirt and blue jeans.

The initial call had 30 people involved in the fight. When the first police car arrived on scene, everybody took off running.

August 26, 2011 - 6:24pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, accident, east pembroke.

A head-on collision, with one victim complaining of chest pain, has been reported on Route 5 at Powers Road in the Town of Batavia.

The road is blocked.

East Pembroke Fire and Mercy EMS responding.

UPDATE 6;30 p.m.: A second ambulance is requested to the scene.

August 26, 2011 - 5:12pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Oakfield.

A Level 3 sex offender who is accused of committing new criminal sex acts against a child was denied his request for lower bail today.

Anthony L. Nicosia Jr., 54, of Albion Road, Oakfield, is being held in the Genesee County Jail on $15,000 bail or $30,000 bond.

The bail was set in the Oakfield Town Court.

Judge Robert Noonan gave both the prosecutor and defense an opportunity to speak to the bail issue, but then seemingly cut off the discussion saying that as a matter of law, the only thing he could do at this stage of the proceedings against Nicosia is decide whether the bail set by the lower court was excessive.

It's not, Noonan ruled, and he can't lower it at this stage.

Assistant District Attorney Will Zickl argued that bail certainly shouldn't be reduced, if anything it ought to be raised.

Zickl said the alleged victim has been interviewed further since Nicosia's arrest and detailed more alleged assaults. There is the possibility, Zickl said, of further criminal charges.

It's also possible, Zickl indicated, that there may be additional victims.

Nicosia, who was arrested earlier this week and charged with criminal sex act, 3rd, forcible touching and endangering the welfare of a child, was convicted of sexual abuse in the first degree in April, 1995.

August 26, 2011 - 4:18pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in entertainment, books, genesee county history.

Just about everybody knows the story of the day Frank Sinatra stopped in Batavia, but what about the day Johnny Cash stopped in Corfu?

It was mid-March, 1985 and the Cash tour bus pulled into the former Super Duper and John and June loaded their carts with groceries, stopping for autographs and pictures along the way.

The story is one of hundreds reprinted in Entertaining Genesee, a new book by County Historian Susan L. Conklin (photo, right) and research assistant Judy Stiles.

The book covers Genesee County residents who sought fame and fortune on stage, screen and in music as well as recounts the famous and nearly famous who passed through the area.

It's the 11th book published by the county's history department -- each paid for by the procedes of the sale of the previous book and funds from the Genesee County Historians Society.

The book is $20 and available at the history department in the old fire house on West Main Street in the City of Batavia.

Using reprinted stories from local newspapers (mostly the Batavia Daily News), letters, telegrams and other periodicals, the book recounts local brushes with the entertainment industry.

Of course, Tom Beers and Joey Pero are in there, but so is Harry Crosby, an actor who garnered some fame in New York City in the early 20th Century, and Miss Mary M. Howard, who wrote a march played by John Philip Sousa.

There's also articles on the times Benny Goodman, Louis Armstrong and Tommy Dorsey came to Batavia. Some of the stories are of the "wish I could have been there type," such as Armstrong's appearance. Satchmo arrived late because his bus broke down, and then played for 700 fans until 5 a.m. Admission was only a buck fifty (tax included).

The next book from the history department, scheduled for 2014, will be called "Criminal Genesee."

August 26, 2011 - 1:50pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, West Main Street.

A tour bus returning from dropping off passengers at the Buffalo Airport broke down this morning on West Main Street at the intersection with Ellicott Street.

The call came in at 9:04 a.m. and the bus wasn't moved until after 11 a.m., causing a bit of a traffic jam for eastbound travelers.

The driver reportedly told Officer Eric Dibble that he was concerned the bus was experiencing mechanical difficulties, which is why he didn't drive on the Thruway back to Rochester.

No passengers were on the bus at the time of the breakdown.

August 25, 2011 - 11:03pm

The plans for growth are aggressive, even lofty, according to Batavia City Manager Jason Molino, but if GCEDC is successful in building the Genesee Valley Agri-Business Park to capacity, it could be a boon for Batavia's sewer system and the ratepayers who support it.

The increase in revenue could potentially allow the city to both lower rates -- already among the lowest sewer rates in Western New York -- and fund replacement of aging sewer lines.

Even though the agri-park is in the Town of Batavia, the sewer effluent flows at some point through the city to the city-operated wastewater plant. The town pays the city a fee to ship effluent from the town to the plant. Every thousand of gallons of effluent that flows to the plant will generate $2.81 for the city. (NOTE: Paragraph re-written to clarify the agreement between the town and the city.)

It would take only one O-AT-KA Milk Products-sized plant to make a huge difference, Molino said.

"If you were to see something like another O-AT-KA come in overnight, you could see a huge benefit," Molino said.

The city manager's remarks followed a special meeting of Batavia City Council where the council unanimously approved a plan to provide sewer service to the agri-business park (Councilman Bill Cox recused himself because of a potential conflict of interest).

The development of the park received a significant boost this spring when Alpina Products agreed to build a new yogurt factory on the site. Escrow on the sale of that parcel is expected to close Monday.

The sewer agreement between the city, Town of Batavia and the Genesee County Economic Development Center is key to closing the Alpina deal. 

It calls for the GCEDC, with a contribution from O-AT-KA, to use state grants to build a sewer system for the agri-business park and the O-AT-KA facility. The system would include two new pump stations -- one within the jurisdiction of the town and the other within city limits on O-AT-KA's property. The city and town would take possession of the completed pumps and sewer lines.

Just expanding capacity for O-AT-KA is a huge benefit to the city, Molino said.

"O-AT-KA is our biggest sewer user, our biggest water user," Molino said. "It is one of the largest employers in the county. It gets a larger sewer line to discharge into, so they’re not constrained anymore and they have the opportunity to grow. That infrastructure is coming to us free, no cost to the city users. The other thing is that Ellicott Street (sewer line) is going to be open now for greater growth. So we’ve got two opportunities there."

Some of the sewer lines in Batavia are up to 50 years old. 100 years old, many more are at least 50 years old. It's infrastructure that needs to be replaced pretty soon. And while the city has one of the most aggressive capital improvement projects for its sewer and water systems in the state, there is still a huge need to move quickly to replace old lines.

"To me, that’s really exciting (if the agri-park is successful), to be able to do sewer line after sewer line project, to replace aging infrastructure," Molino said. "That's really exciting."

During the council meeting, Steve Hyde, CEO of GCEDC (inset photo), told the council that the current gravity system on the Ellicott Street line, the one currently used by O-AT-KA, can only handle 500,000 gallons per year and O-AT-KA needs significantly more capacity to grow. The expansion will give O-AT-KA up to 2.5 million gallons per year of potential flow.

He said the agreement with Alpina is a huge step forward for the project and Genesee County.

"When is the last time we saw a major manufacturer come into the greater Batavia area?" Hyde said. "Maybe 40 or 50 years? We’ve seen a lot of them move out, but not too many move in. Maybe this is the start of something good for our community."

It could also be the basis for pushing forward consolidation between the town and city, one council member observed.

The joint agreement has the Town of Batavia buying sewer capacity from the city and reselling it to agri-park tenants.

The town and the city already have a joint agreement in place for processing effluent in the city's wastewater plant, but the agri-business park highlights the difference in sewer rates between the town and the city.

The town's rate is $5.35 per thousand gallons. If the city and town consolidated, town landowners, including agri-park tenants could potentially pay the city's current retail rate of $3.14 per thousand gallons.

An agri-business park plant producing 15,000 gallons per day would save nearly $12,000 annually paying the city's rate.

Regardless of the rate paid by agri-park tenants, the effluent is all flowing to the same treatment plant, and the quality and efficiency of that plant is the main reason city rates are so low, Molino said.

"That plant is a resource that I don’t think people understand," Molino said. "It’s a special plant. It’s 350 acres. It’s one of the largest lagoon plants east of the Mississippi. It doesn’t use chemical treatment. It’s natural treatment, so there’s no chemical cost. Only four people run it, seven days a week. You find me a sewer plant that has low labor costs like that, low treatment costs -- that's why our sewer rates are some of the lowest in Western New York."

August 25, 2011 - 9:47pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Kiwanis, Child Advocacy Center.

Lawrence Friedman, president of the Batavia Kiwanis Club, accepts a $350 donation from Bleyke Culver for the Child Advocacy Center.

With some grant funding being cut, local Kiwanians have stepped in to try and fill any potential budget gap. Batavia Kiwanis set a goal of raising $100,000 for the center, which provides assistance to abused children. Other area Kiwanis clubs are being asked to raise another $50,000.

Bleyke, a 16-year-old Batavia resident, was representing the Genesee County foster care program. The county's foster care program provides a number of field trips for foster children throughout the summer.

Typically, the foster children raise funds for their own field trips, but this year, the program received an unexpected donation from a former county employee. The foster children decided to donate some of the extra money in the program to the CAC.

August 25, 2011 - 5:19pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Le Roy.

Le Roy police suspect somebody has been making "bottle bombs" and letting them explode in an area on the west side of the village.

An investigation began after complaints of gunshots or fireworks heard on the west side of the village.

"Bottle bombs," also known as "works bombs," can be exceptionally dangerous and the Le Roy Police Department is looking for information to help determine who is making them.

Officials also warn residents not to approach any sports drink or 2-liter pop bottles found laying on the ground.

Touching a fully charged bomb can cause it to detonate.

Bottle bombs are made of Drano and tinfoil mixed together in a plastic bottle that is then sealed. Pressure builds up inside the bottle until it explodes. The chemicals inside become a boiling liquid that can cause severe burns and other serious physical injuries.

The bombs are not hard to make and numerous videos of homemade bombs are posted on YouTube.

If a suspected bottle bomb is found, you should move away from it and call 9-1-1 immediately.

The Le Roy Police Department advises that anyone found making these explosives may face criminal charges.

To report information about the possible manufacture of bottle bombs, call 343-5000.




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