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April 15, 2011 - 3:14pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-26, Jane Corwin, kathy hochul.

Press release:

The following is a statement from Fabien Levy, director of communications for Kathy Hochul for Congress:

“In just a few hours the House will vote on the Republican budget proposal that would end Medicare as we know it. For days, Kathy Hochul, candidate for New York’s 26th Congressional District, has called on her opponents to join her in rejecting any budget that would add burdensome costs onto the backs of America’s seniors. Today, there is only one candidate whose silence signals her intentions to break the promises made to our elderly population.

“Jane Corwin remains the only candidate in this race who has refused to tell the voters of the 26th District where she stands on the current budget proposal. As the only Republican in the country currently running for Congress, she has repeatedly dodged every opportunity to take a position on the Republican’s 2012 budget.

“While her silence signals apathy, the truth may be even worse. The people of the 26th want to know, if Jane Corwin was currently a Member of the House of Representatives, would she vote to slash benefits, increase costs, and hold America’s elderly population responsible for fighting with insurance companies? Kathy Hochul has firmly stated her opposition to this proposal and promised to reject any budget that fundamentally alters Medicare. 

“Assemblymember Corwin, before the vote is cast, tell the voters of the 26th District how you would vote today – would you reject the current budget proposal before the House or would you vote to decimate Medicare?”

April 15, 2011 - 3:10pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, accident.

A driver heading west on Route 5 near Mill Road shortly after midnight claims she didn't see the turn signal of the car ahead of her and was unable to stop before slamming into the 2003 Chevy sedan.

The SUV overturned and six people inside were transported to UMMC for treatment of various injuries.

The driver, Amanda A. Mull, 26, of Knapp Road, Akron, was cited for allegedly following too close and unlicensed operation.

The driver and passengers in the SUV were Erika R. Kreidler, 18, Cashay O. Merritt, 19, Ynesha C. Nixon, 18, Shanta A. Bedo, 18, Precious M. Jones, 18, Nana S. Gyesi, 22.

Kreidler's vehicle is registered in Mt. Washington, Ky.

Mull was also injured and transported to UMMC.

The accident was investigated by Deputy Patrick Reeves.

April 15, 2011 - 3:02pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, byron.

The Sheriff's Office and State Police were 6319 E. Main St.,  in South Byron this morning to retrieve and dismantle a suspected methamphetamine lab.

In connection with the operation, two people are reportedly in custody. Their names and the nature of the charges have not yet been released.

South Byron Fire Department and Mercy EMS along with Genesee County Emergency Services were also on scene.

UPDATE: Post updated with specific street address, and map corrected.

View Larger Map

April 15, 2011 - 2:51pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Le Roy.

Darik Robert Michael Orbaker, 18, of Forest Edge Drive, Batavia, is charged with criminal contempt, 2nd. Orbaker was taken into custody on East Main Street, Batavia, by State Troopers and Sheriff's Deputies on Thursday afternoon. Orbaker is accused of violating an order of protection. He allegedly hit a female covered by an order of protection.

Brian Michael Fairbanks, 33, of Church Street, Le Roy, is charged with unlawful imprisonment, 2nd, and menacing, 3rd. Fairbanks allegedly committed the crimes during a dispute with a friend in his apartment.

Nicholas M. Lyons, 30, of 17 Central Ave., Batavia, is charged with menacing, 2nd, and harassment, 2nd. Lyons is accused of punching, kicking and using a knife to threaten another person during an alleged incident at 10 p.m., Thursday.

April 15, 2011 - 9:22am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Upton Monument.

The eagle atop the Upton Monument at Main and Ellicott in yesterday's late afternoon sun.

April 14, 2011 - 5:59pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, business, GCEDC.

As a matter of "consistency," the Genesee Economic Development Center Board on Thursday approved tax abatements for a proposed Holiday Inn Express near the Thruway in Batavia.

The project will get a 60-percent PILOT (Payment in Lieu of Taxes), and relief from mortgage taxes and sales taxes on construction materials.

Several local hotel owners showed up for the meeting at the Upstate MedTech Center, but none where given a chance to speak. They previously expressed their concerns at a public hearing attended by GCEDC staff, but no board members. Last month, staff members presented a detailed report to the board on the owners' objections.

Mark Masse, senior VP of operations, said in a brief statement to the board today that he researched some of the claims made by hotel owners -- about the impact more hotel rooms would have on occupancy rates -- and concluded, "an analysis of the data could be interpreted in many different ways."

Past hotel projects that received GCEDC assistance included construction of the Best Western in 2002 and the Hampton Inn in 2002. In 2008 and 2010, local acquisitions of hotels received tax abatements (but no PILOT) and the Travel Lodge and Clarion have recently received PILOTs.

Masse concluded, "It's my recommendation as a policy decision to either be consistent with previous 60-percent PILOTS, mortgage tax and sales tax abatements, or is it the decision of the board not to help these types of projects going forward."

Board Chairman Hollis Upson spoke in favor of being consistent.

"There is some argument for the fact that additional rooms could be brought into the market without severe impact to existing hotels," Upson said. "It's certainly not the EDC's intention to harm any existing business, but we also want to be consistent."

After the meeting, the attorney for the existing hotel owners argued that there is no precedent for these tax abatements. He said the prior abatements for more rooms were granted years ago before the market was saturated.

"All of the data is that the 12-month occupancy rate never gets above 50 percent," said Thomas J. Warth, of Hiscock & Barclay. "Most of the properties are in the 40-percent area, and that's distressed property range."

April 14, 2011 - 5:16pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in photos, Pavilion.

Yesterday, the weather forecast for this morning sounded promising for photography, so my morning plan was to get out early and see what pictures I could take. There weren't many clouds nor much low-lying fog, but once out, might as well snap a few frames.

Above, the sunrise from Roanoke Road, Pavilion. Below, a field on Transit Road, Bethany and the back side of the Flemming barn (which I've featured before) in Bethany.

April 14, 2011 - 3:55pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-26, kathy hochul.

Press release:

ERIE COUNTY – Today, the House of Representatives passed the 2011 budget compromise that was struck last Friday night, just one hour before a government shutdown.

While Kathy Hochul called for this compromise early on and challenged both her opponents – Republican, Jane Corwin, and Tea Party-endorsed candidate, Jack Davis – to join her in supporting the agreement, neither candidate ever stated their position.

“Last Friday, literally in the 11th hour before a government shutdown, House and Senate leaders came together and worked out a budget compromise that averted a massive government shutdown,” said Hochul.  “From early on, I called for this compromise and challenged both Jane Corwin and Jack Davis to follow my lead. Today – six days later – neither candidate has yet to say a word.

“The people of the 26th District do not currently have a Congressmember representing their best interests in Congress. If I was serving as a Representative for Western New York, I would have been working to avoid a government shutdown last week. However, if my opponents were in Washington, we have no idea what they would have done. 

“It is only fair to ask would they have supported a budget compromise that kept essential services going or would they have supported a massive shutdown that would have delayed essential services to our veterans, our troops, our business owners, our students, our seniors, and to the American taxpayers?

“The lack of interest and care by Jane Corwin and Jack Davis has been disheartening and I hope they finally join my lead and support this budget compromise that will cut waste and get our economy moving forward.”

April 14, 2011 - 3:05pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Jack Davis, NY-26.

Press release:

Statement from Jack Davis, Independent candidate for U.S. Congress (NY-26), on federal budget proposals:

The budget proposals from both parties in Washington fail to address the real issue: jobs for Americans. Putting Americans back to work is the way we will reduce the deficit and balance the budget.

I oppose privatizing Medicare and forcing seniors to buy insurance with vouchers. This would throw millions of senior citizens into poverty or worse, and it fails to lower health care costs.

Instead of cutting Medicare and Social Security, we can save money by cutting foreign aid and foreign military commitments, from Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya, to Germany, Japan and Italy. We must end corporate welfare and tax giveaways that allow companies like GE to pay no taxes at all.  

We have given government an unlimited expense account – and it has exceeded it. Giving Washington more money is not the solution. That’s why I oppose raising taxes.

We need to put Americans back to work instead of pushing more trade deals like NAFTA that send our jobs overseas.

Putting Americans back to work is the best way to reduce the deficit. Right now, about 56 percent of Americans over the age of 16 are working. If the percentage of working Americans increases to 64 percent, the budget deficit disappears. To put it another way, working Americans and profitable businesses pay taxes and pay into the Social Security and Medicare trust funds. The jobs offshored to China do not pay U.S. taxes.

But instead of focusing on jobs for Americans, the leaders of both parties are pushing for more failed trade deals that send American jobs overseas.

In the next 90 days, Congress will vote on a Korea trade agreement that would outsource thousands of American jobs and open the door to more imports from communist China. The party leaders are also pushing a NAFTA-style deal with Colombia that will cost us more jobs.

I will oppose these trade deals and will fight for American jobs. I ask Jane Corwin, Kathy Hochul and Ian Murphy to join me in making an iron-clad commitment to fight against these unfair trade deals.

Jack Davis, Independent candidate for U.S. Congress, is an engineer, innovator and entrepreneur who founded and manages I Squared R Element Co., Inc. a manufacturing company in Erie County. He has given the company to his employees and they will own and manage it when he retires.

April 14, 2011 - 10:44am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia.

A 16-year-old who was last seen at Tim Horton's restaurant in Batavia at 5 p.m., April 7, has John Dehm, youth officer for the Sheiriff's Office, concerned.

The teen has runaway in the past, but she's never dropped out of contact before, Dehm said.

"I'm a little worried about here," Dehm said. "I would like somebody to call and say we know where she is."

Even if she just pops up on Facebook, Dehm would like to know.

Sara Howard is described at 5'2", 120 lbs and was last seen wearing black jeans, black books, a dark gray sweater and a black Aeropostale jacket. She has dark brown hair usually worn in a ponytail.

Dehm said he's tried calling her and texting her but hasn't gotten any response.

Anybody with information about Sara is asked to call the Sheriff's Office at 343-5000.

April 14, 2011 - 10:26am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

Jennifer Jean Fracek, 20, of Batavia-Stafford Townline Road, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana. Fracek was charged after College Village security contacted the Sheriff's Office with a claim that Fracek was found in possession of marijuana during a security investigation.

April 14, 2011 - 10:18am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, politics, county legislature.

Press release:

Having recently learned of Hollis Upson’s decision not to seek another legislative term this fall, I have decided to pursue the Republican nomination to be the next representative for the 8th District on the Genesee County Legislature.

The 8th District represents Wards 2 and 3 in the City of Batavia. I have been a resident of the second ward for most of my adult life. Before my election to Council at Large, I served as the second ward representative on the City Council. As the current City Council President, I have committed myself to addressing the needs and challenges within the City of Batavia. If given the opportunity, I will work diligently to address those needs at the county level.

April 14, 2011 - 10:00am
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-26, kathy hochul.

Press release:

ERIE COUNTY – Kathy Hochul, candidate for New York’s 26th Congressional District, today released her third television advertisement entitled “The Fighter.”

The 30-second spot tells the story of how Kathy Hochul fought for the residents of Western New York and became the “Stop the Tolls Pioneer.”

“Voters in Erie County know Kathy as a fighter, who persistently has worked for their best interests,” said Fabien Levy, communications director for Kathy Hochul for Congress. “‘The Fighter’ will tell one of those stories to the voters of the 26th District, so they know how hard Kathy will work for them once elected to Congress.”

April 13, 2011 - 6:59pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Jack Davis, NY-26.

Press release: 

The first television ad from the Jack Davis independent campaign for Congress contrasts Jack’s record of creating good-paying American jobs with the record of both parties in Washington that support trade deals like NAFTA which encourage companies to move American jobs offshore. The spot begins airing on cable and broadcast in the Buffalo and Rochester media markets on Thursday.

The factory scenes in the commercial were shot at I Squared R Element, Inc., in Akron N.Y., the company Jack Davis founded and manages. Jack’s commitment to his country, his community and his employees led to his decision in 2009 to give his company to his employees. 

“The success of my company was made possible by the loyalty, dedication and hard work of the men and women who work here. They will own it when I retire. They don’t have to worry about the company being sold and losing their jobs,” Jack Davis says. See the attached letter from Jack Davis to his employees for details.

NAFTA passed Congress in 1994 with support from President Clinton and both political parties in Congress. After its passage, multinational companies closed U.S. plants and relocated to Mexico. Today, President Obama and the Republican leadership in Congress are pushing trade deals with Korea, Colombia and Panama. The Korea trade agreement alone will lead to 159,000 lost U.S. jobs, more imports from China and a higher trade deficit.  

April 13, 2011 - 6:29pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

In 2007 the Bank of America branch on Main Street, Batavia, was robbed by a man who may have displayed a gun, and today, a federal grand jury indicted a suspect in that case.

Michael C. Makolinski, 30, is facing four federal counts of armed bank robbery, four counts of illegally entering a bank with the intent to commit a larceny while armed and four counts of armed bank larceny.

Each charged carries a penalty of 25 years in prison and a $250,000.

Besides the Nov. 7, 2007 robbery in Batavia, Makolinski is accused of robbing the Fairport Savings Bank, on Hudson Avenue, Irondequoit, on Nov 16, 2007, the First Niagara Bank, on Center Street, Lewiston, on Nov. 27, 2007, and the Evans National Bank, on Delaware Avenue, Buffalo, on Dec. 5, 2007

In each case, Makolinski is accused of brandishing what appeared to appeared to be a firearm.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Richard Maigret, who is handling the case, stated that the Indictment is the result of an extensive investigation conducted by Special Agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and New York State Police Investigators over the last three and a half years. 

The Batavia Police Department assisted in the investigation.

April 13, 2011 - 3:32pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Genesee Justice.

The first formal donation, $1,000 from the Genesee County Bar Association, was made to Genesee Justice today.

Even though the nonprofit corporation for Genesee Justice is not yet approved by the IRS -- it's a lengthy process -- the American Baptist Church, Genesee Region, has agreed to act on behalf of Genesee Justice to accept tax-deductible donations.

Last year, about $100,000 was slashed by the Genesee County Legislature from the Genesee Justice budget. With staff taking cuts in hours and Director Ed Minardo resigning his position, the plan worked out with the legislature and the legal community was for Genesee Justice to become funded in part by new grants and donations.

"Funding is just getting very tough, hence we started this foundation to start looking for alternative means of support for this work," said Jane Schmider, president of the new Genesee Justice Foundation.

When the suggestion was made that the programs of Genesee Justice might be turned over to the Probation Department, judges and attorneys -- both prosecutors and defense -- came out in force to support Genesee Justice.

"It was in November 2010 when our organization passed a resolution overwhelmingly objecting to the merger based on the knowledge of the practitioners," said Bar Association President Durin Rogers. "The donation today continues that support."

Alan Newton, executive minister for the American Baptist Church, Genesee Region, said part of the reason the church board stepped forward to help is because restorative justice and reconciliation are a big part of the regional church's mission.

"Godly justice, respect and reconciliation," Newton said. "Those are common themes through our churches in the Genesee Region."

The Genesee Justice Foundation will need to work quickly to raise sufficient funds to save the pioneering restorative justice program, and Schmider said the board is looking at a variety of ways to raise money, including from big donors and possibly a membership program.

"I have no assurances (for 2012) other than that the plan we came up with last year was temporary," said Tiffany Szymanek, assistant director of Genesee Justice. "We know we have to come up with that money regardless. If some of that does come from the county that would be absolutely beneficial to us, but we still have to be aware that that might not happen."

To donate: Make checks payable to American Baptist Church of the Rochester/Genesee Region, with "Genesee Justice" in the note field. Mail to Genesee Justice, 14 W. Main St., Batavia, NY 14020.

Photo, from left, Jane Schmider, Alan Newton, Durin Rogers and Tiffany Szymanek.

April 13, 2011 - 12:02pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Le Roy, Stafford, Grand Jury.

Donnie Hendrickson is indicted on charges of grand larceny, 4th, 23 counts of timber trespass, grand larceny, 3rd, and scheme to defraud, 1st. Hendrickson is accused of cutting and stealing timber from property in Le Roy between Jan. 9 and Feb. 14, 2010 with an estimated value in excess of $1,600. The timber trespass charges each stem from alleged removal of specific trees, including sugar maple, red oak trees and hickory trees. He is also accused of removing trees from property in Stafford, specifically swamp white oak and soft maple trees. He is also accused of cutting and removing timber from a property in Stafford with a value in excess of $18,000. He is also accused of fraudulently trying to acquire the trees.

David Isabell is indicted on charged of two counts of grand larceny, 4th, three counts of grand larceny, 3rd, issuing a bad check, 22 counts of timber trespass, petit larceny, theft of services and scheme to defraud, 1st. Isabell is accused of stealing timber from a property in Le Roy with a value in excess of $1,000. He's also accused of stealing $6,250 from a person in Bergen. He's also accused of stealing timber from a property in Le Roy with a value in excess of $3,000. He's accused of writing a bad check to a person in Le Roy with a value of $5,600. He's a accused of removing timber from a property in Stafford with a value in excess of $450. He's accused of removing timber from a property in Le Roy with a value in excess of $1,000 The alleged timber removed from these properties includes sugar maple, red oak, hickory and swamp white oak. The theft of services charge comes from an allegation that Isabell failed to pay for hotel rooms in Batavia. 

Randall W. McKeown is indicted on a felony charge of DWI, felony driving with a BAC of .08 or greater and aggravated unlicensed operation. McKeown is accused of driving drunk on Nov. 7 while in the Town of Batavia.

April 13, 2011 - 11:40am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

Nichole L. Rushing, 24, of 113 Jackson St., Apt. #2, Batavia, is charged with criminal contempt, 2nd. Rushing is accused of allowing a person who was barred from being in the presence children into her residence with out prior court approval.

Francisco Martinez Jr., 37, of 113 Jackons St. Apt. #2, Batavia is charged with criminal contempt, 2nd. Martinez reportedly walked to Batavia Police headquarters to report an alleged violation of a family court order of protection involving a female acquaintance. While reporting this incident, Martinez reportedly admitted that he was living at the same address and was violating an order of protection by being there. Martinez was reportedly ordered by city court to stay away from the residence and two young children who reside there.

Lemual Morris Clawson, 28, of Eelpot Road, Naples, is charged with petit larceny. Clawson is accused of stealing video game disks from Kmart.




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

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