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June 26, 2015 - 5:34pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in GCEDC, Batavia Downs, business, batavia.

Dealing just with hard numbers -- setting aside speculation on hoped-for new revenue and "the multiplier effect" of jobs created -- the tax abatement plan approved Thursday by the Genesee County Economic Development Center Board for a new hotel at Batavia Downs should be profitable for taxpayers, according to data obtained by The Batavian from a GCEDC staffer.

The abatements will save developers about 11.5 percent on their $5.49 million investment, and the new taxes the project generates will be about a 100-percent return to taxpayers, if you accept the notion that the project doesn't get built at all without the tax incentives. If not, it's at least 42-percent return.

By law, the developer must certify that the project requires a tax break to be feasible, according to Rachael J. Tabelski, marketing and communications director. That is a requirement for all projects considered by the GCEDC.

"We have to trust the applicant that when they say this project won't be a viable project without the tax incentives," Tabelski said.

ADK Hospitality, the hotel's developer, will save $638,000 in taxes over the next 10 years, but it won't be getting off totally free. The hotel's owners, over the next 10 years, will pay $1.1 million in various taxes.

Tabelski was quick to point out that the $638,000 in tax breaks is not money taken from taxpayers. It's just money that isn't paid to the government; money that doesn't exist if the project isn't built. Thus, the $1.1 million in taxes ADK will pay over the next decade is all new revenue for schools, the county and the state (but not the Town of Batavia, which doesn't have its own tax on property).

That figure doesn't include sales tax generated by the hotel, or any anticipated increase in sales tax generated by the hoped-for increase in business at Batavia Downs. It also doesn't include employment taxes generated by the anticipated $600,000 in payroll for 25 full-time equivalent new hires at the hotel. 

The developers told the GCEDC Board that the project would generate a total of $2.8 million in tax revenue between now and 2025, but there isn't a breakdown available on what categories of taxes comprise that total. It likely covers fire district, property, bed tax, sales tax and payroll tax.

The $1.1 million in hard numbers we have includes:

  • $56,000 paid to the Town of Batavia Fire District;
  • $550,000 paid in county bed taxes;
  • $500,000 paid in property taxes over the life of the PILOT.

A PILOT is a tax break given to developers of projects that industrial development agencies, such as GCEDC, believe will create or retain jobs. It is a reduction in taxes on the increase in assessed value of a property.

Let's say a property is valued at $100,000. A business ads a new wing to its building and increases the assessed value to $150,000. The business continues to pay all property taxes on the initial $100,000 in assessed value, but gets a reduction in taxes on that additional $50,000. PILOT agreements vary, but typically, there would be no taxes due the first two years of the increase, and then taxes would be incrementally increased every two years until the 10th year, when the property owner is paying the full tax bill on the increase in assessed value.

In the case of the hotel property, the developers are buying land from Western OTB, which is currently tax-exempt and has no assessed value. It will be assessed next year, and its assessed value will go from zero to whatever that assessed value is, and the PILOT will be calculated based on that increase, unless the project is not yet completed, in which case there will be only a partial assessment with a full assessment to come during the next annual assessment period after the project's completion.

The PILOT on this project is worth $300,000. The remaining abatements are for the mortgage tax on the purchase and on the sales taxes due on material purchased during construction.

As for the multiplier effect, that's a controversial notion to some, but the idea is that if you create a new job and pay that person money, they will spend some amount of that money locally, and the churn of that money will help pay other people's wages, lifting everyone's boats. That $600,000 in new payroll could be worth millions in economic growth locally.

These figures also don't include wages paid to construction workers and purchases made from local vendors -- if any -- during construction.

June 26, 2015 - 4:51pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Cornell Cooperative Extension, dairy, agriculture, Stafford.

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Area dairy farmers were invited to a pasture walk today at the farm of John and Sue Mikel, on East Bethany Le Roy Road, Stafford, by the Cornell Cooperative Extension. John and Sue own and operate Mikelholm Holsteins, a small grazing dairy they started on a 30-acre field they purchased seven years ago. They built a house and barn with a milking parlor.

They graze their 35 cows plus youngstock on the remaining land and supplement their diet with purchased feed. They also knew grazing would provide health benefits to the cows and reduce demands on labor. An added benefit was the reduced bedding costs while the cows are out to pasture.

The discussion included how John and Sue got started, fence and laneway layout, nutrition balance and summer rations as well has how to control parasites. 

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June 26, 2015 - 3:59pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Jackson School, batavia, City Schools, education, schools.

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It was a big day for the students at Jackson School. They moved up a grade, receiving certificates of continuation from administrators during a ceremony in the Batavia High School auditorium.

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June 26, 2015 - 2:00pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Stop DWI.

Press release:

Genesee County STOP-DWI Coordinator Matt Landers announced today that the Genesee County Sheriff’s Department, City of Batavia Police Department and the Village of Le Roy Police Department will participate in a special enforcement effort to crackdown on impaired driving.

The statewide STOP-DWI Crackdown efforts start on July 3rd and will end on July 6th. The 4th of July extended weekend is historically a deadly period for impaired driving. This year the 4th of July falls on a Saturday so we expect heavy traveling to begin on Thursday July 2nd and festivities to begin on Friday July 3rd and run through Monday July 6th.

Americans love to celebrate Independence Day with family, friends, food and fireworks, but all too often the festivities turn tragic on the nation's roads. The fact is, this iconic American holiday is also one of the deadliest holidays of the year due to drunk-driving crashes.

According to data from NHTSA, during July 4th holiday period over the last five years (from 2009 to 2013), 750 people lost their lives in crashes involving drivers with a BAC of .08 or more. These fatalities account for 39 percent of all motor vehicle traffic fatalities over this same five-year period. The New York State Police, County Sheriff and municipal law enforcement agencies will collaborate across the state and will be out in force in this coordinated effort to aggressively target those who put lives in danger.

Undersheriff William Sheron said, “The traffic volume will increase on and around the 4th of July. All drivers will need to take extra precautions and drive defensively. Drivers who are impaired by alcohol or drugs add to the danger on our highways. That is why the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office will have extra patrols out, dedicated to DWI enforcement, over this holiday weekend.”

The 4th of July Weekend Crackdown is one of many statewide enforcement initiatives promoted by the New York State STOP-DWI Association. The Statewide STOP-DWI Crackdown Campaign also targets Labor Day Weekend, Halloween and the national Holiday Season in December.

While STOP-DWI efforts across New York have led to significant reductions in the numbers of alcohol- and drug-related fatalities, still too many lives are being lost because of crashes caused by drunk or impaired drivers. Highly visible, highly publicized efforts like the STOP-DWI Crackdown Campaign aim to further reduce the incidence of drunk and impaired driving.

June 26, 2015 - 11:10am
posted by Howard B. Owens in IAFF Local 896, batavia, City Fire.

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Members of City Fire, IAFF Local 896, are in the midst of their annual fundraising effort on behalf of the Muscular Dystrophy Association this morning, asking passing motorist to "fill the boot."  The firefighters are on Main Street and Ellicott Street around Court Street and will be in place until 1 p.m.

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June 26, 2015 - 10:33am
posted by Howard B. Owens in steve hawley.

Press release:

“Tonight I voted against an omnibus legislation rushed through the legislative process on the final day of session because it contained a variety of poorly constructed bills. Despite the inclusion of mild tax rebates in the bill, we have not accounted for postage, printing, processing and personnel to construct and mail out property-tax rebate checks. These added costs will surely be paid for by taxpayers and will drain resources from other areas of future budgets, such as education and infrastructure aid. Furthermore, these checks will substantially increase and be mailed out only days before Gov. Cuomo’s reelection in 2018. We should not be buying votes with taxpayer dollars. 

“The ‘Big Ugly’ bill fails to address the root cause of soaring property taxes in New York State: unfunded mandates. The average state receives 2 percent of its revenue as transfers from local governments while New York receives 15 percent of its revenue from local governments. In shifting roughly 1/7 of the costs of the state to local governments, we have forced them to raise property taxes to make up the lost revenue. This is shameful and irresponsible governing. Tax rebate checks or a property-tax cap will not solve our state’s rising property taxes. This must be done at the state level by refusing to shift costs to our localities.”

“It is ridiculous that in this legislation, Gov. Cuomo was granted the power to wed (marry) individuals. That power should be held by religious figures and justices of the peace. For these reasons I am disappointed in this bill and voted against it."

June 25, 2015 - 4:59pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in darien lake performing arts center, Darien, crime.

The following arrests were announced by the Sheriff's Office in connection with the Train Concert at Darien Lake Performing Arts Center on Wednesday.

Connor W. Whitman, 20, of Pendleton Street Extension, Cortland, is charged with criminal possession of marijuana for allegedly smoking marijuana in view of other concert patrons.

Michael R. Marchese, 25, of Park Avenue, Batavia, is charged with disorderly conduct and trespass after allegedly refusing to leave the concert parking lot after being told to leave several times and then throwing his cell phone, striking a passing vehicle in the rear window.

June 25, 2015 - 4:46pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in picnic in the park, GO ART!, batavia.

Press release:

The Genesee-Orleans Regional Arts Council (GO ART!) presents the 37th annual “GO ART! Picnic in the Park” this Independence Day. The festivities run from noon until 5 p.m. on Saturday, July 4th, in historic Centennial Park on Richmond Avenue in Batavia. As is tradition, this year’s “Picnic in the Park” is a free, family-friendly event that will once again include all-day live musical entertainment, an arts and crafts show, folk arts programs, food vendors, children’s activities, and much more!

Introduced just last year to great response, the event will be preceded by a “Kiddie Parade” kicking off the day. Families with children ages 12 and under are invited to bring their bikes, scooters or strollers to the northwest corner of Centennial Park – between the Main Stage and Richmond Avenue - at 11 a.m. to decorate them for an old time “kiddie parade.” Decorations will be provided, and the parade will take place at 11:30 a.m. on Ellicott and Park avenues.

Live entertainment is presented on two separate stages, the Main Stage and “Stage II,” which has traditionally featured performances that engage kids and families. MAIN STAGE entertainment commences at noon with the “Picnic” staple Batavia Concert Band playing its traditional mix of Sousa-style marches and Big Band numbers.

Founded in 1924, the Band has brought musical pleasure to the region every year except during World War II. The Concert Band itself consists of 40 to 50 brass, woodwind and percussion players ranging from advanced high school musicians to 50-year veterans. Many have professional performance experience; the rest are advanced amateurs. All love to play. The Band's musical repertoire is wide-ranging in origin, style and period, and includes marches, Broadway show tunes, favorites from hit musicals and movies, pop, jazz and even rock numbers arranged for band. Join the Band for weekly concerts during the summer on Wednesday evenings in Centennial Park.

Directly following Batavia Concert Band’s performance, Vibrant Batavia’s Centennial Committee will do a short presentation honoring the City’s 100th Birthday which will include cupcakes to be distributed to all who attend. 

A wide variety of bands featuring local and traditional music will follow on the Main Stage through the rest of the afternoon:

1:30-2:30 p.m. – Henrie Brothers: Old-time music has been a family matters since the early 1970s, when Bill, the oldest, tookd up the fiddle and helped his younger brothers John (mandolin), Bob (guitar), and Doug (bass) learn their instruments. Since then they have performed at leading music festivals and venues throughout the Northeast, performing bluegrass, old time, contradance, swing and jazz, all to consistent critical acclaim. At Picnic in the Park, the brothers will return to their roots in old time, early country and Irish music that gave them their start. 

2:45-3:45 p.m. – The Niagara River Dancers combine students at the Tuscarora Indian Elementary School located at the center of the Tuscarora Nation, with members of the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) tribes from throughout NYS.  Many of the students stay after school for an extra hour to learn traditional dancing on a weekly basis. They not only learn the Haudenosaunee dances, but also dances from other Native communities around the country. The dancers wear beautifully beaded outfits, many in the Tuscarora raised-beadwork style, which are often made by their parents or other relatives. Traditional musicians accompany the dancers, who include explanations of the dance patterns, stories and history.

4-5 p.m. – Steel Alchemy Community Steel Band was formed in 2001 by Director Ted Canning as the Livingston County Community Steel Band, with assistance from the Decentralization grant program of the NYS Council on the Arts.  Several members have been playing with the band since its inception, including the Palermo family from Mt. Morris. In 2007 the band released its self-titled CD recording, which prompted them to come up with their current name, Steel Alchemy. They perform a variety of music including Caribbean traditional and popular songs, American pop, and music written especially for steel bands. The band is open to people ages 13 and older, with no prior experience required. Anyone interested in learning more can contact Ted at [email protected].

STAGE II:

12:30-1:30 p.m. -- Cut Off (A cappella Group) will perform their first performance of the day. The group was founded in the summer of 2010 by recent college graduates looking to continue performing in a contemporary a cappella setting. This co-ed group’s debut performance was in January 2011 at Lovin’ Cup in Rochester. The group participated in the first ever Boston Sings A cappella Festival (BOSS) in April 2012, where they took part in a workshop with Canadian-based group, Cadence. They were also proud to have performed at the Rochester Fringe Festival in September of 2013 at the TheatreROCS Stage at Xerox Auditorium. Cut Off just released their first CD, "Get Cut Off," in March of 2013 with Liquid 5th Productions (Raleigh, N.C.) and in 2014, the group was nominated for 2 Contemporary A cappella Recording Awards (CARAs) for Best Country Song (Good Girl) and Best CAL Song (LaserLight). 

2-2:30 p.m. -- Thai Kwon Do Demonstration by Refuse 2 Lose Martial Arts

3-4 p.m. -- Cut Off (A cappella Group) -- Second Performance

THROUGHOUT THE DAY in Centennial Park, other activities include horse-drawn wagon rides by Hartland Carriages, pony rides and petting zoo by North Forty Pony Express and the Wildlife Educators Coalition returning with its wide assortment of animals. Geoffrey Clough offers his popular interactive program of children’s songs called “Cookie Songwriting,” and of course juggling and other roving entertainment in the park.

The GLOW Area YMCA will have its bounce house and inflatable obstacle course on site, and the Explore Art! Tent invites kids and families to do their own hands-on art activity, all materials provided, and free caricatures will be available near the tent. The Genesee County Park will be featuring a larger display this year with interactive activities and they will also have their resident turtle on hand to visit. The Park is celebrating its 100th Anniversary this year!

Along the Richmond Avenue side of Centennial Park, artists and crafters representing an amazing diversity of arts and crafts are featured in an ARTS AND CRAFTS SHOW AND SALE. Additional attractions consist of booths by community nonprofit organizations, including Genesee County ARC information & recycling education, Genesee County Historians Association, Batavia Assembly of God dunk tank and sand art, Batavia Players pizza & show info, GO ART!’s Picnic in the Park 50/50 Raffle and many others.

“Picnic” always offers up tantalizing food by a variety of vendors, such as Abbott’s cones, sundaes, milkshakes and root beer floats, Lonsberry fresh-squeezed lemonade and soft pretzels, and, of course, the Batavia Jaycees’ famous ‘dog and burger stand in its traditional location.

The event is funded, in part, by the New York State Council on the Arts Folk Arts Program with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. Picnic Level sponsors ($500 and up) include Batavia Rotary Club, Turnbull Heating & Air, Batavia Jaycees, Steve Hawley, CY Farms, The Batavian, and The Daily News.

Admission is free to the “Picnic in the Park.” Please call GO ART! at 585-343-9313, e-mail [email protected] or visitwww.goart.org for more information.

June 25, 2015 - 1:32pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in wbta, business.

Press release:

WBTA Radio will temporarily suspend AM and FM transmissions on Friday morning, June 26 in order to repair antenna damage caused by severe thunderstorms earlier.

The station expects the signals will be turned off at about 10:15 a.m. as engineers reposition the station's FM antenna that was rotated 90-degrees due to strong winds.

The AM signal on 1490 was unaffected by the storm but in order for someone to safely climb the 200-foot tower on Creek Road to reach the FM antenna both signals must be shut down, explained WBTA President Dan Fischer.

“We hope the outage will last no more than 90 minutes but we will not know the extent of damage until we can inspect it close up,” Fischer said.

While the stations are off the air, programming will continue to be heard online and via mobile devices at WBTAi.com.

June 23, 2015 - 7:44pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in jobs, economy, business.

The number of people with jobs in Genesee County has improved, according to statistics released today by the state Department of Labor.

The sunnier employment picture for local residents comes a couple of weeks after a labor department report revealed that the county fell flat on in-county job growth in May, but the same jobs report showed an increase in the workforce in Monroe and Erie counties.

There are 300 more local residents with jobs now than there were a year ago, according to today's report. The total has climbed from 28,900 in May 2014 to 29,200 this May.

That puts the Genesee County unemployment rate at 4.7 percent, compared to 5.0 in May 2014.

The 4.7-percent rate is low, but not the lowest figure of the past 12 months. The rate was 4.6 in October. In the past 12 months it's been as high as 6.8 percent, which was the figure in January.

The unemployment rate in Wyoming County is 5.2 percent, down form 5.8 percent a year ago. In Orleans it's dropped from 7.0 to 6.2 and in Livingston, from 5.7 to 5.1.

The state rate is 5.3 percent and the national rate is 5.3.

June 23, 2015 - 3:06pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia.

A woman who played a business role in a shop on Ellicott Street that became a flash point for a local spike in synthetic drug use in summer of 2012 received a probationary sentence from a federal district judge today. Amber Snover had entered a guilty plea stemming from her arrest three years ago.

The 24-year-old Rochester resident was an associate of Charles Fitzgerald, who was identified by authorities as the owner of the 420 Emporium, at 400 Ellicott St., Batavia.

Snover admitted previously to using a communication facility to facilitate a controlled substance. She was sentenced to five years probation and must forfeit her share of $771,109 seized in a raid July 25, 2012, of the residence in Greece she shared with Fitzgerald.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jennifer Noto, who handled the case, said that Snover used a telephone to order various synthetic controlled substance analogues for delivery and sale at the Batavia location of the chain of head shops.

Fitzgerald was convicted and sentenced to 30 months in prison. Three employees of Fitzgerald’s who worked at the 420 Emporium stores located in Batavia and Henrietta have also been convicted and sentenced.
June 22, 2015 - 10:49am
posted by Howard B. Owens in darien lake, darien lake performing arts center, crime, Darien.

The following people were arrested during the Fall Out Boy concert on Thursday at Darien Lakes Performing Arts Center.

Katie N. Cook, 18, of University Avenue, Atlanta, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th, and unlawful possession of marijuana.

Michael T. Smith, 18, of Maple Avenue, Cohocton, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th, and unlawful possession of marijuana.

Jennitsia I Rodriguezis, 18, of Jude Road, Cohocton, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th, and unlawful possession of marijuana.

Keisean R. Canery, 18, of West Genesee Road, Camillus, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th, and unlawful possession of marijuana.

The following were issued appearance tickets for alleged unlawful possession of marijuana:

Benjamin R. Green, 21, of Cornwall Road, Palmyra
Austin J. Gieseke, 20, of Richmond Mills Livonia
Eric R. Curtis, 18, of Fuller Road, Corfu
Amanda M. Carroll, 20, of East Sciota Road, Scio
Name redacted, under age 18, of Old Route 99 McKean, Pa.
Name redacted, under age 18, of Hill Road, Waterford, Pa.
Kevin W. Cornelia, 25, of Longridge Avenue, Rochester
Austin S. Muscato, 18, of Falconer Road, North Tonawanda
Name redacted, under age 18, of Debra Lane, Niagara Falls
Dylan P. Boes, 18, of Hyde Park, Lockport
Dominic E. Williams, 18, of Carolina Avenue, Lockport
Ibro Alemic, 18, of First Road, Solvay
Cole J. Gloss, 19, of Diller Road, Orchard Park
Alexander W. Domkowski, 18, of Rochelle Drive, Churchville
Dominic J. Prisi, 19, of Hillside Parkway, Lancaster
Stephen A. Weimer, 18, of Holmcrest Drive, Amherst
Jack R. Cooper, 18, of Cree-Ton Drive, Amherst

The following people were issued citations for alleged possession of fraudulent, altered or use of another person's driver's license or ID by DMV investigators:

Ryan J. Wood, 19, of Merric Road, Buffalo (fake RI DL)
Richard D. Hillman Jr., 20, of Sharon Drive, Lockport (fake PA DL)
Timothy M. Kane, 19, of Winding Woods Hamburg (another’s DL)
(name redacted upon request), 18, of Cliffside Drive, East Clarence (altered , 2 fake CT’s, 1 fake MI ID)
Katherine A. Niedzielski, 20, of Claudette Ct.Depew (another’s FL DL)
Jacob B. Kopacz, 20, of Parkhaven Drive, Amherst (fake MI ID)
Peter F. Walsh, 19, of Woodcrest Drive, West Seneca (fake )
Joseph R. Higgins, 19, of Girard Blvd.Kenmore (another’s DL)
Lea M. Praller , 19, of Sder Road,Varysburg (fake OH DL)
Abigail M. Bobbette, 18, of Blackberry Lane, Piseco (fake BC ID)
Adam D. Hodge, 19, of Del Verde Road,Rochester (fake MI ID)
Mark A. Passantino, 19, of Timothy Lane, E. Aurora (fake OH DL)
Name redacted, under age 18,, of Argyle Park, Buffalo (fake CT DL)
Richard J. Gicewicz, 19, of Wildwood Lane, Orchard Park (fake OH DL)
Alicia J. Wagner, 19, of Tampa Drive, Buffalo (fake PA DL)
Justin T. Gray, 18, of Overlook Avenue, Tonawanda (fake PA DL)
Nicholas Trajcevski, 19, of Sailboat Drive, Corsicana, TX (fake OH DL)
Michael J. Mauro, 19, of Pearl Road, Hornell (fake DE DL)
Matthew J. Eisenhauer, 19, of Coldwater Road, Rochester (fake NJ DL – x2)
Lavonte D. Lee, 19, of Rumson Road, Amherst (another’s DL)
Hunter D. Vangorder, 19, of Shortsville Road, Shortsville (fraud CT DL)
Aaron S. Scheff, 20, of E. Apache Blvd. Tempe, AZ. (fake AZ DL)
Nathan E. Mutka, 19, of Pinelake Drive, Williamsville (fake ME DL)
Andrew M. Kausch, 19, of Holmes Road, Rochester (fake OH DL)
Austin D. Pieniaszek, 19, of Raspberry Patch Rochester (fake CT DL)
Domenic A. Zendano, 18, of Lancelot Drive, Niagara Falls (fake MN DL)
Name redacted, under age 18, of Victor (fake MD DL)
Trevor J. Baum, 19, of Whittier Road, Spencerport (fake CT DL)
William A. Borema, 18, of Toll Drive, Tioga, Pa. (fake PA DL)
Odessa L. Werchowski, 20, of Oklahoma Avenue, Oriska (fake PA DL)
Mariah L. Bona, 19, of Meadowbrook Drive, Williamsville (fake RI DL)
James P. Rehak, 18, of The CMN, Williamsville (fake VA DL)
Benjamin A. Cambria, 18, of Saint Johns Avenue, Buffalo (fake PA DL)
Cal C. Goheen, 18, of Chablis Drive, Fairport (fake OH DL)
Jacob P. Alessi, 19, of Erie Road, Lancaster (fake OH DL)
Kayla I Bicknell, 18, of Ashford Place, Depew (fake OH DL)
Alexnader P. Gyles, 19, of Chillon Court, Fairport (fake CT DL)
Ryan C. Smith, 18, of Boston State Road, Boston (fake CT DL)
Long J.T. Voung, 20, of Naples Circle Amherst (fake OH DL)
Name redacted, under age 18, of Summit Road, Lancaster (fake OH DL)
Michael C. Elie, 18, of Pannell Circle Fairport (fake PA DL)

The following people were cited for alleged possession of more than one unexpired driver's license by DMV investigators:

Dylan M. Mosher, 19, of Chicken Coup Heights, Trumansburg
Austin J. Gieseke, 20, of Richmond Mills, Livonia
Name redacted, under age 18, of Third Road, Allega, 
Alexander W. Domkowski, 18, of Rochelle Drive, Churchville
Jack R. Cooper, 18, of Cree-Ton Drive, Amherst

June 22, 2015 - 8:00am
posted by Howard B. Owens in thebatavian, The Batavian Club, Sponsored Post, advertisement.

Members of The Batavian Club receive more than $300 in gift certificates. These are gift certificates that be used in the same local businesses we all patronize every day.

An annual membership is a mere $60. So think about it, use your first $60 in gift certificates and the rest of your membership package is like getting free money. Who doesn't like free stuff?

Sign up with an annual recurring payment instead of a one-time payment, and save another $10 off your membership fee. More free stuff!

You're helping to support The Batavian's mission to bring you the best local coverage and supporting local businesses at the same time. Everybody wins.

Here's what you get:

  • Adam Miller Toy and Bicycle, $3
  • Alex's Place, $5
  • Alli's Cones & Dogs, $3
  • Batavia Country Club, $5
  • Batavia Muckdogs, Two free GA tickets
  • Beds-N-Bones Pet Lodge, $5
  • Blue Pearl Yoga, $10
  • Center Street Smoke House,$5
  • City Slickers, $4
  • Dan's Tire & Auto, $5
  • The Detail Shop, $2
  • En Garde, $5
  • Floral Fantasies, $3
  • Great Kutz, $3 on haircuts
  • Hardcor Audio, $20
  • Jagged Edges Salon, $5
  • The Mane Attraction, $5
  • Main St. Pizza Company, $3
  • Max Pies Furniture, $100 on $500 or more retail value
  • Millennium Computer, $20 on $100 or more purchase
  • R&D Outlet Center, $5
  • R.W. Vapors, $5
  • Santino's Pizza , $5
  • Settler's Restaurant, $5
  • Smokin' Eagle BBQ & Brew, $5
  • Sweet Pea's Cupcakery Cafe, $2
  • Valle Jewelers, $25 on $100 or more retail value
  • Vinyl Sticks
  • West Main Wine and Spirits, $3

There are three ways to join: Use Paypal (buttons below) call us with your credit card information, or mail us a check.

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Single member non-recurring payment: $60
Single membership annual recurring automatic payment of $50
June 20, 2015 - 9:26am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, abandoned properties.

Press release:

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) today announced that a bill he introduced to provide tax incentives to renovate "zombie" properties in the City of Batavia, A.7570-A/S.5196A, was passed by the Assembly and Senate on Thursday.

The legislation establishes a program giving property-tax assessment incentives to residents of Batavia who purchase and renovate dilapidated single-family properties. The program, if successful, could be allowed in other cities statewide.

“I was pleased to have had the opportunity to work with Senator Ranzenhofer to ensure that this legislation passed both houses before the end of session,” Hawley said. “Zombie properties have plagued Batavia for years and this is a monumental step toward addressing the issue. Residents who purchase these dilapidated properties will be given a property-tax exemption to help alleviate the financial burden of repairs made to the home.

"This will ensure that home renovation costs do not exceed property value. Also, the legislation protects against large real estate companies buying many properties and subdividing them into apartments or multiple-family dwellings. The bill will now be sent to the governor for his signature. If it receives his approval the program will take effect immediately.”

Senator Michael Ranzenhofer carried the bill in the Senate and Hawley applauded his efforts and said he is pleased to have worked with him.

“By spurring redevelopment of vacant homes, this innovative program will help to benefit all taxpayers," Ranzenhofer said. "For prospective home buyers, it will provide a real incentive to make costly repairs to a distressed home. For neighbors, it will make their street a better place to live and prevent their home values from being depressed.

"For all taxpayers, it will help to dilute the burden of property taxes by adding more properties with higher valuations to the tax rolls,” Ranzenhofer said. “I am hopeful that the Governor will sign it into law.”

June 20, 2015 - 7:15am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Stafford Carnival.

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Don Dessert submitted this photo from the Stafford Carnival.

June 20, 2015 - 7:00am
posted by Howard B. Owens in dwyer stadium, batavia, muckdogs, baseball, sports.

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Melanie Case submitted this photo of fireworks after the Muckdogs' opening night game at Dwyer Stadium. I don't think I've ever seen a better photo of fireworks at Dwyer.

June 19, 2015 - 10:16am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Le Roy.

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From our news partner, WBTA:

State Police suspect a driver may have suffered some type of medical problem causing him to crash into a concrete barrier of the Thruway at the Le Roy exit.

Troopers said the unidentified driver was taken to Strong Memorial Hospital with head injuries and chest pain.

The accident happened at 2:30 Thursday afternoon. Entrance and exit lanes were closed for more than an hour.

According to State Police, a Ford 350 pickup truck crashed into the concrete barrier that protects the toll booth. The impact bent one of the steel supports that supports the roof of the booth.

The pickup truck proceeded through the exit lane and flipped over on its roof.

(Photos submitted by Greg Luetticke-Archbell.)

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June 19, 2015 - 9:41am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, genesee county libertarian party.

Press release:

The Genesee County Libertarian Party is pleased to announce our endorsement of Lisa Whitehead to be a candidate for Batavia City Council Ward #2.

June 18, 2015 - 2:47pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in jobs, economy, business.

Year-over-year job growth for Genesee County was stagnant in May, according to data released by the Department of Labor.

In May of 2014 and 2015, there were 23,900 jobs locally, according to the department's count.

The unchanged non-farm jobs number comes in a month that New York State as a whole added more than 142,000 jobs, jumping from 9.133 million jobs to 9.276 million jobs.

The Rochester area added 7,100 jobs and the Buffalo region added 13,000.

Wyoming County was also flat in jobs growth for May, holding steady at 13,500 jobs. The data for Livingston and Orleans counties are included in the Monroe County data.

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