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February 2, 2017 - 5:15pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in michael ranzenhofer, news.

Press release:

The New York State Senate has passed legislation (S1207) to make the property tax cap permanent. If enacted, this bill would secure $66 billion in taxpayer savings over the next ten years.

State Senator Michael H. Ranzenhofer voted in favor of the legislation.

“The property tax cap has helped to end the days of sky-high annual increases in tax bills, and it has saved taxpayers $15.5 billion over the last five years. Simply put, it is working. That is why it is so important to enact this legislation into law,” said Ranzenhofer.

Between 2001 and 2011, growth in New York’s property taxes increased by 73 percent for school districts and 53 percent for counties.

The property tax cap was first enacted in 2011. The cap limits the annual growth of property taxes levied by local governments and school districts to two percent or the rate of inflation, whichever is less.

The bill has been sent to the State Assembly.

February 2, 2017 - 2:37pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in genesee county, tourism, business, news.

A weak Canadian dollar kept many tourists from the north out of New York and Genesee County, as a result, saw a decline of 3 percent in bed tax revenue, Tom Turnbull, president of the Chamber of Commerce, told county legislators yesterday.

Turnbull and tourism director Kelly Rapone provided a review of chamber and tourism activity at the Ways and Means Committee meeting.

"People were not traveling as much," Turnbull said. "But talking with our friends in Buffalo-Niagara, we did better than them. They were down 10 percent."

The weak exchange rate for Canadians didn't keep too many golfers away, though, Turnbull said. Because the prices at local golf courses are so competitive, the chamber was still able to sell a number of golf packages.

Turnbull thinks the county's bed tax revenue will return to a level of $420,000 or higher in 2017 in a large part because this will be the first full year of operation for the new hotel at Batavia Downs and this year a new hotel should open on the north side of the Thruway in Batavia, the Fairfield by Marriott.

Group sales have continued to do well, if not better, Turnbull said. Genesee County continues to be a popular location for soccer, lacrosse and baseball tournaments. 

"That brings people into the hotels and they spend money and that’s what we’re looking for," Turnbull said.

Rapone shared copies of the new tourism promotional material the chamber has available. She also debuted the totally redesigned tourism website visitgeneseeny.com. The modernized website will make it easier for tourists to find information about visiting Genesee County, she said, and it will also make it easier on both golfers and staff to handle bookings for golf packages.

During the meeting, Legislator Ray Cianfrini also floated the idea of creating an entertainment tax. He noted that when he's gone to venues in other counties he's noticed the ticket price includes an entertainment tax, so he's been researching it. The tax, if implemented, would likely apply only to venues over a certain size, say with seating of 2,500 or more, and colleges would be exempt.  

The only current venue where such a tax might apply is Darian Lake Performing Arts Center.

"It might be another source of revenue," Cianfrini said.

February 2, 2017 - 2:03pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in GLOW YMCA, news.

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Mary Case talked about the positive impact the GLOW YMCA has had on her grandson during the kickoff of the 2017 fundraising campaign at Terry Hills last night.

The money raised will go to the Y's scholarship program. Scholarships allow people who need the support of the Y and access to its programs to be able to join at no cost.

The fundraising goal through the four counties is $91,000, but Executive Director Rob Walker (bottom photo) challenged the two dozen volunteers and staff members at last night's kickoff to reach for a goal of $100,000.

Case said her grandson has made lifelong friends through participation at the Y and going to Camp Hough, where he met a counselor from China who taught him a few phrases in Chinese that he still uses to this day.

"He knows that counselor had an impact on him," she said.

Directors from the Orleans County and Wyoming County YMCAs also shared stories about how scholarships are helping members in their community improve their lives through the services offered by the Y.

“The things that we do have an impact on our community and they happen every single day, but we don’t always get to see them or pause and realize that behind that moment there’s a family that’s impacted,” Walker said.

To find out how to make a contribution to the YMCA, visit the GLOW YMCA's website.

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February 2, 2017 - 1:45pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in chris collins ny-27.

Press release:

Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) has sent correspondence to Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly expressing a deep concern regarding the expedited implementation of the biometric exit-entry system.

“Western New Yorkers and our economy rely heavily on the timely movement between Canada and the United States via the Peace Bridge,” said Congressman Chris Collins. “While keeping our communities safe is my number one priority, I want to ensure that before any agency implements the biometric exit-entry system fully, we examine all possible transportation impacts and take steps to alleviate any disruptions that may be created. Our southern and northern borders have different security issues and I hope those differences are taken into account.”

The biometric exit-entry program was requested by the 9/11 Commission to better track individuals traveling in and out of the country. However, its implementation has been delayed because of the significant logistical issues it could create. The issue has recently been raised because President Trump in his executive order on immigration states: “The Secretary of Homeland Security shall expedite the completion and implementation of a biometric entry-exit tracking system for all travelers to the United States, as recommended by the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States.”

In the letter, Congressman Collins writes, “I strongly support increased national security measures across our nation and commend President Trump for his swift action. However, I am concerned that an expedited implementation of this system will not take into consideration the differences in security interests at our northern and southern borders.” 

Furthermore, he urges Secretary Kelly “to carefully consider the widespread impacts implementation of a biometric entry-exit system would have on our northern border.”

Congressman Collins previously introduced an amendment in 2015 requiring a pilot program be implemented before a full-scale implementation of the biometric exit-entry program to avoid any major commerce and travel disruptions.

February 2, 2017 - 10:33am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy, news, crime.

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Press release:

The Village of Le Roy Police Department is attempting to identify an individual who is a person of interest in a larceny that occurred on Jan. 31 at approximately 3:15 p.m. at the Walgreens on West Main Street. The subject was observed leaving in a dark four-door sedan.

Anyone with information is urged to call The Village of Le Roy Police Department at 585-345-6350; please reference CR# 17-0426.

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February 2, 2017 - 10:27am
posted by Howard B. Owens in nursing home, genesee county, news.

County Manager Jay Gsell just announced that as of 7:56 a.m., Genesee County is out of the nursing home business. 

The sale of the Genesee County Nursing Home to Premier Healthcare Management, LLC is complete after state regulators cleared the way for transfer of title. 

The county has received payment in full in the $15.2 million transaction, Gsell said.

February 1, 2017 - 2:33pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in michael ranzenhofer, news.

Press release:

The New York State Senate has passed legislation (S418) to amend the New York State Constitution to strip taxpayer-funded pensions from criminally convicted politicians. 

State Senator Michael H. Ranzenhofer, a cosponsor of the bill, voted in favor of it.

“Under existing law, some public officers are still able to collect a pension even after they are found guilty of a serious crime, and I have been working to end this practice. This reform measure will help to ensure that corrupt government officials face serious financial consequences for their misconduct,” Ranzenhofer said.

Under the measure, a pension may be reduced or revoked if a public officer is convicted of a felony related to their official duties. Public officers include elected officials, direct gubernatorial appointees, municipal managers, department heads, chief fiscal officers and policy makers.

“If state officials fail to be ethical and uphold the public’s trust, then they should be held accountable for their actions. This historic new Constitutional Amendment does just that,” Ranzenhofer said. “I am pleased to report that it is a step closer to reality.”

In order to amend the State Constitution, the legislation must pass both houses of the Legislature in two consecutive sessions. Both the Senate and Assembly passed the measure during the 2015-16 Legislative Session. Following its passage in both houses earlier this week, it will be presented to voters for approval later this year on Election Day.

A law enacted in 2011, known as the Public Integrity Reform Act, subjected any public official who joined the retirement system on or after Nov. 13, 2011 to pension forfeiture if convicted of certain felonies related to their public office. However, the new law could not apply to public officials who joined the retirement system before that date because of language contained in the State Constitution. The Constitution states that public pensions involve a contractual relationship that cannot be reduced, unless an amendment is made to the document.

February 1, 2017 - 2:31pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia PD, batavia, news.

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Press release:

The Batavia Police Department has installed two drop boxes, one for pharmaceuticals and one for sharps, in the rear vestibule at police headquarters for the public’s use.

Citizens may deposit unwanted pharmaceuticals, and sharps, 24 hours a day, seven days a week (24/7) in the drop boxes located at 10 W. Main St.

The drop boxes allow for the public to dispose of the following items in a safe, secure, anonymous way.

Acceptable items: Sharps, in a sharps container no larger than 2 liters, prescriptions, prescription patches, ointments, medications, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, samples, and medication for pets.

Non-acceptable items: Thermometers, aerosol sprays, inhalers, illicit drugs, hydrogen peroxide, perfume, cooking oil, soaps, shampoos, conditioners, detergents, and beauty supplies.

Small sharps containers will be available for free on top of the sharps drop box.

February 1, 2017 - 1:36pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news, Darien, byron, Bethany, elba.

Shawn M. Twardowski, 34, of Bank Street, Batavia, is charged with: animal cruelty; second-degree harassment; third-degree robbery; fourth-degree criminal mischief; obstruction of governmental administration; and resisting arrest. Twardowski was reportedly involved in an incident at his residence on Bank Street at 12:15 a.m., Thursday. He allegedly strangled and punched a beagle, subjected a female at the location to physical contact, stealing and attempting to disable her mobile phone and then, upon police arrival, barricaded himself in a bedroom. When police gained access, he allegedly struggled with officers. He was jailed on $50,000 bail.

Salvatore M. Schwable, 19, of Webber Avenue, Oakfield, was arrested on a warrant. Schwable allegedly violated the terms of his release-under-supervision contract. He was jailed on $2,500 bail.

Ronald J. Murray Jr., 22, of Wood Street, Batavia, is charged with harassment, 2nd. Murray allegedly pushed another person during an argument, reported at 8:30 p.m., Thursday.

Alan P. Ellis, 36, of Lewis Avenue, Batavia, is charged with harassment, 2nd, criminal obstruction of breathing, endangering the welfare of a child and cruelty to animals. During an argument reported at 5:15 a.m., Sunday, Ellis grabbed victims by their throats, with one being under age 17, and he allegedly threw and kicked a dog, causing it to limp.  

Charles J. Rodriguez Sr., 40, of North Spruce Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Rodriguez was arrested on a warrant out of Batavia City Court at Buffalo City Court when he appeared there on an unrelated matter. He was jailed on $1,000 bail or $2,000 bond.

Michael J. Antonucci, 34, of Alexander Road, Attica, is charged criminal contempt, 2nd. Antonucci was arrested on a warrant for allegedly violating an order of protection.

Jeanna M. Hattaway, 29, of West Main Street Road, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Hattaway allegedly stole two pairs of sunglasses from the 7-Eleven at 505 E. Main St., Batavia.

Diane M. Fiorentino, 67, of Grandview Terrace, Batavia, is charged with harassment, 2nd. Fiorentino was arrested Nov. 13 following the report of an incident at 5:30 p.m. that day at her residence. No further details released.

Nikayla C. Jackson, 19, no permanent address, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear on a disorderly conduct charge.

Willie A. Saab, 42, of West Main Street, Batavia, is charged with two counts of first-degree criminal contempt and two counts of aggravated family offense. Saab allegedly violated a pair of stay-away orders. He was jailed without bail.

Grayson Jordan Albert Finnin, 20, of Seven Springs Road, Batavia, is charged with harassment, 2nd, obstructing emergency medical services, and unlawful possession of alcohol by a person under age 21. Finnin was allegedly involved at a disturbance at a local hotel at 12:12 a.m., Tuesday. He was transported to UMMC and allegedly became combative with medical staff and police officers.

Gerardo Carrera-Sanchez, 31, Oak Orchard Road, Elba, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, consumption of alcohol in a motor vehicle, unlicensed operator and moving from lane unsafely. Carrera-Sanchez was arrested by Deputy Howard Wilson following the investigation into a motor-vehicle accident reported at 7:30 a.m. Jan. 22 on Shelt Road, Byron.

Timothy Michael Weinstein, 44, of Alleghany Road, Darien, is charged with criminal contempt, 2nd, and unlawful possession of marijuana. Weinstein allegedly violated the terms of an order of protection.

Yahaira Ann Marie Brown Diaz, 18, of Old Telephone Road, Bethany, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana. Diaz was allegedly found in possession of marijuana while at a location on West Main Street Road, Batavia, at 7:04 p.m., Sunday.

February 1, 2017 - 11:19am
posted by Howard B. Owens in football, sports, Le Roy, elba.

Two former Genesee County football stars have been selected for induction into the Section V Hall of Fame.

David Boyce, of Le Roy, and Mark Shardlow, of Elba, will both be inducted during the 20th-anniversary ceremony April 6.

Joining the 2017 class are:

  • Mark Baniewicz, Fairport
  • Trent Bridges, Irondequoit
  • Mike Butler, Irondequoit
  • Keith Downing, Fairport
  • Danny Gilardi, East Irondequoit Eastridge
  • Thomas Nacca, Jefferson

Three coaches from Section V and two others who have contributed to Section V football will be inducted: 

  • Jim Haugh, Victor and Livonia
  • Mike Nally, Edison
  • Ron Rucker, East Rochester
  • Marc Remillard, game official
  • Kevin Pino, athletic trainer, in contributor category

The ceremony will be at RIT Inn and Conference Center. Tickets to the induction ceremony and dinner are $40 per person or $350 for a table of 10. They may be ordered before April 1 with checks payable to Section 5 Football by mailing to: Frank Marafino, 4 Georgetown Drive, Apt. C, Rochester, NY, 14617.

February 1, 2017 - 9:49am
posted by Howard B. Owens in alexander, fire, news.

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A garbage truck is reported to be on fire in the area of the country deli in Alexander.

Alexander fire responding.

UPDATE 10:12 a.m.: A tanker from Bethany requested to the scene.

UPDATE: Photos submitted by Heather Jackson.

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February 1, 2017 - 8:00am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, batavia, news.

A one-vehicle accident is reported in the area of 8557 Lewiston Road, Batavia.

Unknown injuries.

Town of Batavia fire and Mercy EMS responding.

UPDATE 8:15 a.m.: No injuries. Town assignment back in service. 

February 1, 2017 - 7:56am
posted by Howard B. Owens in chris collins, NY-27.

Press release:

Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) released the following statement regarding President Trump’s nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court:

“President Trump showed America his commitment to conservative principles with tonight’s Supreme Court nomination,” Congressman Collins said. “Judge Neil Gorsuch will be a strong voice on the Court for years to come.

"I fully anticipate that he will continue interpreting laws as they are written and defend the constitutionally protected rights all Americans hold dear. I urge my Democrat colleagues in the Senate to recognize the clear message American voters sent on Election Day and quickly confirm Judge Gorsuch.”

February 1, 2017 - 7:39am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Deal of the Day, advertisement.

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

  • To make purchases, you must be registered. This is its own registration system, separate from the main registration for The Batavian.
  • Once registered you must be logged in.
  • You click on the orange button, if the item is not sold out, and it takes you to a PayPal button. This allows you to pay either with your PayPal account or with a credit card/debit card. The login for PayPal is completely separate from our accounts.
  • The first person to successfully complete the PayPal transaction wins the gift certificate.
  • You are eligible to buy the same item only once in a four-month period. We use the registration system to track this for you so you don't have to.
January 31, 2017 - 4:41pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in missing person, pembroke, news.

alexismissiong2017.jpgA local mother is desperate to find her missing daughter and even though the daughter is missing in Miami, she's turned to local law enforcement, the local media and local residents to ask for help.

Alexis Say, 22, has been missing in Miami since Monday when she was last seen at an area emergency room.

Say lived in Indian Falls when she was 10, but mother, Jennifer, and daughter have lived in other parts of the country in the intervening years for work before moving to Miami.

When Alexis went missing, her mother, who has moved back to Indian Falls, tried to file a missing persons report in Miami and ran into some difficulty, so she turned to the Genesee County Sheriff's Office.

Deputy Chad Cummings took the report, according to Chief Deputy Gordon Dibble. Cummings then placed several phone calls to the Miami PD before finally successfully getting an investigation opened there.

Alexis Say is reportedly in poor health.  

Perhaps you know people in the Miami area or have other information that may assist in the investigation. The Sheriff's Office can be reached at (585) 343-5000.

Here is a Facebook Page with more information.

January 31, 2017 - 4:15pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in news, accident, alexander.

A one-vehicle, minor injury rollover accident is reported in the area of 1940 Hickox Road, Alexander.

Alexander fire and ambulance responding.

January 31, 2017 - 3:36pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news.
stjohndavon2017.jpg
    Davon S. St. John

A 18-year-old Oak Street resident has been arrested and accused of posting explicit pictures of a person under 17 years of age to social media.

Davon S. St. John, of 72 Oak St., Batavia, is charged with promoting an obscene sexual performance by a child, promoting sexual performance of a child, endangering the welfare of a child and two counts of sexual misconduct.

Police allege that St. John posted the pictures on one of his social media accounts and then promoted them on another social media account.

He was arraigned in City Court and ordered held without bail.

January 31, 2017 - 1:17pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in agriculture, 4-H, Pavilion, news.

emilyboldt2017.jpg

Press release:

Genesee County 4-H member Emily Boldt has been selected to represent the New York State 4-H Program as a youth delegate at the 2017 National 4-H Conference. 

The National 4-H Conference is the pinnacle experience in 4-H Citizenship, providing an opportunity for young people to connect, engage, lead and learn how to impact their communities, their nation and their world.

The 2017 National 4-H Conference will be held March 25-30 in Chevy Chase, Md. Youth delegates from across the United States will explore current issues affecting youth, the role 4-H can play in addressing those issues, and tell federal decision makers if their current efforts are effective. 

Emily is a junior at Pavilion High School. She has been actively involved in the Genesee County 4-H Program for the past seven years and has taken on leadership roles within several areas. Emily is the current president of the Genesee County 4-H Rustic Riders Horse Club and also attended the 2016 4-H Career Explorations Conference at Cornell University.

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

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