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January 11, 2013 - 10:53pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, elba.

A 17-year-old Batavia resident has been accused of forcing another person into a sexual act and was charged today with a felony count of criminal sexual act in the first degree.

Kyle H. Morse, of Bank Street, was arraigned in Town of Batavia Court and released under supervision of Genesee Justice.

The charge stems from an incident alleged Sept. 21 in the Town of Elba.

Youth Officer John K. Dehm investigated the report.

January 11, 2013 - 10:26pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy.

Deputies and troopers are on scene of an incident in the area of Route 5 and Keeney Road, Le Roy, that involved some concern about a subject with a gun.

A resident had reported shots fired near his house and a person possibly on his porch.

Law enforcement responded and began a radio conversation about a subject in a house who was seen with a gun.

They observed the actions of the person inside and at one point he was seen putting on either a dark sweater or a vest on (the deputy couldn't see which for sure). He was then seen bending down and standing back up multiple times, doing something the deputies couldn't see below the window.

Le Roy Fire Department was summoned to the fire hall to stand by for possible traffic control.

About that time a deputy was heard yelling over the radio, "Let me see your hands! Let me see your hands!"

A second later, the deputy reported, "one in custody."

Deputies and troopers entered the house and reported two other subjects inside the residence.

At this point, it sounds like law enforcement is trying to sort things out. A deputy told dispatch, "we're securing one subject until we figure out what's going on."

Le Roy fire remains on stand by.

UPDATE 10:27 p.m.: Route 5 and Keeney is being reopened. A deputy tells dispatch, "we're all set" (meaning the situation is under control).

UPDATE 10:44 p.m.: One person being taken into custody (we'll post details from any forthcoming press release when available).

January 11, 2013 - 4:15pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in thebatavian, Sponsored Post, advertisement, The Batavian Club.

As of this moment, we have 29 local businesses that will honor exclusive gift certificates mailed to members of The Batavian Club. The total value of those gift certificates is $285, while you can become a member of the club for as little as $50 a year ($60 a year if you just want to make a one-time payment).

Here's a list of the participating businesses and the value of each gift certificate you will receive as a member:

  • Adam Miller Toy and Bicycles, $3
  • Alex's Place, $5
  • Alli's Cones and Dogs, $3
  • B Town Taxi, $4
  • Batavia Country Club, $5
  • Batavia Muckdogs, Two free GA tickets
  • Bed-N-Bones Pet Lodge, $5
  • Center Street Smokehouse,$5
  • City Slickers, $4
  • Clor's Meat Market, $3
  • CPR, $25
  • Dan's Tire, $5
  • The Detail Shop, $2
  • En Garde, $5
  • Floral Fantasies, $3
  • Hardcor Audio, $20
  • 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
  • Salon VIP & Boutique, $5
  • Salsa & Curry, $5
  • Settler's Restaurant, $5
  • Smokin' Eagle, $5
  • Sweet Pea's, $2
  • Valle Jewelers, $25 on $100 or more retail value
  • West Main Wine and Spirits, $3

Some time around the end of January -- I hope -- we will send out the first mailing of membership cards and gift cards to members. The gift cards can be used anytime in the next year (one per household, must present your membership card at time of redemption and cannot be combined with other discounts, including The Batavian's Deal of the Day).

And as we announced the other day, members will also receive a voucher for two free general admission tickets to a Batavia Muckdogs' game (July 3 excluded).

I look forward to you becoming a member and helping to support The Batavian. And thank you to all of the participating businesses. Any businesses that would like to be included can contact me at (585) 250-4118.

TO JOIN: Use PayPal buttons below, or to pay by check (annual only) or credit card, click here to download form. Or call (585) 250-4118 to pay by credit card.

You already love The Batavian. We appreciate your daily visits to our site and telling your friends about the stories you read here and supporting our sponsors. Now we're asking for your direct financial support. Reader support will help us grow and become better at what we do.

We've set up four membership tiers -- Subscribe to the club monthly as one person or as a household, or annually at either of those levels. 

Members receive a membership card, bumper sticker and a package of gift certificates to local businesses. We'll also occasionally e-mail you coupons from local businesses.

It's important to note, this isn't a subscription to read the site. Our stories remain free to read. This is a membership club with benefits (and we'll add benefits as it grows).

Join via PayPal below, or for annual and one-time memberships paid by check, click here to download this form (monthly, recurring payment memberships must be via PayPal or credit card. To pay by credit card, use the form, or call (585) 250-4118.

Monthly Single Membership - $5 per month
Includes membership card and bumper sticker, package of gift certificates to local businesses.

 

Monthly Household Membership - $10 per month
Includes two membership cards and two bumper stickers, one package of gift certificates to local businesses.

 

Annual Single Membership - $50 per year
Includes membership card, bumper sticker, package of gift certificates to local businesses.

 

Annual Household Membership - $100 per year
Includes two membership cards and two bumper stickers, one package of gift certificates to local businesses.

 

Annual membership, one payment of $60
Includes membership card, bumper sticker, package of gift certificates to local businesses.

Annual household membership, one payment of $120
Includes two membership cards, bumper sticker, one package of gift certificates to local businesses.

 

January 11, 2013 - 4:07pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in byron.

A state Comptroller's audit of the Town of Byron found what might be deemed sloppy bookkeeping in the town court.

While no money is alleged to be missing, several traffic tickets may have gone unpaid.

The audit report dings the town for not conducting annual audits of the court to ensure its books are balanced and items are sufficiently recorded.

Going back to 1985, 629 tickets issued in the Town of Byron are still listed as "pending," including 11 in the 1980s and 84 in the 1990s.

Auditors selected 25 tickets at random to determine what happened to them and found that 13 were either dismissed, a fine was paid, or the case was transferred to another court even though they were still listed as pending with the DMV.

Seven tickets had not being enforced by the court until auditors inquired about them, according to the report.

When fines are not paid on tickets, they are supposed to be reported to the DMV as "scofflawed," and that apparently did not happen with these tickets.

"Every town justice is required to present his/her records and dockets at least once each year to be examined by the Board, or by an independent public accountant," according to the report. "In conducting the review, it is important for the Board to determine whether the Court has effective procedures to ensure the Court’s financial transactions are properly recorded and reported, and that all monies are accounted for properly."

Typically, there is some segregation of duties in a town court, but in Byron, according to the report, the justices (Daniel DiMatteo and James Lamkin (for most of the period of the audit)) performed all of the accounting and reconciliation duties themselves.

"The lack of segregation of duties make the annual audit even more important, however, Town officials failed to provide sufficient evidence that annual audits of the Justices’ books and records were conducted," the report reads.

In response to the audit, the town board informed the Comptroller's office that it will create the position of court clerk and hire a person for the job and perform annual audits of the court records.

January 11, 2013 - 3:42pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Darien, Stafford, Alabama.

Stephen P. Pahuta III, is indicted on charges of on two counts of criminal obstruction of breathing or blood circulation, one count of strangulation in the second degree, coercion in the first degree, criminal mischief in the fourth degree and assault in the third degree. Pahuta is accused of choking another person June 23 at a location in the Town of Alabama. It's alleged that the victim lost consciousness or was in a stupor for a period of time. Pahuta is accused of instilling fear in the victim so she wouldn't contact law enforcement. There also an alleged choking incident July 16. Pahuta is accused of damaging a phone to prevent the victim from requesting emergency assistance.

Richard R. Vetter is indicted on on count of grand larceny in the third degree and 16 counts of falsifying business records. Vetter is accused of stealing $8,689.78 from a business in Darien. He is accused of making at least 16 false entries into log books to conceal his theft of cash from the business.

Mark K. Biggins is indicted on counts of felony DWI and driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. It is alleged that Biggins drove drunk on Route 33 in Stafford on Sept. 12. According to the indictment, Biggins was convicted of DWI in July, 2003.

January 11, 2013 - 3:22pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Oakfield.

A 41-year-old Oakfield man has been accused of having sexual contact with a child under age 11.

Charged with sexual abuse in the first degree is John W. Eastridge, a resident of Bennett Avenue, Oakfield.

Eastridge was arrested by Youth Officer John Dehm following an investigation into an incident that allegedly occurred in November 2002.

Following arraignment, Eastridge was released under supervision of Genesee Justice.

January 11, 2013 - 3:18pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Thurway.

A tractor-trailer has reportedly left the roadway and traveled into the woods on the Thruway in Le Roy.

There are no injuries reported in the accident.

The location is on the eastbound side of the Thruway, just west of the Le Roy exit.

Le Roy fire and Le Roy ambulance dispatched.

UPDATE 3:22 p.m.: Chief on location. It's not a tractor-trailer. It's a wrecker that's off into the woods.

January 11, 2013 - 2:27pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in health, flu.

Flu viruses are hitting most of the nation pretty hard and Genesee County is no exception.

There have been 107 verified cases locally, according to Public Health Director Paul Pettit.

The number of verified cases is already higher than the average of an entire flu season in Genesee County.

"We're still pretty early in the primary flu season," Pettit said. "With what we've seen already, it's clear we have quite a ways to go with seasonal activity."

The flu season is typically January and into April, with the highest activity usually reported in January and February.

A verified flu case is one where there has been a lab test on a patient. Pettit noted that many flu cases never get reported or tested so there have certainly been more than 107 flu cases in Genesee County.

Pettit said anybody with flu symptoms should contact their physician; however, people should only go to the emergency room if displaying higher risk flu symptoms.

"A lot of emergency rooms are getting filled with people who don't really need to be there," Pettit said.

While there have been some reports of vaccine shortages in other parts of the country, Pettit said health department staff has checked with local pharmacies and found that for people 18 and older there is still a supply available.

"It's not to late to get a shot," Pettit said.

For children, supplies of vaccine is running low. The health department has a limited supply, but Pettit said parents should check first with their primary care physicians on availability. The health department's supply is available when other avenues to vaccinate chlldren have already been tried.

January 11, 2013 - 1:22pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in GCC, new york, Lt. Gov. Robert Duffy.

Lt. Gov. Robert Duffy was in Batavia today and spoke at Genesee Community College providing a recap Gov. Andrew Cuomo's State of the State address.

Duffy covered all the major points of the speech, from economic development, education reform (including longer school days and creating a "master teacher program," reducing gun violence and protecting the rights of women.

"It is about making New York State the best we can make it," Duffy said. "This is year three for the governor. He could have rested on his laurels. He has some of the highest support numbers of anybody around. He’s taken on things, some things may be controversial. He’s taken on things he believes are right for the state. It really is about economy, education and really looking at things that make our state stronger."

Absent from both the governor's speech Tuesday and Duffy's remarks today was any talk of mandate relief for local government.

Asked about it after remarks, Duffy said the failure to mention it doesn't mean the governor's office isn't working on the issue.

"There’s been a lot of work on the underpinnings of mandate relief," Duffy said. "I personally went to a lot of the mandate relief council meetings and listened firsthand. There’s work being done. There are not any big announcements to be made right now but there are a number of things happening."

After his appearance at GCC, Duffy went to Larry's Steak House for lunch.

January 11, 2013 - 9:30am
posted by Nick Sabato in sports.

Notre Dame dethroned Batavia as the Batavia Rotary Tournament Champions, 41-38 at Genesee Community College.

On Tuesday night, Batavia was able to overcome an early deficit to defeat Perry, but a slow start in the first quarter against Notre Dame doomed the Blue Devils in the championship game.

Notre Dame raced out to an early 7-0 lead to start the contest and held Batavia without a field goal in the first quarter. The Blue Devils went 0-for-12 in the frame and fell behind 14-3 after the first quarter. The Irish got a huge spark from senior Riley Norton, who after going 3-for-14 from the field on Tuesday, scored eight of her game-high 20 points in the quarter.

“I didn’t play my best on Tuesday,” Norton said. “But, I’m a senior and I wanted to come out tonight and help my team any way that I could. We know Batavia is a great team and tonight I was able to make some shots early.”

Batavia was able to right the ship in the second quarter, outscoring the Fighting Irish 15-8 to cut the halftime deficit to four. With the Irish keying on stars Tiara Filbert and Madison McCulley, Essence Williams led the comeback effort with nine of her team-high 11 points in the second quarter. Williams also knocked away a Notre Dame rebound right to Filbert, who laid it in just as time expired to keep the Blue Devils within striking distance at halftime.

“Offensively, Notre Dame did a great job of speeding up the game and we couldn’t handle that pace,” said Batavia Head Coach Bill Wade. “So, we decided to slow things down and play at an offensive pace that we were comfortable playing at and we were able to get back into it.”

In the third quarter, Batavia continued to scratch their way back into the game, cutting the lead to two at one point, before Notre Dame went on a 5-2 run to end the quarter. Norton would score five points in the frame, including one of her four three-pointers on the night.

“Riley is our senior and our go-to player,” said Notre Dame Head Coach Dave Pero. “She didn’t shoot particularly well on Tuesday, but tonight her shots were falling and she was huge for us.”

The Blue Devils once again made their push in the third quarter, but each time Batavia would gain momentum, the Irish would respond with a timely basket. McCulley would have to leave the game midway through the fourth quarter with an apparent ankle injury, but she returned with just over two minutes to play and made her presence known immediately by connecting on a deep three-pointer in front of the Batavia bench to cut the lead to 38-36.

Notre Dame responded at the other end of the floor, as Emma Francis hit a foul-line jumper to extend the Irish lead to four with just over a minute to play. After a Batavia free throw at the other end, the Blue Devils were able to get the ball back after a controversial turnover call in the waning seconds, but Notre Dame was able to come up with a defensive stand to wrap up the victory.

“It’s always great to win a tournament like this,” Pero said. “I always call this our mid-term exam, to show us where we are in terms of sectionals. Playing competition the likes of Batavia really gives us a good idea of where we stand as a team and how we can improve the rest of the season.”

Norton was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player, adding five rebounds and four steals to go along with her 20 points. She was joined on the all-tournament squad by teammate Mel Taylor, who finished with 12 points, six rebounds and three steals for Notre Dame (8-1).

Batavia (8-4) was represented by Filbert and McCulley on the team, as Filbert scored eight points, grabbed six rebounds, five steals and four assists, while McCulley chipped in nine points on the night. 

To purchase prints of these photos, click on the link in the upper right of the slide show (if you don't see the link, mouse over the pictures).

January 10, 2013 - 5:44pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in photos, Le Roy.

Tree, Bernd Road, Le Roy.

January 10, 2013 - 3:13pm

Batavia Soccer Club Summer 2013 sign ups and walk-in registration will be held on from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. January 12th at Richmond Memorial Library.

For online registration; please visit: http://www.gasabatavia.org

  • $65  U6-U8, Registration ends 3/1.
  • $95 U11-U15, Registration ends 1/15.
  • $110 U16-U19, Registration ends 1/15.

U-11 to U19 -- Need copy of birth ceritifcate and passport-size photo.

Please make checks payable to: Genesee Amatuer Soccer Association, P.O. Box 53, Batavia, NY 14020

January 10, 2013 - 10:35am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy.

Starting Feb. 6, Village of Le Roy residents used to garbage pick-up on Thursdays will need to start putting out their trash on Wednesdays.

The village, in an attempt to help their refuse collection contractor hold down costs, has agreed to Wednesdays-only pick-ups, eliminating Thursday collection.

"They could really use us to go to one day to help them through these tough financial times," Mayor Greg Rogers said.

Rogers said the switch could help the village stave off a rate increase, though negotiations are not yet completed with the company.

January 10, 2013 - 10:15am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy.

Le Roy will receive a $421,000 grant from New York for sidewalk improvement under a program designed to ensure sidewalks are safe for children walking to school.

The village must still finalize its improvement plans.

"We weren't expecting this much, but we'll put it to good use," said Mayor Greg Rogers.

Meanwhile, the village lost out on grant applications for tree planting and a DEC water quality grant.

"We are actively perusing other grants, trying to get some of the tax money back residents already paid and (have it) returned to the community," Rogers said.

One thing Rogers would like to see the village explore with the sidewalk grant is replacing street lamps on Main Street. He isn't sure that's permissible, but he thinks the lamps could be more attractive, pointing to Downtown Batavia's street lamps of an example of what's possible.

"It's more of a cosmetic thing and how far the grant will take us, I don't know," Rogers said. "It's not a top priority."

The main purpose of the grant will be to replace sidewalks that need to be replaced along routes frequently used by children going to school.

January 10, 2013 - 9:09am
posted by Howard B. Owens in business, Le Roy, Wiss Hotel.

All the experts agree, as Bob Fussell pointed out Wednesday night, the Wiss is structurally sound, but that doesn't mean it's not on shaky ground.

Wednesday, the Village of Le Roy trustees took two key steps that all but guarantee the irreplaceable building's destruction. The board failed to vote on a motion to make a counteroffer for a group of local residents to buy the property and then passed a motion to seek requests for proposal to have the old hotel demolished.

"You're being given an opportunity to have this $250,000 -- maybe half a million -- headache taken off your shoulders and you're asking us to pay $10,000 to boot," Fussell said. "We're probably willing to pay you that $10,000 just because we care about the community.

"We're willing to do something for you that's a huge value and every expert who's looked at it said it's remediable, even Clark Patterson has said you can remediate that."

The reference to Clark Patterson goes back to a three-page letter trustees discussed to kick off the meeting. Trustee Robert Taylor, according to Mayor Greg Rogers, was concerned about the condition of the Wiss and asked engineers from Clark Patterson Lee Design Professionals in Rochester to inspect the building.

Their three-page report, as discussed by trustees, said the building is currently a danger to the public. Youths have trespassed on the property and there are several potential safety issues that need to be addressed immediately.

But as Trustee Jennifer Keys pointed out, the engineers didn't say the building needed to be demolished, and on a merely visual inspection, they found no structural defects.

A more thorough inspection might be required to find any serious problems.

Trustees Taylor, Jim Bonaquisti and Mike Tucci all seized on the report to call for the building's immediate destruction.

"Obviously, this report kind of opened my eyes to a lot of different things," Bonaquisti said.

He noted that his family once owned the building so he knows the roof has been leaking for 30 years and that there have been no tenants on the third floor, because of the leaks, for those three decades.

He said the report noted that youths have apparently been playing beer pong in the vacant building.

"A great concern of mine is that somebody is going to get hurt," Bonaquisti said. "Now there's talk of somebody signing a release from liability and going in and putting a tarp on the roof. Even though we might not be legally liable, it sure would not make me feel very good if somebody went in there and got hurt."

Taylor said one of the things he learned from the report that makes him more comfortable with tearing the Wiss down is that the neighboring building and the Wiss don't share a common wall, so destruction of the Wiss won't harm the other building.

"And the very last paragraph of the report says that some major structural problems may have eluded detection because of limited access to some areas of the building," Taylor said.

Tucci said the report, in his mind, cements the idea that the Wiss needs to be demolished.

"It needs to come down and it needs to come down now," he said. "The report talks about the danger it poses to life and proprty and the surrounding area. If we continue to let it sit there and collect snow that melts and freezes and does it all over again, it's putting the assets of the village at risk."

Fussell, an attorney with experience in liability law, was taken aback by the sudden concern over liability for the village by Bonaquisti, Taylor and Tucci.

If there was such a concern for the danger of the building, Fussell asked, how come the insurance company for the village hasn't been demanding a cover on the roof or a scaffolding around the building or otherwise pushed the village to ensure the safety of the building?

"We've put in a lot of money and a lot of effort to do something for this community and all of the sudden these bogeymen concerns about liability," Fussell said. "You know I know a lot about liability.

"I'm a trial lawyer. I've been doing it for 40 years. I know a great deal about it. I know that this baloney that you've got about liability is nothing more than that. I'll be very blunt in telling you that."

Former Mayor Jim DeLooze -- who owns a building on Main Street that he said he's invested $250,000 in -- said he's very concerned about the fire danger presented by the Wiss. The first fire wall on Main Street isn't until 60 Main St. The fire department said six years ago, it won't fight an interior fire in the Wiss, but will only fight it from the outside, according to DeLooze.

"The number one responsibility of you five people is the safety of the people of this community," DeLooze said at the start of his statement, and concluding, "I have a very big concern that if that thing ever did catch fire, my building is possibily going to be in danger also. So I'm asking you as a former mayor, please do the right thing and have the thing taken down as quickly as possible."

DeLooze also questioned the historical value of the Wiss, and fellow Main Street property owner Jack Hempfling questioned its esthetic value.

"Most of the younger generation I talk to would feel like Walgreens and the Bank of Castile are the best looking things on Main Street," Hempfling said. "They're certainly not historical, but they (replaced the) eyesores that were taken down. Regardless of what anybody is talking about doing with the Wiss, it's still going to be one of the remaining eyesores in Le Roy.

"They say they're caring for the community. Some of us would think caring for the community isn't keeping it looking like it was in the 1930s. Some of us would say caring for the community is bringing it down and widening the intersection."

Lisa Compton said that since talk of saving the Wiss made the news, it's drawn interest from members of the Genesee County Landmark Society and the NYS Landmark Society, that even a trustee in Bethany has expressed an interest in investing in the project.

While the Wiss itself isn't historical, the structure could play an important role -- and losing it could diminish the chances -- of declaring the village a historic district.

"It's a significant part of the district," Compton said.

Mayor Rogers said he was only looking at the Wiss as a business proposition, which is why he put considerable time into drafting a counterproposal for the LLC to purchase the building.

"While their vision for the Wiss Hotel is nowhere shape or form what mine is, but from what I'll call a business standpoint, we always hear from people who tell you what they can't do, but very seldom do you hear from people who tell you what they can do," Rogers said. "We have people here who are the latter, who are willing to take a chance, who have invested their own money already and, quite frankly, if successful, would save the village $200,000.

"I don't believe they are looking to renovate the building to have the building be the eyesore it is now," Rogers added. "If somebody were to look into the future and think that's their vision, just to have the doors open over there, I would like to think in no way shape or form that's the ideal they have coming."

Rogers' counteroffer included a specific timetable for the LLC to meet, such as being legally formed, securing financing, taking possession of the building, shoring up safety issues and beginning renovations, as well as paying the village $10,000 once a certificate of occupancy was issued.

One of Tucci's objections to the project was that he didn't think the LLC could successfully rent the apartments. Fussell said there would be more market research done before the final floor plan was completed and if the market couldn't sustain five more expensive apartments, then seven could be put into the space at a lower monthly rent. Rogers pointed out that what the LLC did with the building once it owned it wasn't really a matter of village business.

When he called for a motion to approve the counteroffer, Jennifer Keys made the motion, but there was no second, so it died for lack of support.

Talk of possible ground contaminates that could drive up the demolition costs, perhaps to $500,000, almost had Bonaquisti convinced to back the sale to the LLC, but others pointed out that there is no evidence of ground contaminates under the Wiss.

With the counteroffer killed, Tucci made a motion to have the building demolished. This was amended to see requests for proposal to find out exactly how much it would cost the village to tear down the Wiss.

This motion passed 3-2, backed by Tucci, Taylor and Bonaquisti.

Photo: Bob Fussell.

January 9, 2013 - 9:49pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in steve hawley, michael ranzenhofer.

Statement by Assemblyman Steve Hawley:

The Governor’s State of the State address detailed his personal agenda for the 2013 legislative session. His plans to promote Upstate New York’s economy and invest in programs that will put the state on the cutting edge of high-tech innovation will provide a much-needed boost for our region. However, his presentation lacked any plans to address unfunded mandate relief, one of the biggest issues facing state government this year. No legislative agenda can be considered complete without a substantive plan to free our schools, towns and taxpayers from the burden of unfunded mandates.

Statement by State Sen. Michael Ranzenhofer:

State Senator Michael H. Ranzenhofer (R, C, I- Amherst) has issued the following statement in response to Governor Cuomo’s State of the State Address:

“Over the last two years, the State Legislature has been able to work together – unlike the gridlock and partisanship in Washington, D.C.– to pass two on-time budgets that reduced overall spending, lowered middle-class tax rates to the lowest levels in 58 years and realigned investments toward job-creation initiatives, such as ReCharge NY and Regional Economic Development Councils. Despite our fiscal house being put back in order, difficult choices remain ahead since the State still faces a $1 billion budget gap.

The ultimate goal must continue to be making New York more business friendly and improving our State’s economy so that the private sector can create jobs. The Governor’s proposals to reform workers’ compensation and unemployment insurance programs and his commitment to avoid taxes as a way to balance the budget will further help companies lower the costs of operating a business in New York. I am also pleased that, after announcing a billion dollars in economic development incentives for the Buffalo region last year, the Governor has again recommended a series of initiatives to revitalize Upstate New York’s economy.

The private sector created more than 210,000 jobs in New York State alone during the last two years, and I am hopeful that the State Legislature will be able to move New York’s economy in an even stronger direction by making the right investments and taking the right actions in the 2013 Legislative Session.”

January 9, 2013 - 4:33pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Genesee ARC, garbage collection.

In conjunction with two partners, Genesee ARC submitted a bid to continue providing the City of Batavia garbage and recycling service.

Donna Saskowski, executive director of the ARC, sat through the bid opening at city hall today and characterized her agency's bid as "somewhere in the middle."

But, she said, the city's decision doesn't just come down to price. It's also a matter of being responsive to the bid specifications and she thinks ARC delivers value to the city beyond just price.

"I would hope they could give us a real fair hearing in terms of our value-added items that we will do for the city, keeping people employed here," Saskowski said.

She added that the agency's partners on the project, Boon and Son and Cascade Recovery, also add value to the package; Cascade, in particular, which can sell recyclables anywhere in the world.

"They want a share of that revenue and the city can get more than they ask for if they work with us," Saskowski said.

In the public meeting to open the bids, Director of Public Works Sally Kuzon read each bid for garbage collection and the purchase of totes (two separate bids). A city staff member recorded the bids. When asked for a copy of the record of bids, Kuzon declined to provide a copy to the media.

Saskowski shared ARC's bid, which for refuse collection is $102.97 per parcel per year and $60.13 for recycling. Refuse disposal is $42.50 per ton.

In response to a FOIL request for the rest of the bids, City Clerk Heider Parker said, "This information will be available within 20 business days but I will notify you if it is available sooner."

Deciding to proceed with a bid was a big decision for Genesee ARC, which has provided the city with garbage collection services for 30 years. City officials are seeking to create a new program that is more automated and encourages recycling. ARC is partnering with Boon to provide the trucks necessary for tote pick-ups and with Cascade to help market recyclable material.

"We decided to go ahead because we still have people with disabilities and people in Genesee County who still need jobs here," Saskowski said. "That was my major motivation."

Sean Mason, an environmental sales specialist representing one of the tote manufacturers bidding on the job, Rehrig Pacific, said his company is motivated to help communities improve what they send into the waste stream. Rehrig Pacific has been making totes for 13 years and been in the plastics business for 100 years.

"We're always looking to increase our footprint and to help communities increase their recycling rate and increase the participation per household," Mason said (pictured below with coworker Jason Gimlin).

January 9, 2013 - 3:46pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in UMMC, New Year's Baby.

Press release:

United Memorial Medical Center welcomed the first baby born within Genesee County in the New Year, 2013. Naomi Lynn, a baby girl, was born to Kristen Keiffer and Robert Gerety of Lyndonville, on Tuesday, January 1st at 4:16 a.m. at United Memorial Medical Center in Batavia. She is the first child for the new parents.

Grandparents are Doug and JoAnn Keiffer, of Medina, and John and Nora Denfer, of Lyndonville.

Baby Naomi weighed 4 pounds, 13 ounces and was 17 ¼ inches long. She was delivered by midwife, Cecelia Stearns, CNM.

The new mother, Ms. Keiffer is employed as an aide at Medina Memorial Hospital and Mr. Gerety works for ATB Staffing Solutions at Mizkan in Lyndonville.

As the New Year’s baby, Naomi and her parents received a $250 gift card to a local store from United Memorial.

In 2012, there were 654 babies delivered at United Memorial, a 21-percent increase from 2011.

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