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Alabama

May 21, 2016 - 10:10pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Alabama, news.

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The man and woman accused of attempted robbery at the Smoke Rings Smokeshop early Friday morning were arrested today in Johnstown based on a tipster who saw a picture of the male suspect online.

They were arraigned in Alabama Town Court this evening, each on one count of attempted robbery in the second degree, and both were ordered held without bail pending court appearances at 2 p.m., Thursday, June 2.

Charged were Jeremy J. Reynolds, 34, of Johnstown, and Mitsydawn Souza, 26, of St. Johnsville.

Sitting in court awaiting their arraignment before Justice John Tauscher, Reynolds and Souza discussed the case and Souza made several statements about her own personal situation.

They spoke openly, even after Tauscher advised them that everything they said in the courtroom was being digitally recorded by an audio recorder and a video recorder and that their statements could be used as evidence against them.

Souza cried during the entire conversation and made declarations to a deputy about how she couldn't read the court documents, that she had learning disabilities and mental and physical health problems. Reynolds read portions of the documents to her.

She cried several times that she had never been arrested before, that she had never been in any kind of trouble.

"I've never even stolen a candy bar before," she said. "Now I'm in so much trouble."

When Reynolds read the part of the charge that said they demanded nothing, she said, "I didn't demand anything," and he said, "I didn't demand anything either."

She said, "you told me you just wanted to scare a friend," and he said he didn't tell her that, but that he intended to get shot.

When he was arraigned, he interrupted Tauscher several times, trying Tauscher's patience. Once he said he needed a court-appointed attorney, Tauscher said the arraignment was over, and Reynolds said he wanted to proceed with the arraignment. Tauscher said once he asked for an attorney, the arraignment was over.

Reynolds wanted to know if he could get bail, but Tauscher said that because Reynolds allegedly has two prior felony convictions, he couldn't grant bail in any amount even if the D.A. wasn't requesting Reynolds be held without bail.

Reynolds walked into court carrying his crutches and with his left leg in a cast. He was apparently injured in the scuffle at the smoke shop.

Both Reynolds and Souza were provided with witness statements of the two smoke shop employees who were working when they reportedly entered the store.

As Reynold's read the statement, he told Souza that one statement didn't say the same thing as a statement he claimed to have read earlier. He said he had seen another statement and the person making the statement, "said I had blond hair and blue eyes."

He asked Tauscher if he could get a copy of that statement and Tauscher told him that was an issue to take up with his attorney.

The two store employees, one a Batavia resident and the other an Alabama resident, provided deputies with mostly similar statements about the events that started at 2:42 a.m., Friday.

Two people, both wearing camouflage entered the store, with the man carrying a rifle that may have looked like an M-16, and the woman carrying a pistol. They pointed the guns at one clerk (the other was in a back room) and yelled, "freeze mother (bleep)" (the same term of endearment Reynolds directed at a photographer this evening outside the courthouse).

The couple pushed the first clerk into a back room and tied his hands with zip ties. Then the second clerk came up behind the male suspect and grabbed him and a fight ensued. The red wig he was wearing fell off and the gun he was carrying dropped to the ground, at which point both clerks realized the gun was a fake.

The woman ran from the store, and the clerk with his hands tied, tried to chase her, and during the chase managed to free himself.

The woman got away and he returned to find the male suspect hitting the other clerk in the head with the butt end of the fake M-16. He put the suspect in a choke hold, then when he was indicating he couldn't breathe, the other clerk told him to let him go.

They wrestled him into a chair.

He jumped up and ran into a window. One account says the window broke, the other says he bounced off it. After getting him back in the chair, the suspect again bolted for the window. This time, he made it partially out the window and the two men held him dangling by his legs. The suspect, they said, produced a knife and tried to cut them, so they let him go.

One of the clerks tried to chase the suspect, but he ran into the woods and got away.

When Reynolds and Sousa were discussing the statements, Sousa said investigators had shown her a video of the alleged attempted robbery, but Reynolds said he hadn't seen the video.

"It shows that I did it," she said.

May 20, 2016 - 3:57pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Basom, Alabama, Tonawanda Indian Reservation, news.

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Local law enforcement is looking for two people who entered the Smoke Rings Smokeshop on Shanks Road, Tonawanda Indian Reservation, shortly after 2:30 a.m. and attempted to rob it.

Employees fought back, and although the suspects managed to escape, leaving one employee with cuts on his head caused by the butt of the suspect's rifle, the melee helped produce some evidence investigators hope will lead to an arrest.

Including the face of a suspect exposed for the closed-circuit cameras in the store.

The suspects are described as a white female and white male. Both came in wearing camouflage-colored clothing, face masks and carrying guns, according to Sheriff's Investigator Kris Kautz.  

In the struggle, the white male also lost the red wig he was wearing. Kautz recovered both the mask and wig during his investigation at the scene.

An employee who was injured was transported to an area hospital and required stitches, but the injuries were not life threatening.

When the would-be robbers entered, they grabbed one employee and took him to a back room and tried to restrain him with plastic ties. He managed to escape. The perpetrators did not realize another employee was in the store, apparently. A struggle then ensued. The female suspect fled immediately, but the male fought and was subdued. He was restrained in a back room while awaiting the arrival of law enforcement but managed to escape through a back window.

It's believed he managed to go to a get-away vehicle, possibly a white or light-colored or small SUV, such as an Equinox or Trail Blazer. 

The would-be robbers left empty-handed.

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May 19, 2016 - 9:56pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Alabama, news.

A car vs. tow truck accident is reported on Route 77 at Lewiston Road, Alabama.

Unknown injuries.

Alabama fire and Mercy EMS dispatched.

UPDATE 9:57 p.m.: Emergency responders are told to stage in the area until law enforcement secures the scene. There is a possible disturbance in progress.

UPDATE 10:30 p.m.: Law enforcement on scene reports Alabama fire and Mercy EMS can go back in service.

May 18, 2016 - 7:08am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, elba, Oakfield, Alabama, schools, education, news.

Here are Tuesday's available election results:

Batavia City Schools:
The Budget - $44,366,439 (increase of $1,258,066 or 2.92%: $0.00 increase in tax levy)

  • Yes - 407  (85.86%)
  • No - 67  (14.14%)

Student Ex-Officio Board Member (non-voting) 

  • Yes -  436  (92.57%
  • No - 35  (7.43%)

Board of Education positions: three positions, with top two votes terms are full term from July 1, 2016 to June 30, 2019 ,and the lowest vote is a partial term from May 17, 2016 to June 30, 2018 

  • Patrick Burk 385  (May 17, 2016 - June 30, 2018)
  • Peter Cecere - 427  (July 1, 2016  -June 30, 2019)
  • Karen Tomidy - 424   (July 1, 2016 - June 30, 2019)

Elba Central Schools:

Proposition #1 - 2016/2017 Budget - $9,260,316  --   Passed  (129 Yes/38 No)

Proposition #2 - Purchase of one (1) 65 Passenger Bus   --  Passed  (130 Yes/39 No)

One Board of Education Seat, One Candidate: Michael Hare (142 Votes)

Oakfield-Alabama Central School District:

Proposition #1: Budget:  Yes:   293 / No:  44

Proposition #2: Buses:   Yes:  280 /  No:  52

Board Members:  

  • Jeff Hyde (Incumbent) 248
  • Matt Lamb, 170
May 11, 2016 - 11:03am
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, Pavilion, Alabama.

Daniel R. Ruffner, 30, was arrested in Pavilion on May 7 by Troopers and charged with misdemeanor assault, 3rd, and criminal mischief after he allegedly caused a shoulder sprain and broke a victim’s prescription sunglasses during a physical altercation at a residence on Telephone Road. Ruffner was processed at State Police barracks in Batavia and issued an appearance ticket returnable to the Town of Pavilion Court on May 24.

Bradley Hering, 23, was arrested in Alabama on May 7 by Troopers and charged with driving while intoxicated. Hering was located a short time after a call was dispatched reporting his vehicle was off the roadway on Bloomingdale Road in the Town of Alabama. He was administered the standard field sobriety tests which he allegedly failed. Troopers reported detecting the odor of an alcoholic beverage emitting from Hering. He was transported to State Police barracks in Batavia for processing which allegedly revealed a BAC of .14 percent. He was issued a uniform traffic ticket returnable to the Town of Alabama Court on May 24.

Bobby Gary Mullen, 39, of Oak Street, Warsaw, is charged with failure to pay fine/restitution/surcharge. He was arrested on a bench warrant out of Genesee County Court for allegedly failing to pay a fine stemming from an incident July 8. He was turned over to the Genesee County Sheriff's Office by Wyoming County Sheriff's Department after a traffic stop in Warsaw at 11 a.m. on May 10. He was released after his arraignment. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Rachel Diehl.

May 9, 2016 - 11:28am
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, batavia, Alabama, Stafford, Le Roy, bergen, Oakfield.

Dakota Scott Pocock, 19, of Townline Road, Bergen, is charged with five counts of sexual misconduct following an investigation in the Village of Oakfield. The defendant allegedly had sexual intercourse with the victim without consent five times between August and December. He was issued an appearance ticket for Oakfield Town Court at 5 p.m. on May 16. The investigation was conducted by Sheriff's Deputy Kevin Forsyth and Investigator Bradley Mazur.

Duty E. Caswell, 24, of Hutchins Place, Batavia, was arrested for having a vicious dog. The arrest stems from an incident on March 7 wherein his dog, according to police, attacked two people and another dog. Caswell was issued an appearance ticket and released and is scheduled to appear in Batavia City Court at 10:30 a.m. on May 13. The case was investigated by Batavia Police Officer Stephen Cronmiller.

Devon Schulman, 20, of Liberty Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree menacing and criminal possession of a weapon, 3rd. It is alleged that at 6:52 p.m. on May 5 Schulman displayed a knife to a subject at an apartment on Liberty Street and made comments that led the victim to believe Schulman intended to use the knife against the victim. Schulman was jailed without bail and was to be in City Court on May 6. The case was investigated by Batavia Police Officer Mitchell Cowen, assisted by Chad Richards.

Shawn C. Smith, 35, of East Main Street, Batavia, is charged with driving while intoxicated, aggravated unlicensed operation, first, and speeding. Smith was arrested at 6:24 p.m. on April 30 following a traffic stop on East Main Street, Batavia, and following arraignment was jailed without bail. He was to be in court May 2. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Christopher Lindsay, assisted by Sgt. Dan Coffey.

Shane Michael Green, 28, of Trapping Brook Road, Wellsville, is charged with driving while ability impaired by drugs and moving from lane unsafely. At 7:36 a.m. on May 6, Green was arrested on Batavia-Stafford Townline Road, Stafford, for allegedly driving while the ability to do so was impaired by drugs. The arrest was the result of a complaint for erratic operation of a motor vehicle. Green is to be in Town of Stafford Court on June 6. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Kyle Krzemien, assisted by Deputy Christopher Parker.

Ryan James Sundown, 35, of Meadville Road, Tonawanda Indian Reservation, is charged with second-degree criminal contempt. He allegedly violated a complete stay away order of protection at 6 p.m. on April 25 on Council House Road. He was arraigned on the charged on May 5 in Alabama Town Court. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputyt Kevin McCarthy, assisted by Deputy Kyle Krzemien.

A 17-year-old female who lives in Batavia was arrested at 4:06 p.m. on May 2 and charged with fourth-degree criminal mischief. She allegedly broke a window during an argument. She was issued an appearance ticket for May 17 in City Court. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Christopher Lindsay, assisted by Arick Perkins.

Jany Girwath Jock, 20, of Batavia Stafford Townline Road, Batavia, is charged with identity theft, 3rd. The defendant was arrested following the investigation into the unlawful use of a credit card at 10:30 p.m. on May 3. Jock was issued an appearance ticket returnable to Batavia City Court at a later date. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Ryan DeLong.

Mary Finnegan, 68, of Lake Street, Le Roy, was arrested on May 7 and charged with one count of criminal trespass in the second degree, a Class A misdemeanor. Le Roy Village Police Department responded to a local apartment house after receiving a complaint of a subject on the property trespassing. Upon arrival Finnegan was allegedly located on the property after she had previously been advised she was no longer allowed on the property. Finnegan was taken into custody and charged accordingly. Finnegan is to appear in the Le Roy Town Court on May 19 to answer to the charge.

May 6, 2016 - 8:29am
posted by Howard B. Owens in 1366 Technologies, STAMP, business, Alabama.

Press release:

Silicon wafer manufacturer 1366 Technologies (“1366”) today announced it has received a $10 million investment from the Hanwha Investment Corp., one of Korea’s leading private equity/venture capital firms with more than $500 million under management. The funds will be used toward the construction of 1366’s first large-scale commercial factory, scheduled to be online in 2017.

“Our Direct Wafer™ technology represents one of the most significant manufacturing innovations in solar, with the potential to propel the industry forward and deliver dramatic cost advantages,” said Frank van Mierlo, CEO, 1366 Technologies. “We are thrilled that Hanwha Investment Corporation, with its deep expertise in and understanding of the manufacturing industry, has invested.

"It is a tremendous validation of our commercialization plans, and a clear signal that we’re poised to disrupt the $10 billion and growing silicon solar wafer market.”

“Hanwha Investment Corporation actively seeks out companies with groundbreaking technologies that transform industries. In just a short period of time, 1366 has moved from proof of concept to commercial-ready technology, achieving technical milestones steadily and rapidly. We believe the 1366 team is well positioned for commercial success,” said Woojae Hahn, president and CEO, Hanwha Investment Corporation.

1366’s Direct Wafer technology is a transformative manufacturing process that offers significant advantages over traditional cast-and-saw wafer production technologies. The process makes wafers in a single step, pulling them directly from molten silicon instead of today’s multi-step, energy- and capital-intensive approach, resulting in significant wafer production cost savings.

CLARIFICATION: We were asked to clarify a prior report that said the Hannah company that is purchasing solar wafers and the Hannah company making the investments in 1366 are the same company. While related, they are not the same company and operate independently.

April 30, 2016 - 5:21pm
posted by Billie Owens in fire, Alabama.

A small house, and the woods around it, are reportedly on fire in Alabama at 6985 Meadville Road. Alabama Fire Department is responding along with mutual aid from Pembroke and Indian Falls.

UPDATE 5:29 p.m.: Fire command requests law enforcement to the scene. Five gasoline containers and 40 paint cans are said to be on the property.

UPDATE 5:42 p.m.: "We've got it knocked down pretty good," reports command, noting smoke is visible "over the hill." Corfu is also responding, along with Akron.

UPDATE 5:53 p.m.: The fire is mostly knocked down but smoke is still pouring from a crawl space over the rear wall, which is proving hard to access.

UPDATE 7:12 p.m.: National Grid requested to the scene.

April 28, 2016 - 11:30am
posted by Billie Owens in Oakfield, Alabama, news, Announcements.

Oakfield-Alabama kindergarten registration is scheduled for Monday, May 2nd through Friday, May 6th at the elementary school office between the hours of 9 p.m. and 2 p.m. It is located at 7001 Lewiston Road in Oakfield.

Information packets have been sent to families. If you did not receive a packet or are new to the district, please notify the elementary office at 948-5211, ext. 3211 and we will send one to you.

Please bring the following mandatory documents with you: a completed Student Information Form (from the packet received in the mail), your child’s birth certificate, two proofs of residency, a current immunization record and a current physical examination.

Only children who have reached their 5th birthday on or before Dec. 1, 2016 may be registered for the 2016-2017 school year.

April 8, 2016 - 2:58pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, batavia, Alabama, Bethany, news.

Damien Allen Boyd, 32, of Meadville Road, Alabama, is charged with fourth-degree grand larceny, five counts of criminal possession of stolen property, 5th, and five counts of petit larceny. Boyd allegedly stole a debit card on Feb. 6, which he used to withdraw money from an ATM. In another case, he is charged with petit larceny for allegedly stealing electronic devices while at a residence on Council House Road, Alabama, on March 22. He was put in GC Jail on Thursday in lieu of $15,000 bail. Both cases were handled by Sheriff's Deputy Bradley Mazur..

Jessica Lynn Garofalo, 28, of West Main Street Road, Batavia, is charged with speed exceeding 55 mph, aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, and uninspected motor vehicle on March 25. She was arrested at 5:15 p.m. on April 6 on a bench warrant out of the Town of Bethany Court and released under supervision. She is due in Bethany Town Court on May 17. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Rachel Diehl.

A 39-year-old female who lives on Leicester Street in Perry is charged with falsifying business records, 1st. She was arrested after it was alleged that she made false entries on a financial aid application on Jan. 21, 2015, which allowed her to receive $7,96.50 in student aid while attending Genesee Community College. She was issued an appearance ticket and is scheduled to be in Batavia Town Court on April 25. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Chad Minuto.

April 6, 2016 - 4:39am
posted by Billie Owens in accident, Alabama, news.

A two-car accident with unknown injuries is reported at the intersection of Route 77 and Ledge Road. Alabama Fire Department and Mercy medics are responding. There was air-bag deployment.

March 31, 2016 - 11:16am
posted by Billie Owens in accident, news, Alabama.

A car vs. pole accident with minor injuries is reported on Lewiston Road. Alabama fire and Mercy medics are responding. The driver is out complaining of knee pain.

UPDATE 11:30 p.m.: Occupants are out. Wires are down. National Grid will be notified of the damaged pole.

March 27, 2016 - 9:00am
posted by Billie Owens in fire, Alabama, news.

A fire involving 50,000 pounds of compost is reported at 7795 Alleghany Road, Alabama. Alabama Fire Department is responding along with Pembroke and Indian Falls, as well as tankers from Corfu and East Pembroke. The first chief on scene reports smoke showing from the outside. The location is a composting facility. Responders are told not to use water unless flames are showing.  

UPDATE 9:09 a.m.: When the chief first got on scene he said there was a fire in the center of the building and heavy equipment would be needed to battle it. Then a chief said there is a very small fire "directly against the west wall." 

UPDATE 9:12 a.m.: The fire is out.

UPDATE 9:13 a.m.: "The owner says that's an insulated wall, so there might be some travel up the wall." Reply "That's affirmative; we're opening the wall up now."

UPDATE 9:24 a.m.: They are going to move compost outside to a field and spread it out to keep it from smoldering.

UPDATE 9:49 a.m.: Pembroke, Indian Falls, Corfu and East Pembroke are back in service.

UPDATE 10:51 a.m.: All Alabama units are back in service.

March 26, 2016 - 12:15pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, Darien, pembroke, batavia, Alabama.

Adam D. Smart is indicted for the crime of first-degree criminal contempt, a Class E felony. It is alleged that on Nov. 6 in the City of Batavia, the defendant violated an Order of Protection which required him to stay away from the person on whose behalf the order was issued. In count two, he is accused of first-degree criminal contempt for allegedly violating an Order of Protection on Nov. 6, which required him to stay away from another person in the City of Batavia who also had a protective order against him.

Gayno S. Standsblack is indicted for the crime of driving while intoxicated, as a Class D felony. Standsblack is accused of driving a 2000 Dodge on Meadville Road in the Town of Alabama on Jan. 16 while intoxicated. In count two, he is accused of aggravated unlicensed operation in the first degree, a Class E felony, for driving on that date allegedly under the influence of alcohol or a drug while knowing, or having reason to know, that his driver's license was suspended or revoked. In count three, he is accused of the crime of using a vehicle that did not have an ignition interlock device, a Class A misdemeanor.

John R. Benton is indicted for the crime of driving while intoxicated, as a Class E felony. On Oct. 1, in the Town of Darien, it is alleged that he drove a 2006 Toyota on Tinkham Road while intoxicated. In count two, Benton is accused of aggravated DWI, per se, as a Class E felony, for allegedly having a BAC of .18 percent or more at the time.

Alfonso G. Mayfield is indicted for the crime of driving while intoxicated, as a Class E felony. On Nov. 8, in the Town of Pembroke, it is alleged that he drove a 2007 Jeep on I-90 while intoxicated.

March 21, 2016 - 6:26am
posted by Billie Owens in accident, Alabama.

A car struck a pole and minor injuries are reported at 7238 Alleghany Road. Alabama Fire Department and Mercy medics are responding.

March 17, 2016 - 11:12pm
posted by Billie Owens in fire, Alabama, Oakfield, news.

A wood-frame, fully involved house fire, with smoke and flames shooting through the second story, is reported at 6324 Knowlesville Road, Alabama, near Roberts Road. The structure has been evacuated. Alabama Fire Department and Mercy medics are responding.

UPDATE 11:15 p.m..: Oakfield Fire Department is also called to respond, mutual aid. Fire Police are called to shut down Knowlesville Road at Roberts Road. The emergency West Battalion Fire Chanel has been secured for Alabama and Oakfield.

UPDATE 11:26 p.m.: Pembroke and Indian Falls fire departments are asked to stand by in Alabama's hall.

UPDATE March 18: from our news partner, WBTA: The house was extensively damaged and declared uninhabitable. Two adults and three dogs all made it out safely – one dog, did not. The family is staying with relatives. Firefighters from Alabama, Oakfield and Shelby battled the blaze.

March 8, 2016 - 12:06pm
posted by Billie Owens in accident, Alabama, news.

A motor-vehicle accident with injuries is reported in front of Jan's Smoke Shop, 383 Bloomingdale Road, Alabama. The occupants are conscious and alert. It is blocking traffic. Alabama Fire Department and Mercy medics are responding.

UPDATE 12:46 p.m.: One patient is being transported to Mercy Hospital of Buffalo.

March 5, 2016 - 4:51am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Alabama.

A one-vehicle rollover accident is reported in the area of 2421 Lewiston Road, Alabama.

A person reportedly suffered a neck injury.

The victim is in the car of a passerby and is roadside awaiting the arrival of first responders.

The vehicle is on its side in a ditch.

Alabama fire and Mercy EMS responding.

March 4, 2016 - 9:55pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in 1366 Technologies, Alabama, STAMP, GCEDC, business, news.

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gcedcannual2016-2.jpgWhen the 1366 Technologies plant opens in Alabama in 2017, it will be profitable on the first day of operation, Brian Eller, VP of manufacturing, revealed today during the annual meeting of the Genesee County Economic Development Center at Batavia Downs.

The solar wafer manufacturer has recently completed contracts with solar panel manufacturers that will fulfill orders for 60 percent of plant's production capacity, Eller said.

"This is part of the steady, deliberate process," Eller said. "We keep knocking them off to reduce the risk to the business, because if you sell everything before you start, then you execute, you don't have to go to market and figure out your market."

Eller was the keynote speaker for the annual meeting, which was attended by more than 350 people.

During his 20-minute presentation, Eller described the methodical approach 1366 Technologies has taken to build its business and the foundation for success. It's a classic start-up model: Begin with a prototype product and get it to market and see how it does, concentrate on a single product, then target a niche of customers, then scale your production once you're ready to reach a market with the potential to achieve substantial returns on investment.

The company was founded in 2008 in Bedford, Mass., where it set up a small, prototype plant to test its proprietary process for manufacturing silicon wafer chips for solar panels. That plant has produced and the company has sold thousands of wafers.

With the process established, 1366 began looking for a site appropriate for its business, settling on Alabama and GCEDC's STAMP project because of the promising local workforce, proximity to universities and the availability of clean, hydro energy.

"One of STAMP's strengths is the talent pool in the region," Eller said. “You know, the thing about changing the world is you need skilled people around you."

The company is planning a $700 million investment in its new facility, to be constructed on about 8 percent of the 12,500-acre WNY Science and Technology Advanced Manufacturing Park. STAMP is the brainchild of Steve Hyde, CEO of GCEDC. The center is assisting in the project with tax abatements worth a potential $97 million over 10 years. The state and federal government have also pledged millions for infrastructure at the project site, which GCEDC and regional economic development agencies are working to fill with other high-tech manufacturers.

When the plant is at full capacity -- producing enough wafers each year to provide three gigawatts of electricity -- it will employ 1,000 people. In the near term, 1366 will hire 150 people, though Eller said there isn't a timeline on the hiring process yet. The company is still in the process of hiring consultants, planners, architects and engineers.

Eller did promise the development process will be public and transparent and that all who compete for contracts on the project will do so on a level playing field.

Eller is full of confidence that 1366 will revolutionize solar technology.

"Our process slashes the cost of making the wafer in half and in doing so drastically reduces the cost of solar energy," Eller said. "Those reductions, well, they accelerate adoption. We believe solar will be ubiquitous. It will displace coal as the cheapest fuel source on the planet."

The current process, which the industry has used for nearly four decades, requires multiple steps, using several machines and takes days. The 1366 process involves one machine that will produce a new wafer every 20 seconds.

The technology was developed at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Instead of cutting and grinding solar ingots into flat wafers, which takes energy and produces waste, the 1366 process melts the silicon and floats it into thin layers that harden into silicon wafers.

Eller compared it to the Pilkington float glass process developed in the 1950s and still the process used today for manufacturing flat glass.

"Manufacturing process innovations like ours have true staying power," Eller said. "They simply don’t come along every day."

The solar industry is booming the world over.

Last year, 59 gigawatts of new solar capacity was brought online. That's the result of 240 million solar panels being produced. Eller said that's a big number, so to help understand it, he said, that's more electrical capacity than needed for a year by the entire State of New York.

"We make the most expensive part of the solar panel for half the cost," Eller said. "That was a hard problem to solve, but we've done it. Now we're free to pursue an $8 billion and growing solar market without distraction."

Eller acknowledged that there has been some bad news in the solar industry in recent years, with companies going under or changing directions, but Eller said the slow and deliberate process 1366 has pursued to build the company puts it in a position to succeed.

"The industry consists of exceptional businesses, both established and new, that are efficient, innovative and motivated," Eller said. "To be young in solar is not without its challenges and we are aware of other companies in solar that struggled to compete globally, focused on the wrong technologies or just simply scaled too quickly," Eller said. "We are focused on bringing a highly innovative product to market with deliberate and steady progress."

CLARIFICATIONS:

The folks at 1366 asked us to clarify, by "Day 1," they mean when the first plant is at full production, not the day the plant doors open. There will be a three- or four-month ramp up period to bring the plant up to production levels, which includes hiring and training workers.

Also, in reference to the amount of power from last year's productions of solar panels, we misunderstood.  It's not enough electricity to power of all of New York. It's enough for all New York households.

For prior coverage of 1366 Technologies, click here.

gcedcannual2016-3.jpg

Above, silicon nuggets. Silicon is produced from super heating silica, commonly found in sand, but also found in clay and rock (it's the most common mineral on the planet). When 1366 started to develop its process, silicon was still not a common wafer ingredient, but now 90 percent of all solar wafers manufactured today use silicon.

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Sen. Mike Ranzenhofer (above) and Assemblyman Steve Hawley (below) both spoke briefly and praised and thanked each other for their united effort to help provide the legislative support to bring 1366 to STAMP.

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Steve Hyde.

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Ray Cianfrini, chairman of the Genesee County Legislature.

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GCEDC presented an Economic Development Award to the Batavia Development Corp., represented by Ray Chaya, the City of Batavia, Eugene Jankowski, and the Town of Batavia, Patti Michalak. Steve Hyde, back row, and GCEDC Board Chairman Paul Battaglia to the right.

March 3, 2016 - 1:35pm
posted by Billie Owens in Alabama, Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge, news.

Press release:

Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) in Alabama and Shelby is hosting its annual Spring Into Nature celebration from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 30.

Activities will be at the Refuge Visitor Center on Casey Road with a bald eagle watch located at Cayuga Overlook on Route 77. Join us as we welcome spring back to the swamp with a variety of nature-related exhibits, plus free crafts and games for the kids.

Our theme for Spring Into Nature is Migration, in honor of the Migratory Bird Treaty Centennial 1916-2016. This treaty forms the cornerstone of our efforts to conserve birds that migrate across international borders.

During Spring into Nature we will offer activities and programs that create awareness, promote actions, increase support, and expand engagement in the conservations of migratory birds and animals. Family favorites such as constructing bat and butterfly houses and seeing live birds of prey are among some of the returning favorites. Food will be available for purchase.

Please contact Refuge staff at (585) 948-5445, ext. 7036, visit our Web site at http://www.fws.gov/refuge/iroquois/ or visit our Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/IroquoisNationalWildlifeRefuge for further information.

Iroquois NWR is located midway between Buffalo and Rochester and is managed by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.

Individuals with disabilities and any other person who may need special assistance to participate in this program should contact the Refuge at 585/948-5445 or at the Federal Relay No. 1-800-877-8339. 

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