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News roundup: Council waives residency requirement—Updated

By Philip Anselmo
Jan 13, 2009, 8:20am

Batavia's City Council last night waived the residency requirement for 14 city employees, according to WBTA's Dan Fischer. Councilman Bob Bialkowski was the sole dissenter in the 6-to-1 vote. Assistant City Manager Sally Kuzon and recently appointed Code Enforcement Officer Ronald Panek were among those relieved of the requirement.

No one has yet explained exactly what such a decision means for the city. If the residency requirement was in place: How did the city hire 14 people in violation of the requirement? We put the question to Council President Charlie Mallow this morning, and we're waiting for his response. We'll be sure to get it up when he responds, if he doesn't just beat us to the punch and post a comment before then.

Update: Mallow has responded to our inquiry from earlier this morning.

"The City has a residency requirement for all employees to live within the boundaries of the County," he said. "These employees were identified as living outside the County, some who have worked for the City for over 10 years, and it has been determined that it is in the best interest of the City to waive this requirement  for these people."

Cold, snow and wind will make for a tricky afternoon commute

By Philip Anselmo
Jan 13, 2009, 8:03am

We're looking at a severe winter weather advisory for the region from 9 o'clock this morning through 6:00pm this afternoon, issued by the National Weather Service out of Buffalo. Don't expect things to get more friendly after that. We're already hearing talk of record low temperatures possibly down to minus ten degrees by Thursday. For now, here's what to expect:

A strong cold front will cross western New York early this afternoon and bring 1 to 3 inches of snow to the area. Strong southerly winds ahead of the front will shift to west with the frontal passage and gust up to 35 mph. This will result in considerable blowing and drfiting snow. Expect very hazardous conditions for travel for a few hours during the afternoon.

Please be careful driving out there. Wind, plus snow, plus cold usually make for the worst driving conditions. I can speak from experience that Route 33 between Batavia and Bergen is often treacherous when the gusts start kicking the snow across the road.

Everything looks clear right now on the Thruway.

Emory Upton: No. 5 in What Made Genesee County Famous

By Philip Anselmo
Jan 12, 2009, 3:31pm

Most folks around here ought to know the name Emory Upton compatriot of General Sherman, traveler of the world and military documenter and tactician. His patinated likeness stands tall at the monument on the city's west side where Main Street and Ellicott Street join.

Now, Upton has earned himself yet another memorial: a rank of fifth in the Holland Land Office Museum's countdown of The Twenty-Five Things That Made Genesee County Famous.

Museum Director Pat Weissend tells us: 

In 1875, Upton received orders from General William T. Sherman to leave West Point and go on a world tour to observe and study all the great armies of Asia and Europe. Upton and his group headed west by train to San Francisco, got on a boat and headed to Japan. After observing the Japanese army, they went to China, India, Persia, Turkey, Russia and finally ended up in Western Europe.  Upon his return stateside, he published the book The Armies of Asia and Europe.

Recently, The Batavian sat down with Weissend and County Clerk Don Reed at Main Street Coffee as they worked at transcribing a selection of Upton's letters. (Those letters will be edited and published once the transciption is complete.)

For more on Upton, visit the Holland Land Office Museum online.

Rural Democrats respond to Chris Lee's first week in office

By Philip Anselmo
Jan 12, 2009, 1:47pm

We received the following statement, issued by the Genesee, Livingston, Wyoming and Orleans Democratic Committee Chairs.

The Democrats of the rural counties of New York's 26th Congressional District (Genesee, Livingston, Orleans, and Wyoming Counties, or the GLOW region,) congratulate Chris Lee on being sworn in to represent the district in the 111th Congress.  While he is getting established in Washington, the GLOW county Democratic Committees note that Congressman Lee's plans to open offices in just Monroe and Erie Counties suggest there is a good chance that the rural areas of the district, which comprise a great deal of the 26th, may continue to be overlooked despite there being new representation in Congress.

Mr. Lee has issued a statement announcing that he has been named to the Financial Services Committee, the committee assignment he sought.  Unfortunately, membership on that committee precludes his serving on any of the other important committees in Congress.  (Most members of Congress sit on multiple committees, but members of the Financial Services Committee do not.)  "What our communities really need is a representative on the Agriculture Committee, like the 29th District will have with Eric Massa," says Harold Bush, Chair of the Wyoming County Democratic Committee.  The Genesee County Democratic Committee Chair, Lorie Longhany, says "I am concerned that Congressman Lee is in danger of simply perpetuating a long Washington tradition of being more interested in Wall Street than Main Street.  The fact that two of his very first votes were against closing pay discrimination loopholes -- he voted against the Lilly Ledbetter Fairness Act and the Paycheck Fairness Act -- makes me even more on my guard about his commitment to average people."

The other matter of great concern to the GLOW-region Democratic Committees is that Congressman Lee may not be supportive enough of passing the stimulus plan that is the first item on Congress' agenda.  "He never talks about a recovery plan without worrying out loud about 'fiscal responsibility,'" says Phil Jones, Chair of the Livingston County Democratic Committee.  "But 'fiscal responsibility' has become the Republican code phrase for obstructing what we really need in this district, which is jobs.  The Republicans had plenty of chances to be fiscally responsible when they were in control of Congress and the economy wasn't in dire straits.  But economic experts agree that temporary government spending is the only thing that can help turn around our economic situation."  The Orleans County Democratic Chair, Jeanne Crane, notes that public investment in infrastructure and green energy projects could benefit the 26th district for years to come.  "Smart public investments can lead to real, tangible assets for our community, assets that will attract jobs and growth.  We hope Congressman Lee understands that and will support the kind of stimulus package we need."

On the Beat: Marijuana and fireworks

By Philip Anselmo
Jan 12, 2009, 9:46am

Joseph Auricchio, 17, of Alexander, was charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and unlawful dealing with fireworks Saturday, Genesee County sheriff's deputies said. Deputies picked up Auricchio following a complaint.

Robert W. Baker, 38, of Attica, was charged with driving while intoxicated Saturday, Genesee County sheriff's deputies said. Baker was driving on Route 77 in Alabama when he crashed his car and ended up stuck in a deep snow embankment in a ditch. He was also ticketed with moving from the lane unsafely.

Jerry K. Scroger, 44, of 3207 Pratt Road, Lot 6, Batavia, was charged with second-degree criminal contempt Friday, Genesee County sheriff's deputies said. Scroger is accused of violating a court order of protection by calling his estranged spouse.

Brian J. Lipinski, 25, of Corfu, was charged with trespass early this morning, Genesee County sheriff's deputies said. Lipinski was picked up after crashing his snowmobile into a pile of steel railroad track while driving along the CSX railroad line.

Notre Dame cheerleaders take top prize - Updated with photo and video

By Philip Anselmo
Jan 12, 2009, 9:15am

Thanks to Lindsay Warner for submitting the following info on the Genesee Region League Cheerleading Tournament. We would love to have some color to go with this recap, so if you've got photos or video of this event, please post it to the site or contact me by e-mail so we can get it posted.

This weekend the JV and varsity cheerleading squads of the Genesee Region League gathered for their annual tournament. The competition travels to a different host school every few years and this year was the first for Elba High School and Michelle Merrill, their head coach.

The competition is run much like Winter Cheerleading Sectionals in that each team performs twice on the mat- once in a cheer only round and than again using the tradition cheer/dance routine. Grand Champion is determined by the squad who carries the highest total score. Since the inception of this competition that score belonged to the Holley Hawks- that is until this weekend.

Notre Dame has competed in this tournament for years and since Coach Lindsay (Rapone) Warner began coaching, grand champion was set as the ultimate goal. Holley High School, who is class B2 with nearly twice as many squad members, doesn’t make for much of a fair fight. This year Notre Dame has 14 members, 6 of which are new additions to the varsity team from last year. Nevertheless, Notre Dame was able to top Holley’s squad of 27 by 6 points in Round One which was very exciting for the squad as a last second decision was made to throw out the original cheer and learn a completely new one less than a week before the day’s performance. Overall the Irish stole grand champion by 4 points.

“My team was aware that the odds were against us in our goal to get grand champ. Holley is a great competitor and is well known for their themed routines, which this year, was Legally Blonde,” coach Lindsay Warner. The squad worked very hard to prepare for this competition, including two full practices before each of their games this week. The girls wanted it and their efforts certainly paid off. Assistant coach, Sheri Girvin, who is an alumni of Holley High School and former recipient of Grand Champion as a Hawk joined the Irish last year and was thrilled to receive Grand Champion again, now as a Notre Dame coach.

Squad captains are Stacy Squire, Kristen Francis, and Lauren DiFante, two of which are seniors and are very hopeful that this is just the start of a very successful final season for them at Notre Dame.


JV CHEER DI- Holley 177, Attica 173, Alexander 170; DII- Kendall 137
JV CHEER/DANCE DI- Holley 179,Attica 169, Alexander 156; DII Kendall 150
Varsity CHEER DI-Holley 184, Attica 179, Alexander 174, Oakfield 109; DII Notre Dame 190, Elba 173, Kendall 157, Lyndonville 150
Varsity CHEER/DANCE DII- Notre Dame 185, Kendall 166, Elba 164, Lyndonville 146

News roundup: City Council will vote to abolish Ethics Board

By Philip Anselmo
Jan 12, 2009, 8:04am

Batavia's City Council will meet tonight at 7 p.m. at the City Centre. Their only order of business is a vote to abolish the city's Board of Ethics, which would henceforth hand over all questions of potential ethics violations to the county's board, according to WBTA's Dan Fischer.

Today and tomorrow will be mild compared to the expected temperatures later this week. An Arctic front will blow in Wednesday, dropping temperatures down to near zero that day and possibly even as low as minus five degrees on Thursday. Follow this link to download a helpful extereme cold weather guide.

Storm was not that bad

By Brian Hillabush
Jan 11, 2009, 1:47pm

 We were supposed to get slammed with some big-time snow last night. I woke up this morning with the ambition to go out and photograph some carnage.

It was actually pretty nice.

As you can see, most streets and driveways are clear and the only real damage I found was a power wire down.

New feature: Forums

By Howard B. Owens
Jan 11, 2009, 12:44pm

Here at The Batavian, we're in a constant mode of making improvements and upgrades to the site.

One feature requested a while back was discussion boards, or forums, a place for people to start their own topics of conversation.

Tom Gilliatt, whom many of you have known as Tom G since the site launched, has agreed to help monitor and manage the forums.

Thanks, btw, to both Tom and Gabor for recently changing their user profile to include their full real name to comply with our requirement for real names on the site. 

You can reach the discussion boards through the Forums link in the navigation bar across the top of the Web page.

Attica football is moving down to Class C

By Brian Hillabush
Jan 10, 2009, 2:55pm

 With the amount of students dropping at local schools, I have a thought that within the next few years we might start seeing more schools combine their programs.

The current BEDS numbers are an indication that our area schools are getting smaller and smaller. Most of our schools are Class C or D as it is right now, and there has been a rumor flying around that Attica is dropping from a B to a C next year. 

I just confirmed that the Blue Devils will be playing in Class C next season, but just for football. It will probably be for all sports the year after next.

"I think it's good and it gives us an opportunity to see some different teams," Attica coach Jeff Cusmano said. "I don't think Class C is any easier (for sectionals). You still have your teams like Le Roy, Pembroke and Letchworth, but from a physical standpoint it may help us out."

This year's graduating class at Attica is 147 and Cusmano's son is in third grade, where there are only 100 kids in the class. So enrollment is going to keep dropping in Attica.

Playing in Class C is no cake-walk as Cusmano said, but will give the Blue Devils a better chance to compete. Attica has only won two sectional games in its history, playing in Class B. They knocked off East Rochester/Gananda for the second this year, but then were destroyed by Bath.

"When we go into a Class B playoff game, you have to be able to match up and we couldn't do that with Bath," Cusmano said. "You have teams like Geneva and Hornell that are (larger schools) and pretty tough. We will be able to better match up in sectionals."

With the amount of Class D schools we are going to have in the Genesee Region League and Livingston Conference, is it possible that teams are going to have to merge sports so that there are enough Class C schools to compete.

This past year we saw Elba and Byron-Bergen combine their football program, and it is likely that more athletic teams will be hooking up from those two schools.

Oakfield-Alabama and Pembroke were Class C this year, but both are expected to be Class D very soon.

Section 5 has the most amount of Class D schools in the state, and I'm just wondering if we are going to see more merging. As it is right now, Class D plays one less regular season game because they have to be divided into two classes, and have a playoff after sectionals to see which team moves on to states.

There is currently talk of making the Class D sectionals just a four team competition and allowing schools to play a full seven week regular season. While other classes have eight schools in the playoffs, Class D would only get four teams.

Will Oakfield-Alabama and Pembroke combine programs so that they can compete in Class C or even be a small B school? Caledonia-Mumford has been moved down to Class D and enrollment keeps dropping, so are they going to join up with another school so they can play in an eight team playoff?

This may or may not happen, but with Class D becoming so overloaded, I think we are going to see some major changes in Section 5 football in the near future.

Nasty weather on the way

By Brian Hillabush
Jan 10, 2009, 1:30pm

Yet another good reason to stay in and watch the NFL playoffs - the weather is going to get pretty bad.

Things should get pretty nasty later this evening and through the night, according to

The snow is expected to start at around 3:45 p.m. and will get serious by 7 p.m. and will continue all through the night. 

Here is a copy of the Winter Weather Advisory issued by the National Weather Service this morning.






Paterson's soft drink Nanny Tax potentially more of a problem than solution

By Howard B. Owens
Jan 10, 2009, 12:42pm

Daily News writer Paul Mrozek has a lengthy piece out today on Gov. Paterson's plans to tell parents how to raise their children -- specifically how to control their diets.

He includes all the facts from the governor's perspective, but passes over one lone skeptical voice deep in the article.  There is little focus on the propriety of New York engaging in social engineering, nor the degree to which this plan is going to create new bureaucracies and hence new expenses, whether there is any evidence such a plan will work, nor how the plan will impact businesses and create new costs that will be passed along to all consumers.

The most far-reaching of the proposals is an 18 percent sales tax on sugar-sweetened beverages such as soda. Juices from fruit such as oranges and grapes are excluded from the proposed tax.

In the past 40 years New York residents have increased their consumption of pop from an average of five 12-ounce cans or bottles per week to 11 per week. Research has shown that consumption of non-diet soft drinks is one of the primary factors that increases the risk of obesity in children and adults.

"No question about the link. We have a core fact in front of us," Daines said.

Not so fast. There is a question. A big fat question.

To blame all low-income obesity on soda pop alone is myopic. Low-income diets tend to be heavy in empty carbohydrates of all kinds, not just sugar. Children living in food insecure homes consume less healthy food. One reason there is such an abundance of empty-carb foods can be traced to farm subsidies for corn, but even that connection is a rather simplistic view of the obesity problem among poorer children.

There is also the question of proper exercise.  In too many homes, children are allowed to watch TV or play video games rather than being required to run around outside.

These are largely parental issues, not government issues.

If the government wanted to do something to help, they would restructure aid programs to make it easier to buy healthier food.  Given a choice, most parents would pick more meats, fruits and vegetables. But right now these options are beyond their budgets. 

Driving up the costs of the high-carb foods isn't going to help them afford the good foods.

The article says, "You raise prices. You provide alternatives."  But what are those alternatives. How are they paid for and provided?  If the alternatives are paid for by the tax, how does the state ensure sufficient revenue for those alternatives once consumption of the taxed items goes down?

Will taxed drinks receive some sort of stamp like alcohol and cigarettes?  If so, aren't we just creating yet another environment for potential illegal black market activities?

And one issue about the proposed tax I've not seen discussed anywhere is the impact on business: Who will levy the tax? Will retail outlets be burdened with the the expense of tracking and tallying the tax, which could include the expense of reprogramming cash registers?  And if the tax is imposed at the wholesale level, won't it just get passed along to all consumers of soft drinks and other beverages from those particular wholesalers?

What about vending machines? Will vendors be required to have two prices on drinks in their machines -- one for taxed items, and one for non-taxed? Or will us diet drinkers just pay more? Who pays for the expense of reprogramming machines or replacing machines that aren't capable of handling tiered prices on soft drinks?

Per usual, any time the government starts interfering in private lives and private enterprise, there are as many if not more problems created than solved.

Here's an appropriate and timely video from Reason Magazine.

Consolidation: Four most common questions...

By Philip Anselmo
Jan 9, 2009, 2:40pm

Yesterday, we brought you some extracts from a report by the Center for Governmental Research on the potential consolidation of the town and city of Batavia. We would still encourage everyone in those municipalities to download and read the full document (it's about seven pages or so). In the meantime, we would like to present you with the four most commonly asked questions of the researchers as they interviewed leaders in the city and town on the topic of consolidation. Here's what they heard most:

1. "How can we ensure that city and town residents and businesses are fairly represented in the new government?"

2. "How can we ensure that the current costs and obligations of the city are not unfairly transferred to current town taxpayers?"

3. "What would happen with fire and police services?"

4. "What is the process for approving the creation of New Batavia?"

Answers to all of these questions, to a certain extent, depend on the plan that has not yet been planned. That being said, the Center for Governmental Research has some answers to help appease folks in the meantime. That is particularly the case for questions one and three. Amusingly, the CGR recommends a charter review committee works out those details in time for the November vote. We say amusing, because the city has been working on its own charter for quite some time now, and all of the work would essentially be null and void if a consolidation goes through. Daily News reporter Joanne Beck explored this irony in a recent article in that paper.

As for the other questions... Question two—will the cities burdens become the towns—has been the most frequent that I have heard. Basically, CGR says that consolidation of the city and town "can be expected to yield both short term and long term savings" for everyone. To me, that makes it sound like a non-issue.

Question four—approving the creation of New Batavia—is a real hoot. Quite simply, there's nothing that says the consolidtion has to be voted on by residents. However, the state Legislature does get a say.

As for the next steps...

Number One: Develop a plan! (Seriously, that's number one.)

Number Two: Get some money, because you will need it.

Number Three: Get more input.

There you go. Is everybody ready?

Byron-Bergen high school student heading to the inauguration

By Philip Anselmo
Jan 9, 2009, 12:16pm

"It's not like I'm planning on being president or anything," Nicholas Prospero told me across the kitchen table at his home in Bergen.

His parents snickered on the other side of the room. They couldn't believe it. After all, Nick may be the most ambitious 14-year-old to ever walk the halls of Byron-Bergen Middle School, and he's already poised to stake his claims in the high school. And that's no exaggeration. Nick's school principal honored him as having "literally provided more services" to the middle school than anyone else "in the history of the school," his father, Jon, said.

Nicholas was twice the student body president of the middle school, once took over the treasury position when that representative bailed mid-semester, worked as a sort of liaison with the school's advisor, oversaw all school events—and all that in addition to track, soccer, band and choir... and, you know, a few other posts and activities here and there.

"It wasn't that bad," Nicholas said of the workload. He shrugs. I believe him, even though I can't believe him. He says he took this year off to get used to the high school. He started ninth grade this past September, and he has plans to join the high school's student council as a representative next year.

In a couple weeks, Nick will be boarding a plane by himself bound for Washington, D.C. He has been selected along with 4,000 other students from across the nation to attend the Presidential Youth Inaugural Conference. That includes a ticket to the inauguration of President Barack Obama January 20. He'll be standing there as the parade rolls down Pennsylvania Avenue. Millions are expected to descend on the city that day. Not everyone's got a ticket, however.

"I'm looking forward to it," Nick said. "It could have been history either way the election went."

Nick had been nominated to attend the inauguration when he was in seventh grade, two years ago. At the time, he had no idea who would be heading up the parade in Washington.

He's especially stoked about the black tie gala inaugural ball, where he plans to dress in a silver tuxedo. Nice. It's too bad, he tells me, that Lance Armstrong won't be speaking—he had initially been on the bill—but Al Gore and Colin Powell will have to do. Nick cheered on Al Gore for president when he was in first grade, he said. His classroom had a poster of Gore smiling, thumbs up. He just looked like the right guy for the job. Unfortunately, Nick was about ten years too young to vote. Besides, he didn't live in Florida, so it wouldn't have mattered much anyway.

"I want to hear how they were able to be successful in life, how they got where they are, how hard they worked to make it happen," he said of the speakers.

You might not believe it, but Nick is "not that big on" politics. Or so he says.

Right now, he thinks he would like to become a sports writer. We told him that he's welcome to write for us, anytime. We're hoping to get a few reports of the inauguration live from Washington while he's down there.

Poll: Who should run the government of a consolidated Batavia?

By Philip Anselmo
Jan 9, 2009, 9:25am

Yesterday, we ran a post on some of the details of the consolidation proposal. Later today, we'll get more into what has yet to happen if this issue will truly go to a public vote this November. For now, we thought to play a little hypothetical game. One of the lines in the report on consolidation prepared by the Center for Governmental Research reads: "For discussion purposes, we will refer to this new consolidated government as New Batavia."

That's right: New Batavia. It's got a nice ring to it. Now, if we had to vote tomorrow on who should run this new, mega rural-opolis, whom would you vote for?

Who should be the leader of New Batavia?
( polls)

As some of you may already know, the 'Other' responses do not automatically show up here, so we'll do our best to get them added in the comment field throughout the day. Personally, I'm going other and nominating former Main Street Coffee proprietor, Rob Credi, for the post. Either him or Tim Paine.

Video: Interview with Scooter the Coonhound

By Philip Anselmo
Jan 9, 2009, 8:15am

For those who have been with the site for a while, you may have noticed we like to post the adoption videos posted on YouTube by the Genesee County Animal Shelter. Well, today, we found a few new videos from the shelter that are quite fun. Usually, the shelter crew just records the animals frolicking around and sets that to some quirky music. In three new videos, the shleter crew actually gives "interviews" with... well, really about the dogs. Check it out:

On the Beat: Rape charges in Oakfield

By Philip Anselmo
Jan 9, 2009, 7:41am

An Oakfield man is in jail this morning following an arrest on more than a dozen felony charges made yesterday by the Genesee County sheriff's deputies. Corey W. Klase, 24, of Oakfield, was arrested at his home, where deputies allegedly found a video that depicts Klase "engaging in multiple sexual acts" with a 15-year-old girl, along with several other items, which were not named.

Klase was charged with two counts of use of a child in a sexual performance, two counts of promoting an obscene sexual performance by a child, two counts of promoting a sexual performance by a child, two counts of possession of an obscene sexual performance by a child, two counts of possessing a sexual performance by a child, two counts of third-degree criminal sexual act and two counts of third-degree rape. All charges are felonies.

Klase was sent to Genesee County Jail in lieu of $20,000 bail.

Consolidation: Are we heading towards a New Batavia?

By Philip Anselmo
Jan 8, 2009, 4:46pm

Everybody's talking about consolidation. Will the city and town of Batavia merge into a single entity? Even more important than that: If it does, what will that mean for me and my taxes? In the hopes of shedding some light on the topic—rather than further obfuscating the issue by pandering to rumor—we thought to invite two of the major players down to our office for a video interview. We had hoped to ask Charlie Mallow, the city's council president, and Greg Post, the town's supervisor, to explain as succinctly as possible the central issues involved in a potential consolidation.

Unfortunately, Post didn't have much to say. It's far too early in the game, he said. Most of what we've been hearing so far has been "a lot of hype and political posturing," he said. He then recommended we check out the memorandum issued by the Center for Governmental Research on the upcoming consolidation study. Once we've done so, he would be more than willing, he said, to answer questions pertaining to specifics as they were mentioned in that document. So we did that. In fact, the document is right now sitting on the desk before me.

Before we turn again to Mallow and Post with some more specific questions, we thought it would be a good time to extract a few choice nuggets from the memorandum to help give folks a clearer idea of just where we are in this whole process and just where we may be going. Hadn't someone said that we would be voting on whether to consolidate as soon as November? Could that be true? Well, before we jump that gun, let's look at what we do know (all of the following excerpts have been taken from the memorandum by the Center for Governmental Research issued to the "City and Town of Batavia Consolidation Study Committee" on December 15). You may download the complete document here.

"The overall objective study was to identify ways to make the joint operations of the two governments more effective and efficient, by exploring ways to work together incrementally under a shared services approach, up to and including full consolidation of the two governments. Results of the study are expected to be delivered by October, 2009."

"If the City and Town of Batavia consolidate into one government ... This would be enough to reduce the combined property tax levy of the City and Town by 15% per year."

"In greater Batavia, local governments have ironed out their differences over provision of regional water service, and the City and Town have worked cooperatively on a regional waste water treatment system. However, current boundaries and the resulting turf protection issues have made it very difficult to develop cost effective regional solutions to deliver ambulance, police and fire services."

"Batavia already has two distinct advantages in pursuing consolidation:

  • Most public school students in the town attend the Batavia City School District. Thus, there is not a town versus city conflict in public education within the greater community.
  • The City and Town share the same name, thus there would be no loss of brand identity from the perspective of the outside world if the two entities were to consolidate."

"Fortunately for Batavia ... the top elected leaders in both the City and the Town are willing to actively support consolidation as being the right thing to do for the greater community in the long run."

Those are the main points made in the first part of the memorandum. Perhaps the most significant recommendation comes later on in the report, under the section: Moving Forward. It recommends that the joint study committee "should strongly consider developing a plan for consolidation that, if approved by the City Council and Town Board, could be put to a vote in the general election on November 3, 2009."

Whoa! There it is.

We can't yet say how any of this will work, we don't even have a plan, not even a confirmation of when the plan will start, but in ten months, the residents ought to be ready to put it to a vote! What's more bizarre, if the vote passes, the consolidation wouldn't even happen until 2011.

Here's my favorite line: "For discussion purposes, we will refer to this new consolidated government as New Batavia."

We would encourage anyone who is interested in these developments to download the complete copy of the memorandum (the link is above). There is much more to be read, some of which we hope to highlight in another post tomorrow, including the next steps, brief sketches of the different phases of the project and the four most common questions so far raised.

For now, we're in the midst of Phase One: "Develop a baseline of current operations." This should be completed by March 1, when we dive into the much more complex Phase Two: "Develop a model for New Batavia." That would be finished by May, when we would begin the final phase leading up to the November referendum: "Community discussion..." That's where I'm sure things will get especially interesting.

So... While we're getting things ready for the big discussion, it seems like a great time to ask: What do you want New Batavia to be? I say we build tunnels. Everywhere. Tunnels.

Two-car crash in Le Roy sends one woman to the hospital

By Philip Anselmo
Jan 8, 2009, 3:54pm

Melissa J. Beaumont, 30, of Rochester, was taken to Strong Memorial Hospital this afternoon where she was treated for a neck injury and released following a two-car crash on Route 19 in Le Roy, Genesee County sheriff's deputies said. Beaumont was driving on Route 19 when she failed to negotiate a curve and lost control of the vehicle. Her car then slid into the opposite lane, colliding with a pickup truck coming from that direction. The truck, operated by James M. Smith, 45, of Warsaw, was pushed into the guard rail, then off the shoulder and into a snow embankment. Smith did not report any injury.

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Crossroads House is a comfort care home for the dying, located in Batavia NY, and is looking for a compassionate caregiver to provide personal care and emotional support to our dying residents, consistent with Comfort Care Philosophy. Must have prior caregiving experience. Licenses or certifications are not required. Must be able to work weekends, overnight shift is required. (11pm-8AM) Day and evening shifts are also available on weekdays and weekends. Must be able to work as a team member and independently. If interested, or have any questions, apply online at or email [email protected]
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Crossroads House is a comfort care home for the dying. We are a non-for-profit organization that provides its services free of charge. We run on a supportive community and selfless volunteers. With out both of those we would not be able to serve our community. If you have a caregiver's heart and 2 to 4 hours a week, we would love for you to become a part of our Crossroads House family! No experience required, we will train you and provide mentors and experienced volunteers to guide you. Please go to to apply, click on volunteer tab to complete application or email [email protected]
Tags: Jobs offered

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