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April 7, 2020 - 4:50pm
posted by Billie Owens in spiritual connections, April 7 2020.

"Spiritual Connections"-- The Batavian will post updates to connect people with their places of worship, religious services, fellowship opportunities, and/or spiritual advisors, etc.

If you have information to announce, please email:    [email protected]    OR    [email protected]

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Ascension Roman Catholic Parish, on Sumner Street in Batavia, announces its Holy Week Mass schedule; access via its Facebook page:

  • Holy Thursday, April 9 -- live streaming Mass of the Lord's Supper at 7 p.m.
  • Good Friday, April 10 -- live streaming Passion of Our Lord service at 3 p.m.
  • Holy Saturday, April 11 -- live streaming Blessing of Easter Food at 11:30 a.m.
  • Easter Sunday, April 12 -- live streaming Masses at 10:30 a.m.

Phone 585-343-1796 / Fax 585-343-0919 / [email protected]

Resurrection Parish (St. Mary's and St. Joseph churches in Batavia) has created a Facebook page and a YouTube channel to keep the parishioners spiritually connected. We have streamed Mass, had a 2 minutes adoration with Jesus, Stations of the Cross and Eucharistic Adoration on the Resurrection our Facebook and YouTube sites. To access the Facebook and YouTube sites, search for Resurrection RC Parish on both sites.

Here's the schedule for Holy Week:

  • Holy Thursday, April 9th, 5:30 p.m. -- Live streaming from Immaculate Conception Cathedral in Albany with Bishop Scharfenberger;
  • Holy Thursday, April 9th, 6:30 p.m. -- Liturgy of the Hours (evening prayer) -- with Deacon Henry, St. Mary's Church;
  • Holy Thursday, April 9th, 7 p.m. -- Live streaming Eucharistic Adoration from St. Mary's Church;
  • Good Friday, April 10th, 3 p.m. -- Stations of the Cross from St. Mary's Church;
  • Good Friday, April 10th, 5:30 p.m. -- Solemn Liturgy of the Lord's Passion and Death live streaming from Immaculate Conception Cathedral in Albany with Bishop Scharfenberger;
  • Holy Saturday, April 11th, 1 p.m. -- Live streaming from St. Mary's Church Blessing of the Easter Baskets. Have Easter baskets at home during the blessing and you will receive the blessing of the baskets virtually.
  • Holy Saturday, April 11th, 5:30 p.m. -- Liturgy of the Hours (evening prayer) -- with Deacon Henry from St. Mary's Church;
  • Holy Saturday, April 11th, 8 p.m. -- Solemn Vigil of Easter live streaming from Immaculate Conception Catherdral in Albany with Bishop Scharfenberger;
  • Easter Sunday, April 12th, 11 a.m. -- Live streaming from Immaculate Conception Cathedral in Albany with Fr. David R. LeFort.

East Bethany Presbyterian Church would like to invite you to join us for our online Sunday Worship service each week at 10:30 a.m. The service will be streamed live on our Facebook page and will remain available for viewing anytime afterward. Also, every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 4:30 p.m. Pastor Erin Jacobson is having a live story time for children, also on our Facebook page. Join Pastor Erin for some stories and songs that the children will enjoy! For more information see our Facebook page or contact us at: [email protected]

Trinity United Methodist Church in Attica and Darien United Methodist Church will have a joint service on Zoom for: Stations of the Cross at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, April 10; Easter Sunrise Service at 6:30 a.m. and Easter Celebration Service at 10: 30 a.m., April 12. For an invitation to join us, please email [email protected],com or [email protected] before that time. Prayer requests may be left on Trinity's voice mail at 585-591-1549 or to Pastor Pam at 716-560-0290.

The Oakfield-Alabama Baptist Church in South Alabama is posting a daily "Encouragement from God's Word" devotional video and its Sunday services on their YouTube channel. You can access these videos on their Facebook page here and on YouTube here. If you live in the Oakfield community and are in need of assistance, please call the church office at (585) 948-9401 or email: [email protected]

Byron Presbyterian Church and North Bergen Presbyterian Church are currently gathering online for worship services. The Sunday service is at 9:45 a.m. via Zoom Conferencing. Pastors Jim Renfrew and Dave Fish invite you to participate. Worship bulletins are sent out earlier in the week by email, and those without internet receive it by U.S. mail. In addition to Sunday services, the churches are also having Holy Week services on Maundy Thursday at 6:30 p.m. and Good Friday at 6:30 p.m. When we can't come to church, we must be the church! For more information, please call (585) 548-2800.

Batavia First Presbyterian online worship will be held on Facebook Live at 9 a.m. on Sunday, April 5. You may go to it from the church's website or by clicking this link. If you use the Facebook link, around 9 a.m. on Sunday a thumbnail will appear that says LIVE, click on that and you will be able to join the Facebook Livestream. Join us as we celebrate Palm Sunday together!

First Baptist Church Elba has moved their services online. Sermons are posted each Saturday for the regular Sunday service time. We encourage you to check out our recent sermons while you are at home during this time. The church is closed during normal services times between 9:30 a.m. - 12 p.m. Sundays. The church office is not open to visitors, however the office phone is answer from 9 a.m - 4 p.m. Monday-Friday. Please call if you need assistance and live in the town limits of Elba. Pastor is Michael Davis. The office phone is 585-757-2722, and the email address is:   [email protected]

St. Paul Lutheran Church in Batavia is now posting its Sunday and Lenten weekday bulletins with worship service and sermons on their website. The Church office is not open to visitors but office staff is on hand to take calls during normal office hours 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday to Friday for any questions or needs of the congregation. A phone tree has been put in place to check on those that might be home and unable to go out publicly to retrieve necessities. If you do not receive a call, and have a need for assistance, please call the main office at (585) 343-0488. Email address is:   [email protected]

April 7, 2020 - 4:28pm
posted by Billie Owens in covid-19, news, batavia, Prospect Avenue.

It is safe to say that the COVID-19 crisis is fostering a spirit of unity here despite mandated social distancing. One door in the city is an example.

The Batavian received two photos from the Sanfratello family on Prospect Avenue in Batavia this afternoon.

"My daughter Kyla and myself did a little something to show others we are all in this together," says Kim Sanfratello. "Thought we would share it with you. We painted it on our front door window."

From Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary:

Together (adverb): with or in proximity to another person or people

Synonyms: at one and the same time; in or by combined action or effort

Related words: concertedly, hand in glove

April 7, 2020 - 2:54pm

Press release:

In partnership with FoodLink of Rochester, The Salvation Army of Batavia is hosting a “Pop Up” mobile pantry on Wednesday, April 8, where individuals come in their cars and are provided fresh and shelf stable items distributed by volunteers into their trunks.

It will be held 9 a.m. in the parking lot of Northgate Free Methodist Church, North Campus, 8160 Bank Street Road, Batavia. One box per household. No deliveries will be available. There are a limited number of boxes available.

Currently, Salvation Army feeding programs are seeing a 50-percent increase in participation statewide.

“The reality is much more dire here in Batavia,” said Lieutenant Rachel Moore of The Salvation Army in Batavia. “Our pantry is quickly being depleted as the demand for food has dramatically increased during the COVID-19 crisis.”

According to Lt. Moore, The Salvation Army of Batavia is currently in need of donations to sustain its food pantry including:

  • Canned fruits and vegetables
  • Canned meat
  • Peanut butter and jelly
  • Cereal
  • Pasta and pasta sauce
  • Rice

“With the help of the community, we can continue to fulfill our mission of 'Doing the Most Good' during this unprecedented and uncertain time,” Lt. Moore said.

(Editor's note: The free food giveaway is not residency or income based and is available to all.)

April 7, 2020 - 2:37pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, scanner, Le Roy.

A pickup truck in the area of Circular Hill Road in Le Roy was reported at a rock pile and the driver was loading rocks into the bed of the truck. A Le Roy police officer says he found tracks from the truck, which has left the scene. The rocks are said to belong to the Town of Le Roy.

April 7, 2020 - 2:29pm
posted by Billie Owens in Darien, fire, news.

A field fire that is moving toward trees is reported in Darien at 10186 Harlow Road. Darien Fire Department is responding. The location is south of Broadway Road (Route 20).

UPDATE 2:31: Fire is out; it is advised that the field be sprayed down. Corfu Fire Department is asked to respond for mutual aid.

April 7, 2020 - 1:54pm
posted by Billie Owens in covid-19, news, ventilators, Sen. Michael Ranzenhofer.

From Senator Michael H. Ranzenhofer:

I hope that this message finds you and your family safe and healthy. As you may know, Governor Cuomo recently announced an Executive Order instructing local hospitals and healthcare providers to surrender ventilators in order to support patients in the New York City region.

Healthcare providers from our region are expressing their concerns about the impact this could have on our community’s ability to fight the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic moving forward.  

Jody Lomeo, president and CEO of Kaleida Health, recently said in a statement, “Hoping for no surge here or a promise of reimbursement for ventilators in the future -- at time of great uncertainty -- would be irresponsible. I cannot jeopardize our workforce and the very patients that we are responsible to care for.”

In response to the concerns raised by local providers, I joined several of my colleagues in writing to the Governor requesting that he reconsider this Order.

I am hopeful the Governor and Department of Health will listen to medical providers, who are on the front lines fighting this pandemic, and work with other states who have a surplus of supplies, to acquire critical devices.  

To be clear, there is a real and ongoing need for medical supplies in the New York City metro area, however, it should not come at the expense of other communities in the state. It has been well documented that in the days and weeks ahead cases are expected to peak in our region. Now is not the time to export critical medical devices.

April 7, 2020 - 1:44pm

Press release:

Washington, D.C. Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA), Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Ranking Member Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Senate Committee on Aging Ranking Member Bob Casey (D-PA), Senate Committee on Indian Affairs Vice Chairman Tom Udall (D-NM), and Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Ranking Member Gary Peters (D-MI) today unveiled the COVID-19 “Heroes Fund.”

It is the Senate Democrats’ proposal for the provision of pandemic premium pay to reward, retain, and recruit essential workers.

Senate Democrats’ proposed “Heroes Fund” consists of two major components: a $25,000 premium pay increase for essential workers, equivalent to a raise of $13 per hour from the start of the public health emergency until Dec. 31 and a $15,000 essential worker recruitment incentive to attract and secure the workforce needed to fight the public health crisis.

Grueling Months Ahead

Essential frontline workers are the true heroes of the COVID-19 pandemic response in America.

Senate Democrats believe in providing premium pay to frontline workers during this pandemic not only to reward essential workers’ for their great personal sacrifices, but also to ensure the retention of essential workers who are working grueling hours on the frontlines of this crisis as well as the recruitment of additional workers who will be needed in the months ahead.

A Summary of Senate Democrats’ COVID-19 “Heroes Fund” proposal can be found here and below:

“Thousands of workers report to the frontlines of our nation’s pandemic response each and every day, placing themselves squarely in harm’s way to serve the needs of others,” Schumer said. “Senate Democrats’ proposed ‘Heroes Fund’ would provide premium pay to these essential workers — the doctors and nurses, grocery store workers, transit workers, and more who are central to fighting this crisis — and would establish an incentive system to retain and recruit the workforce needed for the long months to come.

"Essential frontline workers sacrifice daily for our collective health and well-being, and Senate Democrats are fully committed to supplying these heroes the financial support they deserve.”

The COVID-19 “Heroes Fund” Summary

Senate Democrats’ Proposal for Pandemic Premium Pay to Reward, Retain, & Recruit Essential Workers

Essential frontline workers are the true heroes of America’s COVID-19 pandemic response. Senate Democrats believe in providing premium pay to frontline workers during this pandemic to reward essential frontline workers, ensure the retention of essential workers who are working grueling hours on the frontlines of this crisis, and promote the recruitment of additional workers who will be needed in the months ahead.

As the Congress looks at a potential fourth COVID-19 bill, the following proposal is meant for consideration by Members of Congress, key stakeholders, and the American people. Our proposal consists of two major components:

  1. A $25,000 pandemic premium pay increase for essential frontline workers, equivalent to a raise of an additional $13 per hour from the start of the public health emergency until Dec. 31.
  2. A $15,000 recruitment incentive for health and home care workers and first responders to attract and secure the workforce needed to fight the public health crisis.

Structure of the Pandemic Premium Pay

To meet the goals of reward, retention, and recruitment, we propose a set dollar amount per hour with a maximum amount for the year, for a definite duration, and with an additional bonus for workers who sign up to do such essential work during this crisis.

Amount of Pay Premium -- Our proposal:

  • Uses a flat-dollar amount per hour premium model in order to ensure it is clear, simple, and lifts up particularly those workers making lower wages;
  • Would give each essential frontline worker $13/hour premium pay on top of regular wages for all hours worked in essential industries through the end of 2020;
  • Would cap the total maximum premium pay at $25,000 for each essential frontline worker earning less than $200,000 per year and $5,000 for each essential worker earning $200,000 or more per year.

Duration of Premium -- The premium pay period:

  • Must be for a specified and clear duration of time to ensure workers can rely on it for their economic security and plan for needs like additional child care.
  • Should cover all hours worked by each essential frontline worker through December 31, 2020, or until the worker’s salary-based maximum premium pay is reached.

Premium Pay as a Recruitment and Retention Incentive.In order to recruit the additional health care workers, home care workers, and first responders needed over the coming months, our proposal

  • Would provide a one-time $15,000 premium for signing on to do essential work.
  • Would limit eligibility for this incentive premium to essential health and home care workers and first responders that are experiencing severe staffing shortages impeding the ability to provide care during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Premium Pay and Worker Incentives Delivery Mechanism

Our proposal would fully federally-fund the premium pay and recruitment and retention incentive. We will continue to seek input on the specific mechanism for delivering the pay to workers, as well as the universe of “essential workers” to be covered. The new federal fund would partner with entities designated as an “eligible employer” – states, localities, tribes, and certain private sector employers – to issue the funds premium payments to eligible workers. Frontline federal employees would also be granted the new benefit of up to $25,000.

COVID-19 Heroes Fund. The new COVID-19 Heroes Fund would provide funds directly to eligible employer-partners so that they could distribute the premium payments.

  • Employers in industries engaged in “essential work” would apply to the Heroes Fund for funds to be used to add line-item premium pay to employees’ or independent contractors’ paychecks. The eligible employer would track these payments, provide payroll records demonstrating premium payments, and return any unspent funds to the agency.
  • No employer would be required to participate, but all would be strongly encouraged to and the program would be widely advertised.
  • An entity that contracts directly with the state, locality, Tribe, or the federal government (e.g., to provide care to people with Medicare and Medicaid coverage) would be considered a private sector employer, and employees of this entity who are designated as “essential” would be eligible for premium pay. Similarly, an eligible employer is also an individual who hires someone designated as “essential” through programs established through the State (e.g., self-directed care arrangements). This would help ensure coverage of the 2.2 million home health aides, direct service providers, and personal care workers who provide services to more than 12 million Americans.
  • Eligible employers would submit applications for the recruitment and retention incentive premium on a rolling basis.

Federal Workforce -- Our proposal would ensure all federal government essential frontline employees receive the same $25,000 premium pay benefit provided to other essential workers.

  • Coverage should be expansive to capture all federal employees with public-facing positions. This includes Title 5 employees and employees of all other federal personnel systems (e.g., employees of the Postal Service, TSA, VA, FAA, District of Columbia, and federally-funded Indian programs.
  • The benefit would be limited to frontline and public-facing positions – employees who are not teleworking from their homes.

Additional Background and Commentary

Precedents -- Disasters require exceptional flexibility in standard work schedules and assignments and often put first responders and other essential workers in dangerous situations. To ensure this critical workforce is compensated appropriately, there are precedents for funding hazard premium pay and worker incentives through a federal program.

FEMA, through the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Response and Emergency Assistance Act and the Disaster Relief Fund, is currently authorized to reimburse state, local, and tribal governments for straight-time and premium pay associated with disaster response. Extraordinary costs (such as call-back pay, night-time or weekend differential pay, and hazardous duty pay) for essential employees who are called back to duty during administrative leave to perform eligible Emergency Work are eligible for reimbursement in certain circumstances.

This authority has been used many times over the last few years to pay for personnel costs associated with enforcing curfews, facilitating evacuation routes, and restoring critical infrastructure. Past usage illustrates precedent for federal funding of critical state, local, and tribal employees performing essential response functions that keep our communities safe in times of disaster.

Essential Frontline Worker definitions -- As mentioned above, the definition of essential frontline workers for purposes of both the premium pay increase and the recruitment-retention incentive will be the subject of debate. This proposal is not meant to exclude any worker from this conversation. Rather, we hope this proposal will encourage a discussion about how large and diverse this universe of workers truly is. Our goal is to make federal, state, tribal, local and private sector essential workers that are at risk eligible for this benefit.

Retroactive Pay -- Workers who have been on the frontlines since the initial declaration of the Public Health Emergency on January 27, 2020, could receive a lump sum of backpay of $13 per hour for work before enactment. These workers would continue to receive the $13 per hour premium pay on top of regular wages moving forward, but these workers would still be subject to the maximum premium pay cap outlined above.

Additional Benefits for Essential Health and Home Care Workers and First Responders -- The employers of frontline health and home care workers and first responders should be eligible to apply for a second round of premium pay funds of up to $10,000 as those workers continue to combat the virus.

Death Benefits -- It is a deeply disturbing but unfortunate reality that some of our frontline workers are making the ultimate sacrifice to the nation through their work fighting COVID-19.  Their families rightfully deserve to receive the full amount of the premium pay as a lump sum in addition to all other forms of death benefits.

Protections from Corporate Expense Shifting -- Certain large corporations engaged in the provision of essential services and goods employ essential frontline workers who are deserving of premium pay. However, massive corporations should make investments in providing premium pay of their own accord before trying to participate in this program.

Protecting Workers and PPE -- Senate Democrats have been fighting to give essential workers the protections and equipment they need to stay safe. The CARES Act provided billions of dollars for PPE, and Democrats have pushed the Administration to appoint a czar to handle all manufacturing and distribution of critical PPE. We must do more to ensure all frontline workers have the protective gear they need to perform their jobs safely, and we need a strong emergency temporary standard to protect all workers.

April 7, 2020 - 12:47pm

Submitted image and press release:

BERGEN -- Liberty Pumps, a family and employee owned company based in Bergen, is pleased to introduce the Mini-Split Condensation Pump.

It is used for removal of condensate from wall mount, ductless mini-split air conditioners up to 23.5 Btu (7 kW), fan coils, and suspended ceiling air conditioners.

The LCU-MS features quiet operation, solid-state switch technology, and a clear reservoir for easy visual inspection.

There are two models available the LCU-MS and the LCU-MS2, which includes a line cover kit.

For more information call 1-800-543-2550 or visit the online.

About Liberty Pumps

Headquartered in Bergen, NY, Liberty Pumps is a leading U.S. manufacturer of pumping products for ground water and wastewater removal in residential and commercial applications. With a focus on innovative product design, the company offers a wide range of pump styles includes; sump pumps, sewage pumps, effluent pumps, drain pumps, grinder pumps, complete preassembled sewage packages, and pump accessories.

Utilizing a vast network of plumbing wholesalers and pump distributors, Liberty's products are relied on by hundreds of professional contractors each day.

April 7, 2020 - 12:36pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, agriculture, covid-19, CARES Act, farm aid, USDA, NYFB.

Press release:

New York Farm Bureau is requesting immediate help for farmers who are facing serious economic challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic. The recently passed CARES Act provides $9.5 billion in funding for USDA, and NYFB is encouraging that funding to be used for direct payments to farms.

NYFB President David Fisher has sent a letter to U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue to make the case for federal assistance which spells out a number of ways USDA can help a diverse range of farms in New York weather the storm that is affecting millions of small businesses. This would help offset the fact that most farms may not meet the traditional eligibility requirements for Small Business Administration programs. At a time when food security is of utmost importance, we must do everything we can to keep farmers in business during this most challenging time.

The letter from President Fisher reads in part, “While no one could have predicted the extent of this virus on the country or its food supply, the impacts have been real and unprecedented for America’s farmers, including those in New York. Not only have farmers experienced the loss of markets, dumping of products, and labor disruptions, also there remains uncertainty of when they may see any type of recovery.”

In addition to direct payments, some additional requests include:

  • USDA should immediately make purchases of dairy products including but not limited to fluid milk, butter, cheeses and dry milk powders. Additional support could be provided through export assistance programs and direct commodity support.
  • The creation of a voucher program for people in need through the Milk Donation Program, as authorized under the 2018 Farm Bill, to facilitate the distribution of donated milk through grocery stores and other venues since some food banks and food pantries often do not have enough cold storage to accept large quantities of highly perishable products.
  • With the steep decline in purchases in the food service sector, USDA should consider developing a purchase program that would quickly provide stability to all impacted fresh produce growers through the duration of the COVID-19 public health emergency. 
  • Provisions should be made for livestock, equine, horticulture, craft distilleries, maple producers and more who are facing closures and a significant loss of business.

Read the requests made by NYFB to assist farmers across the state and the full letter here.

April 7, 2020 - 12:28pm

Submitted photo and press release:

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected many across the world requiring every qualified medical professional to assist with this crisis. Despite the negativity and disruption to daily work and routines, many acts of kindness and generosity have bonded citizens and rekindled devotion to saving lives and minimizing pain or discomfort.

This ripple effect has also made its way to Genesee Community College. In the most difficult times, Antoinette and Emmett Clancy reached out to bear wonderful news.

The Clancy's contacted Assistant Director of Alumni Affairs, Jennifer Wakefield, inspired by news stories of selfless medical professionals aiding patients during the COVID-19 pandemic.

They recounted one emotional story in particular, at Morristown Medical Center in New Jersey last week, when an unidentified man held up a sign to the hospital window thanking medical staff for saving his wife's life.

"And this is why we love what we do as nurses," Antoinette (née Marchese) Clancy said, "directly helping others and making their lives better."

The Clancy's have decided to award an additional 10 scholarships for the 2020/2021 academic year to support second year nursing students who have exhibited dedication and excellence in their first year of study, and promise to continue this distinction in their second year.

"Nurses are the backbone of the medical system. Because of the Coronavirus pandemic, there is no better time to recognize nurses and their role in the system," Clancy said.

"Because of the Clancy Family's generosity and love for Genesee Community College and the community in which they were raised, they recognized the need to continue assisting nursing students to complete their education," James M. Sunser, Ed.D., president of Genesee Community College said.

"The increased number of scholarships will not only help in the fight against COVID-19, but will help increase the number of skilled rural nurses in Western New York which we so desperately need."

Last fall, the Antoinette Marchese Clancy Scholarship Fund was established through a generous gift from the Clancy family and recognizes Antoinette, GCC Class of 1974.

Each year going forward, this scholarship will support several second-year GCC nursing students who are academically in the upper third of the class and have illustrated excellence in their clinical performance.

Antoinette Marchese grew up in Batavia and in 1970 graduated from Notre Dame High School where she had met her husband, Emmett Clancy. After working as a nurse's aide at St. Jerome's Hospital, she enrolled at D'Youville College, but transferred and graduated from GCC in 1974 earning the Nursing Excellence Award, an honor that is still very important to her.

The Clancy family, now residing in California, has grown to include five children and 11 grandchildren throughout their 45-year marriage.

The formal recognition reception with the Clancy's in attendance was scheduled next month on May 14. Their visit was to be a highlight of the 50th Anniversary of GCC's Nursing Program and the annual nursing graduation ceremony. The ceremony will be postponed to May 2021.

"Just as the Olympics have been postponed until 2021, so has celebrating the 50th Golden Anniversary of Genesee Community College's Antoinette Marchese Clancy School of Nursing. We will celebrate the 2020 milestone and the success of the program in May 2021," Emmett Clancy said.

April 7, 2020 - 11:56am

Press release:

The New York State Elections Commissioner Association, which includes both Genesee County Commissioners, wishes to express our support for Senate Bill #S8015A, which amends election law to further define temporary illness to include the spread or potential spread of a communicable disease during a declared state of emergency.

We support this measure to clarify the temporary illness excuse for absentee ballots under section 8-400 of NYS Election law to include the COVID-19 pandemic and future similar circumstances a valid excuse for requesting an absentee ballot.

Voters should not have to choose between their potential health and their right to cast a ballot. Making this change will allow Boards of Elections the freedom to accept applications for absentee ballots and reduce Election Day population during times of pandemic scares.  

We urge the state legislature to pass this bill in this session to provide assurance to voters who want to use this option during the current health crisis. Adoption of this reform now will allow the voters to use this option during the June primaries and possibly the November General Election of 2020.

In Genesee County, Richard Siebert is the Republican Election Commissioner and Lorie Longhany is the Democratic Election Commissioner.

Genesee County Board of Elections is located in County Building One, 15 Main St., Batavia. Phone is (585) 344-2580, ext. 2207.

April 7, 2020 - 11:28am

Press release:

The Western New York COVID-19 Community Response Fund coordinated by the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo, Health Foundation for Western & Central New York, The John R. Oishei Foundation and the United Way of Buffalo & Erie County announced that it has granted $4.5 Million to 74 organizations in less than two weeks after the Fund was announced.

Grants were awarded to organizations serving all eight counties of Western New York that are addressing immediate needs in our community as a result of the COVID-19 crisis in the areas of food, housing, healthcare, childcare, mental health, transportation, and other emergency services.

Grants were made to nonprofit organizations throughout WNY including urban and rural areas, organizations of every size, and to those serving a range of populations with consideration for areas already in economic distress. 

The WNY COVID-19 Community Response Fund is a collaborative effort among the region’s philanthropic organizations to help essential organizations on the front lines of this community crisis with grants designed to complement public sector funds.

Anyone is welcome to join the effort and donate to the Fund through the website – www.WNYResponds.org.

The following nonprofit organizations received a grant from the WNY COVID-19 Community Response Fund:

• Allegany County Community Opportunities and Rural Development

• Arc of Genesee Orleans (Meals on Wheels)

• BestSelf Behavioral Health

• Boys & Girls Clubs Collaborative

• Buffalo Prenatal Perinatal Network

• Buffalo Urban League

• CAO of Western New York

• Cattaraugus and Wyoming Counties Project Head Start

• Cattaraugus Community Action

• Cattaraugus County Dept. of Aging (Meals on Wheels Fund)

• Cazenovia Recovery Systems

• CCNY

• Child & Family Services of Erie County

• Child Care Coalition of the Niagara Frontier

• Christ Church Community Kitchen

• City Mission Society, Inc.

• Community Action of Orleans & Genesee

• Community Health Center of Buffalo

• Community Missions of Niagara Frontier

• CoNECT (Community Health Worker Network of Buffalo)

• Crisis Services

• Cuba Cultural Center

• Directions in Independent Living

• Empower (United Cerebral Palsy Assoc. of Niagara County)

• Erie Regional Housing Develop. (Belle Center)

• Evergreen Health

• Every Bottom Covered

• Family Help Center

• Feed Buffalo

• FeedMore WNY

• Friends of Night People

• Genesee Orleans Ministry of Concern Inc. 

• Harvest House of South Buffalo

• Health Association of Niagara County (HANCI)

• Healthy Community Alliance

• Heart Love & Soul

• Hearts and Hands: Faith in Action Inc.

• Horizon Health Services

• Jericho Road Community Health Center

• Jewish Family Service of Buffalo & Erie County

• Journey's End Refugee Services

• Kendall Community Food Cupboard Corp.

• Learning Disabilities Association of WNY

• Life Impact (Resurrection Life Food Pantry)

• Lt. Col. Matt Urban HSC of WNY

• Metro Community Develop. Corp.

• Mid-Erie Mental Health Services (Endeavor Health Services)

• Native American Community Services 

• Neighborhood Health Center 

• Niagara Community Action Program Inc.

• Northpointe Council

• NYS Network for Youth Success

• Olmsted Center for Sight

• Open Buffalo (Seeding Resilience Initiative)

• Parkside Evangelical Lutheran Church

• PUSH Buffalo

• Restoration Society

• Safety-Net Assoc. of Primary Care Affiliated Providers

• Save the Michaels of the World

• Say Yes Buffalo 

• Spectrum Health and Human Services

• Western New York Independent Living

To date, the WNY COVID-19 Community Response Fund has received approximately $5.5 million from local foundations, private sector companies, and individuals. Additional funds raised will be distributed based on evolving needs related to the pandemic. To see a full list of contributors to the Fund, please visit www.WNYResponds.org.

On Monday (April 6) Buffalo Bills General Manager Brandon Beane announced that he is donating $20,000 to relief efforts and is also offering fans an opportunity to interact with him as he gears up for the 2020 NFL Draft to build awareness for the Fund.

The initiative, which runs until Friday, April 17, will award seven randomly selected entrants with one of seven unique Bills-themed experiences or prizes.

For anyone in need of assistance with information related to services available in our community, please call 2-1-1. It is a referral hotline that is staffed 24/7 and serves all eight counties of Western New York.

April 6, 2020 - 5:48pm

UPDATE: We spoke with Police Chief Shawn Heubusch about this order and how it might be enforced. He said police officers will be driving by and monitoring the parks to ensure compliance with the order but officers will be unlikely to issue tickets. He said they will issue warnings, reminding people of the importance of social distancing, and asking them to move along. At least on first-time offenses. "We're just asking people to cooperate during this because we want to keep everybody as healthy as possible," Heubusch said. If it becomes necessary to cite somebody for violation of the order, a violation of a local emergency order is a Class B misdemeanor. 

Press release:

Effective Immediately -- EMERGENCY ORDER #1-2020

Acting under the State of Emergency Declaration issued by my hand at 4:30 p.m. on March 22, 2020 and continuing in effect for a period not to exceed thirty (30) days, I issue the following emergency order(s), which shall be in effect through April 11, 2020, and is subject to renewal:

1. All Public Parks within the City Limits of the City of Batavia, New York remain open to public use from 7 a.m. to dusk. During the times that public parks are open, State of New York declared restrictions on congregating will be observed.

In addition, all playground areas, tennis courts, pickle ball courts, basketball courts, picnic pavilions, splash pads, and other park facilities that are used for activities that constitute congregating are closed to public use.

As a reminder, all public parks in the City of Batavia are closed dusk to dawn. Closures will be enforced.

Contact: Martin Moore
City Manager
Phone: 585-345-6333
Email: [email protected]

April 6, 2020 - 5:40pm

Submitted image and press release:

Genesee County Office of Emergency Management in cooperation with the Genesee County Health Department will be utilizing Wireless Emergency Alerts, a public alert and warning system to reinforce the importance of health and safety guidance issued by the Center for Disease Control (CDC), NYS Department of Health and the Genesee County Health Department.  

Periodic messages will be sent out to promote health and safety and to ensure timely and accurate information is shared with all Genesee County residents. You will be receiving an alert to your cell phone tomorrow (April 7) at approximately 12 and 6 p.m. 

Your impact on the community is great and your efforts in promoting safety guidelines is appreciated.

Recommended guidance to protect yourself and others from COVID-19 include:

  • Stay at home;
  • Wash your hands frequently;
  • Follow social distancing; stay 6 feet away from non-household members.

We thank you and your community for your cooperation during these difficult times.  

Frequently Asked Questions: Wireless Emergency Alerts

Why are Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) important to me?

  • Alerts received at the right time can help keep you safe during an emergency. With WEA, warnings can be sent to your mobile device when you may be in harm's way, without the need to download an app or subscribe to a service.

What are WEA messages?

  • Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) are emergency messages sent by authorized government alerting authorities through your mobile carrier.

What types of alerts will I receive?

  • Imminent Threat Alerts that include extreme weather, and other threatening emergencies in your area
  • Public Safety Alerts that are less severe in nature than Imminent Threat Alerts
  • AMBER (missing child) Alerts
  • Presidential Alerts during a national emergency
  • Messages that are opt in message to support state and local WEA testing

What does a WEA message look like?

WEA will look like a text message. The WEA message will show the type and time of the alert, any action you should take, and the agency issuing the alert. The message will be no more than 360 characters.

April 6, 2020 - 2:39pm

From Richmond Memorial Library:

The Children's Room staff at Richmond Memorial Library is certainly missing all of the programs that bring our little ones in, so we will bring them to you!

Based on your feedback, we will post the following on our Facebook page:

Sensory Saturday -- Every Saturday we will offer a tabletop sensory experience idea for you to do at home.

Play Cafe -- Every Wednesday we will provide ideas for activities you can do in your home or yard.

Virtual Tours -- Every Monday we will share a link to see zoos, museums and more. Please feel free to share photos of you and your children enjoying the activities that we post right in the comments!

April 6, 2020 - 2:07pm

Press release:

U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer today (April 6) called on U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Sonny Purdue to immediately release funding and send aid directly to New York’s struggling farmers.

Schumer negotiated $9.5 billion in emergency funding for the agricultural sector already suffering massive financial losses due to reduced demand and supply chain disruptions. The funding was part of the bipartisan $2 trillion CARES Act.

With more than 33,000 farms in New York State, Schumer explained that with restaurants, schools, and other industries closing nationwide due to coronavirus (COVID-19) concerns, New York farmers are losing major revenue streams.

Given the disruptions in supply chains, rampant food insecurity, and the importance of New York agricultural products in the U.S. food supply, the USDA must expedite the allocation of the $9.5 billion emergency agriculture aid set aside in the CARES Act and prioritize New York farmers, Schumer said.

Farmers Forced to Discard Food, Dump Milk

“New York’s farmers and the New York agricultural industry is the lifeblood of the nation,” Schumer said. “In good times, New York farmers work long hours on tight margins but in the midst of a global pandemic, they are losing revenue streams, suffering huge financial losses and being forced to discard their products during a time when we need a reliable food supply.

"I fought to make $9.5 billion accessible to help them out during this crisis, and it is imperative that we immediately put those dollars to use. I will not rest until New York farmers have the resources they need to help Americans get food on the table.”

In addition to demanding immediate help for struggling New York farmers, Schumer called for the USDA to take New York dairy producers, specialty crop farmers, and local and organic farms into consideration as among the hardest hit in the nation.

The Senator revealed that some dairy co-ops are directing farmers to dump their milk, indicating a huge loss in revenue for New York agriculture as milk is New York’s #1 agricultural product. Some farmers dumped more than 100,000 pounds of milk last week, and it is estimated that dairy farmers statewide were forced to dump between 25 million and 35 million pounds.

With prices plummeting and processing plants closing, dairy farmers could lose anywhere between $1 million and $1.2 million in the aftermath of COVID-19. Additionally, several cabbage growers have been unable to sell their produce for two weeks and are watching their entire harvest go to waste as their crops in cold storage reach the end of their freshness.

Small, Local & Organic Farms Are Hit Hard

Schumer also emphasized that local farms would be severely impacted by the crisis. Many small, local, and organic farms depend on farmers markets as an avenue to sell their produce, but as states issue stay-at-home orders and some local governments suspend farmers markets altogether, those small farmers are losing a major revenue streams.

They also are unable to generate revenue through visitor business and experiencing losses both financially and marketing-wise with the cancellation of food-related festivals that often happen in the spring.

Nurseries are also struggling to survive in the midst of the crisis because they are designated as nonessential businesses, while their large-corporation hardware store competitors are allowed to remain open. Schumer urged the USDA to support small business nurseries as they struggle to get through the crisis.

Senator Schumer’s letter to USDA Secretary Sonny Purdue.

Dear Secretary Perdue

"As you know, the agricultural sector has been hit hard by the COVID-19 outbreak and will continue to face grave challenges in the coming months. Unfortunately, farmers in my home state of New York are not immune to the ramifications of this global pandemic. New York farmers are experiencing massive economic losses due to reduced demand from restaurants, disruptions in global trade, school closures, and emergency orders that have idled other industries. Farmers are essential businesses who need our support to continue growing food during this crisis; otherwise, we risk our food security long after the pandemic has passed.

"I urge you to act immediately to allocate the $9.5 billion emergency funding provided in the CARES Act I fought hard to obtain to support the agricultural sector and the over 33,000 farms in New York State. Time is short, as the planting season is underway in much of the country. As you decide how this assistance will flow, please give careful consideration to the circumstances of New York State, which has been hit the hardest by COVID-19. My state has a very diverse agricultural industry, populated mostly by small and medium-sized family operations who depend on robust consumer demand in the New York City metropolitan area and thriving international trade for their markets. I have heard many concerns from struggling New York farmers over the past several weeks, and urge you to pay special attention to the following issues:

Dairy Industry

"New York’s dairy industry has been heavily impacted by drastic reductions in school meals, decreased demand from restaurants, and the slowdown in global trade. Prices for milk have sharply declined, making it difficult if not impossible for dairy farms to break even. Both large and small co-ops have been directing farmers to dump milk to balance supply/demand volatility and workforce shortages at processors due to COVID-19 illnesses among employees. At a time when millions of Americans are food insecure we must do everything we can to help our nations dairy farmers get through these turbulent times.

"I urge the federal government to use all available resources to assist the dairy industry during this unprecedented crisis. At a minimum, USDA should immediately use the $9.5 billion emergency fund included in the CARES Act to assist dairy farmers and co-ops through this health crisis and economic downturn by developing a compensatory mechanism to farmers directed to dump milk. In addition, I urge USDA to use funds from the Commodity Credit Corporation to make dairy purchases, perhaps through a voucher system for food banks or COVID-19 displaced workers, to help ensure that people who are experiencing food insecurity and hunger have access to healthful dairy products at their time of greatest need.

"I have also heard concerns from my sheep and goat dairy farmers, who are also experiencing the devastating impacts of the outbreak. I ask USDA to include sheep and dairy goat farmers in any assistance programs you develop.

Specialty Crops

"Farmers who grow specialty crops are also facing devastating hardships. The many New York farmers who sell directly to restaurants have experienced significant decreases in sales over the past month. As demand from restaurants dries up and crops in cold storage reach the end of their freshness, farmers will likely have to have to dispose of their crops, leading to an increase in food waste.

"As an example, cabbage farmers in New York are some of the specialty crop growers who are dealing with the crippling impacts of the outbreak. Several growers in my state have not been able to sell any cabbage at all for the past two weeks. These farms are anticipating millions of dollars in losses for their cabbage harvests and I expect to see similar losses for other specialty crops.

Local Farms and Organic Crops

"Many small, local, and organic farms generate a portion of their income by operating “you-pick” operations, welcoming members of the public onto their farms and allowing them to pick fruits and vegetables for a fee. Under the stay-at-home guidelines, farms are anticipating losing the revenue generated by farm visitors. Similarly, maple producers are experiencing immense losses from the cancellation of events like the NYS Maple Weekend and stay-at-home guidelines that have essentially closed down tourism in the Adirondacks and other maple-producing regions of the state. Aid must take into account the diversity of farm businesses and ensure that farms experiencing losses from direct marketing operations are also eligible for USDA disaster assistance, similar to relief provided to row crop farmers in the past.

Farmers Markets

"Many New York growers depend on farmers markets for a large portion of their income. As states issue stay-at-home orders and implement social distancing guidance, farmers markets have experienced a decrease in visitors and sales. Some local governments have even suspended farmers markets entirely, depriving farmers of a critical revenue stream. This decrease in income is having a devastating impact on small farms and local farmers markets. Again, USDA assistance should ensure that all farms, including diversified, direct marketing operations, have an ability to benefit from COVID-19 relief measures to ensure their financial viability after this current crisis.

Green Industry

"As states close all but essential businesses, nurseries are struggling to survive. Though horticulture and ornamental crops are an important agricultural sector, they are not considered essential because they do not produce food. Classified as nonessential businesses, many nurseries have been forced to close during public health emergency. Meanwhile, their Big Box competitors, often classified as hardware stores – an essential business – remain open. Nursery operations are also experiencing substantial hardship from widespread cancellation of events, weddings, and religious ceremonies. They grew their inventory in anticipation of seasonal demand and now have no market for their products. Please consider ways that USDA can ensure nurseries get the support they need during this crisis.

"Thank you for considering the impacts to New York’s agricultural sector and for doing everything you can to make sure the farmers, dairy producers, and processors we depend on are protected to the greatest extent possible."

April 6, 2020 - 1:05pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, batavia, Oakfield.

William R. Metz, 48, of Batavia (no address provided), was arrested April 4 and charged with: criminal possession of a weapon in the second degree -- a Class C felony; second-degree menacing; reckless endangerment in the second degree; and fourth degree criminal mischief. NYS Troopers responded to a 9-1-1 report of a possible domestic incident on Batavia-Oakfield Town Line Road in the Town of Oakfield. After an investigation it is alleged that Metz threatened the victim with a weapon and fired multiple rounds in the residence. Metz was arraigned in Town of Oakfield Court and put in Genesee County Jail on $2,500 cash bail or $5,000 bound. The NYSP Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) assisted in this investigation.

Alex S. Dumbleton, 26, of Batavia (no address provided), was arrested for petit larceny. It is alleged that at 1:05 p.m. on April 4 that stole 22 items from Walmart totaling $115.50. Dumbleton was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Batavia Town Court on May 28. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Travis DeMuth.

April 5, 2020 - 4:15pm
posted by Billie Owens in Businesses, good and services.

This is a FREE listing of locally owned businesses that are operating but providing goods and services either by pickup, delivery, virtually, or limited on-site access.

Businesses (no need to be a current sponsor of The Batavian) that would like to be listed, email:   [email protected]   or   [email protected]

***************************************************************************************************************************************************************

Adam Miller Toy and Bicycle, free pickup and delivery for repairs and purchases. Free delivery of any toy, puzzle, game, model, or "anything you need from going stir-crazy" in any part of Genesee County. Special arrangements are possible outside of Genesee County. Call (585) 343-0548

Applied Business Systems, Mailing and print services continue. No walk-ins. For service email: [email protected] or call (585) 343-0962

Ben's Appliance & Kitchens, 634 E. Main St., Batavia. Open for appliance sales and delivery, parts sales, home repair. (585) 343-7033

Calling All Dogs, offering virtual dog training lessons. www.callingalldogsny.com. (585) 455-5387

Delre's Greenhouse & Garden Centre​, opening April 6. Delivery available. 4062 W. Main Street Road, Batavia. (716) 359-0663

Empire Hemp Co. LLC, 34 Swan St., Suite 4, Batavia. www.empirehempco.com, (888) 895-9032

Foxprowl Collectables, for more info click here. Buy online or call (585) 250-0897 for curbside pickup. 

Genesee Data Management -- The Arc Genesee Orleans, offering secure document destruction for businesses. To discuss solutions for your document management problems, email Paul Sasnowski, director of Business Services, at:   [email protected] or call (585) 343-4203.

Gerace Realty, offering virtual tours and electronic signatures. (585) 343-8434

Glassroots, Batavia, curbside pickup available by appointment. Call (585) 409-5405, visit online here, or on Instagram @glassrootsny

Hodgins Printing / John's Studio, 56 Harvester Ave., Batavia. Hours 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays. [email protected], 345-1030

Legacy Insurance, self-employed agent, Stafford. Medicare/Life Insurance/Financial Education. Available via phone & Web for questions, information, life insurance quotes, policy applications and enrollments with remote signatures. Call Diana M. Wagner at (585) 409-1041.

Lambert's Design Jewelers, 375 W. Main St., Batavia. Free shipping! Shop online. Email: [email protected] with questions regarding orders or repairs. Storefront currently closed until further notice.

Major Stash Cigar, 60 Liberty St., Batavia. Owner Doug Palmer is doing porch pickups, or U.S. Postal Service mailings if you prefer or are not in the Batavia area. Email him at [email protected]

Mancuso Commercial Realty, doing business online and over the phone at this time. Email: [email protected]. Fax (585) 343 5550. (585) 343 5257

Mancuso Real Estate, contact Mike Sisson, (585) 345-1000

Marathon Insurance & Realty, "Marathon" Mike Lullo can assist in your real estate and insurance needs. (585) 343-8609 or [email protected]

Pudgie's Lawn and Garden Center, 3644 W. Main Street Road, Batavia. Offering delivery & curbside pickup. Live sales on Facebook M/W/F @ 11 a.m. Also "Mommy and Me" online classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays. (585) 343-8352

Reliant Realty, email Lynn Bezon at:   [email protected]  or call her directly at (585) 746-6253

Valle Jewelers, Shop online. Store temporarily closed. Free shipping on purchases & gift cards. Please call/email if you have a pickup. (585) 343-3372

Vintage Batavia, offering live stream Friday night at 6:30, shop through our Facebook page. Order Friday night for pickup/curbside on Saturday.

Quality Inn & Suites / Palm Island Indoor Waterpark, 8250 Park Road, Batavia. Their new temporary phone number is (585) 344-0616

Whole Life Fitness, (585) 813-2369

April 4, 2020 - 3:18pm
posted by Billie Owens in byron, news, scanner.

A caller to dispatch complained about "loud vehicles off-roading" in the 6100 block of Walkers Corner Road in Byron. Genesee County Sheriff's deputies are responding.

April 4, 2020 - 2:38pm

Submitted photos and press release:

When a crisis occurs, it is vital that communities collaborate. This week, the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership (GVEP) made a significant donation to both the Genesee and Livingston counties' Emergency Management systems.

These donations amounted to thousands of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) including gloves, disposable gowns, hand sanitizer, surgical masks, N95 respirator masks, blood pressure cuffs and alcohol prep pads. 

While schools are closed, these items will be benefit local communities in the fight against COVID-19.  

“Our nation is facing a pandemic that we have never encountered before," said Matt DellaPenna, GVEP director of Safety and Security. "These supplies will help to protect the brave first responders and healthcare workers who are on the frontlines of this COVID-19 outbreak.”

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