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August 18, 2021 - 8:36am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia PD, batavia, news.

21-13370shopliftsusb.jpgBatavia PD is asking the public's assistance in identifying the man in the photo to the right in connection with a shoplifting investigation.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Office Kevin Defelice at (585) 345-6350.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

August 18, 2021 - 8:28am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Deal of the Day, advertisement.

Reminders of how the Deal of the Day program works:

  • To make purchases, you must be registered. Deal of the Day uses a registration system that is not connected to the registration for commenting on The Batavian (the main user login in the upper left of the homepage).
  • Once re gistered you must sign in using the "sign in" link in this box.
  • You click on the orange button, which appears if the item is not sold out, and it takes you to a PayPal button. This allows you to pay either with your PayPal account or with a credit card/debit card. The login for PayPal is completely separate from our accounts.
  • The first person to successfully complete the PayPal transaction wins the gift certificate.
  • You are eligible to buy the same item only once in a four-month period. We use the registration system to track this for you so you don't have to.
  • Only one gift certificate from the same business PER HOUSEHOLD is allowed in each four-month period. We do not have a way to automatically track duplicate purchases within a household; however, if we notice such a purchase, we reserve the right to cancel the purchase and refund the purchase money. Each individual buyer must use his or her own PayPal account for purchases. It's important that participating businesses not be asked to redeem multiple gift certificates from the same person/family at the same time.
  • Gift certificates should be used within 30 days of receipt.
  • Problems, questions, concerns about the Deal of the Day? Email Billie Owens:   [email protected]
August 18, 2021 - 8:10am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Milestones, muckdogs.

Press release:

Communications students from Canisius College, St. Bonaventure University, Syracuse University and the University at Albany have won awards for the upcoming academic year from the Greater Buffalo Society of Professional Journalists College Scholarship Fund.

Meghan Brink of Allegany, N.Y. attends the University at Albany where as editor-in-chief of the Albany Student Press, she played a key role in reviving the independent student newspaper. She has also been an intern with New York StateWatch. 

Griffin Della Penna of Batavia attends Canisius College where he has been focusing on sports journalism. He served as the team broadcaster and director of media relations for the Batavia Muckdogs this past summer and has accepted a position to be a ESPN 3 broadcaster at Canisius for its soccer programs. 

Meghan Hall of Amherst attends St. Bonaventure University and has contributed to TAPinto Greater Olean, an online newspaper. She has also worked part-time at the Olean Times Herald and served as a fellow at the Carnegie-Knight News21 Program at Arizona State University.

Jenna Wirth of Williamsville attends Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications where she has contributed more than 150 articles to print and digital publications. She was a fellow for Popsugar, a digital lifestyle publication, as well as Health magazine. 

“These four talented individuals have distinguished themselves as exceptional student journalists,” said Fund Chair Brian Meyer. “We believe they possess enormous potential and will achieve great things in their professions.”

This marks the 43rd year that the local organization has awarded annual scholarships to aspiring and professional journalists. Since the late 1970s, the group has awarded 155 scholarships totaling more than $135,000. Winners have attended about 30 different colleges and universities in the United States and Canada.

The program helps future and current journalists in Western New York, Northwest Pennsylvania and Southern Ontario. Five trustees, chosen for staggered five-year terms, serve without remuneration. Nearly 100 percent of all fund revenues are awarded as scholarships. 

August 17, 2021 - 4:57pm

With a qualified candidate for an open assistant district attorney post waiting for results of the New York State bar examination, the Genesee County Legislature’s Public Service Committee is recommending passage of District Attorney Lawrence Friedman’s request to create a new position that would enable her to begin employment right away.

Friedman, at Monday’s PSC meeting at the Office of Emergency Management Services on State Street Road, said he just received word that an ADA will be leaving in two weeks, leaving a void in his department that needs to be filled immediately.

“I have someone in mind to hire … who took the bar at the end of July,” he said. “Experience has taught us it is very difficult to fill these positions.”

Per the resolution passed by the committee and forwarded to the full legislature next week, the candidate is a Genesee County resident who completed law school and has indicated a desire to become an ADA upon passing the bar exam.

The new position of a full-time temporary criminal law associate, per the resolution, “will allow this individual to perform many of the duties of an Assistant District Attorney, while under the direct supervision of a licensed attorney … to help alleviate the backlog of work.”

Friedman said another ADA is on Family Leave until January 2022.

The candidate, who was not named, has been a Genesee County dispatcher for seven years and has experience as a court clerk, Friedman said.

“I’ve known her for a long time. She’s a local resident who very much wants to be a prosecutor,” he said, adding that an order from the Appellate Division authorizes her to work during a “training period” until becoming a full-fledged lawyer.

The term of the new position is Aug. 30 through Feb. 28, 2022, but Friedman said he hopes it will be shorter than that.

In another development, the committee voted to accept an Airport Improvement Program grant from the Federal Aviation Administration for the reconstruction of the existing apron and associated lighting at the Genesee County Airport.

Total cost of the capital project is $1.5 million, with federal and state funding taking care of all but the county’s share of $75,866 (which will be paid from the 1 percent sales tax fund).

The legislature’s Ways & Means Committee met after the PSC, approving several resolutions, including the following:

  • Charging back to several towns and the City of Batavia for assessment rolls, tax rolls, tax bills, supplies, and assessment update services that were provided in the previous fiscal year.

The total amount of chargebacks, which will be applied to 2022 town and city budgets, is $87,651. Another $12,650 is being charged back for New York State licensing fees.

Amounts by municipality, with figures representing number of parcels, assessment rolls/bills, license fees and total:

  • Alabama --- 1,130; $3,390.00; $1,000.00; $4,390.00.
  • Alexander -- 1,459; $4,377.00; $1,000.00; $5,377.00.
  • Batavia (Town) -- 3,121; $9,363.00; $631.05; $9,994.05.
  • Bergen -- 1,668; $5,004.00; $1,000.00; $6,004.00.
  • Bethany -- 1,019; $3,057.00; $427.10; $3,484.10.
  • Byron -- 1,359 ; $4,077.00; $1,000.00; $5,077.00.
  • Darien -- 1,844; $5,532.00; $772.90; $6,304.90.
  • Elba -- 1,502; $4,506.00; $1,000.00; $5,506.00.
  • Le Roy -- 3,483; $10,449.00; $1,045.32; $11,494.32.
  • Oakfield -- 1,522; $4,566.00; $1,000.00; $5,566.00.
  • Pavilion -- 1,515; $4,545.00; $454.68; $4,999.68.
  • Pembroke -- 2,485; $7,455.00; $1,200.00; $8,655.00.
  • Stafford -- 1,576; $4,728.00; $1,000.00; $5,728.00.
  • Batavia (City) -- 5,534; $16,602.00; $1,118.95; $17,720.95.

The 2020 chargebacks totaled $98,427.00.

  • Authorization to submit a grant application to the New York State Office of Community Renewal for a Community Development Block Grant of up to $1 million to assist small businesses (25 employees or less) and microenterprises in the wake of losses incurred during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The funds would be facilitated by the Genesee Gateway Local Development Corp., said County Manager Matt Landers.

The resolution indicates the grant will lead to “substantial benefit to Genesee County in forms of safer businesses, new investment, and new or restored employment positions.”

  • On another front, Landers said the committee charged with studying the new county jail is supporting the building of a 184-bed, four-pod facility on West Main Street Road, including the construction of a backup E-911 center.

Landers said the plan is to solicit bids in the late fall or early winter and to break ground next spring.

August 17, 2021 - 1:37pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, notify, WROTB.

The lawyer representing Michael Nolan, the former chief operating officer at Western Regional Off-Track Betting Corp., is suing for $14.5 million following his client’s termination last December.

The 23-page document filed Aug. 12 in U.S. District Court Western District of New York by attorney Steven M. Cohen of HoganWillig, PLLC, names Richard Bianchi, chairman of the WROTB board of directors, and Henry Wojtaszek, WROTB president and chief executive officer, as defendants.

The suit is asking for Nolan to receive $4.5 million for violating his First Amendment rights, another $4.5 million for breaking the state’s Civil Service Law and an additional $5.5 million for emotional pain and suffering.

Nolan, who lived in Elma at the time of his employment, now resides in West Palm Beach, Fla. The lawsuit is requesting that the matter be settled by a trial by jury.

As reported on The Batavian last December, following Nolan’s firing from a job that paid more than $100,000 per year, Cohen said that his client had been ostracized and shut out of OTB developments since April of 2019 for sharing information with federal and state authorities as part of an inquiry into practices such as health insurance plans for board members, use of sports tickets and luxury boxes, and awarding of contracts.

Also, at that time, Daniel Oliverio of Hodgson Russ, the attorney representing WROTB, disputed the allegations, stating that evidence gained through months of examination and interviewing of more than 30 witnesses did not substantiate Nolan’s claims, and that his termination was carefully considered and appropriate as it pertains to job performance.

The Batavian placed calls to both lawyers today seeking comment on the recent filing of the suit, which follows up Cohen’s previous civil action that sought “at least $5 million in damages” for Nolan.

The updated suit calls for $14.5 million in compensatory damages plus Nolan’s reinstatement to his former COO position, reinstatement of full fringe benefits and seniority rights, damages sustained due to the violation including, without limitation, the compensation for lost wages, benefits and other remuneration, and payment of all reasonable costs, disbursements, and attorney's fees.

Previously: WROTB fires chief operating officer who files Notice of Claim seeking $5 million in damages

August 17, 2021 - 11:52am

mobile_command_unit_1.jpg

While staffing, or lack thereof, has been at the forefront of issues facing the Genesee County Office of Emergency Management Services, the importance of dependable equipment also is high on the list.

County EMS Coordinator Tim Yaeger on Monday afternoon emphasized that point to members of the Genesee County Legislature’s Public Services Committee during a meeting at EMS headquarters on State Street Road.

“We are looking at replacing ESU2, which is labeled as a mobile communications command unit … (and serves) as the mobile office,” Yaeger said. “It’s 16, 17 years old and it’s starting to show some wear and starting to show its weaknesses in reliability.”

Yaeger said he is in the process of putting a capital project together to obtain a larger mobile unit, stating that he expects the cost to be in the $400,000 to $450,000 range. He said he is hoping to “carve out a bit of money every year,” adding that the current unit does have some value as a trade-in.

He said the mobile unit is used once or twice a month on average, and is the only vehicle of its type in the county.

“The last thing we want it to be is not reliable,” Yaeger said.

The EMS coordinator touched on several other topics, including the Ready Genesee app, day-to-day staffing and operations, a contract with Municipal Resources Inc. to study the county’s fire/emergency response capabilities, training, other projects and funding.

READY GENESEE APP

Yaeger reported that his office will be working with the Genesee County Health Department to research other apps “in regard to capabilities, efficiency and cost effectiveness as an alternative to the app currently being used by the county.”

The Ready Genesee app was launched in April 2016 to assist residents in case of emergencies and as a tool to receive instant notifications should an emergency occur.

“This app has proven to be a valuable tool in communicating with the public in the past and during the on-going COVID-19 health crisis,” Yaeger reported.

DAY-TO-DAY OPERATIONS

“Overall, as far as the normal day-to-day operations of the office, we’re in really good shape,” he said. “There are struggles that we’re starting to see from the volunteer staffing side. It’s starting to affect our specialized team capabilities; it’s starting to affect our instructor staff that both work for the county and New York State.”

Yaeger said the candidate pool in the EMS field is shrinking.

“So, it’s that same issue (as staffing of volunteer fire departments) with the skill sets that we’re needing becoming very scarce, and my fear is that through that process we start to lower the bar. And, that’s the furthest thing that we need,” he said.

He said the expectations of his office continue to increase, noting that county EMS employees are having to be more “hands on” when it comes to emergency response.

Yaeger mentioned that Gary Patnode has been promoted to deputy coordinator position, and interviews are being scheduled to fill his former post as training technician.

Responding to a question about the factors affecting the EMS candidate pool, Yaeger said, “The expectation of the skill set that they’re required to have is getting harder and harder to find. That’s a difficult part. The pay scale is always an issue; it’s very competitive – to be able to find those opportunities.”

He also said the reality is that there are fewer people involved in public safety, citing the number of hours needed for training and the level of compensation in many cases.

MRI’S WORK CONTINUES

Yaeger said he was encouraged by last month’s visit of four MRI representatives, reporting that they held 21 meetings in a three-day period.

MRI consultants will “make more rounds to fire companies and getting surveys out to firefighters and the community” as well as looking into the age and capabilities of fire stations throughout the county, he said.

He also shared the situation in the Town of Bethany, where the fire chief is shorthanded due to serious illness of a longtime paramedic.

“He’s at a loss,” Yaeger said. “What does he do now because he has less and less medics? So, how do we get the ambulance on the road? He’s very frustrated and upset.”

It falls upon county EMS to bridge the gap, he said, until a solution to our crisis in staffing across the county is found.

TRAININGS MOVE FORWARD

Yaeger said trainings have restarted after being shut down by COVID-19.

Some of those trainings include:

  • Automated external defibrillator drills. The initial AED training was conducted by the county in 2017 with recertification required every two years. Office of Emergency Management staff is in the process of coordinating the in-person AED recertification for county employees. Training is planned for 2022.
  • Fire drills. Six fire drills were completed to date with an additional 13 scheduled at county-owned or occupied buildings. In addition to the EMS office staff, personnel at Facility Management, City of Batavia Fire Department and Town of Batavia Fire Department will or have assisted in these drills. AED inspections are being conducted at the time of the fire drills.
  • Fire extinguisher inspection/AED inspection. As of 2018, the EMS office has taken on the added responsibility of the annual fire extinguisher inspections and semi-annual AED inspections. This effort is an attempt to provide a more comprehensive and cost effective service. Inspections of fire extinguishers in county buildings are complete for 2021.

PROJECTS INCLUDE PARKING LOT

Calling it the most important upgrade at this point, Yaeger said his office received a State and Municipal award for $60,000 to repave the main parking lot.

Work consisted of repaving of the main entry and main parking area of the Fire Training Center/Emergency Operation Center, including the rear driveway and entry to the rear apparatus bay as well as adding gutters to the main facility.

Also, Yaeger mentioned he is awaiting the go-ahead to resume construction of a training maze that was started by Iroquois Job Corps students. Materials were acquired through a donation from a local business.

He said the EMS office has received approval from Homeland Security of New York State to use Homeland Security funds to buy an unmanned aerial system (drone).

“It took us about a year to put the policies and procedures together that FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) requires to have in place to be able to use Homeland Security money to purchase that drone,” he said.

HOMELAND SECURITY FUNDING DECREASES

Yaeger said funding from Homeland Security fell by 11 percent for this fiscal year, from $82,336 to $73,620.

“I don’t know if that money is going to continue but it’s a little bit disturbing because we rely a lot on that money to run our programs and run our office,” he offered. “I’d hate to see that Homeland Security money downsize itself. It’s really important that we continue that appropriation.”

Additional funding sources include Hazardous Materials Emergency Preparedness, Emergency Management Performance, Regional Hazardous Materials and Public Assistance Program grants.

August 17, 2021 - 9:24am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news, notify.
sessions2021mug.jpg perez2021mug.jpg
Germayne Session Sylvia Perez

Two people from Rochester were arrested in the City of Batavia on suspicion of selling crack cocaine, powder cocaine, fentanyl, suboxone, and amphetamines.

Germayne D."Case" Session, 27, of Carl Street, is charged with six counts criminal possession of a controlled substance 3rd, three counts of criminal sale of a controlled substance 3rd, two counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance 5th, and two counts of criminally using drug paraphernalia 2nd.

Sylvia Perez, 60, of Carl Street, is charged with four counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance 3rd, criminal sale of a controlled substance 3rd, two counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance 5th, criminal possession of a weapon 3rd, and two counts of criminally using drug paraphernalia 2nd.

Members of the Local Drug Task Force made controlled purchases of suspected narcotics from Session and Perez. As a result, a search warrant was obtained and executed yesterday at a location not disclosed by the Sheriff's Office.  

Besides the drugs, investigators also reportedly found a digital scale and packaging material.  Perez was also allegedly found in possession of a stun gun.

The defendants were arraigned in City Court on the charges.  Bail was set for Session of $10,000 cash or $20,000 bond.  Session was also held in the Genesee County Jail on a parole warrant.  Perez was released under supervision of Genesee Justice.

The Task Force was assisted by Batavia PD, Sheriff's deputies, NYS Parole, and the District Attorney's Office.

August 17, 2021 - 9:06am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Deal of the Day, advertisement.

It's been more than a week since we've been able to post a Deal of the Day because of technical issues.  We think, hope, those issues are resolved (purchases weren't being correctly saved in our database).

Reminders of how the Deal of the Day program works:

  • To make purchases, you must be registered. Deal of the Day uses a registration system that is not connected to the registration for commenting on The Batavian (the main user login in the upper left of the homepage).
  • Once re gistered you must sign in using the "sign in" link in this box.
  • You click on the orange button, which appears if the item is not sold out, and it takes you to a PayPal button. This allows you to pay either with your PayPal account or with a credit card/debit card. The login for PayPal is completely separate from our accounts.
  • The first person to successfully complete the PayPal transaction wins the gift certificate.
  • You are eligible to buy the same item only once in a four-month period. We use the registration system to track this for you so you don't have to.
  • Only one gift certificate from the same business PER HOUSEHOLD is allowed in each four-month period. We do not have a way to automatically track duplicate purchases within a household; however, if we notice such a purchase, we reserve the right to cancel the purchase and refund the purchase money. Each individual buyer must use his or her own PayPal account for purchases. It's important that participating businesses not be asked to redeem multiple gift certificates from the same person/family at the same time.
  • Gift certificates should be used within 30 days of receipt.
  • Problems, questions, concerns about the Deal of the Day? Email Billie Owens:   [email protected]
August 16, 2021 - 9:12pm

The Genesee County Legislature’s Ways & Means Committee today acted upon a suggestion by the Pembroke Town Board to increase the amount of sales tax earmarked for distribution to towns and villages by passing a resolution amending the county’s sales tax allocation agreement with the City of Batavia.

Meeting at the county Emergency Management Services office on State Street Road, the committee approved a restated contract with the city – which along with the county is one of the two taxing municipalities in Genesee County.

The amended agreement ups the amount of sales tax revenue the county is willing to share with its towns and villages over the next 38 years from $7 million to $8.5 million.

It also drops the amount of other revenue the county will distribute – on a periodic basis – from $3 million to $1.5 million – keeping the total amount at the $10 million level that county leaders felt comfortable sharing.

This latest legislation, which is subject to final approval by the full legislature at its Aug. 25 meeting, was triggered by the recent opting in of revised water supply agreements with the county by the Village of Corfu and the Town of Pembroke.

When the Pembroke Town Board voted to opt in to a new water agreement last week – leaving the Town of Darien as the lone municipality to not sign on to a new deal, Supervisor Thomas Schneider Jr. proposed increasing the fixed sales tax distribution amount.

Genesee County, with a goal of equalizing water rates across the board and having the ability to raise the water surcharge as its Countywide Water Supply Project progresses, initially offered to distribute $10 million in sales tax money as long as all 17 towns and villages opted in to new water supply agreements. If not, then the split was going to be $7 million in sales tax and $3 million in other revenue.

Following today’s Ways & Means meeting, County Manager Matt Landers acknowledged that Pembroke’s suggestion was well received by the legislature.

“The legislature was supportive of moving from $7 million to $8.5 (million) because it does help those towns and villages with their accounting issues that came to light by not being able to share revenue distribution into their B funds,” he said.

“So, the legislature was receptive to the opportunity to share extra sales tax as we understood the Town of Pembroke’s position, seeing that Corfu has already passed it and Darien had not passed it. Pembroke was left thinking what’s the advantage for them to sign the updated water supply agreement if there wasn’t going to be an increase over the $7 million.”

When asked about the status of the Town of Darien, Landers said he continues to speak with officials there and is hopeful that something can be worked out prior to the legislature taking up the final resolution next week.

In other developments, Ways & Means:

-- Approved a request by County Attorney Kevin Earl to extend the statute that spells out the county’s hotel/motel room occupancy tax by three months – through the end of the fiscal year – as the legislature attempts to sort out whether to pass a long-term revision that would include taxation of online booking platforms, such as Airbnb.

“It would be a major change if we did it right now,” Earl said, referring to drafting complex changes at this time. “So, what I’m proposing is to extend the current law to the end of the year … and, obviously, the final one that we propose would be for three years starting in January.”

Legislators have been grappling with this issue for several months, reaching out to Chamber of Commerce staff members for their input in how to capture a portion of the income being generated by increasingly-popular home-based lodging sites.

Committee Chair Marianne Clattenburg agreed that it would be wise to wait before enacting a permanent bed tax law because “I don’t know if we’ve really come to terms with all that is involved …”

-- Welcomed Batavia native Justin Gerace on his first day as a county assistant engineer, with his primary responsibility focusing on helping to facilitate the long-term Countywide Water Supply Project.

A 2014 Batavia High School graduate, Gerace earned his associate’s degree in Engineering Science from Genesee Community College before transferring to the University of Buffalo. At UB, he obtained a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering and a master’s degree in Structural and Earthquake Engineering.

justin_gerace_1.jpg

Last fall, he worked for the structural engineering firm of Simpson, Gumpertz & Heger in New York City, but said he felt the call to return to his roots.

Previously, he was an intern for LaBella Associates in Rochester and for Arup in New York City.

“(County Engineer) Tim (Hens) informed me of this position .. and I thought it was a good fit,” he said. “I will be able to stay local and be near my family.”

Gerace acknowledged a “big learning curve” as he studies documents and visits water pump stations in and around Genesee County.

“I’m excited … I know there’s work to be done over the next 10 or 15 years,” he said, noting the county is moving into Phase 3 of the water project. “Just getting up to speed on all of the moving parts. It’s pretty daunting.”

August 16, 2021 - 7:47pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, notify, County Legislature, Genesee County Sheriff.

firing_range_1.jpg

Genesee County Sheriff Bill Sheron, third from right, conducted a tour of the new firing range behind the Emergency Management Services office on State Street Road this afternoon for members of the Genesee County Legislature.

Sheron said the 60- by 150-yard parcel, which is surrounded by 30-foot high berms to suppress the sound of gun shots, will be equipped with pylons and yardage markers in time for county law enforcement's September qualifier.

Following the tour, the legislature's Public Service Committee lapproved a resolution opening the range for training during the summer months, excluding the need for a wood fence and permitting the use of high-powered rifles.

Highway Superintendent Tim Hens said that 4,000 truckloads of material were brought it over the past several years to ensure that "sound would go up and not out." The new range will replace one that is closer to the EMS building and the road.

From left are Marianne Clattenbur, John Deleo, Sheron, Christian Yunker and Chad Klotzbach.

Photo by Mike Pettinella.

August 16, 2021 - 6:20pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in COVID-19, news, notify.

Press release:

Both Genesee and Orleans Counties have increased to a substantial and high levels of community transmission, respectively, according to the CDC COVID Data Tracker (https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#county-view),” stated Paul Pettit, Director of the Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments (GO Health).  “As noted last week, we are not surprised in this increase in transmission data.  We are saddened to report the COVID-related death of a Genesee County resident who was under the age of 65.  To protect the privacy of the family we will not release any further information about the individual.  Our deepest sympathy goes out to the family and friends of this person.”

We continue to encourage everyone to follow the public health prevention precautions as noted below.  It is important for those who are not currently vaccinated to talk with their primary care provider to determine whether getting vaccinated is right for them.  

There are currently no masking mandates that have been issued by either county, however, per the CDC recommendations for communities with substantial or high spread of COVID-19 we encourage everyone, vaccinated and unvaccinated, to wear masks when indoors in public and when at crowded outdoor settings.

Everyone should continue practicing the following public health prevention precautions: 

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands. 
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. 
  • If water is not readily available, use hand sanitizer. 
  • Wash and sanitize frequently shared/touched items.
  • Stay 6 feet away from others and avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid crowds and poorly ventilated spaces.
  • Wear a face mask indoors in public and crowded outdoor settings. 
  • Monitor your health daily and stay home if you are experiencing any symptoms.

Get tested if you are experiencing symptoms and self-isolate until you get your results back. If you test positive for COVID, you are to isolate for 10 days. 

“The best way to protect yourself from COVID-19 or health complications from COVID-19 is to get vaccinated,” stated Pettit. “Now is the best time to take advantage of getting vaccinated for COVID-19 before the new school term starts and the weather changes and we start moving back indoors”.   

For up to date data, GO Health updates the Emerging Issues page of the website (https://gohealthny.org/emerging-issues/) on Mondays and Thursdays and posts the data on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages (GOHealthNY is the user name for each of these platforms) and the Genesee, Orleans, Wyoming County Health Departments COVID-19 Case and Vaccination Tracker are updated daily (https://experience.arcgis.com/experience/5f8401b0516247b490934303e3975e49/).

For those who are using home testing kits, please note that the Health Departments are unable to verify the results and will not be able to provide paperwork for your employer/insurance company.  Home tests that need verification will have to complete a follow-up test with an approved provider for documentation and state reporting purposes.  If you do either a home test or a test at approved provider, it is important to remember to self-isolate until you receive test results.  For home testing, you are to self-isolate for a minimum of 10 days from onset of symptoms or getting your test result.  Contact your primary care physician for further instructions.

 

August 16, 2021 - 6:02pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Chris Jacobs, news, NY-27.

Press release:

Congressman Chris Jacobs (NY-27) released the following statement on the situation in Afghanistan.
 
“Five weeks ago, President Biden addressed the nation and vowed it was ‘unlikely’ we would see Afghanistan overrun by the Taliban and that we would not see Americans being evacuated from our embassy. His administration failed to plan for that exact scenario, despite the warning signs and has now handed Afghanistan over to the Taliban. This negligence has put Americans and our allies in harm's way, put Afghan women and children at the hands of a regime known for human rights atrocities and weakened our national security. 
 
“History will remember this as one of the most devastating foreign policy failures in our nation’s history.”

August 16, 2021 - 5:58pm

Press release:

The Le Roy American Legion, Botts-Fiorito Post 576 is seeking nominees for selection as the 2021 “LeRoyan of the Year Award”.  This year will mark the 52nd year in which the Award has been presented.

The award is sponsored as part of the four pillars of the American Legion”Americanism” program and recognizes people who demonstrate the following qualities:

  • A man or woman who exemplifies the true spirit of Americanism, its ideals, love of flag and country, regardless of race, color or creed;
  • Good citizenship by carrying out these principles, often beyond what is expected;
  • Service to the community, signified by excellence in a life of purpose and accomplishments.

The deadline for submission of nominations is Saturday, September 11th, 2021

Award Banquet will be held Saturday, October 23, 2021 at 7:00 p.m.

August 16, 2021 - 10:01am
posted by Howard B. Owens in elba, music, arts, entertainment, news.
Video Sponsor

Music, music, and more music, along with food and refreshments (some of the adult kind), are in store for those who make their way to the Village of Elba and its charming central park on Sunday.

The fun sets off at noon with Elba's own Front Porch Pickers plucking out old favorites.

Then the Simon Fletcher Trio takes the stage, starting at 1:30.  Simon Fletcher is a substitute teacher at Elba Central School and the trio plays jazz and bebop.

At 3 p.m., the Old Hippies, featuring Bill and Kay McDonald, will stroll down memory lane with Vinny Pastore along with Liam and Emma Raines on guitar, violin, banjo, and vocals.  There might even be a surprise artist or two joining the Old Hippies.

There will be food and drink vendors such as Lori's Delectable Edibles, Center Street Smokehouse, Los Compadres (besides tacos, margaritas!), and Pub Coffee Hub. Cirlcle B Winery and Eli Fish Brewing Company are bringing the wine and beer. For dessert: Lori's Delectable Edibles and Ice Cream and Chill. 

"In all, this is going to be more music, food and fun than should be legal in NYS!!," said co-organizer Pauli Miano.

Keep in mind, the Village Park is a no-alcohol park.  You can't bring in your own adult beverages but can consume what is available from licensed vendors.  

These concerts are made possible with funds from the Decentralization Program, a re-grant program of the NYS Council on the Arts with the support of the NYS Legislature and administered by GO ART.

VIDEO: A Elba Village Park picnic earlier this summer.

August 16, 2021 - 9:40am
posted by Press Release in Batavia Downs, news, harness racing.

Press release:

An accident occurred near the 5/8th’s pole in the last race at Batavia Downs on Sunday afternoon after pacer Red Roll (Kyle Cummings) went down and Sizzling Summer (Denny Bucceri) and Hardts Or Bettor (Justin Huckabone) ran over him as close quarters prevented them from making a diversionary move. All three drivers were thrown from the sulky and two of the loose horses continued to run.  

After the race, those horses were caught and upon examination, Sizzling Summer suffered multiple lacerations and required stitches and Hardts Or Bettor appeared to be all right. Red Roll had to be euthanized. 

Drivers Kyle Cummings, Denny Bucceri, and Justin Huckabone were examined on-site and suffered minor bruises and abrasions. None were transported to area hospitals.   

August 16, 2021 - 9:34am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news, notify, pembroke, bergen, corfu, Darien.

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Bryan Fitts

Bryan Lewis Fitts, 32, of Chestnut Ridge, Gasport, is charged with criminal possession of narcotics with intent to sell and two counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance with intent to sell. Fitts was allegedly found in possession of a sufficient amount of narcotics and controlled substances to suggest he intended to sell the illicit drugs after being ejected from the Luke Bryan concert at Darien Lake at 9:23 p.m., Saturday.  Deputy Jeremy McClellan reportedly spotted baggies of drugs hanging out of his socks.  He was arraigned in Town of Pembroke Court and released.

Aaron J. McFollins, 42, of North Spruce Street, Batavia, is charged with assault 3rd. At 1:18 a.m., June 4, McFollins is accused of throwing a chair at a woman causing an injury.  He was arraigned in City Court and released on his own recognizance.

Aaron J. McFollins, 42, of North Spruce Street, Batavia, is charged with grand larceny 4th, identity left 3rd, and petit larceny. McFollins is accused of taking and using another person's credit card.  McFollins was arraigned in City Court and released on his own recognizance. 

Larry Kennedy, 43, of Eastbrooke Lane, Greece, is charged with felony DWI, unlicensed operation, driving outside restrictions, driving without an ignition interlock device, and aggravated unlicensed operation. Kennedy was arrested by Batavia PD following an investigation into a suspicious condition at an undisclosed location on Aug. 8. He was released on his own recognizance.

Matthew Oppel, 34, of East Main Street, Batavia, is charged with driving while impaired by drugs, driving while using a portable electronic device, running a red light, and failure to keep right. Oppel on July 31 for an alleged incident at 7:37 p.m., March 20. Oppel was reportedly involved in a property damage accident on Main Street, Batavia. Following an investigation, Oppel was accused of driving while under the influence of drugs at the time of the accident.  He was issued an appearance ticket.

Laura R. Mroz, 32, of Chandler Avenue, Batavia, is charged with harassment 2nd. Mroz is accused of pushing another person on Aug. 7 at an undisclosed location.  Morz was issued an appearance ticket.

John K. Hobbs, 33, of Clinton Street Road, Batavia, is charged with menacing 3rd.  Hobbs allegedly threatened a woman and put her in fear of physical injury during an incident reported at 6 a.m., Aug. 13.  Hobbs was released on his own recognizance.

William G. Horner, 70, of Batavia, is charged with assault with intent to cause physical injury with a weapon, and Wendy L. Henry, 36, of Batavia, is charged with assault 2nd/injuring victim 65 or older.  Horner and Henry were arrested by State Police in connection with an incident reported at 8:39 a.m., Aug. 11, in the Town of Batavia. No further information was released. Horner was ordered held in jail and Henry was released on her own recognizance.

Jessica R. Parker-Sharkey, 28, of Rochester, is charged with criminal impersonation, criminal possession of a controlled substance 7th, and driving with a suspended registration. Parker-Sharkey was arrested by a trooper in connection with an incident at 3:20 p.m., Aug. 12.  No further information was released.  She was released on an appearance ticket.

Tyler J. Gasiorek, 27, of Cheektowaga, is charged with DWI and driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. Gasiorek was stopped at 3:47 p.m., Saturday, in Bergen by a state trooper. He was released on an appearance ticket.

Patrick J. Reiner, 49, of Corfu, is charged with felony DWI and felony driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. Reiner was stopped by a trooper at 12:01, Sunday, in the Town of Pembroke. He was released on an appearance ticket.

David B. Kenjockety, 44, of Lockport, is charged with DWI and driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. Kenjockety was stopped by a trooper at 8:50 p.m., Aug. 13, in the Town of Darien. He was released on an appearance ticket.

Deborah M. Kreienberg, 62, of Pittsford, is charged with felony DWI and driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. Kreienberg was stopped by a trooper at 2:19 p.m., Aug. 13, in the Town of Bergen. She was released on an appearance ticket.

August 16, 2021 - 8:37am
posted by Howard B. Owens in pembroke, sunset, news.

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Last evening's sunset in Pembroke by Joanne Meiser.

August 16, 2021 - 8:13am
posted by Press Release in gas prices, news.

Press release from AAA: 

Today’s national average price for a gallon of gasoline is $3.19, with no change in the past week. One year ago, the price was $2.18. The New York State average is $3.22 – up one cent from last week. A year ago, the NYS average was $2.25. AAA Western and Central New York (AAA WCNY) reports the following averages:

  • Batavia - $3.24 (up three cents since last week)
  • Buffalo - $3.15 (no change since last week)
  • Ithaca - $3.19 (down one cent since last week)
  • Rochester - $3.20 (no change since last week)
  • Rome - $3.27 (up one cent since last week)
  • Syracuse - $3.19 (no change since last week)
  • Watertown - $3.22 (down one cent since last week)

Summer gasoline demand is beginning to slow down. In a recent report, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported that gas demand dropped slightly, signaling that summer gas demand is likely softening as the school year starts in many parts of the country, in addition to COVID concerns. Additionally, total domestic gas stocks declined. The drop in demand has helped to minimize pump price increases. Crude prices have declined slightly due to market concerns that crude demand may not rebound this year as anticipated due to surging coronavirus infection rates across the globe. However, crude prices remain close to $70 per barrel, so AAA expects the national average to remain above $3 per gallon throughout the summer. Locally demand will likely remain high as Labor Day travel kicks in and students return to school later than in other parts of the country.

From Gas Buddy:

"As the number of Covid cases continues to surge globally, oil prices continue to be under pressure due to some countries instituting travel and movement limitations. This limits oil demand, which has led to the increase in gas prices slowing, and many states seeing slight drops compared to prices a week ago," said Patrick De Haan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy. "In addition, the tropics are heating up, which could be a source of upward pressure on gas prices should we see a major hurricane target the Gulf Coast. However, without such a storm, gas prices may see some stability over the coming week or two, before slowly decreasing as the summer driving season wraps up."

August 15, 2021 - 9:23pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in byron, fire, news.

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A fully involved house fire is reported at 6718 Swamp Road, Byron.

Byron and South Byron responding. 

A second alarm is called with Bergen, Elba, Oakfield, and the City's Fast Team dispatched.

UPDATE 9:37 p.m.: Per command, all tankers can go back in service.

UPDATE 10:25 p.m.: Fire is out and under control, reports command.

UPDATE 8 a.m.:  Reported by Alecia Kaus: "According to Genesee County Fire investigators, one person was home at the time of the fire. They were able to get out of the house along with the family dog. One cat is still unaccounted for. One other resident who lives in the home was not home at the time. Investigators are looking at a window air conditioning unit as a possible cause of the fire. The home is a total loss. Residents will be staying with family."

Photo by Alecia Kaus/Video News Service

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