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June 10, 2021 - 1:06pm

Press release:

The Byron-Bergen Central School District announces its participation in the free Summer Food Service Program, offered through the USDA.

Meals will be provided to all children age 18 and under without charge. NO PAPERWORK is necessary -- just show up for great meals!

Delicious, convenient, healthy and economical lunches will be available for pick up at the high school bus loop on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10:30 to 11:45 a.m. starting July 13 through Aug. 19.

The school is located at 6917 W. Bergen Road, Bergen.

Each pick up includes three days of meals.

If you have questions or need more information, call (585) 494-1220, ext. 1015.

June 10, 2021 - 1:04pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in sunrise, news.


Photo by Bryan Bartholomew.

June 10, 2021 - 12:52pm
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]
June 10, 2021 - 12:08pm
posted by Press Release in elba, 2020 Onion Queen pageant, news.

Submitted photos and press release:

There are 10 contestants seeking the crown of 2020 (yes, 2020) Elba Onion Queen. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the annual pageant was cancelled last year. The organizers are excited to bring this back to the community with an incredible slate of young ladies who will graduate at the end of this month.

The 2020 Onion Queen will be crowned at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, June 18th at the Elba Park gazebo. At 6 p.m., a short "caravan" will take place with the contestants riding down Main Street and to the gazebo to begin the crowning at 6:30.

Please stay tuned toward the end of the summer, early fall for details regarding the 2021 Onion Queen contest.

Taylor Augello

Taylor is the daughter of Michael and Tracy Augello. She has resided in the Town of Elba for many years, along with the rest of the Augellos. She cherishes family moments and spending holidays together.

Taylor is proud of the relationships she has built with her family. She enjoys playing basketball, reading, going on walks with her Mom, hunting and shooting trap with her Dad and going on leisure rides with her sister.

Taylor has participated in National Honor Society, basketball, volleyball, Conservation Club and Student Athletic Association.

After graduation Taylor plans on attending Geneee Community College for the Nursing Program in order to obtain her RN and she would ultimately like to become an NP.

Leah Bezon

Leah is the daughter of Candy and Steven Bezon. She wrote that she comes from a long line of farmers in Elba. Her father, Steven, is a third-generation farmer who continues to run their family farm.

Leah says that her parents have instilled their work ethic and dedication into her and her siblings.

Leah enjoys being a three sport athlete at Elba Central School. She was thrilled to score her 1,000th point at a home basketball game and have the community celebrate with her.

She also has been a member of the Genesee County 4-H Beef Club for several years. Leah plans to go into the criminal justice field and will attend Genesee Community College for her first two years then plans to transfer to SUNY Brockport.

Madison Cline

Madison is the daughter of Nicole Scouten. She said her Mom and Stepdad are very hard working and she has three sisters and four brothers who are all very unique.

Madison enjoys baking desserts, she says it is very peaceful and always fun to try making things she has not tried before. Madison also enjoys taking her little brother on walks while watching after him.

During high school she was on the cheer and softball teams, Student Athletic Association, and in the National Honor Society. Madison plans to attend Daemen College for four years to earn a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and then continue on for her Ph.D in Psychology and work as a psychologist.

Madison Harrington

Madison is the daughter of Aaron and Danielle Harrington. She has participated in Student Athletic Association, Student Council, National Honor Society, Masterminds, SADD, Multicultural Club, FFA, soccer, volleyball and tennis.

Madison is also heavily involved with 4H, Fur and Feather Club, Dog Club, Teen Club, Market Poultry and holds office in many of the clubs. She is also a member of ARBA and National Belgian Hare Club.

Madison enjoys spending time at her “funny farm” and taking care of all her different animals. She will attend Alfred State College for four years, with hopes of earning a Veterinary Technology bachelor’s degree. Madison will also play on the women’s soccer team at Alfred State.

Madison Muehlig

Madison is the daughter of Drew and Erika Muehlig. She wrote that her family loves Elba and she is very prideful of the learning environment at Elba Central School.

She is a three-sport athlete and the Valedictorian of the Class of 2021. Madison participates in basketball, soccer, softball, Student Athletic Association, National Honor Society, Principal’s Cabinet, all while playing travel basketball year-round.

She also enjoys runs around the village, drawing freehand, going out to eat with family and friends and attending local sporting events.

Madison has been admitted to the Physical Therapy program at Daemen College where she plans to study for her Doctorate.

Kiah Rosendale

Kiah is the daughter of Heather Rosendale. She enjoys going on hikes, walks and going to museums.

Kiah wrote that her Grandma has taught her how to bake, cook and even shared new art techniques with her. She also says one of her hobbies is art and her Dad showed her many sculpting techniques.

She loves outdoor activities such as camping, archery and fishing.

In school, she is the Senior class and Yearbook Club treasurer, and has participated in Trivia Team, Masterminds, Student Council, National Honor Society, Future Teachers and HOBY Leadership Conference.

Kiah plans to attend Genesee Community College for two years then seek further education to achieve a Bachelor of Secondary Education degree in Science.

Lilliana Thompson

Lilliana is the daughter of Jeremy and Kim Thompson. She along with her parents and three siblings are very sports oriented. She says that supporting the community is a big part of who they are.

Liliana participates in soccer, basketball, softball, volleyball, Chorus and school plays. She also competes at Divine Dance Studio on the competition team. Liliana enjoys drawing, singing, going to church and adventures with her family at the lake.

She plans to play lacrosse during her off season. Liliana will attend Geneee Community College in the fall where she will continue her soccer career and study Elementary Education.

Fanny Venegas

Fanny is the daughter of Sandra Salcido and Jose Venegas. She says that the Elba community and especially the Elba Central School have been a great place to live and go to school. Fanny cannot imagine living anywhere as special as Elba.

She has enjoyed studying Graphic Arts at BOCES and has been a student athlete participating in many sports. Good health is important to Fanny and she enjoys cross-country, soccer, indoor and outdoor track.

After graduation Fanny will attend RIT, she plans to be a member of their cross-country and track teams. Her goal is to some day help her family buy a house in Elba that will be their home.

Brynn Walczak

Brynn is this daughter of Brian and Kim Walczak. She has been a three-sport athlete and high honor student at Elba Central School. Brynn wrote that her parents and twin brothers have been her number one supporters.

She has enjoyed playing soccer, basketball and softball and is proud of being a part of Elba’s five back to back sectional titles. Brynn scored her 1,000th point in basketball this year and was named the 2021 GR All-Star in basketball and soccer.

She has also participated in National Honor Society, Student Athletic Association, Genesee County Youth Bureau Leadership Conference and several basketball and soccer camps.

After graduation she plans to attend Daemen College to major in Physical Therapy and possibly participate in a sport.

Miah Werth

Miah is the daughter of Steven and Trisha Werth. She is currently a senior at Elba Central School where she is an active member of the FFA and serves as the chapter President.

Miah was also selected as the 2020 Genesee County Dairy Princess.

During her high school career she taken part in volleyball, basketball, track, Student Athletic Association and the 4H Beef Club.

Miah says that her favorite activity is volleyball and she enjoys spending time with her friends.

After high school Miah will attend Genesee Community College for Humanities and Social Science. Her passion is to help people feel better about themselves and she hopes to become a mental health counselor.

June 10, 2021 - 11:29am

Submitted photo and press release:

The Boards of Directors of The Arc of Livingston-Wyoming and Arc of Genesee Orleans announce Martin Miskell, current executive director of the Livingston-Wyoming chapter, will lead the agencies through their planned merger.

The unification of the agencies serving individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families will create a one-chapter, four-county service area covering roughly 2,400 square miles—geographically, the largest Arc chapter in New York State.  

Miskell began his Arc career as director of finance at the Livingston-Wyoming chapter in 2002, becoming associate executive director/chief financial officer in 2007 and executive director in 2015. He calls this an exciting time.

“The merger will offer all four counties more program and service opportunities for individuals and families served,” Miskell said. “We have experienced changes over the last decade in the field of disabilities and this merger will make the agency and its services more fiscally sustainable and poised for the future.”

Over the last several months, Miskell has met with senior leaders, board membership and retiring Genesee Orleans Executive Director Donna Saskowski to develop a regional approach and plan for legal and programmatic strategies to ensure a smooth transition. The merger process is expected to take as long as five more months to complete.

The new agency will use consolidated resources to ensure quality services to all people with disabilities and their families served in the Genesee Livingston Orleans Wyoming (GLOW) counties region. Once merged, the new agency will be called Arc GLOW.  

Miskell grew up in the Geneseo area, and he and his wife, Theresa, have four adult children. He received his bachelor’s degree in Economics from SUNY Geneseo and his Master of Business Administration from Rochester Institute of Technology. He also serves on the NYS Genesee Valley Parks Commission, SUNY Geneseo Foundation, and is a member of the Kiwanis Club.

ABOUT THE CHAPTERS: The Arc of Livingston-Wyoming and Arc of Genesee Orleans, soon to be known as Arc GLOW are family-founded agencies dedicated to helping people with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities (I/DD) meet their full potential and find fulfillment in learning, personal relationships, employment, volunteerism, recreation, the arts, and more.

In the coming months, a new Arc GLOW website will be unveiled. In the meantime, the websites serving the chapters are www.arcgo.org and www.lwarc.org. For more information contact Director of Development & Community Relations Shelley Falitico at [email protected].

June 10, 2021 - 10:58am

Press release:

Happy Pride Month! June is established to recognize the impact that gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and queer individuals have had on the world. LGBTQIA+ groups celebrate this special time with pride parades, picnics, parties, memorials for those lost to hate crimes and HIV/AIDS, and other group gatherings.

It’s also important to recognize that the LGBTQIA+ community has been impacted by various mental health issues, including problem gambling. Problem gambling is anytime someone’s life is negatively impacted by their gambling habits. This could be financial struggles, relationship or partner issues, conflicts with work and school, and even translating to criminal behavior.

Unfortunately, there is limited research on the prevalence of gambling addiction among the LGBTQIA+ community. However, the information that is available does suggest that there is a correlation between problem gambling and those who identify as gay, bisexual, and transgender.

A 2006 U.S. study reports that 21 percent of 105 men seeking treatment for problem gambling identified as gay or bisexual. That percentage is seven times higher than the (reported) rate of gay and bisexual men in the general population (21 percent as opposed to 3 percent), raising the possibility that gay/bi men might be at increased risk for problem gambling (Grant, JE, and Potenza, MN, 2006).

Additionally, a 2015 Australian study reports that 20.2 percent of 69 LGBT participants met DSM V criteria for gambling disorder. Pub/slot games (58 percent) and scratch-offs (43 percent) were most common about LGBTI populations. The amount spent ranged from $1 - $3K per month. Reasons were “because it is fun” and “because I like the feeling.”

The most important takeaway from these limited studies is that it’s important to have a comprehensive screening system in place for all individuals receiving treatment for problem gambling, especially screening specifically for LGBTQIA+ folks who are already in care or seeking treatment for mental health or chemical dependency needs.

First and foremost, establishing a safe environment for clients should be a normalized step within all counseling and therapy-related practices. Secondly, help is available for problem gambling no matter how you identify.

The Western Problem Gambling Resource Center (PGRC) is excited to promote our clinicians who are experienced in treating LGBTQIA+ individuals, as well as have training in cultural humility. Below are some barrier-free options the Western PGRC offers our community:

  1. In person or teletherapy counseling (individual or couples therapy)
  2. Connection to Gambler’s Anonymous or Gam-Anon
  3. Online family support group
  4. Guidance through the NYS Casino Self-Exclusion Program
  5. Online tools and resources, including self-assessment screening
  6. Connection to statewide inpatient and outpatient treatment services

To get started, call the Western PGRC at (716) 833-4274 or email [email protected]

For more information, visit https://nyproblemgamblinghelp.org/.

June 9, 2021 - 8:23pm


The Genesee County Planning Department is recommending approval of a site plan review submitted by Plug Power Inc., the Latham-based company specializing in the development of hydrogen fuel cells systems for applications such as heavy-duty freight and forklifts.

The referral is one of 15 on the agenda of the county planning board’s meeting scheduled for 7 p.m. Thursday via Zoom videoconferencing.

According to information provided to the planning department, the site plan to place the green hydrogen facility at the Western New York Science & Technology Advanced Manufacturing Park includes three structures – an 8,000-square-foot operations and maintenance building, a 40,000-square-foot electrolyzer building and a 68,000-square-foot compressor building.

STAMP, located on Crosby Road in the Town of Alabama, is designated as a Technology (T-1) District.

Additional documentation indicates the Genesee County Economic Development Center, which owns STAMP, is in the final stages of closing the sale of 29.884 acres to be allocated to the Plug Power venture, which is being called Gateway Project.

The full environmental assessment form filled out by Plug Power reveals that construction will take place in two phases, with phase one to commence in March 2022 and phase 2 to be completed in June 2023.

It is projected that the company will use 280,000 gallons of water per day, with expected additional capacity from the construction of two new water lines. Company officials state that 70,500 gallons of wastewater will be generated each day. The grounds also will feature a stormwater management facility.

Approximately 16 tanker trucks will come to the facility each day on a reconstructed Crosby Road to provide a new access path. Construction is expected to take place from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Once complete, it will be a 24-hour operation.

Last Thursday, Genesee County Economic Development Center directors approved approximately $2.8 million in sales tax incentives related to the construction of the electrical substation.

The GCEDC reported that Plug Power is investing $232 million the company to build the facility, which is estimated to create 68 full-time jobs.

The company also is investing $55 million toward the construction a substation that will enable 100-percent renewable, reliable electricity at less than $0.035/kwh to future tenants in partnership with the New York Power Authority and National Grid.

Other referrals of note:

  • Special use permit, area variance and site plan review for a Quicklee’s convenience store and four-pump fuel station island at the former Bob Evans Restaurant location in a Commercial (C-2) District at 204 Oak St. (Route 98) in the City of Batavia.

The area variance is necessary because the service station is 165 feet from a church (less than the minimum 500 feet) and the proposed number of parking spaces is 40 (less than the minimum 68).

Patricia Bittar, director of land development projects at WM Schutt Associates, filed the application, stating that the proposed project will take up 2,771 square feet for the convenience store and 1,000 square feet for a drive-thru restaurant.

The planning department recommends approval. The applicant also will have to go in front of the City Planning & Development Committee and Zoning Board of Appeals.

  • Site plan review for a 107,138-square-foot addition for warehousing and manufacturing to Liberty Pumps, 7000 Apple Tree Ave., Bergen

The planning department recommends approval with modifications pertaining to stormwater prevention and archaeological impact documentation.

  • As previously reported on The Batavian, a zoning map change request from the Le Roy Town Board to rezone seven parcels from Residential (R-2) to Light Industrial (I-2) District to expand the GCEDC-owned Le Roy Food & Tech Park on Route 19 ad Randall Road in the Town of Le Roy.

This action could open the door for Great Lakes Cheese of Hiram, Ohio, to build a $500 million processing plant at the site.

The planning department recommends approval since the Comprehensive Plan adopted by the Town of Le Roy in 2017 identifies this area in its Future Land Use Plan as Agriculture and adjacent to Industrial.

  • Zoning text amendments from the Oakfield Town Board for the entire Town of Oakfield to allow major solar collection systems to the Land Conservation (LC) and Agricultural-Residential (AR) Districts and to add public and private utilities to the LC District.

The towns of Oakfield and Elba are gearing up for the proposed construction of a 500-megawatt solar farm by Hecate Energy, which today announced that is has filed an application with the New York State Office of Renewable Energy Siting.

If approved and constructed, the Cider Solar Farm would be the largest solar project ever built in New York State.

Hecate Energy’s press release indicated that the $500 million private infrastructure investment is expected to create moe than 500 construction jobs and will be capable of supplying 920,000 megawatt-hours of renewable electricity per year – enough to power more than 120,000 average New York households.

The planning department is recommending approval.

  • A special use permit for Chad Downs, 1300 McVean Road, Darien, to place a pest control business in his home, which sits in a Low Density Residential (LDR) District.

The planning department recommends approval with the modification that the storage and disposal of herbicides, pesticides and other hazardous materials must be conducted in accordance with applicable State and Federal regulations.

Architect's rendering at top: 3D view of the Plug Power facility to go at WNY STAMP. The rectangle building at the front is the compressor building and the long building behind it is the electrolyzer building. The operations and maintenance building is the smaller structure at right.

June 9, 2021 - 5:17pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, accidents, alexander, notify.

The extrication process to remove the injured driver of a tanker truck this afternoon in Alexander was extensive and difficult, according to Tim Yaeger, Genesee County Emergency Services coordinator. The trucker was hauling 60,000 pounds of milk when it rolled over into a wet ditch filled with cattails.

Shortly before noon, Alexander Fire Department was dispatched to 11181 Chaddock Road in Alexander, between Spring Road and the Wyoming County line. The male driver remained conscious, alert and talking throughout but pinned in by the steering wheel, dashboard and a foot or more of earth that the semi-truck rammed into.

"They were both fighting against the vehicle that was damaged and pinning him, as well as working against the dirt where the truck ended up landing," Yaeger said.

The biggest obstacle was coming up with a plan.

"We train a lot for peeling away, and cutting away and spreading away metal. This was a little more complicated because he was trapped by earth as well as metal. So it was a difficulty and just time-consuming."

Asked if groundwater seeping into the cab posed a danger to the trapped driver, Yaeger said no, the concern here, as in any vehicle accident, was the hazard of fire.

He said a lot of equipment was called to the scene. The Alexander fire chief wanted to make sure they had all the resources they needed. More manpower was warranted because of the heat and humidity.

Mercy medics responded along with Attica and their extrication equipment, Bethany, Town of Batavia, Elba's rescue truck, the Department of Environmental Conservation, and the county Hazmat Spill Response Team. Stafford fire filled in at Alexander's fire hall.

It took more than an hour to extricate the driver, who was ​transported by Mercy EMS to ECMC. Although Mercy Flight landed in an adjacent cornfield to transport the patient, it was unable to do so because of a mechanical issue involving the equipment to secure the gurney; so the aircraft returned to the hangar.

He said the spill was significant and included oil and hydraulic fluid in addition to the milk in the tanker; no fuel was seen.

It is “fairly contained.”

They are trying to get the truck uprighted and removed without spilling more product.

A heavy rescue team will offload unspilt product onto another truck to facilitate uprighting the damaged vehicle.

The process will take a couple of hours, possibly up to four hours.

The accident occurred by a curve, but Yaeger could not speculate about what caused the accident, which is under investigation.

"Members and firefighters, medics from several agencies, along with law enforcement worked to get the patient out safely," Yaeger said. “It’s all hands on deck, we’re going to give everything that we could. And they did a fantastic job working as a team.”

Photos and audio of Tim Yaeger courtesy of Alecia Kaus / Video News Service.

Previously: Driver pinned in after rollover on Chaddock Road, Alexander

UPDATE: Reader-submitted photos.




June 9, 2021 - 4:41pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, Oakfield, scanner, Cary Cemetery.

A caller to dispatch reports a 3-year-old is wandering unattended in the Cary Cemetery off Maple Avenue in Oakfield. The tot is wearing just shorts. A Sheriff's deputy is responding.

UPDATE 4:42 p.m.: The caller says the mother has been located asks for the deputy to stand down, but the deputy says he's responding.

June 9, 2021 - 4:14pm
posted by Billie Owens in accidents, news, batavia, scanner.

A car vs. bicycle accident with unknown injuries is reported in Downtown Batavia on Bank Street near Alva Place. City fire and Mercy medics are responding.

June 9, 2021 - 2:56pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, accidents, bergen, scanner.

A two-car accident with injuries is reported in Bergen at the intersection of Clinton Street Road and West Bergen Road. One Mercy ambulance is called to the scene in emergency mode; a second ambulance is requested. Bergen Fire Department is responding along with law enforcement.

There are two patients; one is complaining of neck and chest pain and has an eye laceration.

UPDATE 3:25 p.m.: Command reports a property damage accident at the same scene. A tow truck backed into an ambulance. The Bergen assisgnment is back in service. Mercy BLS #5 is transporting one patient to UMMC.

UPDATE 3:40 p.m.: One patient is a female with an injured, bleeding right hand. She also has an injured left ankle. There was air bag deployment and heavy front-end damage to her vehicle.

June 9, 2021 - 2:19pm



A proposal by a Lovers Lane Road couple to construct a multiunit senior housing complex off Route 33 (Pearl Street Road) about 1.2 miles west of the City of Batavia limits is back in the news again – four and a half years after it was introduced to the Batavia Town Planning Board.

David and Katie Ficarella, owners of 120-plus acres in the vicinity of their home, said they have the financing in place to build the $17 million, 80-unit Hickory Ridge Estates.

“It’s been a long time coming,” David Ficarella said. “We have some good people on our team and I think it’s going to go very well.”

Ficarella’s team includes Lazarus Industries of Buffalo, the general contractor, and Schenne & Associates of East Aurora, the engineering firm.

The development will feature 40 duplex houses, each of about 1,500 square feet – including a one-car garage – with two bedrooms, two bathrooms and high-end fixtures and appliances. The site also will include a pond and various trees.

“We want to keep as much of the natural landscape as possible,” they said.

The units will be rented at a market rate to be determined.

The complex, open to residents age 55 and older, will sit on about 21 acres on the north side of Route 33, across from Donahue Road, and stretching west along the state highway.

In November 2016, David Ficarella approached town planners with the idea – at that time a 110-unit senior residential site to be developed in conjunction with Calamar Enterprises of Wheatfield. That plan fell through, however, and he is back with something he believes is solid and, once again, is anticipating the town’s support.

“We’re hoping to meet with the town very soon,” he said, noting that he will have to run the proposal by Genesee County and town planners. “We have talked about adding some roads and possibly having an extension of the Ellicott Trail run through the property. We definitely are looking for the town’s feedback.”

Batavia Town Engineer Steve Mountain said that Ficarella needs to provide more information prior to submitting an application. From there, his proposal would be considered by the planning boards.

“It would have to go through a State Environmental Quality Review and likely would need awarding of a special use permit or planned unit development,” Mountain said. “Since it is in an agricultural-residential district, it would be allowed with a special use permit.”

Ficarella said he is working with Lazarus Industries on a construction schedule, and would like to have the first building up by August to serve as a model home.

“I have heard from at least 10 people about renting there,” he said. “The goal is to have them rented before we put the buildings up.”

The rising cost of construction materials has forced him to change his strategy as far as what goes into the frame of the homes.

“We would have started earlier but there’s been a 300-percent increase in construction materials. We had to regroup and go to cold-formed steel, which wasn’t a bad thing. We redesigned the prints and it’s coming together,” he said.

So, instead of 2-by-4 lumber in the walls, contractors will be installing cold-formed steel.

“They make the steel right there in Buffalo. Even the rafters, trusses and all that will be steel. Other than that, it’s the same house,” David Ficarella said.

This would be the first phase of a three-phase plan, he said. The other two phases are putting a second (similar but smaller) development on 30 acres to the north of Hickory Ridge Estates and then developing another 30 acres for single-family homes onto the new Donahue Road to an extension off Edgewood Drive.

Edgewood Drive is part of the McWethy development between Route 33 and South Main Street Road. Currently, it dead-ends at the west end.

Asked if he thought that would create a traffic issue on Edgewood, he said that wouldn’t be the case.

“There just aren’t enough people in there (his senior complex),” he said. “It would be beneficial to Edgewood and residents of other streets in that development who could exit onto Route 33 to go to Corfu or Buffalo. And it would create another entrance for emergency vehicles into the development.”

He also said he has an option to purchase more land toward South Main Street and would like to see a road connecting with South Main Street.

The Ficarellas have contacted the Genesee County Economic Development Center to inquire about tax abatements. They said the project will create two full-time and three part-time positions and 200 temporary construction jobs, and would place no additional tax burden on the two school districts involved (Pembroke and City of Batavia).

As far as the Ellicott Trail is concerned, Genesee County Planning Director Felipe Oltramari said an extension would be feasible, following the National Grid right-of-way that starts near Angelica Textile Services on Apollo Drive in the city and would follow along the north side of Hickory Ridge Estates.


Top photo: Overhead view of the location of the proposed Hickory Ridge Estates (the area in brown above the words Pearl Street Road). Bottom photo: Cleared parcel that sits behind trees on the north side of Pearl Street Road, across from Donahue Road. 

June 9, 2021 - 2:15pm

Press release:

Hecate Energy today announced that it has filed an application with the New York State Office of Renewable Energy Siting (ORES) to construct a 500-megawatt solar farm in the Western New York towns of Elba and Oakfield, representing the first new application to be submitted under the state’s new permitting process for large-scale renewable projects.

If approved and constructed, the Cider Solar Farm would be the largest solar project ever built in New York State.

The $500-plus million-dollar private infrastructure investment is expected to create over 500 construction jobs and will be capable of supplying 920,000 megawatt-hours of renewable electricity per year – enough to power more than 120,000 average New York households.

“This project provides a concrete example of the scale and speed with which we must move if we are to meet critical renewable energy goals,” said Harrison Luna, Hecate project lead. “We are very appreciative of the leadership demonstrated by Elba and Oakfield town governments for this important ‘model’ project.

"Our discussions have helped us understand how to plan the project considering the unique priorities of the communities where we want to become neighbors. Those officials have helped us balance the needs of the communities with the needs of the project.”

“Cider Solar will do more than create clean renewable energy to drive the new economy; it will also deliver significant new revenue to the local governments for decades to come and help fund essential services such as the volunteer fire departments, first responders, and Haxton Memorial Library in Oakfield."

Initially, the project sought leases and options for approximately 4,000 acres of land in the towns of Elba and Oakfield in Genesee County. As the understanding of local priorities grew clearer, detailed siting and study efforts allowed Hecate to refine the project’s footprint to approximately 2,800 acres of land across the two towns. Energy from the solar project is projected to offset over 420,000 tons of C02 per year, the equivalent of taking over 92,000 average cars off the road annually.

“Hecate Energy has been an excellent partner with our community since day one,” said Donna Hynes, Elba Town supervisor. “They’ve kept us informed and part of the process every step of the way. This project will bring welcomed jobs and needed revenues to the area for decades to come, while serving as an example for how to make renewable energy development part of a long-range economic plan.”

“This project will provide significant green energy into the grid,” said Matt Martin, Oakfield Town supervisor. “The commitments and financial resources Hecate brings to our community are welcomed additions. With the benefits to the town, the school district, and the local landowners involved, we are thrilled to be partnering with a leader in clean energy, and one that has a reputation of following through on its promises. We’ve been glad to have a cooperative relationship with the project thus far.”

New York State’s Accelerated Renewable Energy Growth and Community Benefit Act, which includes Section 94-c of the Executive Law, enacted in 2021, created the new ORES and rules for the permitting of large-scale renewable energy projects. It is intended to enhance the siting and construction of projects that are environmentally responsible, cost-effective, and delivered in a timely manner with input from local communities.

Hecate’s Cider Solar 94-c Application, prepared by Buffalo-based Stantec Consulting Services in coordination with the law firm Foley Hoag LLP, is the first new application submitted to ORES under 94-c regulations, representing an important milestone in the State’s project permitting progress.

June 9, 2021 - 1:24pm

Press release:

Join the Genesee County Parks along with the Oakfield-Alabama Lions Club and try out fishing at DeWitt Recreation Area on Saturday, June 26th from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.! No fishing license is required, this is part of the NYSDEC’s Free Fishing Weekend. Perfect for beginners!

No experience required, friendly fishing guides will be on hand to assist you. Fishing gear provided or bring your own.

Kids up to age 16 can join the fun and get the chance to win a prize with the Kendra Haacke Memorial Fishing Derby, sponsored by the Oakfield-Alabama Lions Club!

This program is FREE!

DeWitt is located at 115 Cedar St. in the City of Batavia. Meet at Pavilion 2.

Masks are required for unvaccinated individuals when unable to maintain six feet of social distance. Participants are encouraged to wash hands often with soap and water or use hand sanitizer.

Call (585) 344-1122 to register or walk-ins also welcome.

June 9, 2021 - 1:09pm

Submitted photos and press release:

Genesee Valley BOCES students as high school seniors have the opportunity to meet with area companies about jobs and career opportunities. 

Tuesday afternoon students from the Electrical Mechanical Program at the Batavia CTE spoke with Turnbull HVAC (photo above) and HP Hood (photo below) representatives about career opportunities for students completing training at the CTE.

The event is being sponsored by the Genesee County Business-Education Alliance, Genesee Valley BOCES Batavia CTE Campus and the Genesee County Economic Development Center.

June 9, 2021 - 12:39pm
posted by Press Release in Republican Primary, early voting, Bethany, byron, Stafford, news.

Press release:

Press release:

EARLY VOTING REMINDER to Republican Primary Voters in Bethany, Byron and Stafford

The location for Early Voting has changed. Early Voting has moved from County Building #2 to the ARC Community Center, 38 Woodrow Road, Batavia.

Contests are ONLY for registered Republicans in Bethany, Byron and Stafford. No other jurisdictions have contests.

Registered Republican voters from those three communities can plan to vote early, if they wish, at the ARC Community Center during the following dates and times:

  • June 12 -- 12 to 5 p.m.
  • June 13 -- 12 to 5 p.m.
  • June 14 -- 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • June 15 -- 12 to 8 p.m.
  • June 16 -- 12 to 8 p.m.
  • June 17 -- 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • June 18 -- 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • June 19 -- 12 to 5 p.m.
  • June 20 -- 12 to 5 p.m.

Primary Election Day is Tuesday, June 22nd, from 6 a.m. - 9 p.m. for the Republican contests in the three jurisdictions: Bethany (Bethany Community Center 10510 Bethany Center Road); Byron (Byron Town Hall, 7028 Route 237); and Stafford (New Town Hall, 8903 Route 237).

There are no contests in any other Genesee County towns or in the city.

June 9, 2021 - 12:31pm

Country music singer Claudia Hoyser will be here at our store! Meet her & have her sign a bottle of her Drunken Bean Coffee Whiskey! Click here for more info.

June 9, 2021 - 12:04pm
posted by Billie Owens in accidents, news, scanner, alexander.

A one-vehicle rollover is reported at 11181 Chaddock Road in Alexander between Spring Road and the Wyoming County line. The male driver is conscious and alert but pinned in by the steering wheel.

Alexander Fire Department and Mercy medics are responding along with Attica and their extrication equipment. Mercy Flight's availability is checked and it is available.

"We're gonna need help with extrication -- he's pinned in there pretty good," says command at the scene.

UPDATE 12:08 p.m.: Mercy Flight is called to the scene and has a 12-minute ETA. Dan's Towing is en route with a heavy wrecker/"rotater." Milk is spilled in a ditch; the Department of Environmental Conservation is advised. 

UPDATE 12:12 p.m.: "A large amount of milk is down in the soil, uncontrolled at this point," says a first responder. A DEC rep is being requested to the scene. Mercy Flight will land in a cornfield east of the accident site. The driver of the tanker truck has a severe leg injury.

UPDATE 12:54 p.m.: Stafford fire is asked to fill in at Alexander's fire hall.

UPDATE 12:57 p.m.: Attica is being deployed as rehab for the first responders.

UPDATE 1:12 p.m.: Elba's rescue equipment is requested to the scene.

UPDATE 1:41 p.m.: One Alexander fire truck is back in service.

UPDATE 1:42 p.m.: Mercy Flight just lifted off to take the patient to a hospital to return to the Batavia hangar.

UPDATE 2:05 p.m.: Command releases Town of Batavia, Attica and Bethany. Alexander #6 will remain on scene.

UPDATE 2:41 p.m.: Alexander is clearing the scene, which is turned over to law enforcement.


Photos by Alecia Kaus, Video News Service.

June 9, 2021 - 11:51am

Press release:

A first-of-its-kind, free program is being offered at the Walmart in BataviaIt’s called Walmart Community Academy, and Walmart is offering no-cost classes (virtual, for now) to all community members age 16 or older on the following subjects:

  • Personal finance
  • Resume building
  • Interview skills
  • Standardized test prep
  • Navigating college admissions

Notable highlights for future courses include:

  • Taxes
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Civic engagement

Free enrollment is open right now. 

As background, Walmart has a network of 200 Training Academies nationwide, including one in the Walmart Supercenter in Batavia. In these, we’ve set up instructional environments with dedicated training staff to train Walmart associates on essential retail skills and lay a path for individual career growth.

Our long-term goal is to use these academies to also help our communities, and this marks an initial step.




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