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July 19, 2019 - 4:10pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, tompkins financial corporation, TMP.

ITHACA -- Tompkins Financial Corporation (NYSE American: TMP) announced today that its Board of Directors approved payment of a regular quarterly cash dividend of 50-cents per share, payable on Aug.15 to common shareholders of record on July 30, 2019.

Tompkins Financial Corporation is a financial services company serving the Central, Western, and Hudson Valley regions of New York and the Southeastern region of Pennsylvania.

Headquartered in Ithaca, Tompkins Financial is parent to Tompkins Trust Company, Tompkins Bank of Castile, Tompkins Mahopac Bank, Tompkins VIST Bank, Tompkins Insurance Agencies Inc., and offers wealth management services through Tompkins Financial Advisors.

For more information on Tompkins Financial, visit www.tompkinsfinancial.com.

July 19, 2019 - 3:45pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, news, GCEDC, STAMP, Alabama.

Submitted photo and press release:

Officials from the Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) once again made the annual trip to the New York Loves Nanotech Summit at Semicon West at the Moscone Center in San Francisco July 8-11.

GCEDC Vice President of Business and Workforce Development Chris Suozzi participated in a panel discussion with other economic development professionals about how infrastructure investments are advancing New York’s impact on the development and commercialization of emerging and existing technologies.

Suozzi highlighted investments at the Western New York Science and Technology Advanced Manufacturing Park (WNYSTAMP), the 1,250-acre high-tech greenfield developed in Alabama.

“Semicon West is a great event for us to not only talk about all the great economic development initiatives occurring in Genesee County, but across New York State,” Suozzi said. “New York is continuing to make investments in semiconductor infrastructure and the Buffalo-Rochester Metro Corridor stands out as an area that is providing the best workforce and STEM education in the country.”

New York State is at the forefront of advancing AI, quantum computing, power electronics, and neuromorphic computing capabilities through their advancements in process, equipment, materials and device technology-related research. 

Suozzi and GCEDC Director of Marketing and Communications Jim Krencik also led discussions with representatives of semiconductor and advanced manufacturing businesses seeking to invest in Genesee County and the talent-rich Buffalo-Rochester Metro Corridor.

Suozzi and Krencik were joined at Semicon West by New York Loves Nanotech, a statewide group led by economic development organizations, academic institutions, and technology companies. NYLN promotes WNY STAMP and the state’s assets to high-tech companies.

“Through our presence at this annual event and the relationships with have established with officials from advanced manufacturing companies, Genesee County’s assets will be well received as these officials are discussing ideal locations for their operations,” Krencik said.

For the 22nd year, NY Loves Nanotech had a large delegation of more than 60 officials attending the industry conference. NY Loves Nanotech, Empire State Development (ESD) and National Grid hosted a pavilion at the industry leading conference, which they co-exhibited with several other companies and organizations.

So far, New York has attracted more than $20 billion in nano-optics, photonics, and semiconductor investments. New York State’s world-class workforce and research and development capacities are huge asset, as are the infrastructure capacities at WNY STAMP.

July 18, 2019 - 1:07pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, farm labor bill, agriculture.

A Statement from Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) on Gov. Cuomo signing the Farm Labor Bill into law July 17:

“The largest farm in New York City is a seasonal pumpkin patch but that didn’t stop radical politicians from dictating how our farms should operate. This disastrous legislation, ironically signed in a place with no farms, has the potential to single-handedly destroy family farming in New York as we know it.

“To make matters worse, the newly-created Wage Board, stacked with more big-labor, big-union interests than actual farmers, can unilaterally alter the labor laws how they see fit moving forward.

“Altering the maximum number of hours allowed per week or reversing the ‘no strike clause’ at any moment, goes completely against the farming industry’s standard practices where crop yields, weather patterns and labor needs are consistently fluid. If a farm can’t operate because of unavoidable weather conditions or  because workers are mandated time off – the repercussions will be devastating.

“What these big-city politicians don’t understand is that our family farms are always under the gun since our growing season is virtually half of California and Florida – making reliable labor, many times seven days of week, a necessity.

“As the former owner and operator of our family farm in Batavia, I know first hand how devastating this could be to our industry. As a former president of the Genesee County Farm Bureau and 14-year member of the Assembly Agriculture Committee, I’ve spoken with many farmers and producers about this bill and its devastating effects unlike the New York City politicians who crafted this disaster. Their concerns were voiced yet ignored.

“Our family farms are not corporations, they are not run by money-hungry business people, they are ordinary families like yours and mine who have learned this art from prior generations and intend to pass it on to their children. It’s what they love, and I will always stand behind them to fight these new regulations in any way I can.”

July 18, 2019 - 12:32pm
posted by Billie Owens in Tompkins Bank of Castile, business.

Submitted photo and press release:

Batavia resident Todd Masters has joined Tompkins Bank of Castile as vice president, business development officer for its Community Banking Group. Based in the Pittsford office, he will serve clients in Rochester and Monroe County.

Masters brings more than 15 years of experience in banking and finance to his new role, and plans to partner with local businesses and institutions to build relationships and help identify solutions and efficiencies. He has extensive experience working with clients in manufacturing, higher education, and health care, among others.

“Todd’s expertise in financial services and deep ties to the local community will be a valuable asset for our customers in the greater Rochester area,” said John McKenna, president and CEO. “We are pleased that he is joining the Tompkins team and look forward to his innovative leadership.”

Masters earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Elmira College and an MBA from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. A native of Batavia, he lives there with his wife, Amy, and their two children. 

About Tompkins Bank of Castile:

Tompkins Bank of Castile is a community bank with 17 offices in the six-county Western New York region. Services include complete lines of consumer deposit accounts and loans, business accounts and loans, and leasing.  In addition, insurance is offered through an affiliate company, Tompkins Insurance Agencies. Wealth management, trust and investment services are provided through Tompkins Financial Advisors.  Further information about the bank is available on its website, www.bankofcastile.com.

July 17, 2019 - 4:47pm

Today, July 17, Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed into law the Farmworker Fair Labor Practices Act (S6578/A8419). It was voted on and passed by the New York State Assembly and Senate last month.

Proponents claim the new law will extend basic labor protections to New York State’s farmworkers by allowing them the right to collectively bargain and get overtime pay.

It was sponsored by Assemblywoman Cathy Nolan and Senator Jessica Ramos, both of Queens.

Western New York farmers and lawmakers were among those who lobbied against the legislation, citing the devastating impact it could have on family farms and agriculture, the primary economic driver of the region.

Upon its passage in the Senate in June, Sen. Michael Ranzenhofer said: "This is just another example of Downstate legislators who do not understand the Upstate economy. This will impose hundreds of millions of dollars in mandates onto farms who are already struggling. Simply put, it is going to eliminate jobs and put farms out of business."

For the complete post with reactions after the Senate passage of the bill, click here.

Below is a press release sent this afternoon from Grow NY Farms on the Governor's signature today creating the new law.

For months, hundreds of farmers and farmworkers spent countless hours seeking to find a balance with elected officials on measures that will change working conditions on farms across New York State. However, the measure that ultimately passed the Legislature and was signed by the Governor on July 17 did not address the challenges and needs of farmers and farmworkers.

This measure does not create a path that will assure an economically viable New York agriculture industry, and the four fixable flaws within this bill will likely drive more family-owned farms out of the state or out of business. Worst of all, farmworkers will feel the impacts the most because their work hours will be restricted and their income reduced.

Grow NY Farms has been seeking to correct four fundamental flaws contained in the new legislation (Assembly Bill No. 8419 and Senate Bill No. 6578). Modifications include:

  • Applying a standard wage rate for farmworkers who decide to work on the prescribed day of rest.
  • Expanding the family farm definition to include close relatives such as aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins.
  • Modifying the composition and timeline of the wage board.
  • Preserving secret balloting for both farmworkers and farmers.

“New York's farmers have been at the table from the beginning asking for a workable solution, a bill that would provide the balance agriculture would need to sustain itself as an important job creator and food provider in this state. Common ground should have considered what farms can afford and the opportunities our employees will lose as a result of this law. In the end, our reasonable requests were cast aside, even though there was support for a moderated bill from legislators on both sides of the aisle. What was also dismissed by many of New York's leaders is the dignity and respect our farm families have long provided to the men and women we need and work alongside every day. While the final legislation signed by the Governor is certainly better than the original version of the bill, it will still lead to significant financial challenges for farmers and the continued erosion of our rural communities,” said David Fisher, New York Farm Bureau president and dairy farmer in Madrid.

"It is upsetting that state lawmakers have placed rural New York at a serious disadvantage in our ability to compete in the market place and provide economic opportunities for our employees. This new law failed to take common sense into account, and in turn, will place Upstate further behind in its ability to grow our farms and economy. Our farms and farmworkers deserved better for all that they provide this state,” said Brian Reeves, of Reeves Farms in Baldwinsville and president of the New York State Vegetable Growers Association.

“Long Island has a proud tradition of being a source that New Yorkers turn to for fresh food, wine, flowers, landscape plants and more. Our farms have also provided good, quality opportunities for our employees to get job experience and support their families at home and abroad and have the potential to advance their careers. Sadly, those days are numbered as the farm labor bill will force dramatic changes on agriculture as we know it. It won’t just be our farm families and employees who will suffer, but our customers who value what it means to buy “Grown on Long Island.” Unfortunately, by the time that the legislators who voted for this misguided bill realize the damage they have done to the agricultural industry on Long Island and the rest of the State of New York, it will be too late. This is a sad day for all of us,” said Karl Novak, president of the Long Island Farm Bureau.

“Dairy represents New York’s largest agricultural industry. Our farms must operate 24 hours a day, 365 days a year in order to care for our cows and produce fresh, nutritious milk. We certainly appreciate that legislators who listened to the many voices expressed by stakeholders in trying to negotiate a bill fair to everyone, but we were disappointed in language added in the final hours that has the potential to both negatively impact the long-term viability of our farms and the earning potential and livelihood of our workers,” said Jon Greenwood, president of Northeast Dairy Producers Association and dairy farmer in Canton.

“My family has a long history of supplying fresh fruit to our Hudson Valley community every year, and we have seen our business diversify into building a cidery, but we are worried that the tradition we have built is now in jeopardy with the signing of this legislation. We are proud of our workforce and the benefits we provide them, but the massive increase in labor costs coming down the pike because of this new law will make it difficult to sustain the business that has lasted for generations and one that I hoped to continue. I’m afraid this could be the breaking point for our orchard and many like ours across the state,” said Sarah Dressel, of Dressel Farms in New Paltz and Chairperson of the New York Apple Association’s Board of Directors.

“Today’s job market is competitive, and many farmers provide their workers with optional days of rest, sick and holiday pay, and other benefits. I appreciate New York’s effort to ensure all farms are doing this, however, by limiting worker hours, we are taking away opportunity that many are seeking. Employees do not want to work simply to live – they enjoy farming and want to save for their families and their future. This bill does not include fixes that are needed to help our farms and farmworkers thrive. The reality is clear, our workers will pack their bags and seek opportunity in another state,” said Jose Iniguez, vice president of Lamont Fruit Farms in Waterport and former farmworker.

“This spring, New York’s family farms faced some of the toughest planting conditions we’ve seen in years, and continue struggling to compete against regional and national competitors. Our challenges have been compounded due to recent actions by state officials who have endorsed policies that are fundamentally changing our businesses and threatening the viability of New York’s farm community.  We are urging the Governor to fix several flaws in the Farm Labor bill in order to support the future of New York’s growers, harvesters and dairy producers,” said David Zittel, president of Amos, Zittel and Sons in Eden.

“The Farm Labor will bring about unintended, yet devastating changes to our state’s agriculture sector. The farmworkers who work side-by-side with farm owners and their families want to see this industry continue to grow and diversify, and they understand they are big part of each of our farms’ success. However, this legislation will force many growers and dairy producers to lay off workers or cut hours in order to remain competitive. Far worse is that some will make the difficult decision to cease farming – and New York’s consumers will see prices increase and their source of fresh fruits, vegetables and dairy products diminish. We want to grow our farms, employ more staff, and continue providing the best workplace possible for our workers. The Governor must fix several flaws in this legislation in order to support the more than 30,000 farms across Upstate and on Long Island – and without action, he will be sacrificing those who were counting on him the most,” said Dale-Illa Riggs of The Berry Patch in Stephentown and President of the NYS Berries Association.

For a full list of Grow NY Farms campaign supporters, visit: GrowNYFarms.com

July 16, 2019 - 4:07pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, education, batavia, GCC, Public Procurement.

Press release:

Registration for the fall semester is still open at Genesee Community College, and there is a brand-new course available -- Public Procurement -- listed as course BUS194.

Available completely online, this course was developed and will be taught by Eve Hens, who is the purchasing director for Genesee County, and also a Certified Professional Public Buyer with an MBA in Project Management.

The course is the first and only online Public Procurement class offered in Western New York.

It will introduce public procurement principles and relevant applications, and integrate concepts from a legal, ethical and documentation perspective as well as include the latest best practices in this field. NYS public procurement policies and procedures will be the focus of this course.

The purchasing function, in any industry, is critical to the global supply chain and this course has been designed to prepare individuals looking to enter or advance in that role -- whether in the public or private sectors.

Government procurement accounts for a substantial part of the global economy and therefore, Public Procurement (BUS194) also serves the small and large business owner interested in contracting with the government for goods or services by providing a solid understanding of the applicable procurement concepts, processes and procedures.

As an online course, BUS194 offers maximum flexibility and convenience, requires no prerequisites, and can be taken as an elective as part of an academic degree program or on its own to bolster knowledge or advance careers.

This coursework and information can readily be applied to a broad range of industries such as retail, healthcare, construction, government, technology, manufacturing, film making and more. And with the median wage of a procurement officer being $32 per hour according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor-it also provides a sound career choice.

Additionally, in some businesses, it is a position that allows the employee to work remotely; in some cases from home.

"As Baby Boomers continue to retire in large numbers, the Public Procurement industry is anticipating more and more employment opportunities," said Lina LaMattina, Ph.D., professor and director of GCC's Business Program. "Students in any of GCC's business programs would also benefit from this Public Procurement elective, as they further prepare to enter the workforce."

GCC's semester starts Monday, Aug. 19, at GCC.

To learn more about BUS194 or to enroll in the course, go to https://www.genesee.edu/courses/schedule/.

The Business and Commerce division at GCC also offers the following 11 different degree programs including: Business Administration with concentrations in Supply Chain Management or Marketing and Social Media; Accounting; Business Administration; Economic Crime Investigation; Entrepreneurship; Tourism and Hospitality Management; and four concentrations in Fashion Business, including E-Commerce, Event Planning, Fashion Design, Fashion Merchandising Management and Office Technology.

"As companies continue to require their employees to perform a broader and broader array of tasks and wear multiple hats in the workplace, an individual with knowledge of the public purchasing function will add immense value to their professional resume," LaMattina said.

July 16, 2019 - 3:32pm
posted by Billie Owens in Le Roy, tops market, business.

Submitted photo and press release:

Today marked a new day for shoppers in the Le Roy community as Tops Friendly markets cut the ribbon on $1.6 million dollars in renovations in its hometown grocery store.

This impressive investment includes everything from new flooring, energy efficient equipment, and shopping carts, to a whole new interior décor, giving the store a refreshed and warm appearance. A Grand Reopening at the store, located at 128 W. Main St. took place at 11 a.m. today.

Shoppers found an expansion of Tops’ deli/carry out café areas with a remodeled seating area and bakery as well as a wider selection of natural and organic and gluten-free offerings conveniently integrated throughout the main aisles.

Throughout the store, shoppers also saw expanded refrigerated produce allowing for more variety and convenience, an increase of antibiotic-free meat and seafood selections, and a much larger selection of beers, including local favorites, in Tops Brew Market.

“I am so proud of the changes we have made to this store which will only enhance our customers shopping experience,” said Tom Brigham, store manager of the Le Roy Tops Friendly Market.

“You’ll find the store is designed to bring you more selection, more convenience, more organics, and more grab-and-go meals prepared fresh every day, all at a great value.”

Additionally Tops is proud to partner with more than 200 local growers. Some of these partners are family farms that have been growing for generations and many have been part of the Tops family for decades.

Fenton’s Produce, located in Batavia, brings our shoppers everything from corn, and potatoes, to summer squash, and peppers.

Tops has also been proud to support product grown by New York State farmers who adhere to the New York State Grown and Certified program’s requirements, which includes verification of safe food handling practices and participation in environmental sustainability programs.

An added bonus for Le Roy shoppers is the gas station conveniently located on the property. As customers shop at Tops, they’ll earn points toward fuel savings! Ready to fill up? Just scan your TOPS BonusPlus® card at the pump and watch your gas price drop! You’ll save 10 cents per gallon for every 100 GasPoints you redeem at a Tops Gas Station. With so many ways to earn, it’s easy to save 30, 40, 50 cents, even a dollar a gallon!

Le Roy Tops shoppers will also save time by using Tops Grocery Delivery services. With fast, online ordering, get your favorite items and the best deals in town that you love-delivered from our store to your door.

Customers can visit TopsMarkets.com/Instacart and enter their zip code to get started. Exclusive to Tops our customers can use the promo code "TakeOff15" when they visit TopsMarkets.com/Instacart and receive $15 off their first order of $35 or more.

July 14, 2019 - 2:48pm

From Anne Marie Starowitz, on the passing of Ronald J. DiSalvo:

I had the pleasure of knowing this wonderful family -- the DiSalvos. I taught three of Ron's grandchildren. His death is a loss for Batavia of a wonderful store owner and an exceptional family man. Thank you for your memories Ron DiSalvo.

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

An excerpt from "Back In the Day, Snapshots of Local History The Way I See It":

In 1949, Charles and Dominic Cultrara started the DiSalvo Shoe Store on a second floor over 111 Main St.

Dominic was then the podiatrist and his brother Charles managed the shoe store. Ronald DiSalvo, who assisted Charles in the shop, bought out his employer’s interest and managed the shop for his partner, Dr. Cultrara.

In 1973, Mr. DiSalvo bought out Dr. Cultrara’s interest and became the sole proprietor. In 1976, DiSalvo’s shoe store relocated to the Genesee Country Mall. After many years of serving Genesee County, Batavia lost another family owned store when DiSalvo Shoe Store closed.

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

The picture below was given to me by Ron DiSalvo when I visited at his home in 2015.

For the full obituary of Ronald J. DiSalvo, click here.

July 12, 2019 - 10:42am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Mama Chavez Taqueria, Le Roy, video, restaurants, business.
Video Sponsor

Mama Chavez Taqueria opens today in Le Roy. Owner Maria Chavez and her sons held a ribbon-cutting and an open house for invited guests yesterday. This is an authentic -- very authentic -- Mexican restaurant.  

Chavez has been cooking Mexican food, using recipes handed down through her family, for her children and family friends for 30 years. It's always been her dream to open a restaurant.  

The restaurant is located at 7 Mill St. and is open Tuesday through Saturday.

July 11, 2019 - 4:44pm

Press release from the GC Health Department:

The Genesee County Health Department has recently been awarded a grant to provide the hepatitis A vaccine to food-service workers at NO COST to them or the employer.

In Western New York and across the United States, foodborne outbreaks of hepatitis A have occurred as a result of infected food-service workers.

Brenden Bedard, director of Community Health Services for Genesee and Orleans counties, understands the severity of hepatitis A and the effect it can have on a business and community.

“Hepatitis A is a serious issue because most food-service workers will spread the infection before even knowing they have the disease," Bedard said. "A food-service worker can spread the virus to customers or other staff by contaminating surfaces, utensils and/or food, which can make unvaccinated individuals very sick.

"By offering the vaccine to food-service workers, we can prevent unnecessary illness from spreading in the community.”

Hepatitis A is a contagious (spreadable) liver infection that is caused by the hepatitis A Virus (HAV). It is typically spread through the feces (poop) of infected individuals.

Someone can become infected by consuming food or drink that has been contaminated by feces as well as having close personal contact with a person who is infected, or use of injection and non-injection drugs.

The symptoms of HAV may include sudden onset of fever, loss of appetite, nausea / vomiting, stomach pain, dark-colored urine and jaundice (a yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes). HAV usually does not have signs or symptoms until the second week of infection and is the most infectious during this time.

The good news is that hepatitis A can be prevented through vaccination!

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the vaccine has a 94- to 100-percent efficacy rate.

The hepatitis A vaccine is a two-dose series that is administered six months apart. As the vaccine is not required to attend school or daycare, many people have not received it.

Currently three local restaurants have taken advantage of this opportunity for themselves and their employees who chose to receive the vaccine. The restaurants who have participated thus far have all expressed gratitude knowing their employees can protect themselves and their customers from the hepatitis A virus.

Any food-service worker employed in Genesee County can receive the vaccine.

By receiving the vaccine, you are also protecting yourself from getting the virus if you come in contact with dishes and/or utensils that may have been contaminated by a customer or coworker.

Restaurants that participate in this opportunity will receive a certificate honoring their commitment to protecting the health and safety of their workers and customers.

Limited vaccine is available through the funding, so the supply will be on a first-come, first-served basis.

For more information, please call the Genesee County Health Department at 585-344-2580, ext. 5555. The department is open Monday – Friday from 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.

For more information on the hepatitis A virus, click (PDF) here.

July 11, 2019 - 3:07pm
posted by Billie Owens in tops market, business, Le Roy.

Press release:

LE ROY -- It’s a new day for shoppers in the Le Roy community as Tops Friendly Markets unveils over $1.6 million dollars in renovations in its hometown grocery store.

This impressive investment includes everything from new flooring, energy efficient equipment, and shopping carts, to a whole new interior décor, givingthe store a refreshed and warm appearance.

Grand Reopening at the store, located at 128 W. Main St., Le Roy, at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, July 16.

Shoppers will find an expansion of Tops’ deli/carry out café areas with a remodeled seating area and bakery as well as finding a wide selection of natural and organic and gluten-free offerings conveniently integrated throughout the main aisles.

Throughout the store, shoppers will also see expanded refrigerated produce allowing for more variety and convenience, an increase of antibiotic-free meat and seafood selections, and a much larger selection of beers, including local favorites, in our Brew Market.

“I am so proud of the changes we have made to this store which will only enhance our customers shopping experience,” said Tom Brigham, store manager of the Le Roy Tops Friendly Markets. “You’ll find the store is designed to bring you more selection, more convenience, more organics, and more grab-and-go meals prepared fresh every day, all at a great value.”

Additionally Tops is proud to partner with more than 200 local growers. Some of these partners are family farms that have been growing for generations and many have been part of the Tops family for decades.

Fenton’s Produce, located in Batavia, brings our shoppers everything from corn, and potatoes, to summer squash and peppers.

Tops has also been proud to support product grown by New York State farmers who adhere to the New York State Grown and Certified program’s requirements, which includes verification of safe food handling practices and participation in environmental sustainability programs.

An added bonus for Le Roy shoppers is the gas station conveniently located on the property. As customers shop at Tops, they’ll earn points toward fuel savings! Ready to fill up? Just scan your Tops BonusPlus® card at the pump and watch your gas price drop! You’ll save 10 center per gallon for every 100 GasPoints you redeem at a Tops Gas Station. With so many ways to earn, it’s easy to save 30, 40, 50 cents, even a dollar a gallon!

Le Roy Tops shoppers will also save time by using Tops Grocery Delivery services. With fast, online ordering, get your favorite items and the best deals in town that you love -- delivered from our store to your door.

Customers can visit TopsMarkets.com/Instacartand enter their zip code to get started. Exclusive to Tops our customers can use the promo code "TakeOff15" when they visit TopsMarkets.com/Instacart and receive $15 off their first order of $35 or more.

July 10, 2019 - 6:30pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Fresenius Kidney Care, batavia, business.

frensiusribboncutting-3.jpg

Nearly two months after a grand opening, Fresenius Kidney Care, on Veterans Memorial Drive next to The Home Depot, is still waiting on final certification from the state to become fully operational. 

Until then, the clinic cannot accept additional patients, said spokeswoman Madelaine Ronquillo.

Until the CMS certification is received, the clinic is open three days a week for approved patients. Ronquillo indicated this is the normal process for opening a new clinic.

The clinic's manager and staff are at the facility during normal business hours Monday through Friday, she said.

As for a real estate listing, found by an alert reader of The Batavian, Ronquillo said Fresenius has a 12-year lease on the site and the sale is a matter of the original developer selling the investment property.

The property is being offered for $2.74 million. The 3.8-acre parcel includes two other recent developments, including an urgent care business and a vacant storefront. The listed property owner is Morgan, 4181 Veterans Drive LLC, out of Pittsford.

Photo: File photo.

July 8, 2019 - 5:14pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in GCEDC, business, batavia, Provident Batavia.

scppoolsjuly82019.jpg

Press release:

The Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) will consider accepting an application for incentives from Provident Batavia LLC at the board’s July 11th meeting.

The company wants to construct a 13,000-square-foot addition to an existing 25,000-square-foot office, warehouse and distribution facility leased by SCP Pools. Provident Batavia is proposing to invest approximately $1.194 million and is seeking $156,000 in mortgage, property and sales tax exemptions. The project will retain 15 jobs.

Since the company is seeking incentives of more than $100,000, the GCEDC would schedule a public hearing if the application is accepted.

The GCEDC Board meeting will take place at its offices on 99 MedTech Drive in Batavia at 4 p.m.on Thursday, July 11th. The meeting is open to the public.

June 30, 2019 - 2:04pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Mr. Wine & Liquor, batavia, business.

mrwineandliqribboncutting.jpg

Mr. Wine & Liquor, long located in the Top's Plaza, has moved to a bigger location just a few doors down, and on Friday, the Rathod family celebrated the grand reopening with a Chamber of Commerce ribbon cutting. The ribbon was cut by the Rashod family mother/grandmother, Mukta Gulab Rathod.

June 24, 2019 - 4:29pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, Bourbon & Burger Co..

Bourbon & Burger Co. would like to let everyone know that the restaurant will be closed for remodeling July 1-4.

The business will reopen and resume normal business hours on Friday, July 5.

They would like to thank all their loyal customers who have been supportive of them and helped them thrive.

June 20, 2019 - 7:17pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in news, farm labor bill, agriculture, business.

From Senator Michael Ranzenhofer:

The New York State Senate passed the “Farm Workers Bill.” State Senator Michael H. Ranzenhofer (R-C-I, Amherst) voted against it.

Senator Ranzenhofer has issued the following statement:

“Today’s passage of the Farm Workers Bill is devastating to our local farms. It does not take into consideration the economic and practical realities of farming. I have heard from and met with both farmers and farm workers who have shared the crippling impact this legislation would have on them.

“This is just another example of Downstate legislators who do not understand the Upstate economy. This will impose hundreds of millions of dollars in mandates onto farms who are already struggling. Simply put, it is going to eliminate jobs and put farms out of business.

“Furthermore, I am disappointed that such a critical bill would be introduced at the last minute and not ever be considered by the Senate Agriculture Committee or reviewed by the public.”

From Senator Rob Ortt, ranking minority member of the Senate Agriculture Committee:

“Tonight’s passage of the Farmworker Labor Act is disappointing and further displays the disconnect between state Democrats and Western New Yorkers. For months, I toured farms across western New York and spoke about this legislation with hundreds of workers, employees and community residents.

Employers and employees alike pleaded that this bill would destroy small family farms. With New York State farm closure rates already triple the national average, this legislation will grow the closure rate and devastate the number one economic driver in New York.

My chief concern when Democrats took over the entirety of state government was that Upstate would be ignored. Incredibly, it has gone further than that and Upstate is now being attacked by radical New York City regressives. Their willing accomplices include Democrats from the rest of the state, the Business Council, and the State Farm Bureau, who – sadly – should have all known better.

From Gov. Andrew Cuomo:

"My administration has proudly fought for working men and women across the board, from raising the minimum wage to strengthening worker protections in nail salons and the home healthcare industry. We believe all workers deserve to be treated with dignity and respect -- period.

"Over the weekend, I issued a reformed farm workers bill of rights, which guarantees farm workers will finally be granted basic rights to protect them from abusive and exploitive working conditions.

"With the passage of this legislation, we will help ensure every farm worker receives the overtime pay and fair working conditions they deserve. The constitutional principles of equality, fairness and due process should apply to all of us. I am proud that, with the help of my daughters' years-long advocacy on this critical issue, we got it done."

From Grow NY Farms:

For months, New York’s agriculture community worked with a purpose to meet a fundamental goal of developing farm labor legislation that would protect the combined interests of farms and farm workers. We negotiated in good faith with many majority lawmakers who were interested in hearing from those who would be directly impacted by the legislation.

Political realities meant we had to come to find a middle ground that was mutually beneficial.

We thought we had achieved that goal with a bill that while posing significant challenges for a struggling Industry, it was a vast improvement than where we started. Unfortunately, there were some flaws thrown into the legislation in the final days of this legislative session that made the bill unacceptable. Despite the passage of this flawed legislation (S.6578/A.8419), we have not given up on finding a way to fix those flaws.

These flaws include:

1.       A requirement that wages paid on the seventh consecutive day of work – are based on an overtime rate -- if a farmworker waives their right to a day of rest.

2.       The definition of family fails to recognize the role of close relatives such as aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins – and would make their participation in farm activities subject to the new statute.

3.       The creation of a wage board lacks New York’s key agency expert on agricultural issues – the State Commissioner of the Department of Agriculture and Markets.

4.       Elections involving the ability to form a union lack the integrity of a secret ballot.

At this time, we believe it is in the interest of all parties to continue working together to address these flaws and move forward with legislation that farmers, farm workers and the labor community can mutually embrace and reflect the spirit of the dialogue and discussion that has taken place in recent months.

It is also important to note the significant role played by all the farmers, farm workers and lawmakers who worked to build consensus on this issue.

Grow NY Farms represents a coalition of more than 50 New York farms, organizations, and local businesses. To learn more, visit www.GrowNYFarms.com.

June 19, 2019 - 2:24pm

From left, Bill Hayes, Jon Bigsby, Rich Monroe and in back, Nathan Blowers, Turnbull Operations manager, all gather as Jon accepts Hayes’ offer to enter into Turnbull’s apprentice program.

Submitted photo and press release:

In the school world, June is a time for graduations, celebrations and awards ceremonies. This holds true for Jon Bigsby as June holds special meaning for him; he was offered full-time employment with Turnbull Heating and Air Conditioning.

Jon is a recent graduate of the Building Trades Program at the Batavia Career and Technical (CTE) Education Center. He is set to graduate from Alexander High School on June 27.

His decision to seek employment after high school graduation was easy.

“I like working with my hands and I feel that this is a good choice for me to enter the workforce. I’m honored to be working with Turnbull,” Jon said.

Bill Hayes is the owner of Turnbull Heating and Air Conditioning. In the past, Hayes has hired almost 10 students from the Batavia CTE Center’s Building Trades Program.

“I know that these students have the foundational skills necessary to enter into our training program," Haynes said. "I need skilled workers. The instructors in the Building Trades Program teach the students the importance of quality workmanship and that’s important to me."

Last summer, Jon worked for Turnbull and his work ethic was noticed.

“He listens, is disciplined, he works hard,” Hayes said.

After graduation, Jon will be enrolled in the Turnbull Heating and Air Conditioning 12-month certified apprentice program.

“He’ll learn how to thread pipe to actually doing installations and service calls. He’ll be working in the shop and in the field,” Hayes said.

Rich Monroe is one of the Building Trades Instructors at the Batavia CTE Center. He echoed Hayes thoughts about Jon.

“Jon meets the standards that Turnbull expects," Monroe said. "He is a hands-on learner and he will be embraced here at Turnbull. Jon fits the mold and I know the people here at Turnbull will give him every opportunity to be the best mechanic."

About Turnbull Heating and Air Conditioning

It is a Batavia-based HVAC contractor that offers residential and commercial heating, air-conditioning and commercial refrigeration service, installations, and scheduled maintenance programs.

About the Batavia Career and Technical Education Center

It is a program of the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership (The Partnership). The Partnership operates as a Board of Cooperative Educational Services offering shared programs and services to 22 component school districts located in Genesee, Wyoming, Livingston and Steuben counties in New York State.

June 18, 2019 - 12:14pm

Press release:

Norfolk, Va. – For the second time this year, the Delaware-Lackawanna Railroad (DL) has been chosen for a prestigious freight rail industry award. On June 11, Norfolk Southern Corporation presented the DL, a Genesee Valley Transportation (GVT Rail) subsidiary, with its Short Line of the Year award.

The corporate headquarters of GVT Rail is on Mill Street in the City of Batavia.

In bestowing this honor upon the DL, Norfolk Southern identified the carrier’s operational and business development teams, respectively and collectively, for conscientious customer service and commitment to growth.

“Our partnership with the Delaware-Lackawanna Railroad has resulted in significant growth across multiplecommodities and service improvements for both manifest and unit trains,” said Mike Moen, Norfolk Southern Senior Short Line development manager. “Their cooperation and efforts have contributed to amore efficient interchange and an improved service offering for our mutual customers.”

The recognition from Norfolk Southern follows the DL receiving the American Shortline & Regional Railroad Association (ASLRRA) Business Development Award for 2019. Presented at the organization’s annual conference, the ASLRRA award spoke to the DL’s boots-on-the-ground, "one carload at a time" growth strategy.

This strategy has created traffic volume growth of 510 percent in the 25 years since GVT Rail first came to the Lackawanna Valley.

This quarter-century of growth could not have come to pass without the partnership between the DL and the Pennsylvania Northeast Regional Railroad Authority (PNRRA), rail trackage owner and regional authority with which the DL is the contracted operator.

"The public-private model forged in Northeastern Pennsylvania has become a model increasingly used across the United States to save rail trackage that has been abandoned and was being liquidated by privatesector railroads,” said Larry Malski, PNRRA president. “The progress continues in Northeastern Pennsylvania, as evidenced by a 29 percent increase in carloads during the first four months of 2019 on this trackage."

Through these partnerships, and through public-good relationships with entities such as the Scranton Chamber of Commerce and Pocono Mountain Economic Development Corporation, freight rail is at the throttle of the post-anthracite economic rebirth of Northeastern Pennsylvania.

The GVT Rail and Delaware-Lackawanna teams wish to thank Norfolk Southern Corporation for this recognition.

ABOUT GVT RAIL

Genesee Valley Transportation Co. Inc. (GVT Rail) is a privately owned shortline and regional rail corporation based out of Batavia. Founded in 1985, GVT Rail has grown from a five-mile spur in greater Buffalo to a 318-mile network of five subsidiary railroads in two states.

Over three-and-a-half decades, we’ve set an imprint as an industry-recognized leader in business development and “friendly, customized service.” Be it restoring service to an existing industry or establishing truck-train transloading services, the GVT Rail team is always on the lookout for new opportunities to contribute to the economic renaissance of the communities and regions that we serve.

June 17, 2019 - 6:22pm
posted by Lauren Leone in batavia, business, The Hillcrest Estate, Pavilion, news.

“I find when I bring people here, I’ll get a parent who will be like, ‘what’s that?’ and we’ll go into a 20-minute conversation about the history of the house,” said Kate Wilcox-Rodwell, who owns a newly renovated mansion in Pavilion called The Hillcrest Estate.

Twenty minutes may just scratch the surface of the history of mansion, which sits on 120 acres at 1940 Craig Road.

It was built in the late 1800s in the Country Place Era, a time according to The Cultural Landscape Foundation, in which large, opulent residences were built by affluent families in pastoral settings, often serving as getaways from city life during the warmer months of the year.

The Hillcrest Estate has welcomed notable guests like President Theodore Roosevelt, Mark Twain and Ethel Barrymore.

And for nearly four decades it has stayed in the Wilcox family, which has hosted many public and private events for friends and family.

Kate Wilcox-Rodwell (inset photo below) grew up in the home and last year she and her husband, Matthew Rodwell, moved to the property to devote themselves to extensively restoring it.

The 32-room mansion is spacious at 9,500 square feet. It features 11 bedrooms, a grand ballroom, stone fireplaces and its original wooden floors. Historic antiques are showcased with natural lighting, bookshelves, flower arrangements and vintage furniture.

The estate’s grounds are groomed and landscaped, but they still feel walk-able and casual. The secluded property has a reflecting pool, covered veranda, tiered terraces and various locations suitable for photography like the woods.  

“There’s a lot of unique character here that you can’t get in a brand-new facility,” said Wilcox-Rodwell. “You can’t get authentic character everywhere, but you can here.”

The ballroom and lawns are available for weddings, bridal parties, corporate meetings, small and large social gatherings and community events. The ballroom can accommodate 120 guests, and the outdoor reception tent can host approximately 300 guests.

“One of the things I love about this place is the flexibility and different areas to choose from [for your event]. You’re not subject to one spot for one thing,” Wilcox-Rodwell said.

In May, the estate received a grant from The Landmark Society of Western New York Preservation Grant Fund Committee. This grant funds for preliminary planning and design studies for restoration projects throughout the region. Wilcox-Rodwell put the $2,000 award toward the development of a permit set to turn a portion of the estate into an event venue.

Upgrades to the estate include new landscaping, roofing, masonry work and an ADA-accessible ramp. To use the space to its fullest potential, the owners are renovating the restrooms, foyer and bridal lounge. Future plans include remodeled bedrooms for guests and year-round housing for the owners.

The Hillcrest Estate recently joined the Chamber of Commerce in Genesee and Livingston counties to enhance its business culture and grow closer to the community.

“I have to commend both of the chambers because they have been great — resources and spreading the word about what we are trying to do — I can’t thank them enough for that,” Wilcox-Rodwell said.

“They can really connect you with other individuals who share similar values because they’ve got businesses in their respective counties that want to grow and thrive and connect with other business owners.”   

The owners plan to also support charitable causes with their event space going forward. In September, The Hillcrest Estate will host the Town of York Historical Society to celebrate the town’s bicentennial.

Wilcox-Rodwell describes a rewarding part of owning the mansion as “being able to share this property with other people. There are people who live five minutes from here that don’t know that there’s this amazing house in their backyard that has all this history that 100 years ago was a big part of their town. I’m excited to share it.”

To contact The Hillcrest Estate, phone (585) 356-7164 or visit online here.

Photos courtesy of Kate Wilcox-Rodwell.

June 17, 2019 - 12:51pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in darien lake theme park, darien lake, business.

Press release:

Six Flags Darien Lake is currently seeking qualified individuals to fill more than 500 positions in various departments for the 2019 season.

Six Flags Darien Lake, “The Thrill Capital of New York State,” is one of the region’s largest employers and offers competitive pay, free park admission, and tickets for family and friends.

“Six Flags Darien Lake is committed to providing a fun, fast-paced work environment for job seekers across Western New York. We offer weekly pay, exclusive team member events, and flexible scheduling,” said Park President Chris Thorpe.

“Applicants who come out for our Job-A-Thon could potentially be hired on the spot. Additionally, anyone who interviews will receive a complimentary ticket to the park.”

The Job-A-Thon begins Monday, June 17 and ends Saturday, June 22. The Human Resources building will be open 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on those dates.

Candidates should apply online at sixflagsjobs.com to schedule their interview. Applicants must be 14 years of age.

Available positions include:

  • Admissions & Guest Relations
  • Food Services
  • Ride Operators
  • Human Resources
  • Park Services
  • Games
  • Retail
  • Marketing & Sales
  • Accommodations/Lodging
  • Lifeguards
  • Maintenance
  • Warehouse
  • Cash Control

For more information on jobs at Six Flags Darien Lake, visit sixflagsjobs.com. The park opened for full-time operation on June 14th.

Six Flags 2019 Memberships and Season Passes are now available. Members can enjoy priority park entry, preferred parking and tremendous discounts of up to 50 percent on nearly all food and merchandise purchases all season long.

Gold Plus, Platinum, Diamond and Diamond Elite levels are available featuring all the perks of a Season Pass plus other benefits including admission to all Six Flags-branded theme and waterparks, skip the line passes, unlimited soft drinks and much more!

For more information, visit the Membership Sales Center or go online tosixflags.com/darienlake and sign up.

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