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February 21, 2019 - 9:38am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Oakwood Hills, batavia, business.

Press release:

The Genesee County Economic Development Center is pleased by the announcement today that Ryan Homes has officially broken ground on its new residential project in Oakwood Hills in Batavia.

Ryan Homes broke ground on the first of 56 new homes which vary in size ranging from 1,483 square feet to 2,190 square feet. Affordably priced and located conveniently to all Genesee County has to offer, these new sites will sell quickly.

The Oakwood Hills project will provide single-tenant living along with homes containing up to five bedrooms, two and a half bathrooms, and a basement. All of the homes are designed with an open floor plan that places an emphasis on allowing natural light to come into the homes. The homes will be affordably priced from the $190's.

“The growth happening within Batavia is undeniable, so it is extremely satisfying for us to be a part of fostering that growth by building more housing options for both residents and newcomers alike,” said Shawn Benzer, Regional Sales and Marketing manager of Ryan Homes.

The Oakwood Hills development is located within a community experiencing significant business activity. Food and beverage manufacturing companies have invested nearly $500 million into the Genesee Valley Agri-Business Park, and the next phases of development at the 1,250-acre WNY STAMP campus and Batavia’s Downtown Revitalization Initiative are catalyzing future growth.

“More people will be moving to Batavia and Genesee County as new opportunities and businesses open up, which means we need more housing options,” said Steve Hyde, president and CEO of the Genesee County Economic Development Center.

“Batavia is filled with so many incredible people and providing both current and future residents with beautiful places to call home is a strong asset in our continued economic growth.”

The new construction by Ryan Homes also supports Genesee County’s Smart Growth development plan and the need identified in county’s 2018 market analysis for new single-family homes. The analysis projects a housing demand for more than 1,100 new single-family homes by 2040 in a mid-range growth scenario for Genesee County.

“As we recently learned from our housing needs assessment, the rise of new businesses and attractions locating in Genesee County over the next 20 years will lead to a rapidly growing demand for new housing options,” said Felipe Oltramari, director of the Genesee County Planning Department.

“Targeted new home construction in Batavia helps meet our housing needs as our county continues to grow, and supports Genesee County’s Smart Growth development plan.”

Ryan Homes encourages interested prospective tenants to join a VIP list at RyanHomes.com to be the first to get information on the community and exclusive access to VIP-only offers like special pricing and incentives for the early birds.

For more information regarding the houses, visit oakwoodhills.co. or click here.

February 20, 2019 - 2:05pm
posted by Billie Owens in licensed plumbers, batavia, news, business.

Press release:

The following is the City of Batavia Bureau of Inspection's list of plumbers who have obtained their 2019 Plumbing Renewal License to do plumbing in the City of Batavia.

  • Arthur Allen, 2927 Main St., Leicester, NY 14481
  • Richard Biegasiewicz, 2 Burke Drive, Batavia, NY 14020, 344-0051
  • Jason Brownlie, 100 Nassau St., Rochester, NY 14605, 325-1290
  • Anthony Cellino 631 Bullis Road, Elma, NY 14059, 716-683-5874
  • Henry H. Cook Inc., 3508 Rose Road, Batavia, NY 14020, 345-0915 or 762-8064
  • Christopher Cook 3508 Rose Road, Batavia, NY 14020, 345-0915 or 762-8064
  • James J. DeWald, 300 Colvin Woods Pkwy., Tonawanda, NY 14150, (716) 832-1940
  • JW Danforth, 300 Colvin Woods Pkwy., Tonawanda, NY 14150, (716) 832-1940
  • Diegelman Plumbing LLC, 4995 Ellicott St., Batavia, NY 14020, 356-3438
  • Michael Dollendorf, 140 Cooper Ave., Tonawanda, NY 44150, (716) 873-5000
  • James Ficarella, 19 Warren St., Batavia, NY 14020, 409-5256
  • Timothy Fortin, 11215 Genesee St., Alden, NY 14004
  • Joseph Grasso, 2690 Wilson-Cambria Road, Wilson, NY 14172
  • Ricky Hale, 28 Swan St., Batavia, NY 14020 343-3805
  • Warren Herdic, 5769 Herman Hill Road, Hamburg, NY 14075, 716-913-5721
  • Daniel Johnston, P.O. Box 533, Batavia, NY 14021
  • Matthew Kandefer, 2215 Broadway Buffalo, NY 14212, 716-893-8376
  • Richard Lovria, 150 Ross St., Batavia, NY 14020, 343-4852
  • Michael Mager, 8939 Alexander Road, Batavia, NY 14020, 343-2678
  • Robert Marvin, Tradestar Mechanical, 764 Flower City Park, Rochester, NY 14615
  • Patrick McBride, 6110 Lake Ave. Wolcott, NY 15490
  • Carl McQuillen, 8171 E. Main Road, Le Roy, NY 14482, 768-2322
  • Fredrick Mruczek, 1 Valle Drive, Batavia, NY 14020
  • Thomas Mruczek, 3 Valle Drive, Batavia, NY 14020
  • Dave Muskopf, 3198 Union Road, Orchard Park, NY 14227, 716-681-6997
  • Mark Napoleon, 44 Morrow Ave., Batavia, NY 14020, 409-9961
  • William Penepent, 7182 Kenyon Ave., Basom, NY 14013, 762-8687
  • David Pero, Charles R. Pero & Sons, 121 Trumbull Pkwy., Batavia, NY 14020, 343-7011
  • John Pestillo, 8486 Seven Springs Road, Batavia, NY 14020
  • Erich K. Postler, 615 South Ave., Rochester, NY 14620, 546-7450
  • Alfred Rosemark, 27 West Ave., Elba, NY 14058, 757-9291
  • David Salway, 7100 Quinlan Road, Le Roy, NY 14482
  • Gabriel Sepi Jr., 25 Ganson Ave., Batavia, NY 14020
  • Walter Szczesny, 24 Wood St., Batavia, NY 14020, 345-1697
  • Mark Taylor, 8734 Stahley Road, East Amherst, NY 14051, 716-913-2023
  • Larry W. Toal, 3670 S. Main Street Road, Batavia, NY 14020, 344-3839
  • Ryan Toal, 3670 S. Main Street Road, Batavia, NY 14020, 344-3839
  • Joel Tucciarone, 202 Roosevelt St., Tonawanda, NY 14150, 716-696-6122
  • Francis Willett, 180 Genesee St., Corfu, NY 14036
February 20, 2019 - 9:01am
posted by Howard B. Owens in bdc, batavia, downtown, business.

Press release:

The Batavia Development Corporation (BDC) Board of Directors reviewed the agency’s 2018 results and set goals for 2019 at their last board meeting.

In 2018 the BDC assisted eight projects that invested $3.5 million and pledged to create 38 new jobs. The JJ Newberry Building, award winner of the Robert Macon Award from the Community Design Center of Rochester, was the signature project opening its doors in February of 2018.

“The BDC is positioned to help small businesses and building owners in the City advance their projects,” said Pier Cipollone, president of the Batavia Development Corporation.

“We are also working to advance the Batavia Brownfield Opportunity Area (BOA) sites including Ellicott Station, Creek Park, City Centre, the Medical Corridor and the Harvester Campus.”

Other planning efforts guiding the BDC’s work include the recently updated Comprehensive Plan and Downtown Revitalization Investment (DRI) Strategy.

“The BOA, Comprehensive Plan and DRI Plan were created through a civic engagement model that allowed input and direction from the community to create a road map for land use and economic development in the City,” said Martin Moore, City of Batavia manager.

“The plans identify some of the most pressing issues in the City including blighted, contaminated and underutilized sites, housing issues and recommendations to reverse these trends.”

With the DRI award of $10 million the BDC plays a critical role in overseeing and advancing DRI projects. Currently the BDC is working with all of the DRI project owners and multiple state agencies to coordinate and assist projects.

The BDC successfully launched the $600,000 Batavia DRI Building Improvement Fund and is in the process of working with applicants before final selections are made.

“The momentum and excitement of the DRI has attracted new businesses and developers across the City,” said Rachael Tabelski, director of Economic Development for the BDC. “We will start to see scaffolding and construction starting in 2019.”

BDC Board approved 2019 goals:

  • Secure capital/business commitments of $5 million;
  • Secure business pledges to create 25 jobs;
  • Secure a micro-enterprise grant/loan program for the City of Batavia to foster new start-up businesses;
  • Achieve the BDC’s 2019-2020 budget;
  • Successfully administer and implement the Batavia DRI Building Improvement program;
  • Encourage, enable and incentivize downtown building owners to add new upper-floor apartments and new residential living in the City of Batavia;
  • Participate in the City’s environmental investigation and planning around the BOA Creek Park site;
  • Continue to enhance the BDC’s value and build strong relationships with the City of Batavia government, schools, businesses and residents, and other economic development organizations.
February 18, 2019 - 11:52am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Genesee Valley Educational Partnership, GCEDC, business.

Press release:

The Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) has announced that the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership (GVEP) will receive the Economic Development Partner of the Year award at the agency’s annual business meeting, which takes place March 8 at Batavia Downs.

GVEP serves more than 24,000 students in 22 school districts in  Genesee, Livingston, Steuben and Wyoming counties. The Partnership offers a wide range of programs and services including career and technical education, special education, alternative education, instructional and technical support services, and management services.

“The Genesee Valley Educational Partnership has been instrumental in advancing workforce development initiatives in Genesee County and across the GLOW region,” said President and CEO of GCEDC Steve Hyde. “We look forward to celebrating the Partnership’s tremendous achievements as we continue to invest in the youth of Genesee County.”

GVEP played an instrumental role in bringing a new program called Edge Factor into Genesee County schools. Edge Factor provides a high-tech Web platform and creates high-end videos for students, parents, teachers, counselors and businesses that help introduce the stakeholders across the county to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) career pathways that align with the type of jobs currently in demand across the region.

“The Genesee Valley Educational Partnership (the Partnership) is honored to be selected as the Genesee County Economic Development Center’s 2019 Partner of the Year,” said District Superintendent for The Genesee Valley Educational Partnership Kevin MacDonald.

“We truly appreciate our partnership with the GCEDC as we create and develop new programs and services that are aligned to meet the needs of our communities, businesses and workforce. We are pleased to support the introduction of Edge Factor as a local resource for students to explore regional career prospects.”

The theme of this year’s annual meeting is “Investing in Our Strongest Assets.” The event will emphasize the GCEDC’s workforce talent development and shovel-ready site development achievements, and thank the partners involved in those efforts.

February 15, 2019 - 4:32pm
posted by Billie Owens in steve hawley, news, STAMP, business.

A statement from Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) on the decision of Amazon to axe their HQ in New York City:

“Talk about making ‘Open for Business’ a punchline – the governor and New York City politicians have failed to close the deal with Amazon but there is hope for Mr. Bezos: Western New York is truly open for business and we would gladly accept Amazon’s Headquarters to be located at our STAMP site.

“I have already been in contact with the Orleans County IDA and Economic Development Center in Genesee County to make this a reality and I’m confident our 57 local colleges and universities educating more than 300,000 students could easily accommodate their labor needs.”

February 14, 2019 - 1:48pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, Harvester Center, entrepreneurs.

Press release:

Come join Mancuso Business Development Group as we celebrate three of the Harvester Center's hometown business heroes!

These successful entrepreneurs will be sharing their real-life business wisdom, including their success stories, on Thursday, Feb. 28, at 6 p.m. at Moonjava Café, 56 Harvester Ave., Batavia.

Please come learn from the best! Whether you are already in a business of your own, or are looking to begin, this is the opportunity to learn.

RSVP to [email protected]

For more information, contact Bev Mancuso at [email protected] or call 585-356-3432.

February 13, 2019 - 4:10pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, business, UMMC, breastfeeding.

Press release:

United Memorial Medical Center (UMMC) has received prestigious international recognition as a Baby-Friendly Designated birth facility.

Baby-Friendly USA Inc. is the U.S. authority for the implementation of the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative (“BFHI”), a global program sponsored by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

There are more than 500 baby-friendly hospitals across the nation. UMMC and Rochester General are the only two recognized hospitals in Western New York.  

Earning the designation is a lengthy process that requires years of planning and preparation, followed by an on-site survey that ensures the hospital is practicing the “Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding.” UMMC is recognized for providing breastfeeding mothers the information, confidence, and skills needed to successfully initiate and continue breastfeeding their babies.

“It has been a tremendous journey on the path to Baby-Friendly designation and I couldn't be more proud of our team,” said Emily Callari, RN, CLC, EFM-C, who played a key role in the designation process. “The process challenged us to examine policies and procedures and transform maternity and infant feeding care.

"Our facility is now a pillar for breastfeeding support. This designation truly represents UMMC's commitment to providing the best evidence-based care to our community.”

There are numerous health benefits for both mother and child when it comes to breastfeeding. Research shows that babies who are breastfed have a lower risk of asthma, type 2 diabetes, eczema, infections (gastrointestinal, ear and respiratory), obesity and more.  

“We aim to ensure every mother is fully informed of the importance of breastfeeding and consistent care is afforded to each of our patients regardless of their feeding preference.  As part of the Baby-Friendly initiative, all healthy newborns at UMMC have skin-to-skin contact with their mothers immediately following delivery and receive ongoing breastfeeding support from a Registered Nurse (RN), International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) or Certified Lactation Counselor (CLC)”, said Linda Lee Stoiber, RN, BSN, IBCLC.

United Memorial Medical Center is also a recipient of the New York State Perinatal Quality Collaborative (NYSPQC) Safe Sleep Project’s Quality Improvement Award. This award was given in recognition of the hard work and dedication to improve safe sleep practices for infants. As a participant in the NYSPQC Safe Sleep Project, UMMC committed to modeling a safe sleep environment and providing caregiver sleep education during birth hospitalization.

These recognitions exemplify United Memorial Medical Center’s focus on fostering the most supportive environment possible for each family, while providing them with exceptional care and a personalized experience that honors their individual needs.

For more information about the U.S. Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative, visit www.babyfriendlyusa.org and to learn more about the New York State Perinatal Quality Collaborative visit www.nyspqc.org. For details about UMMC’s Women’s Care and Maternity services, visit RochesterRegional.org.

February 12, 2019 - 2:14pm
posted by Billie Owens in east pembroke, news, business.
Press release and submitted photo:

On Feb. 7, the Crosby’s location at 2594 Main Road in East Pembroke held its grand reopening for the public.

This renovated location provides customers with expanded food offerings with the addition of a new Sub Shoppe, offering fresh and delicious made-to-order subs available alongside pizzas, calzones and breakfast sandwiches.

The store also features a new f’real milkshake and smoothie machine and fresh-baked cookies are available daily. 

Crosby’s is also contributing to the community as part of the grand reopening festivities in East Pembroke and will offer a $500 donation to the Pembroke School District. 

The store in East Pembroke offers Mobil gas, and is open from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week.

Growing to Better Serve Customers

Along with updated store locations in Kendall and Barker, East Pembroke is part of Crosby’s ongoing efforts to improve new and existing stores to provide a more comprehensive range of options and services for customers. 

“By renovating and updating these stores, we can provide more fresh options and expanded offerings to our neighbors and customers,” said Doug Galli, vice president and general manager of Reid Stores.

“Crosby’s thrives in each of our communities by putting a focus on making customers our priority and being actively involved in the community beyond simply offering products and services.”

In addition to the new food, beverage and fuel services offered at these renovated Crosby’s locations, every store will also feature competitively priced grocery items, tobacco products and other amenities including an ATM, Crosby’s gift cards, fuel gift cards, money orders, propane exchange and a variety of New York State Lottery games. See each individual store location for further details.

About Crosby's

Crosby’s, a division of the Reid Group, is headquartered in Lockport. The company operates 84 Crosby’s convenience stores throughout Northwestern Pennsylvania and Upstate New York.

About the Reid Group

The Reid Group, founded in 1922, is a full-service independent motor fuel marketer providing a comprehensive range of products and services for retail motor fuel outlets and convenience stores. The Lockport-based company serves retail and commercial customers.

Photo of East Pembroke grand reopening, from left: Doug Galli, vice president, Reid Stores; Sean Tooley, district leader, Reid Stores; Assemblyman Steve Hawley; Lynn Bianchi, team leader, Reid Stores; John Worth, Pembroke town supervisor; Gordon Dibble, Genesee County legislator; Michael Hicks, constituent service liaison from Rep. Chris Collins’ office; Tom Schneider, Town of Pembroke Planning Board chairman; and David George, director of operations, Reid Stores.
February 11, 2019 - 2:37pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in michael ranzenhofer, farm labor bill, business, agriculture.

Press release:

Senator Michael H. Ranzenhofer has shared his concerns with recently reintroduced legislation, the Farmworkers Fair Labor Practices Act (S2837), in a letter to the bill’s Senate sponsor, Senator Jessica Ramos.

Senator Ranzenhofer is requesting that the bill’s sponsor garner feedback from the agriculture industry.

“For years, many local farmers have shared their fears regarding serious unintended consequences of this legislation,” said Ranzenhofer in the letter. “Agriculture is the largest industry in the state, and I believe it is critically important that local farmer concerns and the concerns of the greater agriculture community be heard.”

Senator Ranzenhofer believes that the proposal could have a devastating impact on local jobs and family farms.

“Simply put, the stakes have never been higher for farmers across New York State and additional employer mandates could have catastrophic consequences for many rural Upstate communities and consumers,” Ranzenhofer said.

February 8, 2019 - 7:55pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Downs, news, batavia, business.


Video Sponsor

Press release:

Batavia Downs Gaming & Hotel announced the official opening of its new Gatsby bar with a ribbon cutting on Friday at Batavia Downs Gaming & Hotel. The Gatsby bar is located just outside Fortune’s restaurant and will feature high-end bourbons, gins and other spirits along with other handcrafted cocktails. 

“We’re excited for guests to check out the Gatsby Bar for quick drink or appetizer before dinner in Fortune’s,“ said Vice President of Operations Scott Kiedrowski. “Alternatively it’s a nice place to get a quiet drink if 34 Rush is busy with sports or live entertainment.”

The bar will also feature New York State Lottery Games like Quickdraw and will have a self-service terminal to place horse wagers.

“This is the first phase to open of our new expansion,“ said Henry Wojtaszek, president and CEO. “This and those that follow will better serve our valued guests.”

Expansions for more seating at Thurman’s 34 Rush and Fortunes are due to open in the following months. A new look inside the “Park Place,” formerly known as the Paddock Room, is near completion.

“This is another banner day in the history of our facility,“ said COO Michael Nolan. “We pride ourselves on customer service and giving our guests what they want. Our expansions continue to make the facility a premier entertainment destination.”

February 8, 2019 - 10:28am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Graham Manufacturing, business, GCEDC, batavia.

Press release: 

The Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) voted to accept applications for incentives from Graham Manufacturing and Gateway GS, LLC at the agency’s Feb. 7 board meeting. 

Graham Manufacturing is investing $1.075 million for capital improvements to expand various properties at its campus in the City of Batavia. The company will renovate an existing 8,000 square feet of buildings, including an expansion and renovation of its 4,000-square-foot welding school to meet market demand for welders. 

An existing 4,000-square-foot manufacturing building also will be repurposed and the company will build a new 5,000-square-foot warehouse for storage needs. The capital investments will help Graham retain 291 jobs in the City of Batavia.

The company is seeking sales, mortgage and property tax exemptions totaling approximately $130,000. For every $1 of public benefit offered, Graham Manufacturing is investing and helping generate an economic contribution/ impact of approximately $5.90 into the economy. 

Gateway GS, LLC is investing $450,000 to build out the interior of an existing 27,000-square-foot speculative building the company constructed in 2018 at the Gateway II Corporate Park in Batavia. The project would create five new jobs.

Gateway GS, LLC intends to lease the space where tenants would provide input to the final buildout. Among the various uses that the building offers includes space for warehouse, distribution, light manufacturing, technology and commercial operations.

The company is seeking sales, mortgage and property tax exemptions totaling approximately $206,000. For every $1 of public benefit offered, Gateway GS, LLC is investing and helping generate an economic contribution/ impact of approximately $12.60 into the economy. 

“We are very excited to support two great projects that will have significant economic impacts for Genesee County and Batavia,” said GCEDC Board Chairman Paul Battaglia.

“These projects demonstrate the importance of assisting companies such as Graham Manufacturing that are retaining jobs and in the instance of Gateway GS creating new jobs and hopefully even more new jobs as they bring in tenants to their spec building.”

February 7, 2019 - 3:27pm
posted by Billie Owens in GCEDC, news, business, 2019 Meeting & Luncheon.

From the Genesee County Economic Development Center:

The Genesee County Economic Development Center will hold its annual Meeting & Luncheon from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Friday, March 8, at Batavia Downs Gaming & Hotel in the Paddock Room.

Cost is $25 per person. Batavia Downs is located at 8315 Park Road in Batavia.

To register click, here.

The GCEDC enjoyed another successful year in 2018 and its partners in business, government and education are spending 2019 "Investing in Our Strongest Assets" in growing the local economy.

The center and its staff looks forward to having you join them in celebrating Genesee County's economic progress and showcasing the next steps in their mission at the upcoming Meeting & Luncheon.

The event will start with an informal networking opportunity and the program follows promptly at noon.

Come and learn more about the accomplishments and opportunities the GCEDC is working hard to bring to local communities.

For questions or more information, contact Jim Krencik, director of Marketing & Communications at:  [email protected] or phone 585-343-4866.

February 4, 2019 - 12:51pm

From the Genesee County Economic Development Center:

Start-Up Genesee invites you to "Fall in Love with Franchising!" for the next Think & Drink networking event.

Join the Start-Up Genesee community and business consultant John Adams for a conversation about opportunities to own your own business and how to successfully get into the franchising industry.

This program will be held from 4 to 6 p.m on Thursday, Feb. 13 at The Generation Center, 15 Center St., in Downtown Batavia.

Afterward, everyone will head to O'Lacy's for a drink. To register for this event, so there can be an accurate head count for seating and drink token, click here.

In Genesee County, opening a start-up business through an established franchise means you never have to go it alone.

From restaurants to retailers in many industries, franchising can create a turn-key solution for you to focus your entrepreneurial energy.

Adams leads FranNet's business matchmaking programs in New York and helps entrepreneurs make the right decisions to achieve their financial and lifestyle goals.

February 4, 2019 - 11:30am
posted by Howard B. Owens in GCEDC, news, batavia, graham corporation, business.

Press release:

The Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) will consider accepting applications for incentives from Graham Manufacturing and Gateway GS, LLC at the agency’s Feb. 7 board meeting. 

Graham Manufacturing is seeking incentives for a $1.075 million capital investment for various properties at its campus in the City of Batavia. The investment would renovate 8,000 square feet of existing space for expanded workforce training and add 5,000 square feet of new space for the construction of a warehouse. The project would help retain 291 jobs.

Gateway GS, LLC is proposing to invest $450,000 to build out the interior of a spec building the company constructed in 2018 at the Gateway II Corporate Park in Batavia. The project would create five new jobs.

Since each project would receive benefits of more than $100,000 public hearings would be scheduled if the applications for incentives are accepted by the GCEDC Board.

All GCEDC Board meetings are open to the public. Meetings are at 4 p.m. unless noted otherwise and take place at 99 MedTech Drive in Batavia across from Genesee Community College.

February 1, 2019 - 1:16pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, news, GCC, annual fashion show.

Press release:

Genesee Community College Fashion Program students are continuing in their year-long preparations for the 38th Annual Fashion Show that is scheduled on Saturday, May 4.

There really is a sense of "LIMITLESS" for students planning the program and designing new garments, and also for the community who can participate in the show as volunteer models.

"LIMITLESS" was the theme chosen by the students this year to demonstrate the endlessness of fashion possibilities and the possibilities of embracing the diversity of the GLOW region. With no limits or boundaries, this year's fashion show will draw from both classic and fiery palettes and promises to be innovative, inspirational and inclusive!

It also gives the general community an opportunity to experience the excitement and thrill of strutting down the runway. 

Following the success of "Ascendant," GCC's 37th annual show in 2018, "LIMITLESS" will take place in the 24,000-square-foot indoor Richard C. Call Arena. With plenty of space to accommodate 2,000 guests with ample parking, the students are planning one dynamic, fast-moving production.

There will be pre-show interviews and photo-ops featuring the coordinators of each scene, and a post-show party and vendor market. Currently, students are not only seeking vendors to participate in this portion of the program, but models of all ages.

Models tryouts will be held in the Conable Technology Building at the Batavia Campus on: 

  • Tuesday, Feb. 5, from 12:30-1:30 p.m. in T122
  • Wednesday, Feb. 6, 4-5:30 p.m. in T119
  • Thursday, Feb. 7, 12:30-1:30 p.m. in T119

Attend any one of the three events above to try out, and preregistration is not required. Participants will be asked to walk as if on a runway, and those comfortable wearing high-heeled shoes should bring a pair to the tryouts.

The student production team is looking for age, ethnic, gender and aesthetic diversity in models. Ages newborn to 92 are welcome. No prior modeling experience is necessary.

If chosen, models will be required to attend a dress rehearsal the evening of May 3, as well as approximately three to five scene rehearsals as required by the scene coordinator.

To fully appreciate the development of "LIMITLESS," follow @gccfashionprogram on Instagram, @trendygcc on Twitter and the FBM (Fashion Business Merchandising) program blog at https://sunygcc.blog/category/academics/fashion/. Students will be sharing details about the show, their individual scenes and more!

Any business, organization or individual interested in an opportunity to support this year's Fashion Show should contact Debbie Mancuso at (585) 345-6830 or via email at [email protected]. Business donations start at $10, but event sponsorships are welcome at all levels.

Personal donations of $5 are available, and Fashion Program students will be delighted to schedule a donation pick up or make special arrangements for donations. Sponsors and in-kind donations are included in the Fashion Show Program as well as on the Fashion Show website.

Checks should be made payable to GCCA and can be mailed to Genesee Community College, Fashion Show, One College Road, Batavia NY 14020-9704.

January 30, 2019 - 4:17pm
posted by Billie Owens in Ag District 3, Le Roy, bergen, Pavilion, Stafford, business, news, agriculture.

Press release:

The state mandated 30-day public review period has begun for Agricultural District No. 3 in the towns of Le Roy, Pavilion, Stafford and Bergen.

The Genesee County Agricultural and Farmland Protection Board announced that Agricultural District No. 3 would embark on its eight-year review with a 30-day public review period beginning on Jan. 26.

As with every eight-year review, landowners with lands in the district under review will be asked to complete a worksheet where they will be given the option to enroll or withdraw property from the district. Only entire parcels can be included or excluded.

Landowners will receive the worksheet, along with a letter, informational brochure, and map of the current district boundaries in the next couple of days. Each landowner will have until Monday, Feb. 26thof this year to mail the worksheets to the Department of Planning in the envelopes provided.

This deadline also coincides with the deadline for the Annual Enrollment Period which allows for inclusion of predominantly viable agricultural land to any of the County’s Agricultural Districts pending review by the Agricultural and Farmland Protection Board. In addition, nearby landowners that are receiving Agricultural Tax Assessments and are not part of the Agricultural Districts Program will be mailed a letter and form inviting them to join the program.

During this 30-day period, a map of the District will be on file and open to the public in the office of the Genesee County Clerk and at the Genesee County Department of Planning. Any municipality whose territory encompasses the above Agricultural District, any State Agency or any landowner within or adjacent to the District, may propose a modification of the District during this period.

The District and any proposed modification will be submitted to the Genesee County Agricultural and Farmland Protection Board for review. Consequently, a public hearing on the District and any proposed modifications will be held on Wednesday, May 8, at 5:30 p.m. at the Genesee County Old Courthouse, 7 Main St., Batavia.

At the conclusion of this review, the Genesee County Legislature will vote on any modifications to the District and send the proper materials to the State Department of Agriculture and Markets for recertification. The public is encouraged to attend all open meetings.

By enrolling land in the Agricultural Districts Program, participating farmers can receive relief from nuisance claims and certain forms of local regulation. Enrollment is free and voluntary.

For a free informational brochure, please contact the Genesee County Department of Planning. Phone: (585) 815-7901; Fax: (585) 345-3062; Email: [email protected] Visit on the web here

January 30, 2019 - 2:07pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, agriculture, precision-agriculture.

Registration closes on Feb. 13 for the third annual Precision Ag Workshop focused on "Turning Data into Dollars."

The 2019 Precision Ag Workshop is presented by The BEST Center (Business and Employee Skills Training) at Genesee Community College, which has been dedicated to supporting employers and employees for more than 15 years.

The workshop is open to everyone and registration, which includes lunch and materials, costs $59. Participants can register by phone at 585-345-6868 or in person at The BEST Center, One College Road in Batavia.

The workshop runs from 9 a.m. 'til 3 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 20, in Room T102 of the Conable Technology Building on Genesee Community College's Batavia Campus and features keynote speaker Bob Stewart, management partner at Stewart Farms in Yorkville, Ill.

Based on his experience with finance, land owner relations and production, Stewart will present "Our Farm's Precision Ag Experience: What Works for Us and What Still Needs Work."

Keeping with the theme of getting the most out of Ag data, the workshop also includes:

  • "What Makes Sense Doesn't Always Make Dollars" presented by Aaron Breimer of Veritas Farm Business Management
  • "Remote Sensing and How it Works" by John Johnson of Agri Air Solutions and Agri-Advantage
  • "Does Everybody Get the Vision?" by Stephen Redmond of Redmond Agronomic Services
  • "Water Management -- the Key to Record Yields" presented by John Wagner of AgRePlan, LLC
  • "How Will Education Incorporate all this Data?" with Bruce Wright of SUNY Cobleskill Ag Engineering

"The data collected in the Ag industry is critical not only to yield and operations, but when analyzed and applied properly, can really take the business to the next level," Reid Smalley, executive director of Workforce Development said. "The BEST Center has put together this workshop to expose participants to new and innovative ways to employ the data already being collected and to maximize its value to any operation."

The BEST Center provides businesses and organizations with customized training solutions ranging from supervisory skills to technical training. The Center also offers numerous professional and personal development courses for individuals, including classroom and online opportunities.

January 29, 2019 - 12:32pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Tompkins Bank of Castile, business.

Press release:

Tompkins Financial Corporation reported record 2018 full year diluted earnings per share of $5.35, an increase of 56.0% compared to the $3.43 per share reported for the period ending December 31, 2017. For the fourth quarter of 2018, diluted earnings per share of $1.23 were up from the $0.16 per share reported in the same quarter last year.

As more fully disclosed in the Non-GAAP disclosure tables included in this press release, it is helpful to view comparisons to prior periods on an adjusted basis to exclude the impact of certain significant non-recurring items. Most notably, earnings per share and net income in the fourth quarter and year-to-date periods of 2017 were impacted by a one-time non-cash write-down of net deferred tax assets in the amount of $14.9 million as a result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. On an adjusted basis, year-to-date diluted earnings per share for 2018 would have been $5.33, an increase of 20.6% over the adjusted diluted earnings per share of $4.42 reported for the year ending December 31, 2017. For the fourth quarter of 2018, adjusted diluted earnings per share of $1.23 reflecting an increase of 7.0% over the $1.15 adjusted diluted earnings per share reported in the same quarter last year. Refer to Non-GAAP Disclosure tables for additional details.

Due to changes in the Federal tax rates between periods, it is also helpful to view the current period and prior period earnings performance on a pre-tax basis. Income before tax expense was $104.2 million for the year ended December 31, 2018, and $23.8 million in the fourth quarter of 2018, reflecting an increase of 9.4% and 13.5%, respectively, over the same periods in 2017.

President and CEO, Stephen S. Romaine said “We are pleased to once again report record earnings for both the full year and quarterly periods. The results are especially rewarding in today’s environment of uncertain economic conditions. During the quarter, our net interest margin remained relatively stable as growth in average noninterest-bearing deposits helped soften the impact of rising market interest rates. Our diversified revenue sources have served us well in volatile markets, as fees from insurance, wealth management, and banking related services provide a revenue mix that is less dependent on interest rates. During 2018, each of these fee-based business lines reflected growth over the prior year."


  • Return on equity was 13.93% for the year ended December 31, 2018, compared to 9.09% for the full year ended December 31, 2017.
  • Net interest income for the fourth quarter of 2018 increased over the third quarter of 2018, which represents the 15th consecutive quarterly increase in net interest income.
  • Net interest income for the full year was up 5.2% over 2017.
  • Total loans of $4.8 billion at December 31, 2018, were up 3.5% over December 31, 2017, while total deposits of $4.9 billion were up 1.1% from the prior year-end.
  • Nonperforming assets remain near historically low levels and compare favorably to our industry peers, with nonperforming assets representing 0.42% of total assets at year-end 2018, compared to 0.38% at year-end 2017.


Net interest income of $53.2 million for the fourth quarter of 2018 was up 2.4% over the same period in 2017. For the full year, net interest income was $211.8 million, up $10.5 million, or 5.2% from the same period in 2017.

Growth in net interest income for the year ended December 31, 2018, was largely driven by $356.4 million of growth in average loans during the year, an increase of 8.1% over the prior period. Average deposits for the year ended December 31, 2018, increased $89.7 million, or 1.9% compared to the same period in 2017. Included in the growth of average deposits during 2018 was a $103.5 million increase in average noninterest-bearing deposits, up 8.1% from the prior year average.

Net interest margin for 2018 was 3.37%, down slightly from the 3.41% reported for 2017. The decline in margin during the year was largely due to increases in market interest rates, which has resulted in funding costs rising at a faster pace than asset yields.


Noninterest income represented 26.8% of total revenues in 2018, compared to 25.6% in 2017. For the full year, noninterest income of $77.4 million was up $8.2 million, or 11.9%, when compared to 2017. Noninterest income was $19.9 million for the fourth quarter of 2018 and was up $2.5 million or 14.7% compared to the same period in 2017. Fee income business related to investment services, service charges on deposit accounts, and card services income all contributed to the increase over the fourth quarter of 2017. Declines in the stock market during the fourth quarter of 2018 resulted in lower investment services fees tied to assets under management, though the impact was offset by higher than normal fees associated with trust and estate activities.

Other income in the fourth quarter of 2018 included $2.5 million related to the collection of fees and nonaccrual interest for a credit that was charged off in 2010. Other income for the full year included a $2.9 million gain on the sale of two properties. The sale of these properties was related to the move of the Company’s headquarters in the second quarter of 2018.


Noninterest expense was $47.2 million for the fourth quarter of 2018, up $0.9 million, or 2.0%, over the fourth quarter of 2017. For the full year of 2018, noninterest expense was $181.1 million, up $10.0 million, or 5.8%, from the same period in 2017. Noninterest expense increases for both the full year and fourth quarter of 2018 included normal annual increases in salaries and wages. The higher noninterest expense in 2018 included lease write-downs of $2.0 million in the second quarter and $514,000 in the third quarter related to leases on recently vacated space. Results for the quarter and full year periods also include an increase of $1.5 million and $2.8 million, respectively, in professional fees, primarily related to investments in strengthening the Company’s compliance and information security infrastructure.


The Company's effective tax rate was 20.9% for the year ended December 31, 2018, compared to 44.8% for the same period in 2017. The decrease is a direct result of the $14.9 million non-cash write-down of net deferred tax assets recorded in the fourth quarter of 2017, which was caused by the decline in the Federal statutory tax rate from 35% in 2017, to 21% in 2018 as a result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.


Asset quality trends remained strong in the fourth quarter of 2018. Nonperforming assets represented 0.42% of total assets at December 31, 2018, compared to 0.38% at December 31, 2017. Nonperforming asset levels continue to compare favorably to the most recent Federal Reserve Board Peer Group Average1 of 0.61%.

Provision for loan and lease losses was $2.1 million for the fourth quarter of 2018, compared to $2.0 million for the fourth quarter of 2017. Net charge-offs for the fourth quarter of 2018 were $6,000 compared to net charge-offs of $281,000 in the fourth quarter of 2017.

The Company’s allowance for originated loan and lease losses totaled $43.3 million at December 31, 2018, and represented 0.95% of total originated loans and leases at December 31, 2018. At December 31, 2017, the allowance was $39.7 million and represented 0.91% of total originated loans and leases. Contributing to the $2.1 million increase in the allowance over the level reported at September 30, 2018, was an impairment reserve related to a single credit that was downgraded during the fourth quarter of 2018. The total allowance represented 163.25% of total nonperforming loans and leases at December 31, 2018, compared to 172.84% at December 31, 2017.


Capital ratios remain well above the regulatory well capitalized minimums. The ratio of tangible common equity to tangible assets was 7.81% at December 31, 2018, improved from the 7.49% reported at September 30, 2018, and the 7.24% reported at December 31, 2017.

January 24, 2019 - 5:51pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Alpina Products, batavia, business, news, notify.

Some potential buyer of the now-shuttered Alpina property in the Genesee Valley Ag Park is going to pick up an ultramodern dairy plant for a relative song, according to the man tasked with finding a buyer.

And it will sell soon, said Aaron Morgenstern, managing director of Harry Davis & Company, the firm handling the real estate listing.

"It's an opportunity that doesn't come along often," Morgenstern said. "I would expect we'll soon find a buyer. I'm 100-percent confident that it will be sold soon and I'll be surprised if it's July 4 and we're still talking about who will buy the plant."

Harry Davis & Company specializes in valuing dairy companies and handling dairy plant and operations sales. The company helped in the sale of the former Muller Quaker Dairy plant in Batavia when HP Hood acquired it from Dairy Farmers of America.

Alpina acquired the land and built the plant for $20 million in 2012. Over the next six years, Alpina invested another $50 million in buying more land in the ag park, adding equipment, including equipment for liquid yogurt production, and adding onto the facility in anticipation of increased production.

The fully automated plant will help the company that acquires it control labor costs; at full capacity, Morgenstern would expect the plant to employ about 100 people.

"Our goal is to find a new operator who will bring jobs back to the area and grow the facility to its full capacity," Morgenstern said.

Morgenstern said he couldn't disclose the asking price for the plant but said it's substantially less than the $70 million that Alpina invested.

"The value proposition is that this an opportunity for somebody not currently in New York State to get into one of the premier milk sheds in the United States," Morgenstern said. "Or it's an opportunity for somebody in New York to continue to capture this milk shed with a brand-new ultramodern facility."

Morgenstern said he's received about three dozen inquiries about the property from serious potential buyers since the plant went on the market last week.

In 2012, Alpina, based in Colombia, received $767,096 in tax incentives to build its first U.S. plant in Batavia. A large portion of those tax incentives was in the form of a PILOT -- Payment In Lieu Of Taxes -- in which Alpina paid a fee in exchange for reduced taxes on the increase in assessed value of the property. The amount of taxes due to the increase in assessed value graduates upward over the years, from zero percent the first year, to about 50 percent today.

The assessed value of the property $168,000 (commercial properties are assessed differently than residential properties to account for the depreciation of commercial buildings). CORRECTION: When looking at assessments, we only looked at one parcel. There is another parcel that Alpina owns with an assessed value of $4.2 million.

Jim Krencik, spokesman for the Genesee County Economic Development Center, said the GCEDC board has the option, under the PILOT agreement, to adjust the agreement, or even cancel the PILOT, to increase the tax bill to 100 percent of assessed value.

A potential pitfall of canceling the PILOT is that a new owner would not be eligible for a continued tax abatement. The board keeps the PILOT in place but adjusts the taxable amount, another company could get a new PILOT agreement. A canceled PILOT agreement potentially makes the property less marketable.

The Batavian contacted four of the five current GCEDC board members and all said they wanted to reserve comment on the status of the PILOT until they had more information.

The board doesn't meet again until February and the time period for making a decision about the future of the PILOT is February and March.

"As we move forward with the site, I’m keeping in mind that any decision regarding the PILOT is within a larger effort to continue to bring more capital investment and job growth at the Alpina site, the Ag Park and Genesee County," Krencik said.

If the amount of taxes due under the PILOT were adjusted, it wouldn't take effect until the tax years for municipalities and school districts, and if Morgenstern's prediction of a quick sale is correct, the issue would become moot.

When Muller Quaker sold its $200 million plant to DFA, DFA didn't immediately decide what to do with the plant and it sat vacant for more than a year. In that case, the GCEDC board adjusted the PILOT and DFA paid more than $655,000 in additional taxes to local governments in 2017. When HP Hood acquired the plant, the PILOT benefits were extended to Hood.

January 24, 2019 - 11:25am
posted by Virginia Kropf in One Hope, Harvester Center, batavia, news, business.


Sarah Veazey has always had an entrepreneurial mindset, and now that she has started her own business, her passion is giving back to the community.

Veazey has opened a wine tasting venue in Harvester Center called “One Hope.”

The name alludes to Veazey’s desire to help nonprofits achieve their goals, and every month she will choose a nonprofit organization to benefit from the profits of her wine tastings.

Her business is named after a California winery.

“I searched for a wine that gives back,” Veazey said. “Every wine has a different nonprofit organization that funds will go to.”

In addition, for every private in-home tasting or business-after-hours event, Veazey will donate 10 percent to a local nonprofit.

On Feb. 16, she will host a couples’ wine and beer tasting from 3 to 6 p.m. to benefit Crossroads House.

“I have also been a volunteer coordinator for Crossroads House, so I know their need,” she said.         

A native of Oakfield, Veazey has always had a passion for wine and previously worked as manager of A Gust of Sun Winery in Spencerport.

“I gained a lot of experience there,” she said.

One of her goals is to have local artists exhibit their work at her business, and she already has several artists’ works on display.

On Saturday, Veazey has planned a Sip & Shop from 5 to 9 p.m. to benefit the family of a Corfu girl who was born on June 20 at Golisano’s Children’s Hospital with numerous medical problems. The event will help the family with their mounting medical bills.

Every third Wednesday, Veazey offers “Rest and Relaxation,” featuring massages and psychic mediums.

One evening she may have gallery readings with groups.

Next month she will have yoga one week. By spring, she hopes to be able to offer a soup and salad bar and, eventually, a reasonable Sunday brunch.

“I’m full of ideas,” she said.

Plans for Valentine’s Day include a wine and chocolate tasting.

Regular tasting room hours are from 2 to 7 p.m. Thursday and 2 to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

Information on tickets for her events may be found on her Facebook page at Facebook.com/wnyonehope.


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