Local Matters

Recent comments

Community Sponsors


October 15, 2018 - 4:45pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, batavia, news, Kmart.

The Kmart on Lewiston Road in Batavia is one of 142 stores owned by Sears Holdings Corp. to be shuttered by year's end. Liquidation sales are expected to begin soon.

The manager of the Batavia store, located at 8363 Lewiston Road, referred us to a corporate spokesman but we have been unsuccessful in contacting him to find out how many local employees will be out of a job.

There are about 700 stores currently open, down from 3,453 stores in 2005 when Kmart Holding Co. bought and merged with Sears Roebuck & Co. in a cash and stock deal then valued at $11 billion. The new entity became Sears Holdings Corp.

Sears Holdings has filed for bankruptcy and plans to reorganize its massive debt and reemerge on more solid ground. It reported liabilities of $11.3 billion and assets of $7 billion. A $134 million debt payment was due that it could not make at the time of filing.

Under the safety net of Chapter 11, Sears Holdings will be able to remain open through the holidays while striving to square away its finances.

But retail business analysts say returning to a position of strength and relevance will be difficult to do. Since the hoopla surrounding the merger in 2005, the parent company has struggled with anemic sales, crippling debt and shifts in consumer spending, especially the juggernaut of e-commerce. 

One advantage e-commerce formerly enjoyed was not having to collect sales tax. But over the years, most U.S. states passed online shopping sales tax laws. Even so, about half of all Amazon.com purchases, for example, are sold on its Amazon Marketplace through third-party vendors, and these purchases remain tax free (with the exception of Washington state).

More to the point, critics say Sears Holdings Corp. is not faring well because it has not reinvested in decaying stores; and it sold off iconic brands like Craftsman tools without giving consumers new brands and incentives to buy. The down slide has been going on for so long, they say, the retailer has become irrelevant and consumers are moving on.

Sears Roebuck & Co. started in 1886 and was able to grow by leaps and bounds thanks to its the proliferation of its mail-order catalog business, using the U.S. Postal Service to deliver goods from its Chicago warehouse to growing suburbs and the hinterlands beyond them. For generations of American families, stores coast to coast sold everything to everybody -- studio portraits and Goodyear tires, Kenmore stoves and Craftsman tools, home goods and engagement rings.

And the "Blue Light Specials" of its once-feisty rival Kmart are pure Americana. A store associate would announce a hot deal over the loudspeaker by saying: "Attention Kmart shoppers..." and the blue lightbulb would flash and for the next 30 minutes, say, there would be a deal in the Shoe Department on bags of tube socks.

"It's always sad to see a local business close," Genesee County Chamber of Commerce President Tom Turnbull told our news partner WBTA late this afternoon, adding that Kmart has been in Batavia a long time and he remembers when it was at the other end of town.

"But that's the circle of life," Turnbull said. "Others will step up and take its place."

October 12, 2018 - 10:39am
posted by Virginia Kropf in Bell Boyz Barber Shop, batavia, business, news.


Owning his own business was Roy Bell Jr.’s dream, and with help from the Batavia Development Corporation, his dream is coming true.

On Saturday, along with Genesee County Chamber of Commerce President Tom Turnbull and representatives from the BDC, Bell and his family cut the ribbon to celebrate the opening of his own barbershop.

His business is located in his home at 49 Buell St. in Batavia.

While working for someone else, Bell attended barber school and began cutting hair in the kitchen of his upstairs apartment.

With guidance from the Chamber and a loan from BDC, Bell was able to rent a house, remodel the downstairs and buy the needed equipment.

“I love this,” Bell said, standing behind his barber chair. “It doesn’t feel like work.”

He had no trouble deciding on a name for his new shop.

With two young boys, 8 and 11, who already take an interest in the barbershop, Bell chose the name “Bell Boyz Barbershop.” It is his hope to someday leave the shop to them.

He offers full barbershop services, including shampoos, straight razor cuts, hot towel shaves, facial massages and more. He would like to get into offering “diva curl,” a process of washing hair with a special shampoo, all chemical free, to bring out the natural curl.

All haircuts are $13 on Mondays and he plans to offer raffles and other specials during the week, such as $10 brush cuts on Wednesdays or bring someone in on Tuesdays and get one-half off the second service.

Bell Boyz is open Monday through Saturday – by appointment only. He will accommodate other days by request. Appointments may be made by calling (585) 300-1242.

“I want my customers to come as a guest and leave as family,” Bell said.

Anyone in the City of Batavia who is interested in starting up or expanding their business can ask for assistance from the BDC.

“The Batavia Development Corporation is excited to support Roy Bell and Bell Boyz Barbershop here in the city with loan funds for his shop,” said Rachel Tabelski, director of Economic Development for the BDC. “The entrepreneurial and small business spirit is a testament to the hard work and perseverance that we have here in Batavia.”

Roy Bell Jr. is ready to greet customers at his new barbershop at 49 Buell St. in Batavia. He was able to go to barber school and establish his own business with a loan from the Batavia Development Corporation. Photos by Virginia Kropf.

October 11, 2018 - 5:14pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, business, batavia, jobs, employment.

The Genesee, Livingston, Orleans, and Wyoming counties Workforce Development Board will host a Business Forum at the Genesee County Career Center in Batavia on Wednesday, Oct. 17. Time is 1 to 2:30 p.m.

This is an opportunity for job seekers to hear directly from hiring managers of local businesses. Job seekers who attend can hear about local job openings and employer expectations. Many of the job seekers that the career center is currently working with are invited to attend, however it is open to the public and would encourage any job seeker to attend the event.

Join participants for an informal question-and-answer session with hiring managers from several local businesses, including: Chapin Manufacturing; Lifetime Assistance; Premiere Genesee Center for Nursing & Rehabilitation; Remedy Staffing; and United Memorial Medical Center.

Employers' reps may talk about current job openings!

The career center is located at 587 E. Main St., #100, Batavia. Phone is (585) 344-2042. Call to sign up or come to the front desk to reserve your spot.

October 10, 2018 - 3:23pm
posted by Billie Owens in GCC, creativity conference, news, batavia, business.

Photo: Trace R. George, GCC Class of 1993, will give the keynote address at this year's Creativity Conference. He owns VSP Graphic Group in Buffalo.

Submitted photo and press release:

The Business and Commerce department at Genesee Community College has announced its sixth Creativity Conference to be held Wednesday, Nov. 14, at the Batavia Campus.

Under the theme of "Creativity in the Entrepreneurial Zone," the conference this year will serve both aspiring entrepreneurs as well as existing business owners looking to take their business to the next level. 

All attendees will have the opportunity to learn from the experiences of our community's leaders through the stories of their own startups and ventures. The conference will include workshops on "How to use Social Media to Grow your Business," "Building Creative Teams," "Developing a Creative Organization," "Personal & Organizational Impact of Creative Style" and more!

GCC has collaborated with the Startup Genesee Committee to put together an agenda full of learning and networking opportunities, inspirational stories and education. Giving the keynote address will be owner of VSP Graphic Group from Buffalo, Trace R. George, GCC Class of 1993. 

Small business owners or employees, entrepreneurs and the general public are invited to attend the conference and workshops. The cost is $39 per person, which includes a continental breakfast and delicious lunch. For GCC students, faculty and staff, the conference cost is $25 per person.

Seating is limited, so register today! GCC faculty and staff are encouraged to contact The BEST Center to register. Students are asked to register through their instructors.

Whether you are launching a new endeavor to taking your successful business to a bigger platform -- let GCC be a resource for your idea and your path to success! GCC offers both an associate degree and a certificate program on Entrepreneurship. Check out the options here.

For more information, contact Director of Business Programs Lina LaMattina at (585) 343-0055, ext. 6319, or via email: [email protected].

October 9, 2018 - 3:06pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, tompkins, insurance agencies.

Press release:

Tompkins Insurance Agencies has recently been named the number 1 insurance agency to work for in the Eastern region by Insurance Journal’s 2018 Best Agencies to Work For.

This award highlights the importance of competitive salaries, employee benefits, training and education, resources, and other employee perks as drivers of satisfaction in the workplace.

“Tompkins is a great place to work and that’s because of our people,” said David Boyce, president and CEO of Tompkins Insurance Agencies. “Our employees stay with us for many years and we even have multigenerational family members on our team. This speaks volumes about our company and our culture.”

The award is based on employees’ responses to Insurance Journal’s Best Agency to Work For survey. Tompkins employees made it abundantly clear that Tompkins’ commitment to serving its community has not gone unnoticed.

Tompkins offers 24/7 customer service, participates in numerous charitable initiatives in the community and serves its employees by creating a family-like work environment.

Tompkins Insurance Agencies operates 17 offices in Western New York. It is an independent insurance agency offering personal and business insurance and employee benefits services through more than 50 of the nation’s leading insurance carriers. Further information is available at www.tompkinsins.com.

October 8, 2018 - 12:29pm
posted by Billie Owens in Le Roy, Farmer's Creekside Tavern & Inn, news, business.

Submitted photo and press release:

Farmer’s Creekside Tavern & Inn is transitioning to seasonal winter hours starting Columbus Day.

As of today, Oct. 8, regular dining will be as follows: 

  • Wednesday -- Kitchen: 11a.m - 9 p.m.; Bar: 11 a.m. - 11 p.m.
  • Thursday -- Kitchen: 11 a.m. - 9 p.m.; Bar: 11 a.m. - 11 p.m.
  • Friday -- Kitchen: 11 a.m. - 10 p.m.; Bar: 11 a.m. - 12 a.m.
  • Saturday -- Kitchen: 11 a.m. - 10 p.m;. Bar: 11 a.m. - 12 a.m.
  • Sunday -- Kitchen: 11 a.m. - 8 p.m.; Bar: 11 a.m. - 10 p.m.

Farmer’s Creekside Tavern & Inn will still be open for overnight guests as well as prescheduled events, meetings and parties.

To utilize the facility for an event, please contact us at [email protected]; we’d be happy to host your next happy hour, board meeting, holiday party, etc.

October 5, 2018 - 1:29pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in news, notify, batavia, business, p.w. minor.


At 10 a.m. today (Oct. 5) Batavia's oldest continuously operating company, shoemaker P.W. Minor, ceased operations. Forty-two workers were laid off last week; 40 people lost their jobs today.

Local businessman Pete Zeliff, who, in partnership with Andrew Young, acquired P.W. Minor in 2014, still owns the company's headquarters and factory building at 3 Treadeasy Ave., as well as the production equipment. He was leasing the building to Tidewater + Associates. Zeliff carried the paper on the loan for Tidewater's purchase of the company earlier this year.

This afternoon, Zeliff said he foreclosed on the company last week.

Last week, P.W. Minor CEO Hundley Elliotte announced the company would eliminate 45 jobs, ending production of its welt boot line, but would continue with orthopedic shoe production.

This morning's decision to shut down the company completely came as a surprise to everybody.

Zeliff said he has no plans to reenter the shoe business, but he said there is some hope that investors can be found to resurrect at least the orthopedic line of shoes, and perhaps the boot line, and he believes Tidewater is working on finding new investors. We were referred to Elliotte for any questions about the future of the company.

We have an email out to Elliotte requesting comment.

This afternoon a customer of P.W. Minor's forwarded an email to The Batavian from Brian Benedict, VP of sales for P.W. Minor, that read, "I regret to inform you that as of 10AM this morning, PW Minor has ceased operation. There will be a formal announcement via email, but since you are drop ship customers who rely on us, I wanted you to know as soon as possible so you can modify your sites accordingly."

UPDATE -- Press release:

P.W. Minor LLC, a Batavia, NY footwear manufacturer, has ceased operations as of today and laid off all employees.

All assets of P.W. Minor LLC, have been transferred to our senior creditor Batavia Shoes LLC, per an agreement signed today. 

“Our focus through this entire process has been on our employees' well-being. We want to thank them for their dedication, loyalty and hard work.” said P.W. Minor CEO Hundley Elliotte. “We would also like to thank the NYS Dept. of Labor, the Genesee County Workforce Development Board and the local business community for their responsiveness and offers to help get our affected employees back to work as soon as possible..”

P.W. Minor, founded in 1867 and located in Batavia, New York, is the second oldest footwear manufacturer in the United States and the maker of orthopedic and diabetic athletic, dress and casual shoes.

October 5, 2018 - 12:00pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in GCEDC, Amada Tool, darien lake, darien lake theme park, batavia, business.

Press release:

The Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) approved incentives for Amada Tool and Six Flags Darien Lake LLC, and accepted an application for an expanded PILOT (Payment In Lieu Of Taxes) agreement to support the Ellicott Station development at the agency’s Oct. 4 board meeting.

Amada Tool in the City of Batavia was approved for incentives for an $8.8 million capital investment to increase the company’s manufacturing facility by approximately 19,000 square feet. The project will create 17 new jobs and retain 68 current jobs. The approved investment includes $2.3 million in construction costs and $6.5 million in new equipment. Amada Tool was approved for property and sales tax exemptions of approximately $266,000.

Six Flags Darien Lake LLC was approved for approximately $166,000 in sales tax exemption to build a new $2.15 million ride that is scheduled to open in 2019.  Six Flags Darien Lake LLC is one of the largest sales tax revenue generators in Genesee County.

The PILOT agreement expansion requested by Savarino Companies for the Ellicott Station development was based on increased capital costs, from approximately $17.6 million to $21.75 million, and the development’s footprint, which will expand from 73,100 square feet to 99,111 square feet. The expansion includes the addition of at-grade garages for residents as well as increasing the number of housing units from 51 units to 55 units. 

NOTE: The Batavian will have a follow-up story on Ellicott Station as soon as we have time to write it, which may not be today.

October 4, 2018 - 11:15am
posted by Howard B. Owens in BEA, business, batavia, elba, graham corp.


More than 200 local high school students, including students from Elba High School at Graham Manufacturing, toured local businesses yesterday for National Manufacturing Day, sponsored locally by the Genesee County Business/Education Alliance.

At Graham, Elba students learned about what the company does and how it does it during a presentation in the company's cafeteria. The students then toured some of the production buildings.

Other companies participating were U.S. Gypsum, Amanda Tool, Oxbo, Orcon, Liberty Pumps, and Chassix.



October 3, 2018 - 4:26pm
Press release:
October is Women's Small Business Month.
Please join the Mancuso Business Development Group as we celebrate some of our Women in Small Business on Thursday, Oct. 25 at Moon Java Cafe.
The evening will feature: Renee Smart from Moon Java Cafe; Lori Trader from Le Roy’s No Finer Diner and No Better Bed & Breakfast; Judy Hysek from Eden Café and Bakeshop in Batavia; and Kimberly Argenta, who is celebrating her 10th anniversary with Art Ah La Carte in Batavia.
Come learn about the experience of these women as they each took their small business from concept to reality, and maybe find out how you, too, might become a successful woman in small business.
The event begins at 5:30 p.m.
Moon Java Café is located at 56 Harvester Ave., Batavia.
Please RSVP to [email protected] or 585-343-2800 by Oct. 23.
Thank you to all successful women entrepreneurs!
October 3, 2018 - 2:33pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Ed Arnold Scrap Processors, corfu, business.


Press release:

At the Sept. 28 meeting of the GLOW Region Solid Waste Management Committee, Ed Arnold Recycling was recognized for its support of the GLOW Committee and its efforts, along with its overall recycling work.

Unbeknownst to the Arnold family, at its June 22 meeting, the Committee passed a resolution that noted, among other things, Ed Arnold’s valuable input to GLOW in GLOW’s formative years, the support they have given to GLOW’s efforts to promote recycling; and contributions to GLOW’s household hazardous waste collection from the time it began in 1996.

Ed Arnold takes numerous lead acid vehicle batteries and propane tanks each year at the collections at no charge to GLOW. Ed Arnold Jr. attended the meeting, not knowing why he was asked to attend.

Dan Pangrazio, GLOW chairman and Peggy Grayson, Recycling Administration, presented the award. Pangrazio noted that Grayson felt the award was essential that the company be recognized and Committee members agreed. Grayson added that at least in her 20-plus years with GLOW, and most likely since GLOW began in 1987, it was the only time such an award was given.

After Grayson read the resolution, Ed Arnold Jr. was presented with a recycled glass award with an inscription that read “In appreciation for contributions toward regional recycling efforts and assistance given to GLOW Solid Waste through the years” by Pangrazio and Grayson on behalf of the Committee. Arnold thanked the Committee and gave members an overview of how the materials collected are recycled.

October 2, 2018 - 7:41pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, steve hawley, unshackle upstate, business.

Press release:

According to a leading taxpayer protection and small business group, Unshackle Upstate, Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) was one of only two members of the entire Assembly to receive a 100-percent score based on a number of key legislative votes and sponsorship of bills during this year’s session.

The legislation considered covers a wide array of topics, including universal health care, business regulations, budgetary spending and environmental issues.

“I am honored to be named the state’s top assembly member when it comes to protecting taxpayer money, supporting small businesses and championing initiatives to grow the economy and create jobs,” Hawley said. “This is an issue dear to my heart and one I take seriously due to years spent operating our family farm and now my own small business.

“One thing has become abundantly clear over the past several years – Gov. Cuomo’s policies have yet to open New York for business and continue to drive too many residents to more tax-friendly states. Upstate businesses and tax dollars are the lifeblood of our state, and I will continue to fight against reckless spending, overregulation and oppressive taxes.”

October 2, 2018 - 2:51pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in dri, downtown, business, batavia.


Press release:

The City of Batavia is advancing the Downtown Revitalization (DRI) Initiative to create a vibrant sustainable city that is inclusive of all ages and socioeconomic situations. The $10 million DRI funding investment will be concentrated in the downtown area and eight priority projects are moving forward. The $10 million DRI will have a direct return of $60 million of private investment into the community.

"City Council has ramped up engagement of our community and businesses over the last few years with the Batavia Opportunity Area planning, the Comprehensive Plan and the DRI," said Eugene Jankowski, City of Batavia Council president. "We're now ready to move into the implementation stage with the DRI projects and onward with our vision for a better Batavia."

The Governor’s DRI competition is in the third year. The program fosters transformative projects in downtown neighborhoods. Here in Batavia eight projects were selected for funding including: the YMCA Healthy Living Campus; The Mall; Jackson Square; Ellicott Station; Carr’s; Harvester 56 Theater; a Building Improvement Fund; and Ellicott Place (Save-A-Lot building).

“Each of these projects is critical to the success of Batavia as a place that encourages arts, culture and entertainment, healthy living, and prosperity for all,” said Matt Worth, interim city manager. “The city will be working hard to execute on the Mall and Jackson Square projects and assisting the other winners in the process."

There are parts of Batavia that are designated as highly distressed with higher than average unemployment and poverty. However, the DRI, combined with the Batavia Pathway to Prosperity (BP2), a program to reinvest PILOT (Payment In Lieu Of Taxes) payments from all taxing jurisdictions directly into highly distressed areas, will help to combat poverty and revitalize brownfield sites. These programs offer a long-term solution to reduce blight, build the economy, and provide prosperity for all.

The DRI project investments will bring immediate change that you will be able to see and feel within the next year to five years. Grant winners will be working with state agencies soon to enter into formal grant agreements. The Batavia Development Corporation is hopeful that the $600,000 Building Improvement Fund "applications to property owners" will be ready in the late fall.

The grant will reimburse up to 60 percent of a project, and awards will range from $10,000 to $200,000, with eligible activities including facades, window/ door repair and replacement, painting, masonry repair, awnings, building signs, exterior lighting, storefront upgrades, roofs, and interior upgrades (heating, plumbing, electrical, walls, floors).

Rachael Tabelski, director of Economic Development of the BDC said, “The BDC is excited to get moving with Building Improvement Fund grant program. As soon as the state contracts are signed we will be able to communicate the terms and application process with property owners in the BID. We will be reaching out with direct mail, email, and public meetings.”

Beth Kemp, director of the Downtown Batavia Improvement District said, “As director of the Downtown Batavia Business Improvement District (BID) and having three of the City’s five brownfield sites within our downtown, we are committed to vision and strategy of making Batavia a more vibrant downtown."

Bob Bausch, chairman of the Genesee County Legislature said, “The DRI funding, combined with the other initiatives of the City and the County’s economic development agencies will continue to have long-lasting positive results for our community. The County continues to support economic development and private sector investment.”

Patrick Burk, Batavia City School Board president said, “At the school we are working hard to link kids with careers including STEM, trades, agriculture and other industries that are growing in the Finger Lakes, but we still have a dire number of students living in poverty and walking by brownfield sites every day. We understand and support the value of getting our downtown aligned as a safe friendly place for students to live and play.”

Steve Hyde, president and CEO of the Genesee County Economic Development Center, said “The Governor’s DRI competition gives Batavia an amazing opportunity to grow quickly and meet the needs and the demands that the development community will soon be putting on the city as the Western New York Science and Technology Advanced Manufacturing Park (WNY STAMP) starts its build-out. As a City of Batavia resident, I could not be more thrilled to be a part of the resurgence in Batavia and across our community. The creative class that will be attracted to WNY STAMP will demand city living with arts, culture and entertainment.”

October 2, 2018 - 1:47pm

(File photo of the Sweet Life Country Store.)

The Grand Opening of the Sweet Life Country Store & Oliver's Candy Factory in Elba will take place Friday and Saturday, Oct. 19-20, with tours, vendors, live music, giveaways and more.

The completely refurbished building is located at 100 S. Main St. (Route 98) in Elba.

On Friday, Oct. 19, there will be candy factory tours and plenty of giveaways, starting at 10 a.m. until 4 p.m.

Then on Saturday, Oct. 20, also from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., a trio of vendors will be on site selling their products: Jackie's Jams; Peg's Produce; and Vicki Price Jewelry.

Circle B Winery will offer wine and chocolate tasting. There will be giveaways galore and candy factory tours will be offered from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The official ribbon-cutting ceremony with representatives of the Genesee County Chamber of Commerce will take place that Saturday at noon.

Josh Hawkins will perform live music Oct. 20 from 1 to 4 p.m.

Everybody is welcome and encouraged to attend.

In an exclusive interview with The Batavian on June 14, Oliver's Candies co-owner and Vice President Jeremy Liles shared the 80-year-old company's plans to triple its confectionary manufacturing capacity by moving its kitchen operation entirely to the newly acquired Elba facility. (Here's that story.)

Those plans also included the 1,000-square-foot retail store at the front of the property that offers candy, ice cream, Oliver's custom-roasted coffee, country-style Americana crafts, and more.

(Below is a file photo of the new candy kitchen in Elba where all of Oliver's Candies are now made.)

September 28, 2018 - 12:43pm
posted by Billie Owens in job fair, batavia, news, business, employment.

A Job Fair that is free and open to the public is being held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 3, at the Genesee County Career Center.

It is located at 587 E. Main St. in Batavia.

Come and interview with these companies:

  • Adecco
  • Alpina
  • Chapin International
  • HP Hood
  • Kelly Services
  • Lapp Insulator
  • Lifetime Assistance
  • Oatka Milk
  • Remedy Intelligent Staffing

Additional companies may be added.

Bring your resume and dress professionally.

This is an Equal Opportunity Employers/Program.

September 25, 2018 - 1:31pm
posted by Billie Owens in assemblyman steve hawley, business, news.

Press release:

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) announced today that he has received an 88 percent rating from the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) and a 91 percent from The Business Council of New York State Inc. based on a number of key votes during this year’s legislative session.

Hawley’s rating puts him in an elite tier of pro-small business Assembly Members compared to many lawmakers from New York City who received failing grades. Votes on various topics pertaining to business were evaluated including taxes, regulations, compensation and labor issues.

“As a small-business owner and operator for much of my life, I know firsthand how important it is to cultivate an environment where entrepreneurs are cherished and jobs are created without costly tax incentives,” Hawley said.

“New York has far too long been known as anti-business, and that reputation has forced too many of our small businesses and larger companies to leave the state, costing us revenue, jobs and stalling economic growth. I am honored to be considered one of the state’s top pro-business legislators once again and look forward to making New York truly open for business."

September 24, 2018 - 7:59pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in p.w. minor, batavia, news, notify, business.

P.W. Minor this morning filed a notice with the NYS Department of Labor of possible layoffs and a possible plant closing but that doesn't necessarily mean anybody will lose their job, according to Brian Benedict, the company's VP of sales.

He said CEO Hundley Elliotte is in town this week working with management on a restructuring plan. Some of the options include both keeping the plant open and retaining all current employees, Benedict said. 

"As of today, there have been no layoffs," Benedict said. "By filing the warn (notice) we were just following the letter of the law."

All of the work crew today was sent home and they are not expected to return to 3 Treadeasy Ave., Batavia, tomorrow. Benedict said at this point he doesn't know when they will start working again.

"We will know a lot more by Wednesday afternoon," Benedict said.

In the Warn Notice, P.W. Minor informed the state potential layoffs could mean a loss of 42 jobs, or all 82 jobs at the plant and cited "economic reasons" for the potential layoffs.

Elliotte's investment firm Tidewater + Associates acquired the shoe company from Pete Zeliff in February. Zeliff and then partner Andrew Young saved the 151-year-old company from certain ruin in 2014.

September 19, 2018 - 1:00pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, news, batavia, revival salon, hair salon.

The official ribbon-cutting ceremony for Revival Salon on Sunday afternoon.

Submitted photos and press release:

Nearly 100 people attended the Grand Opening of Revival Salon on Sunday afternoon, Sept. 16th, located at 401 Ellicott St. in the City of Batavia.

The name Revival not only stands for refreshing one’s beauty, it also honors a very special lady and the goal to carry on her legacy. The great-grandmother of salon owner Jessica Levins was Viola Kulikowski, who owned and operated Viola’s Beauty Salon for nearly 70 years in the same space -- at the corner of Ellicott and Swan streets.

Levins remembers watching her great-grandmother at the salon and being infatuated with the idea of owning a business that was exciting and fun. Viola is not only with her great-granddaughter in spirit on this new venture, but within the business name. Viola’s nickname “Vi” is cleverly hidden inside the name Revival. Jessica’s mother came up with the name, while her dad designed the Revival logo.

Entrepreneurship is a family trait. The building at 401 Ellicott St. has been in the family since her great-great-grandfather owned a barbershop. In the mid-'90s her aunt, Pam Reed, owned and operated the “All Victorian” gift shop there. Her Uncle Mark Kulikowski, now owns the building and operated Southside Photography there most recently. Another Uncle Frank Kulikowski, owns and operates Frankly Design laser engraving just down the block.

Levins earned her cosmetologist’s license in 2014 and gained experience at a couple local hair salons. Her specialties are colors and updos. She has also worked for the past four years as a counseling aide in the Batavia City School District while earning her bachelor’s degree. As if starting a new business wasn’t enough, Levins is also continuing her graduate work at the University of Buffalo to earn her master’s degree and become a school counselor.  

Levins has three hair stations that she will be renting out to independent hair stylists. 

The Revival Salon is starting out by appointment only.

Before cutting the red ribbon on Sunday, Levins first and foremost thanked the key people involved with helping make her dream a reality: Small Business Development Center Advisor Sam Campanella; Batavia Development Corporation President Pier Cipollone; BDC Director Rachael Tabelski; BDC Board Member Chris Fix; Genesee County Chamber of Commerce President Tom Turnbull; Rick Hale of Genesee Plumbing; Brian Kemp of T-shirts Etc.; and Michelle Farina of Michelle’s Catering.

She also thanked City and County officials who attended -- District 7 Genesee County Legislator John Deleo; Sixth Ward Councilwoman Rosemary Christian; Fifth Ward Councilwoman Kathy Briggs.

Levins gave a special thank you to her parents Debbie Levins (John Deleo), Steve Levins, Stepdad Ed Popil, her sister Melissa Levins, grandparents, and all the family and friends who took the time to come and celebrate her Grand Opening. A well planned out celebration included plenty of food, games, prizes, T-shirts, hats, cups, and giveaways.

For more information or to book an appointment at the salon, call Jessica at (585) 402-9269.

September 19, 2018 - 12:16pm
Press release:


Governor Andrew M. Cuomo on Tuesday announced that $5 million is available as part of the first rebate designed specifically for the installation of electric vehicle charging stations at workplaces, office buildings, multi-family apartment buildings, and public locations such as theaters, malls, parks and retail locations.

The installation of charging stations for public use supports the Governor's ambitious clean energy goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent by 2030.

"New York continues to lead the nation in reducing our carbon footprint by aggressively investing in clean transportation methods," Governor Cuomo said. "By expanding public access to electric vehicle charging stations, this program will make it more affordable for New Yorkers to make the switch to an environmentally friendly electric vehicle, resulting in a cleaner, greener New York for all."

"We're expanding access to electric vehicle charging stations and investing in installation initiatives to promote electric vehicle use," Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul said. "Communities across the state are taking advantage of funding and programs to support electric vehicles, and this funding as part of the first rebate for the installation of charging stations at office buildings, apartment buildings, and other locations continues to advance our clean energy goals and help make communities greener and healthier for future generations."

Administered by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, the new Charge Ready NY initiative provides a $4,000 rebate per charging port for public or private employers, building owners, municipalities and nonprofit organizations to install Level 2 charging stations. Depending on installation costs and the model/make of the charging station, installers can save up to 80 percent of a typical installation's total cost. Level 2 stations provide up to 25 miles of electric range to cars for each hour they are charging. Charging stations must be installed at one of the following types of locations:

  • Public parking lot: must have at least ten parking spaces and be open to the general public at least 12 hours per day for at least five days per week. Examples include municipal or privately-operated parking lots or garages, parking at retail locations, shopping malls, restaurants, parks, transit stations, schools and other destination locations.
  • Workplace: must have at least 10 parking spaces that primarily serve a minimum of 15 employees who work at or near the lot. Examples include office buildings, universities, schools, and hospitals.
  • Multi-unit housing: must have at least eight parking spaces that primarily serve a building with five or more housing units, such as apartment buildings, condominiums and co-ops.

Chairman of Energy and Finance for New York Richard Kauffman said, "Governor Cuomo is building a comprehensive electric vehicle and charging infrastructure across the state to support the electrification of the transportation sector -- the biggest emitter of carbon than any other industry. New York is rapidly becoming a leader in clean transportation technologies and deployment across the state and today, we're making another move to get us closer to our meeting our emissions reductions goals."

New York State Energy Research and Development Authority President and CEO Alicia Barton said,"Through initiatives like Charge Ready NY, Governor Cuomo is helping New Yorkers join the clean transportation revolution that is taking place in our state. Combined with the Drive Clean Rebate, which provides rebates for the purchase of electric vehicles, this initiative is helping reduce emissions by making cleaner modes of transportation a possibility for more and more drivers."

NYPA President and CEO Gil C. Quiniones said, "The build-out of an extensive electric car charging network is key to getting more New Yorkers to drive low-emission vehicles and bringing New York State that much closer to its clean energy goals. Our new Evolve NY electric vehicle initiative focuses on addressing infrastructure barriers and our ongoing joint efforts with NYSERDA will help bring more fast chargers to qualifying businesses and nonprofits through our workplace charging programs across the state."

Charge Ready NY rebates can be combined with New York State's 50 percent tax credit for installing charging stations. The tax credit is applied after therebate amount received from NYSERDA. Charge Ready NY rebates cannot be combined with other New York State charging station rebate programs offered by NYSERDA, the Department of Environmental Conservation, the New York Power Authority, or other state entities.

The transportation sector is one of the largest producers of energy related greenhouse gas emissions in New York State. As a result, the state has multiple initiatives and programs designed to reduce these emissions and support the expansion of electric vehicles. For example,  the Drive Clean Rebate initiative provides New York residents with rebates of up to $2,000 for the purchase of a new or leased electric car. Since its launch, more than 9,000 New York residents have received rebates totaling more than $12 million.

This new initiative supports the Governor's Charge NY 2.0 initiative, which aims to have at least 10,000 charging stations across New York by the end of 2021, so clean cars can travel across the State with the opportunity to recharge along the way. The initiative also builds on the Governor's Charge NY initiative, which was launched in 2013 and has a goal of having 30,000 to 40,000 electric cars on the road by the end of 2018.

To complement Charge Ready NY, which enables public and private organizations to apply directly for rebates, the Governor recently announced a $250 million commitment by the New York Power Authority to accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles and expand electric vehicle fast charging stations along key transportation corridors and in New York City airports.

Entities interested in installing a charging station at their location can visit NYSERDA's website at www.nyserda.ny.gov for more information.

Reforming the Energy Vision

Reforming the Energy Vision is Governor Andrew M. Cuomo's strategy to lead on climate change and grow New York's economy. REV is building a cleaner, more resilient and affordable energy system for all New Yorkers by stimulating investment in clean technologies like solar, wind, and energy efficiency and requiring 50 percent of the state's electricity needs from renewable energy by 2030.

Already, REV has driven growth of more than 1,000 percent in the statewide solar market, improved energy affordability for 1.65 million low-income customers, and created thousands of jobs in manufacturing, engineering, and other clean tech sectors. REV is ensuring New York reduces statewide greenhouse gas emissions 40 percent by 2030 and achieves the internationally recognized target of reducing emissions 80 percent by 2050.

To learn more about REV, including the Governor's $5 billion investment in clean energy technology and innovation, visit rev.ny.gov

September 11, 2018 - 2:41pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, business, united way of genesee county.

Press release:

Today, the United Way of Genesee County’s Board of Directors announced that Erik Fix has resigned his position as Executive Director effective later this month. Fix served the county in this capacity for six years.   

“The Board of Directors thanks Erik for his service to our community,” said Theresa DeMars, United Way of Genesee County Board chair. “During his tenure with the organization he has helped to raise and allocate thousands of dollars to better our community. We are grateful to him and we are very happy for him and his family as he begins this new opportunity.”

United Way of Genesee County’s Board of Directors will continue its mission to motivate and organize people as it begins a search, in partnership with United Way of Greater Rochester, to fill the Executive Director position.

The organization is excited to kick off its 2018 campaign at the end of this month with the women of the United Way of Genesee County Board of Directors as chairpersons of the campaign.

“We have always been a very active board, and this provides another opportunity for us to make a difference for this community,” DeMars said.

For more information about United Way of Genesee County’s Executive Director position, visit uwrochester.org/our-team. For more information about the United Way of Genesee County or, if you are interested in giving, volunteering or advocating for the organization, visit uwgeneseecounty.org.


Subscribe to



Copyright © 2008-2019 The Batavian. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service

blue button