Local Matters

Community Sponsors

July 31, 2019 - 12:52pm

Press release:

Seventy-two years ago, Henry J. Mager founded Arctic Refrigeration in his garage. Over a span of 60 years, he built the Batavia company into a successful mechanical contracting firm. Mager never obtained a college degree, but he could engineer a solution to any obstacle that posed a problem.

He was constantly thinking of better ways to do things, and inventing ways to do them.

In 2009, Henry passed away from a lengthy battle with cancer. His legacy lives on, and the Cedar Street business he built is looking to give back to the community.

In hopes of maintaining this legacy, to promote technical (trade) education to future generations, and support local cancer-based charities, the Mager Family and Arctic Refrigeration have hosted a charity golf tournament every year since Henry's passing.

The scholarship and charitable donations are funded entirely by community fundraising and local corporate donations though the golf tournament. This is the 10th year for the annual Henry J. Mager Memorial Scholarship Golf Tournament, which will be hosted by Terry Hills Golf Course on Sept. 7th.

In the United States today, we are at an emergency level of underemployment in the building trades. People entering the job market as plumbers, electricians, carpenters, welders and mechanics is at an all-time low.

We hope to promote the trades, and encourage our youth to enter these fields. Traditionally, we offer at least one $1,000 scholarship to an area youth who decides to pursue a technical or trade education; many years we've given two of these awards as the applicants were very impressive.

Do you know of an area youth that may be interested in entering the building trades? We humbly ask teachers, counselors, aunts and uncles, friends and parents to nominate the recipients, as we find many trade students will not apply themselves.

Would you or your business like to support the trades in our area? We are now accepting golfers, sponsors and prize donations for our tournament on Sept 7th.

Sponsorship opportunities include:

  • Corporate Sponsorship -- $450 -- Hole sponsorship, corporate name and logo on promotional materials, golf foursome with gift bags, drinks (beer, water, soda), lunch for four, chicken dinner for four, awards presentation;
  • Team Entry -- $375 -- Golf foursome with gift bags, drinks (beer, water, soda), lunch for four, chicken dinner for four, awards presentation;
  • Hole Sponsorship -- $175 -- Sponsor a hole on the golf course, designated by your corporate sign, corporate name and logo on promotional materials, chicken dinner for two (please confirm dinner with payment), award presentation (no golf included in this option).

On the day of the event, registration and lunch begins at noon. Shotgun start is at 1 p.m. The tournament features 18 holes of golf with cart and scramble scoring. Chicken dinner, with awards and raffles, to follow. All proceeds benefit Henry J. Mager Scholarship Fund and a donation to Roswell Park Cancer Institute.

For golfer information, sponsor information, or to donate to the scholarship, please contact:

Jon Mager: [email protected]

or

Teresa Tamfer: [email protected]

As we enter our 10th year, we truly thank each and every one of you who have helped, donated and supported us.

July 31, 2019 - 12:19pm
posted by Billie Owens in hlom, d&r depot, Le Roy, business, Wonderland of Trees.

In photo, from left: Ryan Duffy, director HLOM; Kathy Jasinski, committee member; Sean Valdes, co-owner of D&R Depot; Alice Chapell, committee member; and Linda Johnston, committee member.

Submitted photo and press release:

CHRISTMAS IN AUGUST? While some people are taking vacations and enjoying the summer, several dedicated volunteers at the Holland Land Office Museum are preparing for the 2019 Wonderland of Tree’s Gala Opening on Friday, Nov. 22nd. Pictured above are some members of the Wonderland of Tree’s Committee, who recently met at the D&R Depot in Le Roy to discuss the menu for the upcoming Gala with Sean Valdes, co-owner of the restaurant and catering service.

D&R Depot will be catering the 2019 Wonderland of Tree’s Gala Opening.

The Wonderland of Trees Gala Opening, at the historic Holland Land Office Museum, kicks off the holiday season for the Genesee County Community. It will have the traditional display of trees, music and great food that people have enjoyed over the past 16 years. Many new ideas are being incorporated into the regular Gala to provide a wonderful holiday event for everyone.

More information will be available soon -- you can call the Holland Land Office if you are interested in setting up a tree at 343-4727.

July 31, 2019 - 10:59am
posted by Howard B. Owens in onions, mucklands, elba, business, argriculture.

ipm_award2019whole_group.jpg

Press release: 

Elba onion growers Matt Mortellaro, Guy Smith, Chuck Barie, Emmaline Long, and Mark and Max Torrey received an Excellence in Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Award from the New York State Integrated Pest Management Program (NYSIPM). The six are muck onion farmers in Elba, who meet weekly during the growing season for what is known as Muck Donut Hour, to discuss crop protection tactics.

Onions grown in muck soil — organically rich former swampland where production practices are unique and intense — are one of the most valuable crops in New York, with an average value of $34.6 million. In the Elba muck and surrounding pockets in Orleans, Genesee, and Livingston counties, eight farms produce 40 percent of the New York onion acreage on 3,000 acres. Mortellaro, Triple G, CY, and Big O farms account for almost 75 percent of that production.

In 2005, onion thrips infestations were nearly uncontrollable in New York. Populations of the vegetable-loving insect were resistant to multiple insecticides, and the hot and dry conditions created a worst-case scenario, causing crop losses exceeding 30 percent. The Elba muck growers helped Cornell researchers conduct dozens of research trials and host large-scale demonstrations on their land, in an attempt to understand the biology, ecology, and management of thrips.

“The result culminated in a practical thrips management program, which includes regular scouting of onion fields followed by sparing use of insecticides designed to minimize resistance,” said Brian Nault, professor of Entomology at Cornell AgriTech.

The Elba growers are now able to successfully manage their thrips infestations. They average between one and four fewer insecticide applications and have saved an average of $113/acre, which is approximately $6,000-$226,000 per farm per year.

In addition to regular scouting, the other key tool in the IPM arsenal is information exchange and discussions at the Muck Donut Hour, which Christy Hoepting, senior extension associate with the Cornell Vegetable Program, describes as a way she keeps her "finger on the pulse" of the pest complex each year.

A CCE tradition for more than years, the Muck Donut Hour is held weekly during the growing season. There growers and researchers discuss the latest research findings, scouting and spray reports. Hoepting notes the willingness of the muck onion farmers to entrust their crops to Cornell’s research, and their transparency in sharing spray records.

She continues: “the Elba growers are undeniably brave; to so wholeheartedly adopt IPM practices demonstrates the extent of their faith in Cornell’s research on their farms. The risk of a pest spiraling out of control in a high-value onion crop is frightening. Clearly, these growers believe in solid science and go above and beyond to support it.”

Steven Beer, professor emeritus of Plant Pathology and Plant-Microbe Biology at Cornell University, says, “without the cooperation of the Elba onion growers, it is not likely that so many IPM-themed tactics would have been adequately tested under real grower conditions. They set the standard for other growers.”

The Elba muck onion farmers are Matt Mortellaro, a third-generation muck farmer and co-owner of G. Mortellaro & Sons, with his brother Paul.

“Matt is a fearless leader in adopting IPM strategies," adds Hoepting. "He is committed to sustainable onion production and environmental stewardship, and is a strong advocate of onion IPM."

Guy Smith, a fourth-generation muck farmer, owns Triple G Farms with his brother Greg and nephew Gary. Guy Smith represents the Elba growing region on the Board of Directors for the New York Onion Research and Development Program.

Chuck Barie and Emmaline Long are Crop Production Managers for CY Farms LLC, which grows 120 acres in Batavia and Elba. Barie has been responsible for planting, spraying, irrigating and harvesting the onions for more than years. Long joined the farm in 2014, after graduating from Cornell; she scouts CY’s entire onion acreage weekly, including counting thrips, to implement IPM.

Together, she and Barie make pest management decisions. CY has the ability to micromanage every 5-20 acre onion field based on each area’s precise pest management needs.

Mark and Max Torrey are a father and son onion growing duo, and 11th and 12th generation farmers with Torrey Farms Inc. Max serves as the General Manager for Torrey’s onion operation, Big O Farms.

As the largest grower in Elba, the Torrey’s pest management practices affect everyone.

“Their commitment to implementing resistance management strategies and following IPM spray thresholds has been instrumental in preserving the longevity of insecticides remaining effective against thrips,” Hoepting says.

The award was presented to the pioneering growers during their Muck Donut Hour on Tuesday, July 30.

July 29, 2019 - 11:09am
posted by Howard B. Owens in GCEDC, Graham Manufacturing, business.

Press release:

The Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) will consider approving incentives for Graham Manufacturing and accepting an application for incentives from Wendt Propane at the board’s Aug. 1 meeting.

Graham Manufacturing plans to invest $1.67 million on three projects at its City of Batavia campus, including expanding the company’s welding school, repurposing an existing 4,000-square-foot structure and construction of a new 8,875-square-foot warehouse. The company is seeking sales, mortgage and property tax exemptions of approximately $210,000.

Wendt Propane, based in Sanborn in Niagara County, has submitted an application for incentives to build a new 9,600-square-foot facility in the Town of Le Roy. The $1.3 million project would create four new jobs. The company is seeking sales, mortgage and property tax exemptions of approximately $125,000.

The GCEDC Board meeting will take place at its offices on 99 MedTech Drive in Batavia at 3 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 1. The meeting is open to the public.

July 26, 2019 - 2:47pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Downs, business, marketing.

Press release:

Representatives from Batavia Downs are pleased to announce they have received two Romero trophies during the closing ceremonies of the Casino Marketing and Technology Conference in Las Vegas.

The Romero Awards honor excellence in gaming marketing and are named for gaming marketing pioneer John Romero. Awards are given in two size categories (above or below 1000 gaming positions) in several different marketing categories. The winners are selected by an independent panel of expert judges.

Lindsay Matikosh, Batavia Downs’ Promotions Manager, was on hand to receive the trophies as they were awarded.

A Gold Trophy was received for Batavia's Fall Ball Promotion. An Honorable Mention trophy was won by the company’s “Best Seat in the House” promotion, whereby texters into the Batavia Downs Text Club could find themselves sitting on the Max Pies Furniture couch for a concert at last year’s summer concert series.

Batavia Downs’ host supervisor, Mikala Phillips, was part of a group that won the Team Challenge Championship. As part of a five-person team, she and her teammates were presented with a problem that they needed to solve by working together in just a matter of hours. They then presented their solution to a panel of judges with over one hundred people in the audience.

"Everyone at our facility shares in these awards," said Ryan Hasenauer, director of Marketing at Batavia Downs Gaming. "All departments were involved in either the creation, promotion or the execution of our events.

"The trophies will be added to our display case near Player's Club for all to see. We are also proud of Mikala for winning an individual award. Staff is looking forward to her sharing all she learned at the conference with us."

July 23, 2019 - 2:35pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, bergen, liberty pumps.

robynbrookhartlibrtypumps.jpgLiberty’s Board of Directors elected Robyn Brookhart, of Bergen, to the position at its June meeting. She replaces Charlie Cook who will remain CEO and chairman.

Brookhart has been with Liberty for 22 years.

She has served in a variety of positions including sales and marketing, customer service, and manufacturing. Most recently she has been the company’s executive vice president, as well as its chief operating officer – a position she will retain.

Brookhart has an MBA from the Rochester Institute of Technology and an undergraduate degree in Marketing from SUNY Fredonia.

She serves on the board of the GCC Foundation and is an active member of the Young Presidents Organization (YPO). She lives in Bergen with her husband, Michael, and children Camryn (14) and Zachary (11) – along with one dog, two cats and three horses.

Other members of the Liberty Pumps Executive Team are:

  • Dennis Burke, CFO
  • Randy Waldron, VP Sales and Marketing
  • Dave Williams, Director of Engineering
  • Peter Cunningham, Chief Information Officer
  • Don Cunningham, Manufacturing Manager
  • Jeff Cook, Purchasing Manager​
July 19, 2019 - 3:45pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, news, GCEDC, STAMP, Alabama.

Submitted photo and press release:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

July 17, 2019 - 4:47pm

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Press release:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Submitted photo and press release:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

July 14, 2019 - 2:48pm

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

July 11, 2019 - 4:44pm

Press release from the GC Health Department:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Press release:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Photo: File photo.

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

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Press release:

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

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

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

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

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

mrwineandliqribboncutting.jpg

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

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

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

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

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

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

From Senator Michael Ranzenhofer:

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

Senator Ranzenhofer has issued the following statement:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

From Gov. Andrew Cuomo:

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

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

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

From Grow NY Farms:

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

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

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

These flaws include:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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