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Howard B. Owens's blog

September 20, 2020 - 3:37pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Donald Trump, news, corfu, pembroke.

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A group of local supporters of President Donald Trump say the Pledge of Allegiance before riding off in a "Trump Train" of five semi-trucks volunteers in Pembroke painted to read "Trump 2020."  The five traliers were parked in strategic locations on Route 5 and Route 33 after the caravan.

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September 20, 2020 - 3:30pm

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Pembroke Town Park was filled with classic cars today -- perhaps more than ever -- for the 13th Annual Pembroke Corfu Darien Kiwanis Club Annual Car Cruise & Fall Festival.

Rep. Chris Jacobs and Assemblyman Steve Hawley were on hand for the opening ceremonies, meet constituents, and admire the beautiful cars.

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September 20, 2020 - 2:36pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Le Roy, news.

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A group of area residents came together Saturday night to hold a vigil in Le Roy in memory of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who passed away Friday at age 87.

Ginsburg was appointed to the court in 1993 following an already distinguished legal career as an advocate for equal rights for women.

Photos by Philip Casper.

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September 20, 2020 - 2:33pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, news, bergen.

A possible serious ATV accident is reported in the area of 5946 W. Sweden Road, Bergen.

Bergen fire and ambulance along with Mercy EMS dispatched.

September 20, 2020 - 2:18pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Deal of the Day, advertisement.

Reminders of how the Deal of the Day program works:

  • To make purchases, you must be registered. Deal of the Day uses a registration system that is not connected to the registration for commenting on The Batavian (the main user login in the upper left of the homepage).
  • Once registered, you must sign in using the "sign in" link in this box.
  • You click on the orange button, which appears if the item is not sold out, and it takes you to a PayPal button. This allows you to pay either with your PayPal account or with a credit card/debit card. The login for PayPal is completely separate from our accounts.
  • The first person to successfully complete the PayPal transaction wins the gift certificate.
  • You are eligible to buy the same item only once in a four-month period. We use the registration system to track this for you so you don't have to.
  • Only one gift certificate from the same business PER HOUSEHOLD is allowed in each four-month period. We do not have a way to automatically track duplicate purchases within a household; however, if we notice such a purchase, we reserve the right to cancel the purchase and refund the purchase money. Each individual buyer must use his or her own PayPal account for purchases. It's important that participating businesses not be asked to redeem multiple gift certificates from the same person/family at the same time.
  • Gift certificates should be used within 30 days of receipt.
  • Problems, questions, concerns about the Deal of the Day? Email Billie Owens:   [email protected]
September 19, 2020 - 6:51pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Ed Rath, steve hawley, Chris Jacobs, news.

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Ed Rath, running for State Senate, Rep. Chris Jacobs, also in the ballot for the NY-27 in November, and Assemblyman Steve Hawley, up for reelection stopped in Corfu this afternoon to check out a group of trailers that have been painted to support President Donald Trump's reelection bid.

The trailers are the project of a group of veterans, business leaders, farmers, truckers, and other community members who came together for many hours of work -- often into the night so a projector could be used to stencil the lettering -- to create the trucks.

Tomorrow at noon, the trailers will be positioned on Route 33 in Corfu, on Route 5 in East Pembroke, and on Route 5 in Bushville.

September 19, 2020 - 12:42pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in corfu, news, Dave Saleh.

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Longtime Corfu resident and dedicated community volunteer Dave Saleh was honored with the dedication of a new bench at the village hall this morning.

Saleh, who is battling cancer, now lives in Batavia, but he's never far from the hearts of Corfu residents and he's still only a phone call away when people have questions or need help with something.

An attorney by training, Saleh has used his legal expertise to help the Village and the volunteer fire department. In 1995, he helped lead the effort to create a fire district to support the department and relive the village of the expense. He's volunteered with the department for more than 40 years.

"He's always given of his time and energy to the people of the village," said Mayor Tom Sargent.

Saleh said he felt overwhelmed by the gesture.

"I raised my kids here," Saleh said. "I have a number of very close friends here who are near and dear to my heart. All of these people are close to my heart. I can't express the appreciation I feel for all the things they do for me."

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September 19, 2020 - 11:55am
posted by Howard B. Owens in corfu, news, accident.

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A pair of luxury sports cars -- a 2007 Lotus Elise and a 2008 Lotus Elise California -- were involved in an accident at about 9:20 a.m. on Colby Road, Corfu, at the railroad crossing.

One of the drivers, from Clarence, said the Lotus doesn't have great clearance for going over railroad tracks so he slowed to go over the tracks and the driver behind him, from West Seneca, didn't notice him slow. The red car rear-ended the orange car, driving it off the road and into a utility pole.

The driver said, "I'm not upset by it. Accidents will happen." 

He figures insurance will cover the damage and nobody was hurt, and that's what really matters.

The two drivers, along with a third Lotus owner in the caravan, were on their way to Watkins Glen for a rally.

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September 19, 2020 - 8:15am
posted by Howard B. Owens in weather, news.

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Submitted by JoAnne Meiser.

September 19, 2020 - 8:09am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Deal of the Day, advertisement.

Reminders of how the Deal of the Day program works:

  • To make purchases, you must be registered. Deal of the Day uses a registration system that is not connected to the registration for commenting on The Batavian (the main user login in the upper left of the homepage).
  • Once registered, you must sign in using the "sign in" link in this box.
  • You click on the orange button, which appears if the item is not sold out, and it takes you to a PayPal button. This allows you to pay either with your PayPal account or with a credit card/debit card. The login for PayPal is completely separate from our accounts.
  • The first person to successfully complete the PayPal transaction wins the gift certificate.
  • You are eligible to buy the same item only once in a four-month period. We use the registration system to track this for you so you don't have to.
  • Only one gift certificate from the same business PER HOUSEHOLD is allowed in each four-month period. We do not have a way to automatically track duplicate purchases within a household; however, if we notice such a purchase, we reserve the right to cancel the purchase and refund the purchase money. Each individual buyer must use his or her own PayPal account for purchases. It's important that participating businesses not be asked to redeem multiple gift certificates from the same person/family at the same time.
  • Gift certificates should be used within 30 days of receipt.
  • Problems, questions, concerns about the Deal of the Day? Email Billie Owens:   [email protected]
September 18, 2020 - 7:57pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Oatka Creek, news, Le Roy.

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Photos taken this evening in Le Roy.

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September 18, 2020 - 7:51pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in American Legion Botts-Fiorito Post #576, Le Roy, news, veterans.

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The Botts-Fiorito American Legion Post #576 this evening honored those who were captured and never returned or lost in war as part of POW/MIA Recognition Day with an empty chair ceremony at their post in Le Roy.

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September 18, 2020 - 7:24pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Chris Jacobs, covid-19, coronavirus, news, NY-27.

Press release:

 Congressman Chris Jacobs (NY-27) is releasing the following statement after the announcement Thursday evening that an additional $14 billion would be committed to the Department of Agriculture’s Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP). Rep. Jacobs is a member of the House Committee on Agriculture.

“I applaud the President for his continued commitment to our nation’s farmers. With this additional $14 billion in coronavirus aid, farmers will be better equipped to weather the effects of the coronavirus and to continue to feed American families,” Jacobs said. “While this aid has helped the agriculture industry, more assistance is needed. Regrettably, Senate Democrats blocked legislation last week to provide more funding for farmers, and now Speaker Pelosi is refusing to replenish the Commodity Credit Corporation that funded this additional CFAP aid. Farmers have supported our nation throughout the entirety of this pandemic, now is not the time to be playing partisan games with their livelihoods. I urge Congressional leadership to resume negotiations on a new coronavirus package and to provide the critical assistance our farmers in Western New York and across the country need.”

The $14 billion will support the second version of the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP 2). The program was created to support growers and producers of agricultural commodities. More information and a list of eligible commodities can be found here: https://www.farmers.gov/cfap

September 18, 2020 - 3:19pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Planned Parenthood, news, batavia.

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Dave Twichell carries a sign that reads "Babies Lives Matter" in front of the Planned Parenthood location on West Main Street in Batavia.

Twichell said he has been making frequent protest trips to the location by himself for years.

"I'm out here as much as I can be," Twichell said. "Somebody's got to stick up for those who can't speak for themselves." 

September 18, 2020 - 3:00pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Deal of the Day, advertisement.

Reminders of how the Deal of the Day program works:

  • To make purchases, you must be registered. Deal of the Day uses a registration system that is not connected to the registration for commenting on The Batavian (the main user login in the upper left of the homepage).
  • Once registered, you must sign in using the "sign in" link in this box.
  • You click on the orange button, which appears if the item is not sold out, and it takes you to a PayPal button. This allows you to pay either with your PayPal account or with a credit card/debit card. The login for PayPal is completely separate from our accounts.
  • The first person to successfully complete the PayPal transaction wins the gift certificate.
  • You are eligible to buy the same item only once in a four-month period. We use the registration system to track this for you so you don't have to.
  • Only one gift certificate from the same business PER HOUSEHOLD is allowed in each four-month period. We do not have a way to automatically track duplicate purchases within a household; however, if we notice such a purchase, we reserve the right to cancel the purchase and refund the purchase money. Each individual buyer must use his or her own PayPal account for purchases. It's important that participating businesses not be asked to redeem multiple gift certificates from the same person/family at the same time.
  • Gift certificates should be used within 30 days of receipt.
  • Problems, questions, concerns about the Deal of the Day? Email Billie Owens:   [email protected]
September 17, 2020 - 5:08pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in michael caputo, Nate McMurray, news, NY-27.

Press release:

Nate McMurray, Democratic candidate for Congress in New York’s 27th District praised the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announcement that Western New York native, conspiracy theorist, fear monger, and embattled HHS Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs Michael Caputo would step aside from his role at HHS on a 60-day leave that extends through the Nov. 3rd election. The Department also advised that Caputo’s aide, Paul Alexander, will leave his post at HHS permanently. 

“I said it in April 2020 and I’ll say it again now: the President was beyond reckless to install Michael Caputo — who, by his own admission, has absolutely no scientific training or expertise — as ‘spokesman’ for HHS in the middle of a public health crisis in the first place,” McMurray said. “I wish Caputo well in recovering his faculties over the coming weeks, but this turn of events comes as no surprise. 

“Caputo has been a ‘yes’ man for Donald Trump since 2014 when he spearheaded a smear campaign to muscle out other bidders in Trump’s failed attempt to buy the Buffalo Bills. This spilled over into his shadowy work on Trump’s 2016 campaign and subsequent House of Representatives investigation during which Caputo was brought before the House Intelligence Committee. His latest smear campaign, accusing the learned scientists of the Centers for Disease Control of ‘sedition’ and ‘resistance’ when they have only been hard at work these last many months against the coronavirus, was the last straw.

“It’s clear that Michael Caputo’s loyalty doesn’t lie with the American people, but solely with Trump. His hiatus from HHS is welcome at this critical time in our public health crisis, but at the same time is too little too late. I call on Caputo to step down permanently and leave the scientific experts at the CDC and HHS to do their jobs for the American people.

“Meanwhile where is my opponent? When Western New Yorkers and every day Americans need Chris Jacobs, whether to vote correctly or to stand up for them and denounce Caputo’s and Trump’s organized assault on science, the CDC, and public health and safety, Jacobs’ head is firmly planted in the sand as he protects his own political interest over the public’s health and safety. The lack of leadership is staggering and the silence deafening.”

Here is Michael Caputo's statement, which Caputo sent to The Batavian yesterday, about his leave of absence:

After consultation with President Trump and Secretary Azar, I have decided to take a temporary medical leave of absence to pursue necessary screenings for a lymphatic issue discovered last week.

My experience mirrors that of many Americans. When I first noticed I was losing weight, I thought it was because of a new exercise and diet regimen. But over time, I realized there may be other factors causing my weight loss for months.

Instead of taking the time to see my doctor, I failed to do so. This was a mistake, and contributed to my stress level, along with the increasing number of violent threats leveled at me and my family back in Buffalo. But every American battling COVID — in every city in every state across the nation — has been under enormous pressure. I am just one of them.

I’ve learned so much in friendship with the doctors of the President’s Coronavirus Task Force. Sometimes we disagree, but we work in unity to defeat the virus and we care for one another. I want to thank Dr. Tony Fauci for conferring with my personal physician as we get the healthcare I long needed, and yet neglected, through the pandemic.

Our family is blessed. We urge all Americans to see their family doctor for the health care they need but have missed for months during this crisis. Do it today.

September 17, 2020 - 2:07pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in gced, STAMP, business, notify.
Video Sponsor

The total annual tax revenue from all current Genesee County Economic Development Center-backed projects -- more than 160 since 2006 -- will generate more than $8.4 million in additional property tax revenue for local governments once all the projects have matured out of their PILOT phase.

There are more than 90 projects that received a PILOT (Payment In Lieu Of Taxes) that are now completely on the tax rolls.

A PILOT waives property taxes on the increase in assessed value associated with a building expansion or new construction but requires the property owner to make payments to the local taxing jurisdictions. 

The 71 projects currently with an active PILOT generated $1.5 million in revenue for local governments, such as municipalities, the county, and school districts, in 2019.

The projects with completed PILOTs generated another $3.5 million in revenue for local governments -- revenue that would not have been realized if the property owner had not expanded or started a new project causing an increase in the assessed value of the property.

Steve Hyde, CEO of GCEDC, Jim Krencik, marketing director, and Lezlie Farrell, CFO, shared data on GCEDC's progress during an annual review presentation for the county's Ways and Means Committee on Wednesday.

Hyde and Mark Masse, vice president of operations, both said Genesee County is well-positioned to take advantage of the new thinking among manufacturers in the post-pandemic world, when many companies realize they need to tighten up their supply chains and "reshore" (bring factories back to the United States) their operations. They're looking for shovel-ready sites, and there is ample such acreage in the GCEDC-created industrial parks around the county.

"Companies are taking a serious, hard look at where there are failings in the current system, from raw materials up through shipping," Masse said.

On a recent statewide conference call with three of the nation's top site selectors, one of them, whom Hyde described as the dean of site selectors, praised Genesee County.

"We've been working on getting on his radar for 10 years," Hyde said. "When you start to get on their radar, you've got a shot."

As for STAMP -- the industrial park in Alabama being marketed to tech manufacturers -- there are five companies currently considering siting a new facility there, including a semiconductor company that Hyde indicated Sen. Charles Schumer helped swing Genesee County's way.

These are long-term projects so Hyde said it will be a while before any of these potential suitors sign a deal.

The biggest obstacle to industrial growth in Genesee County is the lack of quality housing stock. That makes it harder to attract companies who want to ensure employees who move here can find quality housing or it means well-compensated employees move to Rochester or Buffalo.

Hyde noted that the average age of a house in Batavia is 73 years, twice the national average.

September 16, 2020 - 4:24pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in covid-19, coronavirus, news, schools, education, notify.

There are any number of reasons that a child might have the sniffles, or run a fever, or get a stomachache. But since all of these ailments are also potential symptoms of a COVID-19 infection, school districts are under instruction from the State Health Department to isolate children with these and other symptoms until its confirmed that child can't spread the disease at a school, said Rochester Regional Health Pediatrician Dr. Steven Schulz today in a Zoom conference call with reporters.

"Because of low community prevalence, there's a 99-percent chance that those symptoms are due to a different virus, that it's not COVID and that's a good thing and a good place that we're starting out with," Schulz said.

"But because we don't want COVID to spread in the schools and break out, we are being very stringent. Actually, it's the Department of Health that's been very stringent with regulations on what's required to eventually return to school."

If a child goes home with a potential COVID-19 symptom, that child can't return to school unless there is a negative COVID-19 test, and the child is again symptom-free, and a doctor has cleared the child to return to school.

The reason a child must be symptom-free even after a negative test for COVID-19, Schulz said, is because of the small percentage of COVID tests that return a false negative.

Schulz serves on the Finger Lakes Region School Reopening Task Force and is one of the people responsible for writing school reopening guidelines in the region. RRH, parent hospital group for UMMC in Batavia, sponsored today's press conference on what parents should know as their children return to school.

Possible COVID-19 symptoms that could lead to a child being kept out of school include runny nose, congestion, cough, shortness of breath, sore throat, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, fatigue, poor appetite.

"There's a whole host of conditions that can cause all of those things, not just COVID," Schulz said. "And so many kids do have chronic conditions, such as seasonal allergies that can have overlapping symptomatology."

For children with chronic conditions, a doctor can verify those conditions and letters written as needed to allow those children to return to school.

What the main focus is on, he said, is the development of new, or different, or worsening symptoms. 

"Every school district has implemented a screening protocol for students and parents to go through before that student set foot sets foot on campus If they screened positive for any of those," Schulz said. "Again, focusing on new and worsening symptoms, in particular, and those would be reasons for an evaluation with the health care provider.

"Obviously, the big one would be a fever. If a child has a fever, they certainly would need to have additional evaluation. So we, of course, would encourage families if there is any concern that their child might have symptoms that are consistent with COVID to contact their health care provider for the next steps."

If a child at a school does test positive, the Health Department will take over, conduct contact tracing, and determine if any other children were exposed and take proper precautions as necessary. If proper social distancing has been maintained and masks are worn properly, it may not be necessary to quarantine other children.

One thing parents can do to help the entire community, Schulz said, is to ensure they and their children receive a seasonal flu shot.

"It's especially important this year," Schulz said. "COVID and flu have a lot of overlapping symptoms and people can theoretically be infected with both. The concern with that is that we could overwhelm our health care system not just with COVID, but also with flu. Both together could overwhelm it even more.

"So the flu vaccine is a safe and effective way to protect you and others around you from getting the flu. And we are encouraging everyone to get that as early as possible this year."

September 16, 2020 - 1:36pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in unidentified flying object, ufo, news.

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A local farmer reports seeing this triangular-shaped object flying over his fields last night at about 8:45. He said he posted about it on Facebook and at least one other person said they saw something, too, and one person sent him this photo. Did you see anything?

September 16, 2020 - 1:26pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Deal of the Day, advertisement.

Reminders of how the Deal of the Day program works:

  • To make purchases, you must be registered. Deal of the Day uses a registration system that is not connected to the registration for commenting on The Batavian (the main user login in the upper left of the homepage).
  • Once registered, you must sign in using the "sign in" link in this box.
  • You click on the orange button, which appears if the item is not sold out, and it takes you to a PayPal button. This allows you to pay either with your PayPal account or with a credit card/debit card. The login for PayPal is completely separate from our accounts.
  • The first person to successfully complete the PayPal transaction wins the gift certificate.
  • You are eligible to buy the same item only once in a four-month period. We use the registration system to track this for you so you don't have to.
  • Only one gift certificate from the same business PER HOUSEHOLD is allowed in each four-month period. We do not have a way to automatically track duplicate purchases within a household; however, if we notice such a purchase, we reserve the right to cancel the purchase and refund the purchase money. Each individual buyer must use his or her own PayPal account for purchases. It's important that participating businesses not be asked to redeem multiple gift certificates from the same person/family at the same time.
  • Gift certificates should be used within 30 days of receipt.
  • Problems, questions, concerns about the Deal of the Day? Email Billie Owens:   [email protected]

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