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K-9 Rayzor

January 18, 2022 - 9:41pm

k9.jpgThe power of private/public partnership is about to make a difference for the K-9 units of local law enforcement agencies.

Batavia’s Home Depot and CountryMax stores have come together to provide the materials and labor to construct a K-9 obstacle course at the Genesee County Fire Training Center on State Street Road.

“These businesses came to us and said they want to provide these services to Genesee County at no cost to the county,” said County Manager Matt Landers, speaking about a resolution approved today by the Genesee County Legislature’s Public Service Committee to accept the donations. “The course will be used by the Sheriff’s Office, City of Batavia Police and State Police K-9 officers.”

According to the resolution, Home Depot will donate building materials through a grant from The Home Depot Foundation – estimated value of $3,232 – and CountryMax Stores will provide the labor required to construct the course. The layout will be utilized by K-9 units for training purposes to simulate obstacles they are likely to encounter in the field during deployments.

Landers said the course, which will be owned by Genesee County, will be built to last “through multiple seasons.”

In other action related to the Sheriff’s Office, the committee approved the creation of a Public Safety Systems Manager position while eliminating the Communications Coordinator job that was held by the recently-retired Russ Lang for 33 years.

“The responsibilities of the open position really warrant a change in title,” Landers advised. “This was reviewed by the Sheriff’s Office and Human Resources, and they were in agreement that the new position better reflects the responsibilities of the position in the Sheriff’s Office.”

Per the resolution, the cost associated with this new position is covered by the previous Communications Coordinator salary accounted for in the 2022 budget.

Both PSC approvals are subject to ratification by the full legislature later this month.

File photo: Genesee County Sheriff's Office K-9 unit -- Deputy Andrew Mullen and Frankie, left, and Deputy Jim Stack and Rayzor. Photo by Mike Pettinella.

May 19, 2021 - 4:26pm

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Rayzor and Frankie are back in action after undergoing surgery and encountering medical issues, respectively.

The stars of the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office K-9 unit have suffered injury and illness in recent months, with Rayzor tearing the anterior cruciate ligament in his back left leg last November and Frankie having a tooth removed after fracturing it last December.

Rayzor, who is handled by Deputy Jim Stack, was out of action for about four and a half months after undergoing surgery at the Hudson Highland Veterinary Specialty Group facility in the Dutchess County Village of Fishkill.

That was followed by eight weeks of confinement and sedation as Stack had to carry the dog outside so he could go to the bathroom.

“After that, Rayzor (a 2-year-old Belgian Malinois/German Shepherd mix) had to go through intense physical therapy at Pine Woods Animal Hospital Rehabilitation Center in North Tonawanda,” said Stack, who has been working with the pup since March 2020.

Stack credited Paul McNamara, veterinary surgeon at Hudson Highlands, for opening his schedule to get the dog into surgery. He also thanked veterinarians Aubri Matroniano and Stephanie Ortel of Pine Woods and Lindsay Edwards, Rayzor’s regular vet, from the Corfu Veterinary Clinic.

Frankie, age 4½, is a Belgian Malinois that was assigned to Deputy Andrew Mullen in September 2020. After having the tooth removed, he got an infection and was sidelined for a couple weeks.

Undersheriff Brad Mazur said the department is fortunate to have the K-9 unit back on the job.

“It looks like we’ve gotten through it. It’s just one of the things that happen with a canine, with the medication and stuff.”

On Monday, Mazur spoke at the Genesee County Legislature’s Public Service Committee meeting and requested a $5,000 allocation from the K-9 Donation Reserve Account to cover Rayzor’s physical therapy and medications and Frankie’s veterinarian evaluations and medications.

The committee approved it and the resolution has been forwarded to today's Ways & Means Committee meeting and, upon further approval, to the full legislature for final voting.

“We have been very fortunate over the years with donations from the public which has enabled us to provide for our K-9s and maintain the program,” Mazur said.

In other action, the committee voted in favor of resolutions providing additional sheriff deputy services at Six Flags Darien Lake and Batavia Downs Gaming.

Mazur said Six Flags Darien Lake officials have requested weekend patrols during May and June and daily patrols during July and August. He also said he is anticipating deputies working concerts at the park this summer.

At Batavia Downs Gaming on Park Road, deputies would handle traffic control and offer other assistance during the summer concert series shows. He said the contract with Western Regional Off-Track Betting Corp., parent company of the casino, calls for eight deputies per event.

The committee voted to renew the agreement with Darien Lake through May 31, 2022, which also is the ending date of a one-year pact with Batavia Downs Gaming. The resolutions reflecting Public Service Committee approval will be forwarded to the full legislature for final voting.

Genesee County has appropriated $191,112 for overtime/additional police services for these contracts to be offset by revenue billed back to Six Flags and Batavia Downs Gaming for these services.

Also, the committee approved:

  • The acceptance of easements from the Town of Batavia around the perimeter of the DeWitt Recreation Area and behind the Spectrum office on Cedar Street – small properties that had been assigned to the town during the development of Ellicott Trail.

Currently, the county’s parks department maintains these easements through an agreement with the town.

  • Contracts with Cold Spring Construction Corp. of Akron for $967,856.50 and Erdman Anthony of Rochester for $136,000 to construct and consult on, respectively, the Hundredmark Road Bridge replacement project in the Town of Elba.

Highway Superintendent Tim Hens said Cold Spring’s bid was $100,000 less than engineers’ estimates.

The capital project is expected to be funded by federal aid (80 percent) and the county (20 percent), with the county’s share coming from its 1 percent sales tax revenue.

  • A supplemental agreement with Barton & Loguidice of Syracuse for construction inspection and administrative services connect to the replacement of the Pratt Road Bridge over the Tonawanda Creek in the Town of Batavia. The additional expense is not to exceed $31,259.

Hens said construction has been completed but this action was necessary before the project could be closed out.

  • The appointment of Batavia businessman Eric Biscaro to the Genesee County Planning Board, a volunteer position, effective June 1, 2021 through May 31, 2024.

Photo: Deputy Andrew Mullen and Frankie, left, and Deputy Jim Stack and Rayzor in front of the Genesee County Sheriff's Office this afternoon. Photo by Mike Pettinella.

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