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kathy hochul

February 9, 2022 - 6:38pm
posted by Press Release in kathy hochul, COVID-19, news.

Press release:

Governor Kathy Hochul today announced New York's new Winter Toolkit for the new phase of the pandemic, aiming to keep New York safe, open and moving forward. The Winter Toolkit focuses on five core areas: protecting the most vulnerable New Yorkers, increasing vaccinations and boosters, strengthening our health care system, empowering local leaders, and supporting individuals facing the long-term effects of COVID.

"As we begin a new phase in our response to this pandemic, my top priority is making sure we keep New York safe, open and moving forward," Governor Hochul said. "I want to thank the health care workers, business owners and everyday New Yorkers who acted responsibly during the Omicron surge by masking up and getting vaccinated. But make no mistake: while we're moving in the right direction, this pandemic isn't over and our new Winter Toolkit shows us the path forward."

Governor Hochul announced that the statewide indoor business mask-or-vaccine requirement will be lifted starting Thursday, February, 10, and will remain optional for businesses, local governments and counties to enforce. This protocol, a temporary measure implemented on December 10 as statewide cases spiked, was an effective tool to address the winter surge and the rise of the Omicron variant. With case counts plummeting and hospitalizations sharply declining, this temporary measure is no longer needed statewide. Counties, cities, and businesses will be able to opt into the mask-or-vaccine requirement if they so choose. 

Masks remain a critical tool to fight the spread of COVID-19, and mask requirements will remain in place in certain high-density settings. All health care settings regulated by the Department of Health and other related state agencies will continue to require masks. Masks will also be required in nursing homes, adult care facilities, correctional facilities, detention centers, homeless shelters, and domestic violence shelters, public transit and transportation hubs, as well as trains, planes and airports in accordance with federal regulations. 

Governor Hochul also announced plans to assess the mask requirement in schools in early March, to ensure students can continue learning in-person and in the classroom. The assessment will be based on public health data, including key metrics like cases per 100,000 residents, hospital admission rates, vaccination rates, global trends and pediatric hospitalizations. Plans are already underway to distribute two tests for every K-12 student ahead of midwinter break, and continue distribution the following week when students return to school. In the meantime, Governor Hochul has directed the Department of Health to work on preliminary guidance, with input from educators and parents, to keep students and teachers safe.

With a new phase of the pandemic beginning, Governor Hochul unveiled a new Winter Toolkit to help keep New Yorkers safe. The toolkit includes efforts to:

  1. Protect the most vulnerable
  2. Increase access to vaccines, boosters and testing
  3. Strengthen the health system
  4. Empower local leaders
  5. Support New Yorkers facing long-term COVID effects

Protecting the Most Vulnerable
New York State will continue to acquire and distribute masks and tests to New Yorkers to ensure those who need them can access them. The state's test stockpile contains 92 million tests. Over 14.2 million tests have been distributed to schools and tests will continue to be distributed as needed. 4.2 tests have been distributed to nursing homes, 2.4 million tests to adult care/congregate facilities, and 4 million tests to counties.

1.28 million masks have been distributed to nursing homes and 5.5 million masks have been distributed to counties.

Visitation rules in nursing homes will remain in place. Visitors must show proof of a negative test within 24 hours of their visit and masks will remain required.

Tests will be made widely available for students so that K-12 students can go home for their Midwinter Break with two tests.

Increase Access to Vaccines, Boosters and Testing

  • New York State's mass vaccination and testing sites will remain open to ensure all eligible New Yorkers can access first, second, and third doses for themselves and their children.
  • The State's #VaxForKids pop-up programming continues to expand with 63 new sites established today and 193 sites established to date. This effort brings the vaccine directly to parents, guardians, and their children at local schools, community centers, and destinations like farmer's markets to make getting vaccinated convenient and accessible for families.
  • New York State is actively preparing for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to come online for children under 5 years old.
  • The State's robust education efforts to reach New Yorkers with good, science-based information about the vaccine is on-going including through traditional advertising, digital and multimedia campaigns, and direct messaging efforts through SMS text messaging, robo-calling, and Excelsior Pass push notifications.
  • All 61 state-operated and state-partnered testing sites will remain open to provide New Yorkers with access to COVID-19 testing.
  • Testing also remains widely available at over 1,800 sites statewide in every region of the State.

Strengthen the Healthcare System
To troubleshoot shortage issues, Executive Order 4 to increase staffing flexibility will remain in place. National Guard will continue to be trained to be able to staff in places needed as well.

As part of the Governor's Winter Surge Plan 2.0, the State has already deployed 20-member Medical Specialty Teams from the U.S. military hospital support team to Erie County Medical Center, a 35-member team to SUNY Upstate in Syracuse, 92 new ambulance teams to different regions in the state, including 50 to NYC, and two Medical Specialty Teams (MSTs) of 20 personnel from the Department of Defense to Strong Memorial Hospital.

Governor Hochul also outlined investments to strengthen the health care system in her 2022 State of the State Address and FY 2023 Budget. $10 billion will be invested to grow the health care workforce by twenty percent in five years. $4 billion will be invested in wages and bonuses to stop the hemorrhaging of health care staff. $1.6 billion will be invested via the Capital Plan.

Empower Local Leaders
Governor Hochul's announcement today comes after consultation with local leaders on steps the state is taking to fight COVID-19.

Support New Yorkers Facing Long-Term COVID Effects
Last Thursday, the State's Department of Health hosted an expert forum on Long COVID and over 2,000 individuals registered to view the panels. Panelists included specialists, clinicians, social scientists, patients and advocates who shared their experience, expertise, and insights.

This discussion, as well as continued focus and study by the Department, will inform the State's response which will span policy, regulatory, and program considerations to support New Yorkers suffering from long COVID as well as the healthcare providers who care for them.

January 18, 2022 - 4:43pm
posted by Press Release in Steve Hawley, kathy hochul, government, nys, news.

Press Release:

Statement from Assemblyman Steve Hawley:

“For all of the talk during today’s executive budget address by our governor of a bright new future for New York, the proposals discussed seemed tired and unimaginative at best. New York’s economy isn’t going to suddenly catch fire because of a few meager tax cuts or narrow tax credit programs for businesses, because at the end of the day New York will still have little to offer entrepreneurs looking across the country to open businesses and create jobs. Within a global economy that grows more competitive by the day, it will only grow harder for us to attract the best and brightest to live and work here when it’s so lucrative for them to invest their resources elsewhere. With that said, I do applaud the announced investment into education, something of vital importance in a marketplace demanding skilled, technologically-savvy workers.”

 
January 7, 2022 - 5:52pm
posted by Press Release in COVID-19, kathy hochul.

Press release:

Governor Kathy Hochul today announced new guidance recommending booster doses for all New Yorkers ages 12 and older. The guidance, following action by the CDC, recommends that people, including the newly authorized 12-15-year-old age group, who received the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine should receive a booster dose at least five months after their second dose; the previously recommended interval was at least six months. In addition, moderately to severely immunocompromised 5-11-year-olds can receive an additional primary dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine 28 days after their second dose. At this time, only the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is authorized and recommended for children ages 5-11.    

Additionally, the CDC today recommended the same change to a five-month booster interval for the Moderna vaccine, which is only authorized for people 18 years and older.

"As we continue to battle this winter surge, I strongly recommend that all New Yorkers ages 12 and older get boosted as soon they are eligible," Governor Hochul said. "With boosters now available for all adolescents, I especially urge parents and guardians to get their children in this age group a booster dose as soon as eligible. A booster dose will provide greater protection against severe outcomes from COVID-19 and help keep our kids healthy, protected, and safe."  

Governor Hochul additionally announced her plan to require that all covered health care workers previously required to receive a COVID-19 vaccination under the Department's August 26th Emergency regulation must also now receive a COVID-19 booster dose within two weeks of becoming eligible, absent a valid medical exemption. Consistent with the August 26th Emergency Regulation, there is no test-out option. Following review and approval by the Public Health and HealthPlanning Council at their emergency meeting on Tuesday, the emergency regulation will be filed with the Department of State (DOS). Regulations are effective upon the filing with DOS. 

The Governor also announced new rules for nursing home visitations. Starting Wednesday, all visitors must wear "surgical"-type masks and must present upon entry a COVID negative test taken within 24 hours of their visit. Governor Hochul further noted that 952,000 tests and 1.2 million masks are being delivered to nursing homes late this week into next. 

On January 5, 2022, the CDC endorsed the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practice's (ACIP) recommended expansion of booster dose eligibility for the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 to individuals ages 12 through 15. CDC now recommends that all adolescents ages 12 through 17 should receive a booster dose five months after their initial Pfizer-BioNTech vaccination series. This followed the CDC's updated recommendations that severely immunocompromised 5-11 year-olds receive an additional primary dose of vaccine 28 days after their second dose, and that people who received the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine series should get a booster dose at least five months after the second dose, instead of six months.   

New York State Department of Health Acting Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett said, "Booster doses are a critical tool in our continued response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and I am grateful that they are now available for all New Yorkers 12 years of age and older. Data show that people who are vaccinated and boosted are more protected against serious illness from COVID-19, and we continue to urge all those eligible to act now. Do what you can to stay healthy and out of the hospital by getting vaccinated and boosted and wearing a mask. If you have questions, talk to your health care provider or vaccine administrator."  

All state mass vaccination sites are now offering Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine booster doses for New Yorkers 12 years of age and older, as well as third doses for immunocompromised people 5 years and older. For more information on boosters and additional doses, see the State's dedicated page here.  

January 6, 2022 - 10:55am
posted by Press Release in kathy hochul, news, 139th assembly district, Steve Hawley.

Press release:

“In a time of crisis, as we face issues related to our economy, public health, and public safety, we cannot keep rehashing the same tired ideas that have proven to be ineffective solutions to serious problems. While I appreciate the governor’s rhetoric in support of small businesses during a time when they and our residents are leaving the state in droves, we should be talking about meaningfully cutting taxes and easing regulations to enable their success in the long term. Of equal importance is our need to focus on restoring order to our increasingly dangerous streets, following the passage of bail reform.  

“Having served as assemblyman while Gov. Hochul served as our district’s congresswoman, it would be a pleasure to work together in earnest to make New York work for everyday New Yorkers once again. We must all come together to restore the authority of our local governments and judges.”

January 5, 2022 - 12:49pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in kathy hochul, state of the state, video, livestream.
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Gov. Kathy Hochul State of the State Speech Jan. 5, 2022

December 13, 2021 - 2:19pm
posted by Press Release in COVID-19, news, kathy hochul.

Press release:

Governor Kathy Hochul today announced that the mask protocol for all indoor public places announced Friday is now in effect, as well as a new Frequently Asked Questions resource for business owners and the general public.

Masks are now required to be worn in all indoor public places unless businesses or venues implement a vaccine requirement. As noted on the Frequently Asked Questions webpage, an indoor public place is defined as any indoor space that is not a private residence -- businesses and venues New Yorkers frequent that are publicly owned or owned by private business. These entities include indoor entertainment venues, concert halls, indoor sports stadiums, recreational spaces, restaurants, office buildings, shopping centers, grocery stores, pharmacies, houses of worship and common areas in residential buildings. Posters encouraging people to wear masks and get vaccinated are available for businesses to use here and here.

"As Governor, my top priority is to protect the health of New Yorkers and the health of our economy, and these temporary measures will help us get through the holiday season safely," Governor Hochul said. "I share everyone's frustration that we have gotten to this point, especially with the vaccine at our disposal. I want to thank the millions of New Yorkers who have done the right thing to get fully vaccinated. We are all in this together and if others will follow suit, these measures will no longer be necessary."   

This major action to address the winter surge and concern over upcoming holiday gatherings comes as COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations rise statewide to be in alignment with the CDC's recommendations for communities with substantial and high transmission. The State Health Commissioner issued a determination solidifying the requirement. 

This measure is effective until Jan. 15, 2022, after which the State will re-evaluate based on current conditions, and brings added layers of mitigation during the holiday season when more time is spent indoors shopping, gathering and visiting holiday-themed destinations.     

Acting Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett said, "Taking this action now is critical to slowing the COVID-19 winter surge during the holidays. Each of you can contribute: get vaccinated, get boosted if you are already vaccinated and wear a mask. We urge the public to support these new requirements in indoor public places by cooperating with the venues. We need everyone to do their part to get through this together."

For information how businesses and venues can implement a proof of vaccination requirement or a mask wearing requirement, see the Frequently Asked Questions here.

COVID-19 vaccines and booster doses are free and widely available statewide. New Yorkers can visit vaccines.gov, text their ZIP code to 438829, or call 1-800-232-0233 to find nearby locations. To schedule an appointment at a state-run mass vaccination site, New Yorkers can visit the Am-I-Eligible site. New Yorkers can also contact their health care provider, county health departments, Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs), rural health centers, or pharmacies. 

New Yorkers can retrieve their Excelsior Pass or Excelsior Pass Plus here. Businesses and venues can download the Excelsior Pass Scanner app—free for any business nationwide and available in more than ten languages—here

August 24, 2021 - 9:00am
posted by Press Release in kathy hochul, Steve Hawley, news, 139th assembly district.

Press release:

A statement from Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) on the inauguration of Gov. Kathy Hochul

 “By swearing in a new governor, I remain hopeful we can use this moment as an opportunity to correct the course set by our former executive. Given her experience in local and county government, I hope that her tenure will be free of the burdensome mandates on small businesses, schools, places of worship, and other institutions which characterized her predecessor’s style of leadership and were so harmful to the people of our state.”

August 23, 2021 - 11:42am
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, notify, kathy hochul, jim owen, New York State governor.

hochul_owen.jpg

When Jim Owen, well known as “The Mayor of Redfield Parkway,” had 16-year-old Kathleen Courtney as an 11th-grader in his typing class at Hamburg Junior-Senior High School, little did he know that someday she would become the first female governor of New York State.

But he did see some personality traits and skill sets that he says have served her well throughout her political career.

Courtney was part of that typing class in 1975, about eight years into Owen’s teaching career that included 36 years as a full-time instructor and the last 18 years as a substitute teacher in the Batavia City School District.

Forty-six years later, Courtney, now Kathy Hochul, will assume the state’s highest office on Tuesday. She is succeeding Andrew Cuomo, who is stepping down following a state attorney general’s report that he sexually harassed 11 women.

Cuomo has repeatedly denied the accusations, but said he is resigning in the best interest of the state.

The “best interests of the state” will become the responsibility of Hochul, 62 (she will be 63 on Aug. 27), who, according to Owen, is prepared to do a great job.

“One of the things is that she is a person who communicates with many people,” Owen said of Hochul, who has been New York’s lieutenant governor since 2014. “In my opinion, she makes people feel important; she makes people feel comfortable, and I think she is a great listener.

“I always remember when she said, ‘If it’s a Republican idea and it’s a good idea, I’ll take it. If it’s a Democratic idea and it’s a good idea, I’ll take it. If it’s a Conservative idea, I’ll take it; if it’s a Liberal idea, I will take it. Her bottom line is that she is going to do the best for the people of our state.”

Owen admitted that it’s impossible to please everyone, but is convinced that Hochul will put her best foot forward.

“Obviously, you can’t win everybody’s opinion, but she will do her darnedest.” He said. “She’s a fighter. She’s not that tall, but she grew up with a family of great athletes … good competitors, and she is, too. Of course, in typing, she did her work.”

The teacher and student have kept in touch over the years; they usually meet at Batavia Muckdogs’ games when Hochul is in town. Owen said he got a surprise call earlier this month.

“Last Friday night, Friday the 13th, about 5:30 in the afternoon, I was at Stafford Country Club and I got a phone call from 716 (area code). I thought it may be a scam, but I decided to answer it,” he offered. “Well, it’s Kathy. She’s calling me, thanking me for saying nice words about her in a story on Spectrum News – which I thought was kind of neat. That was kind of a class act that she would give me a call.”

Owen also was quoted in a story published today in the New York Daily News:

“Jim Owen, who taught her in a 28-student typing class when she was a junior, said he would not necessarily have guessed at her political future given her soft-spoken and studious nature. But he said her determination shined.

“She was a very hard worker,” recalled Owen, 78, who’s now retired and lives in Batavia. “She made the teacher look good.”

Hochul, on Aug. 12, confirmed that she plans to run for a full term as governor in 2022.

Photos: Kathy Courtney Hochul's graduation photo; her and Jim Owen at a Hamburg Alumni Foundation event; the duo at a Batavia Muckdogs' game. Photos submitted by Jim Owen.

August 10, 2021 - 2:18pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Andrew Cuomo, news, Ed Rath, kathy hochul.

Press release from State Sen. Ed Rath:

This afternoon's resignation from Governor Cuomo is a welcomed and necessary relief for those New Yorkers he has harmed and those who continue to look to Albany for leadership amid this pandemic. Harassment has no place in our society, especially at the upper levels of state government.

I continue to call on the State Legislature to ensure that other investigations into Governor Cuomo's malfeasance remain ongoing. New Yorkers who lost loved ones in nursing homes deserve answers. While the Governor has already written his book, let us not write off other avenues where he has betrayed his oath of office. If ongoing investigations by the State Assembly reveal further misdeeds, impeachment must remain a viable option. The State Legislature must uphold its duty to hold Governor Cuomo accountable.

I look forward to working with Lieutenant Governor Hochul in her new capacity as the first female Governor in New York State history. As a fellow Western New Yorker, I hope she strives to help New York heal and elevates the voices of upstate New Yorkers long maligned and ignored by downstate leaders. Having served with her at several levels of government, I am confident that her integrity is unwavering. Together, we will continue to navigate the challenges facing all New Yorkers.”

From Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul:

"I agree with Governor Cuomo's decision to step down. It is the right thing to do and in the best interest of New Yorkers.

As someone who has served at all levels of government and is next in the line of succession, I am prepared to lead as New York State’s 57th Governor."

Assemblyman Steve Hawley:

 “Now that the governor has done the right thing and resigned, we can focus on bettering the lives of the working people of this state once again. This is the third high ranking official that has stepped down due to improper conduct during my tenure, and I hope we can come together and work to assure it’s the last and that conduct like that of Andrew Cuomo’s is never left unchecked. I do want to congratulate Kathy Hochul, who will be our next Governor in two weeks, and hope we can work together in bipartisan fashion to do more for the people of this state than ever before.”

Rep. Chris Jacobs:

“Andrew Cuomo's resignation is long overdue, and needed to move our state government past the multiple scandals he and his staff inflicted on the citizens of New York. Despite his resignation, criminal investigations of the Cuomo administration must continue to ensure justice is served.”

February 17, 2021 - 2:46pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in kathy hochul, livestream, video, GCEDC.
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Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul delivers regional State of the State message, hosted by Genesee County Economic Development Center.

October 1, 2020 - 5:21pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in workforce development, kathy hochul, UMMC, video, batavia, news.
Video Sponsor

Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul visited UMMC on Wednesday to announce the hospital will receive a $200,000 state workforce development grant to help people enter the nursing career. The grant is part of an $18 million statewide project announced yesterday by the governor's office as part of Workforce Development Awareness Week.  

Press release from the governor's office:

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that, during Workforce Development Awareness Week, New York State has been awarded an $18 million federal grant to fund educational opportunities that train New Yorkers for in-demand jobs, support entrepreneurs, and help small businesses recover from the coronavirus pandemic.

New York was one of just eight states to receive the funding -- made available through the CARES Act -- and received the most of any state that was awarded a grant. 

"The coronavirus pandemic is far from over, and as we continue to fight against this deadly virus, we must also respond to the economic devastation it has caused," Governor Andrew Cuomo said. "With millions of Americans out of work, we must use every resource available to train New Yorkers to compete -- and succeed - in this difficult economic situation.

"Our workforce is the bedrock of our economy, and I know that this funding will help bridge the gap between education and industry, allowing us to build back better by uplifting both individuals looking for jobs and small businesses across the state."  

"We are making success accessible ensuring New Yorkers have the training and skills they need to seek new jobs and opportunities as we continue to battle this pandemic," said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. "Our ongoing workforce development initiative is supporting efforts to improve the economic security of women, youth and other groups that face significant barriers by making job placement more inclusive and leaving no New Yorker behind.

"We are sending a clear message to New Yorkers that they will have the training and skills they need to succeed as we build back better, smarter and stronger for the future."

The New York State Department of Labor will partner with the Office of Workforce Development, Empire State Development, New York's ten Regional Economic Development Councils, the State University of New York, and the City University of New York to allocate the federal grant funding on programs that support New York's continued economic recovery. 

Educational programs will focus on developing the skills needed to succeed in emerging growth industries like tech, logistics, and advanced manufacturing, and supporting entrepreneurs. New York's multipronged approach will include four elements:

1) Education for Hard-Hit NYC: In New York City, which was among the worst-hit COVID-19 communities, the CUNY system will assist in training residents with the digital skills needed for in-demand sectors such as data analytics, cybersecurity, advanced logistics/supply chain, digital marketing and communications, and software development. 

2) "Stay Near, Go Far" at SUNY: At 30 community colleges across the State, SUNY will leverage its existing "Stay Near, Go Far" initiative to train New Yorkers in high growth industries, including technology, healthcare, and advanced manufacturing, and provide them with the entrepreneurial skills needed to open their own businesses.

3) Entrepreneurship Boot Camps: Building on its existing resources, Empire State Development will host a series of intensive workshops and boot camps to train entrepreneurs and small business owners on how to run their own business during - and after - the pandemic. 

4) Industry Focus, Regional Results: The Department of Labor will issue a competitive Request for Proposals and work with New York State's 10 Regional Economic Development Councils to identify industry-driven programs that either train job seekers to meet current local employment needs or are designed to address future economic and workforce development needs.

September 30, 2020 - 10:33pm
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Press release from the Governor's Office:

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the start of construction for a $1.1 million redevelopment project in the City of Batavia. This project, awarded through Batavia’s DRI Building Improvement Fund, will rehabilitate a three-story, 7,500-square-foot building built in 1865, in Downtown Batavia. Batavia’s downtown area is a mixed-use, affordable neighborhood with access to jobs, anchor businesses, and city and county services.

“The Downtown Revitalization Initiative in Batavia is driving strategic investments and helping bring new mixed-use development to the area to benefit the entire region,” Governor Cuomo said. "This historic building will be preserved to continue with Batavia's rich history and character and will be the propeller of future growth not only for Batavia but for the entire region.”

“Our Downtown Revitalization Initiative is transforming communities statewide by empowering local stakeholders to put forward their best ideas on economic development based on collaboration and shared purpose,” said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul.

“Batavia is uniquely positioned between two major urban areas but has carved out its own identity with projects like 99 Main Street. These projects will attract new people with a new life, energy, and sense of pride, and help New York build back better for a post-pandemic future.”​

The renovation and redevelopment of this historic building will include a new storefront, façade, and reconstruction of the existing three floors. A dental practice will operate on the first floor with the second floor being developed for commercial office space. The third floor will include two two-bedroom market-rate apartments.

The redevelopment of this historic building is part of the DRI award for the Building Improvement Fund, which provided the city with the resources to award building improvement projects Downtown. The award from the Fund is $137,600 with a total estimated project cost of $1,165,000. The Fund is operated locally by the Batavia Development Corporation and administered by New York State Homes and Community Renewal.

The Genesee County Economic Development Center also supported the redevelopment through mortgage and sales tax incentives of $63,500. Neppalli Holdings LLC will also invest nearly $1 million to renovate the building as part of the public-private partnerships for DRI.

Secretary of State Rossana Rosado said, “The Batavia’s Downtown Revitalization Initiative is becoming a reality and it will bring a new look and way of life for residents to live, work and play in their business district. The Building Improvement Fund award provides an opportunity for economic investments in Batavia through the redevelopment of its business district, attracting a new generation of social and commercial enterprises to the city. This project is a testament that hard work and dedication, even in these unprecedented times, can yield progress and a bright future.”

NYS Homes and Community Renewal Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas said, “Through Governor Cuomo’s Downtown Revitalization Initiative, we are working directly with communities across the state to implement targeted economic development projects like this one that expand housing opportunities, enhance the downtown streetscape, and create a more lively and walkable commercial district.

"Batavia’s Building Improvement Fund will utilize $138,000 in DRI funds to transform this historic property at 99 Main Street into a beautiful mixed-use building with new office space and two apartments on the third floor. By supporting local efforts to strategically improve downtown districts with state resources, we are breathing new life into Batavia, the Finger Lakes Region, and beyond.”

Senator Michael Ranzenhofer said, “I am very happy that Batavia was chosen for this project. Investing in our Upstate communities is extremely important and this funding will help further the growth and redevelopment we have seen in Batavia.”

Assemblyman Stephen Hawley said, “Thanks to smart and expansive developments, Batavia will grow into an even greater destination and hub for Western New York than ever before. From the addition of a new performing arts center to the revitalization and renovation of a commercial hub to the continued development and upgrading of Downtown, Batavia is poised to be a bastion of community and comfort for the area. This investment will go a long way towards the continued fostering of community and cooperation for years to come.”

Batavia City Council President Eugene Jankowski Jr. said, “The DRI award is critically important in our efforts to revitalize Downtown Batavia. It’s vital that we continue working with our partners at the state and local level to continue the momentum of the private and public sector investment in the county’s urban core.”

Batavia Development Corporation Board President Lori Aratari said, “The Building Improvement Fund created through the DRI provides grant funding for applicants to implement interior and exterior building improvements in Batavia’s Business Improvement District (BID) for commercial and mixed-use structures. This project exemplifies how we are using this fund to fill vacant and under-utilized structures in the city.”

Genesee County Legislature Chair Shelley Stein said, “The Genesee County Legislature recognizes the importance of the economic vitality of the City of Batavia for our county and region. I am especially pleased to see all levels of government working so closely in our efforts to bring private sector investment to the city.”

Genesee County Economic Development Center President and CEO Steve Hyde said, “To have so much support from so many leaders in the community gives me confidence that our project will be a great success and I hope will encourage others in the private sector to seek investment opportunities in Batavia. I want to thank all of our government partners for their continued support and collaboration in our collective efforts to encourage private sector leaders such as Dr. Neppalli to invest in Batavia.”

Batavia was named a DRI Round 2 winner. The downtown area is a mixed-use, affordable neighborhood with access to jobs, anchor businesses, and city and county services. The area has an excellent foundation upon which to continue its revitalization, including amenities such as recreational sites, healthcare facilities, food markets, a library, and various retail and restaurant venues in a walkable environment.

The Strategic Investment Plan for Downtown Batavia is working closely with private partners and local assets to implement the other eight projects awarded. These projects alongside all of the projects that will be awarded through the DRI Building Improvement Fund will create opportunities for economic development, transportation, housing, and community projects that align with the community's vision for downtown revitalization and that are ready for implementation.

The Downtown Batavia Strategic Investment Plan is guiding the investment of DRI grant funds in revitalization projects that advance the community's vision for its Downtown and that can leverage and expand upon the state's $10 million investment.

June 17, 2020 - 6:57pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in kathy hochul, baseball, sports, video, muckdogs.
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While Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul was in Pavilion today, we asked her if she was still involved in trying to save the Batavia Muckdogs.

June 17, 2020 - 6:37pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in kathy hochul, agriculture, Pavilion, Noblehurst Farms.
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Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul paid a visit to Noblehurst Farms in Pavilion today to highlight the Nourish NY program, which purchased $25 million in agricultural products from farms throughout the state to distribute at food banks from New York City to Buffalo.

June 3, 2020 - 7:22pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in kathy hochul, Nate McMurray, news, NY-27.

Press release:

Today, New York Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul announced her endorsement of Nate McMurray for the Special Election on June 23rd. Hochul represented this district from 2011-2012 after winning a special election to fill the seat prior to redistricting in 2012. 

Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul said, “I believe Nate McMurray will be successful based on the Democratic values he espouses and his track record advocating for the working families and farmers that make up this region.

"I know this district well and am confident that Nate will be a strong representative for all Western New Yorkers when he gets to Washington. We have a critical opportunity on June 23rd to send a national message to Trump and GOP insiders before the General election in November.” 

“I’m very proud to have Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul's support once again," McMurray said. "Kathy Hochul has long been a champion for women and families across New York. I look forward to getting to work in Washington and partnering with public servants like her to improve the lives of all New Yorkers and all Americans."

March 26, 2020 - 1:13pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in COVID-19, live stream, news, kathy hochul.
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Scheduled for 1:40 is a short interview with Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul.

August 8, 2019 - 11:04am
posted by Howard B. Owens in GCEDC, kathy hochul, video, business, education.
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Press release:

Manufacturers, agribusinesses and the skilled trades have been sounding the alarm about the needs to bring more awareness and preparedness for a future workforce in order to meet the demands of the ever-changing workplace and the wave of retirements anticipated as a result of an aging workforce.

In the Genesee, Livingston, Orleans and Wyoming County (GLOW) Region, economic development agencies, workforce development leaders and educators are doing just that through a new initiative formally announced today by New York State Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul.

The daylong hands-on career exploration event – GLOW With Your Hands – will be held on Sept. 24 at the Genesee County Fairgrounds.

More than 1,000 students from 28 school districts across the GLOW Region are expected to attend the event where they will be able to experience first-hand activities associated with careers, like welding, bricklaying, electrical wiring, heavy equipment operation, advanced manufacturing, and many others.

"As our economy evolves with growing opportunities in clean energy, construction, and advanced manufacturing fields, New Yorkers will have increased access to workforce development and training for jobs of the future," said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul, who spoke at today's event.

"Collaborative visions to bring together events like these are part of our ongoing effort to ensure young people have the skills they need to get a good-paying job and achieve their fullest potential.”

The economic and workforce development agencies and education groups are collaborating to make students aware that there are real family-sustaining jobs in the GLOW Region that do not necessarily require a four-year college degree.

More and more school districts in the GLOW Region are creating a curriculum to meet the workplace needs of employers. The demand by employers for workers to fill these jobs is growing every day and organizers of the event want to communicate to students that they can have successful careers immediately after high school graduation.

GLOW With Your Hands organizers include the Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC), the Livingston County Economic Development, Orleans County EDA, Wyoming County IDA, GLOW Workforce Development Board, Genesee, Livingston and Wyoming counties' Business Education alliances and the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership.

Major employers in the GLOW Region and various construction trades unions will be attending the event to simulate the functions and skills of the various jobs that are in demand.

August 7, 2019 - 4:47pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in kathy hochul, Ellicott Station, batavia, video.
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Last month, the Genesee County Economic Development Center issued an open letter to Gov. Andrew Cuomo asking for his help in getting final approval on a complex financial package -- involving private investment, state and local tax incentives, grants, and investment credits -- from state officials.

Following an event today about workforce development (more later), we asked Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul about the delay of the project. She says the governor's office is working to finalize a financial package for Ellicott Station.

The Ellicott Station project will transform the former Della Penna property on Ellicott Street from a crumbling and distressed property into a mixed-used development that will include housing, office space, and a restaurant/brewery.

August 7, 2019 - 3:36pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in agriculture, farm labor bill, kathy hochul, video.
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In an interview with The Batavian following an event at the Genesee County Fair Grounds, where Lt. Kathy Hochul participated in the announcement of a new workforce development program (more later), Hochul defended passage of the farm labor bill.

She said it was needed, even though it was opposed by farmers and farmworkers, because it will improve working conditions for farmworkers and help farmers attract more qualified job candidates.

Hochul said what's missing in complaints about the farm labor bill is that farmers participated in crafting compromise legislation.

August 7, 2019 - 1:55pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in chris collins, NY-27, kathy hochul, video.
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Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul says she has no interest in running for Congress again, not even after redistricting in 2022 because she thinks she is having a more positive impact for the people of Western New York in Albany than she could have in Washington, D.C.

Hochul represented WNY in Congress in 2011 and 2012 before losing a close election to Rep. Chris Collins.

She did say, however, if she ran this year, she would win.

Collins, fighting a federal criminal indictment and facing a House Ethics Committee investigation, has made no official announcement regarding his reelection plans. But he has transferred $500,000 of personal funds to his campaign. He is facing at least two primary challengers and if he runs the Democrats may send Nate McMurray up against him again, who narrowly lost to Collins in 2018.  

Regardless of who runs against Collins, Hochul said Collins will soon be known as "the former congressman" because "he will lose the election."

Hochul was in Batavia for the announcement of a new workforce development program. We will have more coverage on that later.

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