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June 5, 2020 - 5:33pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in public market, downtown, batavia, news, covid-19, coronavirus.

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It was a perfect summer day for the opening of the Downtown Public Market in Batavia.  Of course, rules were in place requiring masks and social distancing.

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June 5, 2020 - 3:44pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in covid-19, coronavirus, news, live stream, video.
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Public Health COVID-19 Update for June 5, 2020

June 5, 2020 - 2:15pm

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Photo by Jim Burns.

Batavia employees of Rochester Regional Health / United Memorial Medical Center take a knee at the War Memorial at Jerome Center at 8:46 this morning.

The time of 8:46 signifies the length of time a white police officer in Minneapolis, Derek Chauvin, knelt on the neck of George Floyd May 25, killing him. The police were called after a store clerk suspected Floyd of using a counterfeit $20 bill at the store. Three other officers at the scene are also charged in the case: J. Alexander Kueng, Thomas Lane and Tou Thao.

A message from Rochester Regional Health President and CEO Eric Bieber, M.D.:

"Today, we as healers at Rochester Regional Health stand with you for healing. The events we have witnessed in our nation and community these past few days are almost unbearable to describe. Already frayed by fighting COVID-19, we witnessed the brutal death of George Floyd — a horrific repeat of too many deaths gone before. Then in our own Rochester community, a peaceful protest devolved into violence.

"Each member of our Rochester Regional Health team is touched by these tragedies—more than 17,000 souls, along with our friends, loved ones, neighbors, and families. And of course, you, our patients. Many of you were born and raised in Rochester. Others hail from every continent on earth. We are diverse in every possible way — race, ethnicity, job description, cultural background, and religion.

"While diversity is our strength, there is more work to be done to bridge the divide. Today we are united in our grief and our resolve. All throughout the coronavirus pandemic, we have been telling you that we will get through this together. Those words mean more now than ever. Together is the way we will get through this to mend our hearts and community.

"Thank you, each of you, for your precious differences and united spirit."

June 5, 2020 - 1:54pm

From Washington County Sheriff Jeffrey Murphy, president, New York State Sheriffs’ Association on behalf of the Sheriffs of New York State:

As professional law enforcement officers who have dedicated their careers to saving lives and helping people in need, the Sheriffs of New York State condemn the senseless, shocking action of the officer who unjustifiably took the life of George Floyd in Minneapolis last week.

It was against everything we stand for, everything we train for and everything we demand and rightfully expect from our police officers.

We also condemn those who, since then, have used that great injustice as an excuse to commit other senseless, brutal acts which unjustly deprive more innocent people of their lives, their livelihood, their life savings and their livable communities.

Conservators of the Peace Sworn to Uphold the Constitution

We are sworn to uphold the Constitution and we fully support the Constitutional right of all citizens to peacefully assemble, protest and petition their government for desired change.

As Constitutional officers who have been given the duty of Conservators of the Peace in the counties, we know that conserving the peace does not mean just keeping everyone calm. It means assuring an atmosphere where all citizens can enjoy their rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness without having those rights unduly infringed upon by others.

Thus while we will do all we can to accommodate and protect those who feel compelled to publicly display, in a peaceful way, their justifiable outrage at the way George Floyd died, we will not condone or accommodate in any way those who would deprive others of their rights by hijacking those legitimate displays of concern to turn them into opportunities to assault, murder, loot, burn and spread anarchy.

We Ask Politicians and Leaders to Refrain from Incendiary Comments

We also must ask those politicians and other leaders in the communities who continually speak of “systemic racism” in our police agencies for their own political advantage to refrain from such unfounded and incendiary comments. It is disgusting conduct, which itself fuels racism on all sides, and leads to worse, not better race relations in this country. Instead we would welcome them to engage with us in open and honest discussions on how we can enhance community relations while regaining the public’s trust in law enforcement through fact-based studies and training.

Deputy Sheriffs and all law enforcement officers suffer because irresponsible leaders paint them with a broad brush. There are 800,000 police officers in this country. The inexcusable action of one police officer in Minneapolis cannot be used to justify labelling all 800,000 dedicated, hard-working police officers as racist. We know of no police officer who condones the actions of that one rogue cop in Minneapolis.

They, like most citizens, were sickened to see that video, but we also know that it is not representative of the 53.5 million contacts that law enforcement has with civilians annually. We know of no police officer who joined the force because they saw it as a license to kill or abuse others. Most police officers join out of a simple desire to help people… of any race. Most police officers have shown more helpfulness, and personal compassion and kindness toward down-and-out citizens… black, brown, yellow or white… than have any of the self-righteous politicians and others who sow hatred and distrust of the police with their irresponsible rhetoric.

Those politicians, when they finish their rants, can then go home to their mansions and comfortable homes, secure in the knowledge that the police officers which they just maligned will continue to do their duty to protect them and all the citizens of their communities, even though their job has been made doubly more difficult by race-baiting rhetoric.

Sheriffs Work Hard to Build Public Trust

There is one thing upon which we and critics of the police can agree: there is distrust of the police in many minority communities. We Sheriffs work hard to build public trust in law enforcement. The training of our Deputy Sheriffs includes extensive training in community relations, anti-racism, recognizing implicit bias, and proper use of force. This training results in officers who are sensitive to the need for racial neutrality in enforcing the law, and their enforcement decisions are based upon a person’s conduct, not their color. That plain fact is, of course, contrary to the popular narrative.

In conclusion, the Sheriffs of New York make a commitment to our communities. We, and our citizens, desire a society where we can all live in true peace. While each of us has Sheriffs have outreach, in some form, to community and religious groups and to minority organizations and minority communities, it is clear that more has to be done to combat the false view of police as the oppressors, which has been inculcated into many minority communities, and which allows opportunists to take advantage of such things as the George Floyd tragedy to foment more hatred and more chaos.

The Sheriffs of New York, through our New York State Sheriffs’ Association, will immediately undertake the task of strengthening, in an organized way, the ties between Sheriffs’ Offices and minority communities and organizations in the counties across the State, with a goal of affirmatively demonstrating that our desire is to serve all citizens, and as the Conservators of the Peace in the counties, to secure to those citizens true peace, which means the opportunity to enjoy life, liberty and happiness in a just world.

June 5, 2020 - 12:51pm
posted by Billie Owens in Batavia Chalk-Out, news, downtown batavia, social justice.

A trio of organizers is planning an event Sunday afternoon, June 7, in Downtown Batavia. Lindsay Wrobel, Verneda Peete and Ken Marrocco, are holding the "Batavia Chalk-Out" from 2 to 4 p.m.

It is not affiliated whatsoever with the protest "March for Justice," which is planned roughly from 8 a.m. to noon the same day.

"We believe (the Chalk-Out) has the potential to be an important moment for the community," Wrobel wrote in an email to The Batavian.

It starts at the International Honorary Peace Garden at Batavia, located at 111 Main St. next to the Holland Land Office Museum. It is expected fan out down Main Street from there.

Here's a statement from the organizers:

"The event will allow people to express their feelings of support surrounding recent events relating to police brutality via chalk art while maintaining social distance. We hope to spark conversations among friends and families and to demonstrate that the black community has allies everywhere, including in small towns like ours.

"We ask that people wear masks to the event, and suggest bringing signs and chairs depending on how long individuals plan to stay. Chalk will be provided, but we also encourage people to bring their own."

"We're excited to see what our community can create, and hopeful that you'll find our event interesting."

June 5, 2020 - 12:20pm

Press release:

New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (State Parks) will begin accepting new camping reservations beginning June 8, for check-in beginning June 22.

Campers are reminded to practice social distancing, bring and wear a face covering, respect the rules, and do their part to keep the campgrounds, parks and beaches open and safe for everyone.

Camping capacity is limited and visitors must make an advance reservation before arriving at a campground.

New York State Park campsites, cabins and cottages are currently open only to those with existing reservations. New reservations for all available sites – including tents, trailers, RVs, cabins, yurts and cottages -- will be accepted at 9 a.m. June 8, for camping stays beginning on June 22.

Reservations are expected to fill quickly. Reservations can be made in advance by calling toll free 1-800-456-CAMP or online here. Online reservations are encouraged.

State Park Police and operations staff are patrolling campgrounds to ensure compliance with social distancing and crowd control measures. Anyone who does not adhere to this guidance will be requested to leave the facility, and will not receive a refund. 

Upon check-in, campers will be asked a series of screening questions to determine if they may have been in contact with anyone suffering from COVID-19, or if they have any potential symptoms of COVID-19, including fever or respiratory illness. People who may be at risk will not be permitted to camp.

Campground density reduction and social distancing measures will be in effect, including:

  • No walk-up reservations will be allowed.
  • Each congregate restroom facility will be opened and cleaned per DOH protocols.
  • Restrooms and shower buildings may have reduced capacity and may be closed periodically for cleaning.
  • Campground gatherings will be limited to immediate household members only.
  • All campground events and programs are suspended.
  • Park Social Distancing Ambassadors will monitor campgrounds, picnic areas, beachfronts, lawns, boardwalks and other areas to ensure park guidelines are being met.
  • COVID related signage has been installed throughout the park system.

For a listing of campgrounds operated by the Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, click here.

Campgrounds in the Adirondack and Catskill parks overseen by the Department of Environmental Conservation operate on a different schedule.

Beaches and day-use areas

New York State Parks’ beaches and day-use areas are open for visitation across the stateIn alignment with NY Forward, State Park beaches, day-use areas and historic sites will return to charging the normal entrance fee of between $6-$10 as regions reach Phase Two of reopening.

For information on NY Foward click here.

Entrance fees may apply beginning Saturday, June 6. Visitors can purchase a 2020 Season Empire Pass for unlimited day-use entry. Available for $80, the 2020 Season Empire Pass is a wallet-sized card that can be shared within a household and not assigned to a specific vehicle.

Visiting State Parks During the Public Health Crisis

To encourage physical social distancing at popular parks, beaches, trailheads, and scenic areas, several restrictions are in effect, including reduced access on high visitation days

State Parks encourage visitors to State Parks, State Lands, and other parks to:

  • Visit in small groups limited to immediate household members.
  • Maintain distance from others while in places where people tend to congregate, such as parking lots, trailheads, and scenic overlooks.
  • Bring and wear a face covering when social distancing cannot be maintained.
  • Face coverings are required to be worn anytime you enter a rest room or park office.
  • Avoid games and activities that require close contact, such as basketball, football, or soccer.
  • Avoid playground equipment like slides and swings and other frequently touched surfaces.
  • Do not share equipment, such as bicycles, helmets, balls, or Frisbees.
  • If you arrive at a park and crowds are forming, choose a different park, a different trail, or return another time/day to visit; and
  • If parking lots are full, please do not park along roadsides or other undesignated areas. To protect your safety and that of others, please choose a different area to visit, or return another time or day when parking is available.

For information and guidance on visiting New York State Parks during the COVID-19 public health crisis, click here.

June 5, 2020 - 12:09pm
posted by Billie Owens in Oakfield, Alabama, news, charity, Feed The Need food pantry.

Submitted photo and information from Melissa Domoy:

“Feed The Need” is a little food pantry located in the Oakfield community behind the Okafield United Methodist Church at 2 S. Main St.

Creating this valuable resource was a project two months in the making as Ava Flores (above photo) worked to complete her Girl Scout Gold Award.

Ava saw that there was a growing need in Oakfield during this difficult time. It is her hope that Feed The Need food pantry will help her Oakfield-Alabama community, not just now but in the future.

Inside the food pantry are recipes for simple affordable meals. It is also stocked with soups, canned fruits and vegetables and other shelf-stable food items.

Anyone who is in need is welcome to stop by and take what they need.

It is her hope that the little food pantry will be self-sustaining in the weeks to come where people may drop off donations or take what they need.

If you would like to make a donation, please contact the church at (585) 948-5550, or go the Feed The Need food pantry and put in some nonperishable goods to help out a local family.

June 5, 2020 - 11:52am
posted by Billie Owens in news, accidents, scanner, batavia.

A car reportedly struck a pedestrian at North Street and Bank Street in the city. The pedestrian was able to get up and is conscious and alert. City fire and Mercy medics are responding.

June 5, 2020 - 11:47am

Northgate Pastor John Keller gets some grooming.

Submitted photos and press release:

Beginning in October of 2019, Northgate Pastor John Keller began a process many of our readers can relate to. He grew a beard. After an eight-month progression and the absence of winter temperatures, Pastor Keller made the decision to potentially lose a part of him which he had grown fondly of.

As a member of the Advisory Board for the Salvation Army in Batavia, Keller put a wager on the community and Northgate congregants through Facebook to raise money in exchange for a fresh shave.  

The original post asked for the community to donate $500 to The Salvation Army of Batavia. Unbeknownst to him, the community rallied around his fundraising efforts and raised that amount in only an hour and a half.

Quick on his feet, Keller amended the goal to $1,000, saying that if he reached the new amount, he would let his three daughters shave his beard. Once again, the congregants and community spoke. Three hours after the original post, the total had surpassed $1,000.

Over the course of the five-day fundraiser, 53 people donated for a combined total of $2,215.  

This financial fundraiser will remain local and will help to fight food scarcity in Genesee County.

Keller said “Truthfully, a beard that long with a mask and the higher temperatures just wasn’t comfortable. So, I was probably going to shave it anyway, but I thought we could have a little fun with it and raise some money for a great cause. I had no idea that people would respond in such an awesome way! Our local Salvation Army is so well run and does such an incredible job loving and serving our community. I’m so glad to have been able to have a part in helping them do that great work!” 

Northgate church continues to partner with The Salvation Army of Batavia, as they have for years. During the COVID-19 closures, they have hosted local food collections each Monday from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. at their North Campus (8160 Bank Street Road).

They have also teamed up with The Salvation Army and Foodlink to conduct drive-thru food distributions every other Wednesday. This past Wednesday, they were able to distribute food to 413 vehicles that passed through their parking lot.

If you are interested in assisting the local community, food deliveries can be delivered during the hours listed above, or directly to The Salvation Army during their hours of operation.

Below, Pastor Keller before and after.

Bottom, photo from this Wednesday's food giveaway at Northgate church featuring featuring fresh meat, produce and dairy products.

June 5, 2020 - 10:01am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia PD, Shawn Heubusch, news, batavia.

Statement from Chief Shawn Heubusch, Batavia PD:

Due to the ongoing events that are unfolding across our country and within our region I have received questions about the Department's use of force policy and what is done to ensure that our police officers do not abuse their authority or use excessive force.

Attached is the Department's Use of Force Policy that every member of the City of Batavia Police Department receives training on annually. The policy adheres to all Local, State and Federal laws, guidelines and follows best practices. The policy puts human life above everything and ensures that every member has a duty to intercede in situations where the use of force of another officer is clearly beyond that which is objectively reasonable under the circumstances present at that time. Each situation is unique and officers are asked to make split second decisions to keep the public safe.

I am proud of each member of our Department, they discharge their duties in a professional, compassionate manner each and every day. Your police officers are well trained, well equipped, caring community-oriented individuals that work extremely hard to bring peace to chaotic situations and serve the public with the utmost. I am also very grateful for the community support that we receive from the vast majority of our residents and business owners. Together we make the City of Batavia a better place to live, work and play.

Take Care!
Shawn Heubusch
Police Chief

Use of Force Policy (PDF)

Also, we discussed the use of force policy in this interview:

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June 5, 2020 - 9:16am
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, notify, Pembroke Central School District.

The Batavian has reached out to school board candidates in Genesee County to get their answers to five questions prior to voting on June 9.

At the Pembroke Central School District, Daniel Lang is running for a one-year unexpired term and Heather Wood is running for a new five-year term.

The questions are as follows:

1 -- What is your position on your school district’s proposed budget for 2020-21? What parts do you support? What parts would you change if you could?

2 -- Are teachers in your district compensated adequately?

3 -- With what we know now about COVID-19, should schools reopen in the fall?

4 -- Are you satisfied that your district responds to parents’ complaints and concerns in a way that ensures the parents know they have been heard?

5 -- What two books published since The Enlightenment have influenced you the most?

DANIEL LANG

1 -- I am in full support of this year’s school budget for the 2020-2021 fiscal year. The District Board and Administrative staff have reviewed all options and strategically planned accordingly with the interest of keeping the Pembroke district moving in the right direction. With this budget encompassing a zero percent tax increase for our residents, we will still be able to continue to provide the absolute best for our students, teachers and district.

2 -- I feel as though the teachers in our district are compensated adequately and have justified the importance of going above and beyond expectations, especially during the recent, trying times that we all have been experiencing.

3 -- Yes, schools should reopen in the fall, and I feel it is vital for the students to return and feel safe in doing so. It will be critical to assure that the buildings and transportation remain sanitary and follow guidelines set by the governing bodies. I feel that there is value in the teacher/student interaction which helps aid in the learning process through individualized communication, and social interaction which cannot be grasped through distance learning. The relationship built with that of a dedicated teacher is irreplaceable and should continue moving forward.

4 -- Yes, I am satisfied with the way the district responds to parents and concerns. With that being said, I also feel that we should be continually looking for new and better ways to be communicating with parents. Complacency breeds mediocrity and steals potential. We all have the ability to improve and use mistakes or difficulties as a way to learn and enhance our current methods. This area of the district is no exception to that. As we work together as a team, the district and parents, we will continue to grow and understand each other in new and exciting ways.

5 -- When I read, I like to dive into books that provide encouragement, hope and answers for real life situations. If I were to choose two books that I have read that fit in this category, they would be When Life Is Hard by James MacDonald, and Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren.

HEATHER WOOD

1 -- My fellow Board members and I all approved of the 2020-21 budget which is being presented to the community. Our Superintendent and School Accountant have worked diligently to lead the charge in bringing us possible scenarios during a time when aid at the State Level was being questioned on what seemed like a daily basis. Collectively we were of the mindset to not put any additional burdens on the community during the uncertain times we are currently facing and were pleased to present a 0 percent tax levy increase. It is always a hard decision when discussing what areas to cut from, but rest assured the needs of the student are always first and foremost in our minds. We will continue to be the very best District we can be no matter what the numbers say and invite the community to contact the District Offices if they have questions moving forward.

2 -- Addressing the question if I feel that teachers are compensated adequately, I would say that it’s not a simple answer. We need to look at the community we live in and remember that higher pay will be reflected in higher taxes. Recently, we did make changes on our starting pay for teachers to bring them more in line with the Genesee Region. That being said, we will continue to provide top notch teachers to our students because that is what we are mandated to do.

3 -- I am both hopeful and optimistic that schools will indeed reopen in the Fall and I do advocate for this. Will things look different moving forward? Yes, most definitely as we all implement new State guidelines that will need to be respectful to our students, staff, parents and administration. We need to be mindful of what will work and what will not work for OUR District. While it is true that Pembroke has done a fantastic job in transitioning our students to online learning these past few months – it in no way should be seen as a permanent replacement for educating our youth and I am quite frankly, offended by anyone who says such things. Students need teachers just as much as teachers need the students. A school is a living, breathing institution and all the connections that are made within its walls are priceless.

4 -- Pertaining to the COVID situation - I feel Pembroke has done a remarkable job communicating the educational materials to the students and their parents. From our Superintendent, building Principals, and teachers – they all got the word out on a weekly basis (sometimes daily) keeping everyone informed of what was going on pertaining to finishing the year out strongly and what the expectations were for each student. This was all new to everyone and it was important that we all worked together in this endeavor. I do know for example, that some families in the community have reached out to our Superintendent for clarification on end of the year grading. He responded and made the policies clear as to what would be required to finish the year strong. In regards to things other than the COVID situation – finishing up my fifth year on the Board, I honestly feel we do a good job as a District addressing the communities concerns, however – that being said – our Board meetings are advertised and the public is ALWAYS welcome to contact our District Clerk if there’s something specific that is on their mind that they’d like to bring to the Board. Some questions can simply be answered from the Superintendent or by him directing the parent/community member to the appropriate administration before it gets to the Board level. If our community has questions, it is a Board member’s job to try our best to address the concerns.

5 -- I can name many books that have influenced me, but there are two that stand out – and to the readers they may seem quite simplistic but to me they mean the world. I read Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White when I was about 10 and it both sparked my passion for reading then and now. Looking back through the adult eyes it just amazes me of the pure innocence of childhood and how doing the right thing matters. Next would be The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom – it reminds me of the importance of relationships/connections and how what you do has a domino effect on everything else that happens in the world. This is how I look at schools – relationships and being a good person mean something just as much as the grades do.

June 4, 2020 - 11:10pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in news, batavia, crime.

Police were dispatched to Ellsworth Avenue in the City of Batavia for the report of a large fight.

The initial dispatched included a report of "shots fire" but a responding police officer, once on scene, said, "no firearms involved."

Ellsworth is between Ross and Summit streets.

June 4, 2020 - 9:04pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in JCPenney, news, business, batavia, notify.

In a bankruptcy filing, JCPenney has announced its closing 30 percent of its 856 stores, including its Batavia location.

The company, which has been struggling financially for years, filed bankruptcy in Federal Court on May 15.

The stores that are closing -- which presumably include the Batavia store -- will hold liquidation sales once pandemic-related regulations are lifted.

Other stores closing in New York:

  • Auburn: Clark Street Road
  • Oswego: State Route 104
  • New Hartford: Sangertown Square
  • Rome: Erie Boulevard West
  • Canandaigua: State Route 364
  • Syracuse: Destiny USA Drive

For more: USA Today.

June 4, 2020 - 6:18pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in covid-19, coronavirus, news, notify.

Press release:

  • As of 2 p.m.
    • Genesee County received one new positive case of COVID-19, for a total of 192 positive cases.
      • The new positive individual resides in Pembroke.
      • The person is in their 50s.
      • The new positive case was not on mandatory quarantine prior to testing positive.
      • One of the previous positive cases has recovered and has been released from mandatory isolation.
      • Zero of the total active positive cases are hospitalized.
    • Orleans County received zero new positive cases of COVID-19, for a total of 238 positive cases.
      • Two of the previous community positive cases has recovered and has been released from mandatory isolation.
      • Seventeen of the total active positive cases are hospitalized. Please note those in the hospital may be from the community or a state-regulated facility. We do not separate them out to protect their privacy.
      • We are sorry to report the death of one of our county residents. The individual was a resident of The Villages of Orleans Health and Rehabilitation Center. We extend our deepest condolences to the family and friends of these individuals during this very challenging time.
June 4, 2020 - 3:50pm
posted by Billie Owens in March for Justice, news, notify, downtown batavia, George Floyd.

Organizers behind a planned protest in Downtown Batavia on Sunday, June 7th, have distributed posters announcing the "March for Justice" which starts with a gathering in front of Batavia City Hall at 8 a.m.

From that location at 1 Batavia City Centre, the plan is to march PEACEFULLY -- which is in all caps in the black, white and red poster -- starting at 11 a.m. to the City of Batavia Police Headquarters, located a short block away at 10 W. Main St.

#SOLIDARITY

#PEACEFULEQUILITY

#STANDWITHUS

Plans for the March here came together after plans for a free BBQ at Williams Park on Pearl Street -- the "BBQ for Equality" -- were nixed by city officials Tuesday. They said that the state would need to OK the event and City Council would need to approve it, too.

Earlier this week City Police Chief Shawn Heubusch expressed concern about outside agitators coming to Batavia to cause trouble if there was a protest Downtown.

Some Downtown business owners say they are apprehensive about the protest because of rioting, looting and brutalities they've seen on media and social media during similar events in cities large and small nationwide. A couple of them even say they plan to board up their storefronts.

The Batavia Post Office, at 2 W. Main St. next door to the police station, isn't taking any chances if things go awry. This afternoon they put up a sign on their front door telling people their lobby will be closed at 5 p.m. on Saturday and won't reopen until 5 a.m. on Monday, June 8.

"We're closing the lobby during those hours out of an abundance of caution," said Karen Mazurkiewicz, spokeswoman for the U.S. Postal Service, Western New York. "We apologize for the inconvenience. We just want to be sure the building is kept safe and sound."

The murder of George Floyd by police in Minneapolis May 25 ignited the latest protests against racial inequality, police brutality, and social injustice in America.

June 4, 2020 - 2:21pm
posted by Billie Owens in hlom, coronavirus, news, reopening strategy.

Press release:

The Holland Land Office Museum plans to reopen when New York State guidelines allow with limited admission and mandatory coronavirus protocols.

We have been following the guidelines set forth by the CDC and the State of New York.

Executive Director Ryan Duffy and the Board of Directors have also obtained the assistance of T&L Cleaning Service, a locally owned professional cleaning service to advise us on a cleaning protocol and usage of effective products to keep our visitors and staff safe during this crisis.

T&L Cleaning has donated their services to our museum during this time. 

The museum we closed will not be the same museum we reopen.

  • Visitors will be required to wear masks;
  • Admission will be limited to no more than 10 at a time;
  • HLOM is planning a “low touch” or “no touch” experience for visitors;
  • The museum will have a newly designed “one way” floor plan with into and out of “pinch points” in its floor layout.

These measures are “a work in progress” and will obviously evolve as our nation continues to deal with this crisis.

We ask for cooperation understanding as we make this transition, as it will be a change for everyone.

The museum looks forward to welcoming old and new faces back with open arms, figuratively speaking, as we continue to exhibit the living history of Genesee County and Holland Land Purchase.

June 4, 2020 - 2:02pm

Come out and support the animals of the Genesee County Animal Shelter. We are collecting scrap metal to raise money for the animals from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, June 27th and Sunday, June 28th at the shelter parking lot.

It is located at 3841 W. Main Street Road, Batavia.

We are accepting metal of any kind: railings, doors, garbage cans, file cabinets, bicycle frames, gutters, pipes, poles, fencing, window frames, lawn furniture, tools, shelving, washing machines, dryers, stoves, wheel barrows, wagons, etc.

We CANNOT take propane tanks, A/C units, or refrigerators.

Scrap service provided by Ed Arnold EAS Scrap Processors of Corfu.

June 4, 2020 - 1:26pm

Melissa Cianfrini is back as a Genesee County employee, this time as the Assistant County Attorney.

County Attorney Kevin D. Earl today confirmed that Cianfrini, who unexpectedly resigned her position as the county’s First Assistant District Attorney in January, was hired on Feb. 25 at a salary of $78,086 – about $13,000 less than she was making as First Assistant DA.

When asked for specific information about her duties, Earl said that neither he nor Cianfrini would be available for comment.

In an email sent to The Batavian, Earl wrote, “As per the County policy, I am only able to provide you with the following information (hire date, job title, salary).”

According to the job posting at the time, the job description includes representing the Department of Social Services in cases involving child support, foster care, parental rights and child abuse as well as proceedings involving public assistance, Medicaid, juvenile delinquency and Family Court.

Additional duties listed: Providing legal advice on behalf of the commissioner of Social Services and other county departments.

Cianfrini is a resident of Oakfield and the wife of County Clerk Michael Cianfrini. She joined the DA’s office in 2009 and was promoted to first assistant district attorney eight years later.

Before resigning, she appeared to be in line to succeed District Attorney Lawrence Friedman, who is planning to retire at the end of his current term.

June 4, 2020 - 1:24pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, Stafford, batavia, byron.

Taylor K. Laird, 27, of Mechanic Street, Byron, is charged with: driving while intoxicated; aggravated DWI -- child in vehicle; aggravated unlicensed operation. Laird was arrested at 10:57 a.m. on May 28 on Pearl Street in Batavia following a "check the welfare call" at a business on West Main Street. Batavia Police Officer Sean Wilson handled the case, assisted by Officer Connor Borchert and the NYS Police.

Salvatore P. Scarlata, 36, of East Main Street Road, Stafford, is charged with criminal contempt. Scarlata was arrested at 6:52 p.m. on June 3 on East Main Street Road in Stafford after he was allegedly found in the presence of a person with an order of protection against him out of Town of Sweden Court. Scarlata was fingerprinted, photographed and issued an appearance ticket for Aug. 6 in Town of Stafford Court. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Christopher Erion, assisted by Deputy Andrew Mullen.

Brittany L. Bolton, 20, of East Main Street Road, Stafford, is charged with criminal contempt. Bolton was arrested at 6:52 p.m. on June 3 on East Main Street Road in Stafford after allegedly being found in the presence of a person with an order of protection from Town of Greece Court. She was fingerprinted, photographed and issued an appearance ticket for Aug. 4 in Town of Stafford Court. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Christopher Erion, assisted by Deputy Andrew Mullen.

Ashley K. Marshall, 28, of Batavia (no address provided), was arrested and issued appearance tickets for Town of Warsaw Court, where she is due to appear at a later date. At 4:20 p.m. on May 31, Wyoming County Sheriff's deputies were patrolling northbound Route 19 in the Town of Warsaw when they stopped Marshall near Mungers Mill Road for having a suspended registration. She was also ticketed for having an uninspected motor vehicle, and operating a motor vehicle which had broken glass. The deputy handling the case was Austin Harding.

June 4, 2020 - 12:36pm
posted by Billie Owens in Oakfield, news.

Reader Ritchie Kirkum, of the Oakfield Betterment Committee, sent us this photo of lovely scenery he took late yesterday from the lookout tower on Albion Road.

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