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February 12, 2019 - 3:48pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, Le Roy, batavia, bergen.

Scott J. Hinze, 52, a registered sex offender who lives on West Main Street Road, Batavia, is charged with failure to report a change of address within 10 days -- a felony, and falsifying business records in the first degree, also a felony. On Feb. 11 at about 11:20 p.m. Hinze was arrested after an investigation. He allegedly failed to register his address change as a sex offender within 10 days to the NYS Division of Criminal Justice Sex Offender Registry. Hinze also allegedly falsified a sex offender address change document at the Genesee County Jail in the City of Batavia. He was issued an appearance ticket for Town of Batavia Court and is due there March 4. On the charge of falsifying a business record document at the jail, he was issued an appearance ticket for March 5 in Batavia City Court. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Erik B. Andre.

Aaron L. Heale, 37, of 25 N. Lake Ave., Bergen, was arrested on Feb. 11 by the Le Roy Police Department and charged with one count of criminal possession of a hypodermic instrument, a Class A misdemeanor. The charge comes after a complaint on Feb. 5 from a local car wash that Heale was allegedly slumped over at the wheel of his car in the wash bay. When the Le Roy police found Heale, who is on parole, he was allegedly slumped over at the wheel and awoken by the officers. During the investigation it was alleged that Heale unlawfully possessed the hypodermic syringe inside the vehicle. Heale, who is currently in Genesee County Jail on an alleged parole violation, was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Le Roy Town Court on March 14.

Jeffery J. Williams, 25, of 25 Ravine Ave., Rochester, was arrested on Feb. 10 by the Le Roy Police Department and charged with two counts of petit larceny and three counts of attempted petit larceny. The charges are based from an investigation which started on Nov. 11 when it was reported that numerous vehicles in the Bacon/Pleasant Street area were entered and items allegedly stolen. During the investigation, it was determined that Williams was visiting a person in Le Roy when he allegedly entered at least five different vehicles during the early morning hours, stealing items from two of the vehicles and ransacking three others looking for items to steal. Williams was issued an appearance ticket to be in Le Roy Town Court on March 5.

February 12, 2019 - 3:27pm
Hops for Hope will be held from 2 to 6 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 17, at Eli Fish Brewing Company in Batavia. The brewery will be releasing its new Hope Lager at the event.
All of the proceeds from the new beer sale, along with the sale of several other items, will go to the Michael Napoleone Memorial Foundation and Gilda's Club of Rochester. Both organizations assist families undergoing the challenges of a cancer diagnosis.
Join us for an afternoon of “Hope” … listening to the music of Michael DiSanto, purchasing a commemorative glass that puts you in a cash drawing, participate in some games, buy some apparel and just spend a Sunday afternoon with friends.
Tickets are available at the door for $15 and include live music and appetizer stations provided by Eli Fish, which is located at 109 Main St.
Go to elifishbrewing.com for details or call 585-861-0550 or 585-423-9700 for questions.
February 12, 2019 - 3:11pm
From the GOW Opioid Task Force:
The GOW (Genesee, Orleans, Wyoming) Opioid Task Force is excited to announce the opportunity to become a Peer Recovery Coach.
This training has been grant funded by the Health Resources and Service Administration and therefore is FREE.
Trainees should have a high school diploma or equivalent and lived experience is preferred -- in recovery, affected family member, experience working in the SUD/Recovery field.
Training is six-weeks in length (46 hours total) and you must commit to completing the program. Space is limited!
Training will take place at the Lake Plains Community Care Network at 575 E. Main St. in Batavia. Please check out the website and flier for more information here.
As part of the Community Based Recovery Support Training Project, training is offered to a select group of committed community members seeking to achieve NYS Peer Recovery Professional Certification.
This enables them to serve families and individuals affected by Substance Abuse Disorder with evidence-based recovery supports, skills and strategies.
The workshop facilitators are Lori Drescher (CARC, RCP) and Keith Greer (LCSW, PCC, PRC), who are professional coaches, recovery advocates and facilitators with a combined 55 years of experience.
If you have specific questions please contact Charlotte Crawford at [email protected] or by phone 585-345-6110.
February 12, 2019 - 2:33pm
posted by Billie Owens in art, paintings, news, Announcements, David F. Burke.

Pictured above is "Root Man," a painting by David F. Burke of Bergen.

Bergen artist David F. Burke and fellow artist Daniel Hogan, a friend he met at Genesee Community College in 1975, will both have their paintings on display at The Little Theatre Cafe in Rochester from Feb. 23 through March 23.

The exhibit is titled "Looking at Nature Through Imagery and Abstraction."

An opening reception will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 24. The cafe is inside Little Theatre 2 & 3 back complex on Winthrop Street and there's additional parking just past Hart's Grocery.

Below is an untitled painting by the artist Daniel Hogan.

February 12, 2019 - 2:14pm
posted by Billie Owens in east pembroke, news, business.
Press release and submitted photo:

On Feb. 7, the Crosby’s location at 2594 Main Road in East Pembroke held its grand reopening for the public.

This renovated location provides customers with expanded food offerings with the addition of a new Sub Shoppe, offering fresh and delicious made-to-order subs available alongside pizzas, calzones and breakfast sandwiches.

The store also features a new f’real milkshake and smoothie machine and fresh-baked cookies are available daily. 

Crosby’s is also contributing to the community as part of the grand reopening festivities in East Pembroke and will offer a $500 donation to the Pembroke School District. 

The store in East Pembroke offers Mobil gas, and is open from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week.

Growing to Better Serve Customers

Along with updated store locations in Kendall and Barker, East Pembroke is part of Crosby’s ongoing efforts to improve new and existing stores to provide a more comprehensive range of options and services for customers. 

“By renovating and updating these stores, we can provide more fresh options and expanded offerings to our neighbors and customers,” said Doug Galli, vice president and general manager of Reid Stores.

“Crosby’s thrives in each of our communities by putting a focus on making customers our priority and being actively involved in the community beyond simply offering products and services.”

In addition to the new food, beverage and fuel services offered at these renovated Crosby’s locations, every store will also feature competitively priced grocery items, tobacco products and other amenities including an ATM, Crosby’s gift cards, fuel gift cards, money orders, propane exchange and a variety of New York State Lottery games. See each individual store location for further details.

About Crosby's

Crosby’s, a division of the Reid Group, is headquartered in Lockport. The company operates 84 Crosby’s convenience stores throughout Northwestern Pennsylvania and Upstate New York.

About the Reid Group

The Reid Group, founded in 1922, is a full-service independent motor fuel marketer providing a comprehensive range of products and services for retail motor fuel outlets and convenience stores. The Lockport-based company serves retail and commercial customers.

Photo of East Pembroke grand reopening, from left: Doug Galli, vice president, Reid Stores; Sean Tooley, district leader, Reid Stores; Assemblyman Steve Hawley; Lynn Bianchi, team leader, Reid Stores; John Worth, Pembroke town supervisor; Gordon Dibble, Genesee County legislator; Michael Hicks, constituent service liaison from Rep. Chris Collins’ office; Tom Schneider, Town of Pembroke Planning Board chairman; and David George, director of operations, Reid Stores.
February 12, 2019 - 1:58pm

Press release:

Tops Family Markets and Dole Packaged Foods LLC are excited to launch the third annual Learning Garden contest granting two elementary schools in either Upstate New York, Vermont or Northern Pennsylvania a Captain Planet Foundation Learning Garden. The contest will begin Sunday, Feb. 17 and will run until Saturday, March 16.

Tops shoppers can enter their school for a chance to win by visiting topsmarkets.comor https://captainplanetfoundation.org/contest/topsmarkets/and filling out the contest application. Two lucky schools will win a comprehensive Learning Garden complete with lesson kits filled with supplies, a schoolyard garden, fully equipped garden cooking cart, and strategies for summer garden maintenance.

The Learning Garden program provides a context for multidisciplinary learning, ranging from Nutrition and Science to Social Studies, Math, and Language Arts. Students benefit by expanding their palates, taste-testing healthy foods, and learning about food origins.

“Dole is very excited to be partnering with Tops Friendly Markets again to bring two lucky schools Learning Gardens. It is so important for children to learn about where their food comes from and develop healthy eating habits at an early age,” said Larry White, vice president -- Sales, Dole Packaged Foods. 

“So many subjects can be taught in the garden and hands-on garden learning is an excellent way to support student understanding of natural systems, food origins, and healthy eating,” said Leesa Carter, president & CEO of Captain Planet Foundation.

“Captain Planet Foundation is dedicated to ensuring that kids are armed with an understanding of the natural world in which they live, and we are thrilled to be partnering again with Tops and Dole Packaged Foods to provide two lucky schools in with Project Learning Garden.”

“Tops Friendly Markets is excited to partner with Dole and the Captain Planet Foundation for a third year. We are committed to supporting educational excellence and the hands-on garden and curriculum is an integral part of the conversation when teaching kids learn where their food comes from,” says Diane Colgan, senior VP of Marketing & Decision Support, Tops Friendly Markets. “We encourage every elementary school to consider entering for their chance at winning this great free resource.”

About Dole Packaged Foods

Dole Packaged Foods LLC, a subsidiary of Dole International Holdings, is a leader in growing, sourcing, distributing and marketing fruit, vegetables and healthy snacks throughout the world. Dole markets a full line of innovative packaged, frozen and dried fruit. The company focuses on four pillars of sustainability in all its operations: water management, carbon footprint, soil conservation and packaging. For more information, please visit dolesunshine.comor doleintlcsr.com.

About Tops Friendly Markets

Tops Markets LLC is headquartered in Williamsville and operates 159 full-service supermarkets with five additional by franchisees under the Tops banner. Tops employs over 14,000 associates and is a leading full-service grocery retailer in New York, northern Pennsylvania, and Vermont. For more information about Tops Markets, visit the company's website at www.topsmarkets.com.

About Captain Planet Foundation (CPF)

Based on the critically-acclaimed animated series "Captain Planet and the Planeteers," CPF was cofounded in 1991 by media mogul Ted Turner and producer Barbara Pyle. Since then, the Captain Planet Foundation has played a critical role in helping to ensure that the next generation of business leaders and policy makers are environmentally literate citizens who leverage technology and information to manage and protect the air, land, and water upon which all life depends. 

CPF is a grant-making foundation that has funded over 2,000 hands-on environmental education projects withschools and nonprofits that serve children in all 50 U.S. states and in 25 countries internationally. More than 1.4 million children have directly participated in and benefited from these educational projects. In addition to its Small Grants Program, the Captain Planet Foundation also operates the following programs: Project Learning Garden, Project Hero, Youth Voice, and the Institute. For more information:www.captainplanetfoundation.org.

February 12, 2019 - 6:00am
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, batavia, Reproductive Health Act, notify.
Video Sponsor

Writing 15,000 letters and sending them to Albany -- instead of one from a local legislative body such as the Batavia City Council -- would be the most effective way for pro-life advocates to let Gov. Andrew Cuomo and state legislators know exactly how they feel about the recently passed New York’s Reproductive Health Act.

That is the opinion shared by Council President Eugene Jankowski following Monday night’s emotional 90-minute public comment portion of the board’s Business Meeting at City Hall.

About 150 people, many of them connected to the Right to Life movement, packed Council chambers, with about half of them having to stand while 18 speakers took their turns at the podium.

Fourteen of them spoke in favor of City Council drafting a letter in opposition of the RHA – with some calling for Batavia to designate the community as a “sanctuary city for the unborn” -- and forwarding it to Gov. Cuomo.

The passing of the law last month, which includes provisions that permit abortions after 24 weeks if the fetus is not viable or the health of the mother is at risk, became a hot topic in the city after Batavian Chris Connelly, a self-described “man made in the image of God,” spoke out against it at the Jan. 28 Council meeting.

His strong comments prompted City Council to consider having City Manager Martin Moore draft a letter in opposition of the law and placing it on a future meeting’s agenda. News of that decision compelled many residents on both sides to write or call their council representative, and ultimately led Jankowski to seek more public input before deciding how to proceed.

And, if he was looking for more feedback, he surely wasn’t disappointed as the speakers shared a range of viewpoints in an effort to persuade the nine council members.

Lifelong Batavian Kathy Stefani, a Right to Life organizer, said that abortion has become legal “right up to the moment of birth in this country” but that it’s a federal crime to destroy an egg of a bald eagle.

Noting that the word “fetus” is Latin for “little one,” Stefani said “we are here tonight for the little ones.”

“It’s okay to give a lethal injection to a living infant but definitely not to a hardened convicted criminal,” she said. “We’re not asking for a raid on the state capital or a march down Main Street, just a letter stating right from wrong. Write a letter and make Batavia a sanctuary city …”

Jon Speed, a church pastor from Syracuse, was more graphic in his address, asking “Which is the best way to kill a baby -- a pill, saline solution, surgically in the second trimester or scissors into the neck in the third trimester. There is no good way to kill a baby.”

He spoke out against Planned Parenthood – leading to a bit of shouting in opposition to that – and urged Council to make Batavia a sanctuary city of the unborn.

“We are called to love our neighbors … born and unborn … If not, and then appointed for the slaughter, the blood will be on your hands.”

Connelly took another turn at the microphone and ramped up his comments.

“God said before I formed you in the womb, I knew you,” Connelly said. “(By taking) these positions, the blood runs in our streets. What about the children who are butchered, who are sold as commodities?”

Calling abortion “disgusting, reprehensible and unthinkable,” Connelly said that “even debating this is a signal that we need repentance before a holy and just God.”

Another speaker, Dan Devlin of Buffalo, president of an organization known as New York Oath Keepers, said he sees abortion as a constitutional issue and quoted the preamble to the Constitution of the United States to support his view.

There are two groups, not one, that this nation was established for,” he said. “We the People … to secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity. Who is your posterity … It is all of our descendants until the end of time. The succeeding generations, and the unborn descendants in the womb are clearly our posterity.”

And Alex Feig of Medina asked Council to follow its own vision statement, reading several points from the city’s website, including “our children, at all ages, will have choices to grow, learn, live, play and work in our community,” and “our city will serve as a model for other small cities in its approach to an overall positive quality of life for all its community members.”

He called for Council to not only write a letter in opposition to the RHA but also to pass an “emergency ordinance” to prohibit abortion in the city.

On the other side of the debate, Nikki Calhoun of Le Roy spoke of the centuries of those seeking to control women, causing them to suffer at the hands of government and their husbands, and preventing them from voting and seeking higher education.

She defended the local Planned Parenthood’s various services, including counseling for those with little or no insurance.

“Where are these girls supposed to turn to when they need to talk?” she said.

She added that she respected everyone’s opinion and held a belief in a higher being, but also respects women who can decide for themselves.

“We’re not someone’s property,” she said. “I implore you to mind the business of the city and not our bodies.”

Erica O’Donnell of Batavia said she approached the city in August of 2017 about taking a stand about Confederate flags being flown in the city after a neo-Nazi rally turned into a deadly tragedy in Charlottesville, Va., but was told that Council refrained from issues other than city business.

“With this (RHA) bill, three branches of state government passed it,” she said. “The city decided against (taking a stand) then, and I hope that going forward you take the same approach.”

Amber Hainey of Mount Morris said a woman’s right to choose has been a law since 1973 (Roe v. Wade) and “we’re done having this conversation. Women have a right to their bodies and their reproductive health.”

Her comments were echoed by Batavian Rachel Curtin, who stated that her reproductive rights are her own, and for Council “to focus on city matters.”

At the end of the public comments – after Oakfield resident Brian Thompson’s call for Council to take advantage of the opportunity to make a “historic” decision for life and for more people to adopt children and after Batavian Frank Klimjack encouraged everyone “to write that letter, send that email and make that phone call” – it was the council members’ turn to respond.

Council Member Rose Mary Christian said she disagreed with those who said it wasn’t part of Council’s duties and said that she was in favor of sending a letter to Gov. Cuomo.

“This is a state issue because he decided to bring this forth and we do have a right,” Christian said, noting that she received 35 emails – 30 of them from people in favor of sending the letter.

She went on to say that abortion, especially in the third trimester, is “barbaric and murder.”

“With (building) a wall, they call it immoral. What the hell? Don’t they call it immoral to kill a baby?”

Council Member Robert Bialkowski said he doubted if a letter from City Council would have any impact in Albany.

“We have a governor now … writing laws … and they don’t care about this part of the world,” he said, condemning laws that promote gambling, legalization of marijuana and pay raises for prisoners.

“The majority of the people elected him … and in Erie County he’s very strong there. I encourage people next time you go to vote, think of it.”

Jankowski said personally he has “no qualms about sending this letter, but it’s not about me.”

“We represent all people in the City of Batavia and I owe my obligation to help people on both sides of this argument … as City Council we can’t fairly represent one side or another.”

He then said he would like Council to “back out of this as a body” and suggested everyone to contact their state representatives.

“I’m going to do my own (letter). I think 15,000 would raise my eyes more than one letter representing 15,000. Fifteen thousand letters dumped on his doorstep … he’d have to take note of that.”

Undeterred, Christian asked City Attorney George Van Nest about the legality of sending a letter.

Van Nest said it cases such as this, a consensus of the board would determine what action to take.

“I’d like to do it,” she said. “Would anyone else like to do it with me so we can send a letter as a body?”

Council Member John Canale weighed in, stating that he was torn over what to do after getting more feedback from constituents over this issue than any other in his eight years of service.

“I consider myself a Christian and try to live my life under Christian values, but my problem is this … I was elected by not just Republicans and not just Christians,” he said. “I now have to make a decision … I say to all of you, put yourselves in my seat; I’m very undecided.”

Canale requested that the issue be tabled to allow time for “soul-searching and to talk to our families.”

Bialkowski suggested the drafting of a resolution to be brought to the next Conference meeting on Feb. 25 and Council Member Kathleen Briggs tried to call for a vote, but that didn’t fly. In the end, Jankowski said if a council member wanted to draft a letter, it would go to the Conference meeting and they would vote on it.

“I’ll do it,” Christian said.

And, judging by her supporters’ passionate appeals, she’ll probably have many people offering to help her write it.

February 11, 2019 - 10:24pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, Batavia City Council.

Batavia residents will get their chance to weigh in on the 2019-20 city budget in two weeks per a resolution passed by City Council tonight.

Following a long and heavily attended public comment session over whether it should send a letter to Albany opposing the state’s recent Reproductive Health Act (watch for a detailed report on The Batavian), Council voted on several measures, including the setting of a public hearing on the budget for 7 p.m. Feb. 25.

The proposed $27.4 million spending plan calls for $5.2 million to be raised by taxes and a tax rate of $8.96 per thousand of assessed valuation, which is the same as last year’s rate.

As a result, owners of a house assessed for $70,000, for example, would face a city tax levy of $627.20 for the year.

A separate public hearing, also at 7 p.m. Feb. 25 (the date of Council’s next Conference Meeting), will address a 3.5-percent increase in water rates and meter fees, and a 10-percent increase in capital improvement fees.

A third public hearing is on for that date and time, this one dealing with the adoption of a local law amending the city sign code.

City Council also passed a resolution requesting that State Sen. Michael Ranzenhofer and Assemblyman Stephen Hawley sponsor bills that would allow Genesee County and the City of Batavia to enter into an amended and restated sales tax allocation agreement for a period not to exceed 40 years.

Other resolutions passed by unanimous vote include:

-- A measure referring the review of the zoning of public storage rental units in the Batavia Municipal Code to the City Planning & Development Committee in response to a petition from Peter Yasses, 54 Cedar Street LLC, in relation to the lack of permitted zoning use of public storage rental units.

-- A supplemental agreement with New York State that paves the way for the city to receive “back pay” along with an annual increase in payments from the state through an arterial maintenance agreement that will extend through 2049.

This agreement stems from the discovery that the City was underpaid for work it did to maintain state highways (Routes 5, 33, 63 and 98) dating back to June 1994 and is not being reimbursed enough to cover its costs going forward.

As a result, the City will receive a one-time payment from the state for $218,539.88 to take care of the underpayments and now will be paid $183,017.40 annually, an increase of $6,500.

-- The endorsement of two bonds financing installation and construction of sidewalk and traffic signal improvements on State Street, Centennial Park, Washington Avenue, Bank Street and Richmond Avenue (pathways to schools), and water system and drainage improvements along South Main Street, Brooklyn Avenue and Union Street.

Seventy-five percent of the estimated $1.1 million sidewalk project will be paid through federal funding and the previously budgeted cost of the water system project is set at $913,000.

-- An order appointing Dwight Thornton to the city’s Board of Assessment Review for a term ending on Sept. 30, 2023.

February 11, 2019 - 4:24pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, Batavia PD, warrants.

From the City of Batavia Police Department:

The following people are wanted on warrants issued out of Batavia City Court. If you have any information on the whereaboute of these subjects, please contact the Batavia Police Department at (585) 345-6350.

Do not make any attempt to apprehend these individuals on your own.

If you have an active warrant and want to avoid ending up on a WANTED list like this, the Batavia Police Department would be more than happy to assist you on resolving the warrant.

ahdeosun_aiken.jpg nicole_casey.jpg heyward_clark.jpg

Ahdeosun "Nunu" Aiken, 20

Charges(s): Second-degree criminal contempt.

Notes: Wanted for allegedly violating an order of protection. Additional pending charge of third-degree bail jumping.

Nicole Casey, 25

Charge(s): Petit larceny

Notes: Wanted for allegedly shoplifting.

Heyward Clark Jr., 54

Charge(s): Multiple counts of third-degree burglary.

Notes: Wanted for allegedly forcefully breaking into several properties and stealing property.

aisha_culver.jpg carey_culverhouse.png allen_davis.jpg

Aisha Culver, 20

Charge(s): Aggravated unlicensed operator
of a motor vehicle
in the third degree; operating with suspended registration; operating without inspection "and additional."

Carey Culverhouse, 59

Charge(s): First-degree assault

Notes: Wanted for allegedly stabbing another person.

Allen Jerome Davis, 37

Charge(s): Sex offender registry

Notes: Wanted for allegedly moving out of his registered address without notice and without providing a new address.

February 11, 2019 - 2:31pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, sports, Bowling, Genesee Region USBC.


CREAM OF THE CROP: Curtis Foss of Medina, left, receives the champion's plaque from Paul Spiotta, tournament director, following his victory Sunday in the Genesee Region USBC Masters at Scopano's Lanes in Oakfield. Foss now has five Masters titles, breaking the tie with Dave Montemarano Jr. of Batavia and Tim Rohl, formerly of Le Roy, for the most ever.

Setting a new standard for bowling excellence in the Genesee Region, Medina’s Curtis Foss captured an unprecedented fifth GRUSBC Masters Tournament crown Sunday in record-setting fashion at Scopano’s Lanes in Oakfield.

Foss, a high-revving power-player whose commitment to the sport in this area is second-to-none, averaged 254 during the eight-game match play finals yesterday and compiled 722 Peterson Points – both high-water marks in the event’s 58-year history.

When asked "what does winning a fifth Masters mean to you?" Foss simply replied “everything” before expressing that he wished to dedicate the victory to his father, Robert Jr., who passed away in October 2016, and his grandmother, Mildred Green, who died the day before this past Thanksgiving.

“They meant so much to me, and the fact that my mom (Sue), grandpa (Darrell Green) and sister (Cassidy) were here, means a lot to me, too.”

The 31-year-old right-hander entered the finals as the No. 1 seed based on his 1,030 score for four games of qualifying the day before (a 257.5 average) and picked up right where he left off by rolling back-to-back 269 games on Sunday.

First he defeated second-seeded and former champion Scott Culp of Honeoye Falls, 269-223, and then he knocked off third-seeded and defending champion Kevin Gray Jr. of Warsaw, 269-213, to leave little doubt as to who would emerge victorious.

He coasted from there, posting scores of 226, 245, 245, 246, 277 and 255 – losing only to Jake Rosenbeck of Medina, 268-245 in game four.

Foss earned $320 and a champion’s ring for his efforts, adding to his collection as a result of victories in 2008, 2009, 2014 and 2015.

In league play this season, Foss -- who bowls as a regular or sub every day of the week -- has registered five 800 series and four 300 games, and already has 27 800's and 40 300's for his career.

As would be expected, Foss came into the tournament with his confidence soaring.

“It’s been going well. My body is doing what it needs to do,” Foss said, noting that he has a “stay me” philosophy.

“That means that I want to do what I’m best at -- which is to stay smooth and don’t overthink the shot,” he said. “When I’m not forcing things and when I get to the place where I feel smooth (to the line) is when I’m at my best.”

Rosenbeck, a 32-year-old righty, enjoyed a successful Masters debut, placing second with 450 Peterson Points and averaging 231 for his 12 game. He earned $240.

Gray finished in third place with 291 points ($200), followed by Scott Allis of Medina (278 points, $160), Culp (205 points, $140), Mike Johnson of Batavia (185 points, $120), former champion Tom Rohl of Le Roy (146 points, $110) and Mike Pettinella of Batavia (64 points, $100).

In Peterson Point match play, bowlers receive 30 points for a victory and more or less points for their score in relation to 200.

High scores from Saturday’s qualifying round (the top eight out of 37 entrants advanced):

Foss, 1,030; Culp, 963; Gray Jr., 942; Allis, 919; Rosenbeck, 911; Johnson of Batavia, 910; Rohl, 892, Pettinella, 887. Devon Leach of Stafford was the alternate at 874.

February 11, 2019 - 12:28pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in elba, accident, news, notify.


Friends and family surrounded Kimberly Albanese and David Robb on Sunday evening in Elba with love and support as they mourned and remembered their mother, Teresa M. Norton, and brother, Thomas M. Norton, at the spot on Route 98 where they were killed eight days earlier.

Teresa, 53, and Thomas, 22, both of Albion, were northbound on Oak Orchard Road when the 2008 Suzuki SUV Teresa was driving hit a deep patch of snow that had blown across the roadway. The Suzuki slid sideways and was struck by a southbound pickup truck.

Both mother and son died at the scene of the accident.

"She was a great mom," Albanese said. "She tried her best. She was my best friend. I miss her so much. Every day I want to call her just to ask her if everything is great. I don't know how I'm going to raise my 2-year-old and my baby. I have a baby due in two months.

"That's when you need your mom the most. My kids are never going to know her. And my brother was only 22. His birthday is in two weeks and he just, he got cheated out of life so much. But what are you going to do? You just go day by day."

A GoFundMe online fundraiser also has been established to assist the family, which has not only suffered the loss of Teresa and Thomas but they are also dealing with the health issues faced by Roger Norton, Teresa's husband. He has been in intensive care at Strong Memorial Hospital since several weeks prior to the accident.


February 11, 2019 - 11:00am
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, sports.

scott_gibson.jpgArmed with a new ball, the Roto-Grip Idol Pearl, Oakfield's Scott Gibson put on an impressive array of striking power last Wednesday night in at his hometown Scopano's Lanes.

The 54-year-old right-hander rolled 32 out of a possible 36 strikes -- including the last 23 in a row -- for a sparkling 238-290-300--828 series on lanes 3-4 in the County Line Stone League.

Gibson said he got the ball a couple weeks ago and had it drilled by Tom Allis of Medina.

He had nine strikes in the first game and, following a nine-spare in the first frame of game two, he never missed the pocket -- and carried every shot -- the rest of the way.

The 828 is his second USBC-certified 800 series (the first was an 810 at Scopano's in November 2000) and he now has eight 300 games.

In other recent bowling action, Jerry Blair of Le Roy recorded a 299 game en route to a 740 series on Jan. 31 and followed that up with a 279--703 series on Feb. 7 in the Thursday Night Men's League at Legion Lanes, and Matt Balduf of South Byron posted a 290 game in the Toyota of Batavia League at Mancuso Bowling Center in Batavia.

For a list of high scores, click on the Pin Points tab at the top of this page.

Watch for a report of Sunday's finals of the Genesee Region USBC Masters Tournament later today.

February 11, 2019 - 10:53am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, news.



Press release (submitted photos):

Property conversions, rehabilitation, and building improvements are moving forward thanks to a strong partnership of the City of Batavia, Genesee County and the City of Batavia School District. All three taxing jurisdictions passed enabling local legislation to enact the Real Property Tax Exemption (RPTL) 485-a and 421-f. Property owners investing in Batavia may qualify for these programs.

Since these tax laws were passed locally, seven homeowners have taken advantage of the 421-f Home Rehab Program and five commercial building owners have converted buildings to mixed-use with the 485-a Mixed Use Conversion Program.

“When residents and business owners improve their property, it enhances the whole community,” said Eugene Jankowski, City Council president. “These programs are available and if you are thinking of investing the City is ready to help.”

The 421-f Home Rehab Program is a real property tax exemption that is applied to capital improvements to residential property. The exemption applies only to the increase in assessed value created by the improvement.

“If you are making improvements (reconstruction, alterations, improvements other than ordinary maintenance) to a one- or two-family residence you might be eligible to participate in the City of Batavia’s 421f,” said Martin Moore, City of Batavia manager.

The City of Batavia also adopted the New York State real property tax exemption known as the 485-a Residential-Commercial Urban Exemption for converting non-residential buildings to mixed-use. The 12-year exemption helps property owners realize a return on investment while advancing the City’s Comprehensive Plan and Downtown Revitalization Investment (DRI) Strategy.

The City’s public planning documents all emphasize the need to convert upper floor vacancies into market-ready residential abodes to provide a built-in market for downtown businesses and a new revenue source for property owners.

Every new household in Downtown Batavia will bring with it approximately $19,000 in demand for retail goods and services. Conversion of commercial downtown residential apartments on vacant second- and third-story buildings is one element to boost activity in Batavia’s downtown.

"This is another tool to turn underutilized properties into economic drivers that turnaround our downtown," said Rachael Tabelski, director of Economic Development for the Batavia Development Corporation.

"We know our building owners are ready and motivated to invest, and we want to make sure they know about City programs, help the Batavia Development Center can offer, as well as the Genesee County Economic Development Center."

By combining all three taxing jurisdictions, property owners could temporarily save upward of $42 per $1,000 value on an increased assessed value attributable to the mixed-use conversion. The former Carr's warehouse building on Jackson Square in Downtown Batavia was one of the first projects to take advantage of the 485a exemption under the ownership of Paul Thompson, owner of Thompson Builds of Churchville.

For more details about these real property tax incentives, contact the City of Batavia Assessor's Office at 585-345-6301 or the Batavia Development Corporation at 585-345-6380.

February 11, 2019 - 10:47am
posted by Anne Marie Starowitz in batavia, news.


      Anne Marie Starowitz

I was looking at our collection of Pat Burr’s drawings of old Batavia in the '60s and was amazed at all of the stores that dotted Main Street.

You really could walk down the street and beginning at one end, mail a letter, buy a car, smoke a cigar, look for a gold watch, buy plumbing supplies, pick up your dry cleaning, buy paint, order a drink, have your picture taken, see a movie, eat a doughnut, have your shoes repaired or buy a new pair of shoes. 

If it was afternoon you could have a drink, buy a sewing machine, smell the delicious aroma from freshly baked bread, pick up a prescription, buy a wedding gown (you might need another drink after the cost of the wedding gown), buy new shoes to go with the gown, order a man’s suit for the wedding, buy children’s clothing, have your eyes checked, buy new furniture, drink a cherry Coke, register for new china, and have a late lunch. 

Continuing west on Main Street, you could make a bank withdrawal for the wedding, buy more jewelry, possibly a wedding band, pick up some fresh produce, purchase a new hat and a real mink coat, pick up another prescription and buy more jewelry.

Now see if you can match the names of these establishments and their merchandise with their locations on Main Street going east from Jefferson to Bank Street.  In the '60s on the north side of the street, there was Mancuso’s Dealership, Chris’ Gifts, The Smoke Shop, William Maney’s Store, Marchese’s Produce, and six jewelry stores, Krtanik, Martin Berman’s, Valle’s, Francis and Mead, Rudolph’s and Brenner’s. 

Clothing stores were plentiful: Alexander’s, Town Shop, Helen’s Darlings, A.M. and M. Clothiers, and Smart Shop. Bon Ton and Bell Hat Shops, Humboldt’s Furriers, and Charles Men Shop were also located on that side of the street along with the beautiful Dipson Theater. There were two paint stores, Mosman’s and Sherwin Williams. There were many restaurants and drinking establishments: Mooney’s, Hamilton Hotel, Young’s Restaurant, Mike’s Hotel, Main Grill, Vic’s Grill, The Dagwood Restaurant and Jackie’s Donuts. A favorite bakery was Grundler’s. A soda shop and candy store was called Kustas’. The furniture store was Bern Furniture and the dry cleaner store was Jet Cleaners. Lawing Picture Studio, Singer Sewing, Genesee Hardware, Western Auto, and the drug stores of Whelan and Dean Drugs were located on different corners. There were four shoe stores, Ritchlin, Cultrara’s, Endicott and Johnson and C.E. Knox. The shoe repair was called Boston Shoe repair.

How many of you could match the store with its location?

If you were traveling down the opposite side of the street you would begin with the Courthouse and pass the County Building where a beautiful Christmas tree would be on the lawn. 

Eventually, you would hope to have a deed to your new home filed at the County Clerk’s Office. You couldn’t miss the Hotel Richmond on the corner that was now just an empty shell. Located within the building of the hotel was Rapid Dry Cleaners. Next, was the three-story J.C. Penney Co. Department Store. If you needed a uniform, there was The Uniform Shop at your disposal. Kinney’s Family Shoe Store was located next to the Camera Shop. Caito’s Liquor Store was followed by Beardsley’s Men’s Store, Sleght’s Book Store, Bank of Batavia, Sugar Bowl, S.S. Kresge’s five-and-dime store, Scott and Bean, Dean’s Drug, M & T Bank, Thomas and Dwyer, C.L. Carr’s Department Store, Marchese Produce, Good Friend Shop, Rudolph’s Jewelers, J.J. Newberry’s five-and-dime store, and WT Grant.

Imagining all these stores decorated for the holidays makes you nostalgic for the simpler times, slower pace when the highlight of your week was going to the city on a Friday night to meet friends and shop! 

February 11, 2019 - 10:36am
posted by Howard B. Owens in gas prices, news, notify.

Press release from AAA: 

Today’s national average price for a gallon of gasoline is $2.28, up 2 cents from last week. One year ago, the price was $2.58. The New York State average is $2.47 – down 2 cents from last week. A year ago, the NYS average was $2.76. AAA Western and Central New York (AAA WCNY) reports the following averages:

  • Batavia -- $2.47 (down 6 cents since last week)
  • Buffalo -- $2.51 (down 2 cents since last week)
  • Ithaca -- $2.34 (down 3 cents since last week)
  • Rochester -- $2.42 (down 2 cents since last week)
  • Rome -- $2.45 (down 2 cents since last week)
  • Syracuse -- $2.36 (down 2 cents since last week)
  • Watertown -- $2.43 (down 3 cents since last week)

National pump prices have inched up this week due to rising crude oil prices. The price gains have coincided with total gasoline stocks growing by approximately 500,000 barrels to 257.9 million barrels last week, according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA). However, as a result of last week's frigid winter weather across the country, demand for gasoline fell sharply, after motorists stockpiled pre-storm, by approximately 500,000 barrels per day, according to EIA. 

February 9, 2019 - 9:13pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Coffee Karma, downtown, Center Street, batavia, news, notify.


Video Sponsor


When Heather Rosendale-Casper started planning Coffee Karma at 12 Center St., Batavia, she knew she wanted a place that would feel warm and welcoming to the community, a real community space, she said during our visit to her new coffee shop today.

"It's really meant to reach out to the community and say, 'hey, let's have this free space were we can exchange conversation, do fun things, start connecting with people once again,' " Rosendale-Casper said.

She's hung local art on the walls, installed a natural-wood coffee bar, uses organic coffee from a local distributor, and even hosts yoga sessions.

Opening Coffee Karma is the culmination of a 20-year-long ambition for Rosendale-Casper.

"Going back to high school and college (coffee shops) is where I fundamentally found myself through philosophy, great conversations, meeting people, networking in an environment that was open and free and I also happen to really love coffee," she said.

Users of The Batavian app, click here to view the video on thebatavian.com.

February 9, 2019 - 4:32pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Ben Bonarigo, news, City Court, notify.


Video Sponsor


Contested elections for judicial seats are rare but voters in the City of Batavia are faced with one in 2019.

Durin Rogers and Ben Bonarigo are vying for the full-time City Court judge position, which becomes open next year because of the mandatory retirement of Judge Robert Balbick.

Saturday morning, Bonarigo officially kicked off his campaign in front of about 200 supporters at City Church's Generation Center on Center Street downtown.

"I think that I've got the experience," Bonarigo said when asked about his qualifications. "Thirty-six years practicing law in the trenches, representing people every day with various civil and criminal cases. I know the rules of evidence.

"I know how to behave in a courtroom, and I know how a judge should act. I've got the right temperament, the ability to listen, the ability to hear everybody who comes before you, to be impartial and fair."

If elected, Bonarigo promised that everybody who came before his bench would be treated fairly.

To get elected, he will have to beat Rogers, who is already a part-time City Court judge and has the City Republicans' endorsement.

But that endorsement doesn't guarantee Rogers the R-line in November.

Bonarigo and his campaign team, led by Nikki Calhoun, are planning a petition drive to force a Republican primary in June. The winner of that June 25th election will win the R-line in the November election.

If Bonarigo were to lose the primary, he could still face off against Rogers in November on the Democratic line.

February 9, 2019 - 4:20pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, sports, Bowling.

Four-time champion Curtis Foss of Medina averaged 257.5 for four games today to lead the qualifying round of the 58th annual Genesee Region USBC Masters Tournament at Scopano's Lanes in Oakfield.

The powerful 31-year-old right-hander blistered the hall's "house shot" to the tune of 259-278-257-236 for a 1,030 total.

Foss, winner of the tournament in 2008, 2009, 2014 and 2015, outdistanced 2016 Masters champion Scott Culp of Honeoye Falls by 67 pins.

Culp's 963 was good for second place, followed by defending champion Kevin Gray Jr. of Warsaw, who posted 942.

Rounding out the top eight who will compete in a Peterson Point head-to-head, eight-game final round starting at 1 p.m. Sunday are Scott Allis of Medina, 919; Jake Rosenbeck of Medina, 911; Mike Johnson of Batavia, 910; two-time champion Tom Rohl of Le Roy, 892, and Mike Pettinella of Batavia, 887.

The field consists of five right-handers and three lefties (Gray Jr., Johnson and Rohl).

Devon Leach of Stafford posted 874 and is the alternate. Leach will bowl in case one of the finalists is unable to compete or withdraws during competition.

In Peterson Point match play, bowlers receive 30 points for a victory and additional points (or less points) for the score in relation to 200. For example, a bowler defeating his opponent with a 220 game receives 50 points for that game.

The bowler with the most Peterson Points after the eight games (including a tournament-ending position round) will be declared the champion.

The tournament drew 37 bowlers.

February 9, 2019 - 2:34pm
posted by Billie Owens in reality check, batavia, TF-GLOW, news.

Submitted photo and press release:

BATAVIA -- Brittany Bozzer, Youth Engagement manager of Tobacco-Free Genesee, Livingston, Orleans and Wyoming counties (TF-GLOW), took Reality Check youth leaders from both St. Joseph School and Notre Dame High School to the state Capitol this week.

They went to Albany on Monday for the Annual Tobacco Control Legislative Day.

Their mission: to show lawmakers the success of the work they’ve done in their community to lower the smoking rate. They also told state leaders about the challenges they face in trying to reduce tobacco use, particularly among vulnerable groups in including fellow youth, the poor and people dealing with mental health issues. 

The facts they shared

Cigarette smoking among New York’s high school youth declined 82 percent between 2000 and 2018, but from 2016 to 2018 the rate increased slightly for the first time since 2000. Even more alarming, electronic cigarette use among the state’s middle and high schoolers continues to rise.

Between 2014 and 2018, the rate increased fully 160 percent, from 10.5 percent to 27.4 percent, and studies show e-cigarettes can be a precursor to cigarette smoking in youth, even those who were not likely to smoke cigarettes. 

Not only has the youth smoking rate in New York State increased for the first time since 2000, but data reveals that more than 1 in 4 of New York’s high-schoolers is using electronic nicotine devices,” Bozzer said.

“With more than half of teens falsely believing e-cigarettes are harmless, adolescent nicotine exposure can cause addiction, it can harm the developing adolescent brain and it can increase the risk of adolescents starting and continuing smoking combustible cigarettes.”

Successes and troubles

St. Joe’s eighth-graders Cayla Hansen and Katie Kratz, as well as Notre Dame sophomores Ben Streeter, Krysta Hansen and junior Maddie Payton, don’t like what they see the tobacco industry doing to hook their friend and family members.

So for this year’s Tobacco Control Legislative Education Day, they wanted to show and tell their elected officials what they see. They created an interactive, life-sized board game called “Tobacco Trouble,” bringing lawmakers on board with the game between legislative sessions to learn about the group’s recent tobacco control successes and the continued fight they’re in with Big Tobacco, an industry that has overfilled their community's retail stores with tobacco products.

More troubling facts in NYS:

  • Adults with poor mental health, less than a high school education or annual income less than $25,000 smoke at much higher rates than the general adult population in the state;
  • About 280,000 kids now under 18 will die prematurely from smoking;
  • E-cigarette use amongst youth has almost tripled from 2014 to 2018;
  • E-cigarettes are now the most commonly used tobacco product by youth—more than cigarettes, cigars, smokeless tobacco and hookah; 
  • Studies show e-cigarettes can be a precursor to cigarette smoking in youth, even those who were not likely to smoke cigarettes;
  • Using nicotine in adolescence may also increase risk for future addiction to other drugs.

Reality Check empowers youth to become leaders in their communities in exposing what they see as the manipulative and deceptive marketing tactics of the tobacco industry.

The organization’s members produce change in their communities through grassroots mobilization and education. Reality Check in this area is affiliated with Tobacco-Free Genesee, Livingston, Orleans and Wyoming counties (TF-GLOW), a program managed by Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center.

To learn more about Reality Check, connect with Brittany Bozzer at 585-219-4064 or [email protected]

February 9, 2019 - 2:04pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, Le Roy, scanner.

Le Roy police are responding to a complaint of a dangerous condition at the Royal Apartments, Building #15, at 103 W. Main St. A male is riding around the building on a snowmobile.


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