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September 9, 2016 - 2:34pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, news, DeWitt Recreation Area.

Investigators are awaiting the results of toxicology tests to help determine the cause of death of a man whose body was found in the lake at DeWitt Recreation Area on Labor Day.

The victim's name has not been released because authorities are having a hard time getting in touch with appropriate family members for the purpose of notification.

Det. Todd Crossett said he expects notification to happen today and the identity of the victim to be released Monday.

"It should be clear when the information is released why this is taking so long," Crossett said.

The autopsy has been completed, but that procedure did not lead to a determination of the cause of death, Crossett said.

Asked if the extensive search of the area conducted after the body was found turned up anything related to the case, Crossett said he couldn't comment on that until information was released on Monday.

Crossett said he wasn't on scene Labor Day, so he doesn't know if identification was found on the victim, but he said somebody who saw the body did recognize him.

In past fatalities, it has taken a couple of months for toxicology reports to come back from the crime labs.

September 9, 2016 - 12:20pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Town of Batavia Fire, batavia, news, business.


Press release:

In preparation for the construction of our new fire station, the Town of Batavia Fire Department, Inc., will be accepting written offers for the house and property located at 5007 Clinton Street Road, Batavia.

The house is two-story, 1584 square feet and is located on a 60’ x 128’ parcel. The house is currently configured as a 2-family home.

The Fire Department purchased the house as it was included as part of the land acquisition for our new fire station. After a formal needs review examination, it has been determined that the house it is not necessary for our current or future needs.

There will be an Open House on Wednesday, Sept. 14, from 2 until 6 p.m. for anyone interested in viewing the house and property.

Written offers will be accepted until Monday, Sept. 19 by U.S. Mail at Town of Batavia Fire Department, Inc., P.O. Box 417, Batavia, NY 14021-0417.

The Town of Batavia Fire Department, Inc., reserves the right to reject any and/or all offers that it deems in its best interest.

By order of the Board of Directors

September 9, 2016 - 11:51am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, animals, pets, news.

A caller complains that at a residence on Dellinger Avenue, a dog is being left outside all day, in the heat, without shelter.

The City's animal control officer is responding.

September 9, 2016 - 11:39am
posted by Genesee Chamber... in Genesee County Park, Bethany, news, outdoors.

Genesee County Park & Forest is back at it with yet another awesome educational event.

Join the county park for Monarch Watching from 1:30 to 2:45 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 17th. Learn about the fascinating lives of Monarch Butterflies. Explore their world and find out what people are doing to help out!

$5/person, $10/family. Space is limited, pre-registration is required! Call 585-344-1122!

Five Fun Facts about Monarch Butterflies to prepare you for migrating season:

1. Monarch Butterflies migrate through our region in mid-September.

2. A monarch caterpillar can eat a whole milkweed leaf in under 4 minutes! Monarch caterpillars gain about 2,700 times their weight in two weeks.

3. Monarch butterflies smell with their antennae.

4. Monarch butterflies taste with their feet, using special receptors called tarsi.

5. Monarch butterflies ride updrafts of warm air to help complete their 3,000-mile migration at the end of each summer. Monarchs have been seen gliding at altitudes as high as 11,000 feet!

Visit www.VisitGeneseeNY.com to learn more...

September 9, 2016 - 11:34am
posted by Howard B. Owens in walmart, batavia, news.

A deputy has been dispatched to Walmart to investigate a report of a girl, about 5 or 6 years old, in a pink outfit, panhandling.

September 9, 2016 - 9:51am
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, Tim Horton's, Genesee County Planning Board.

Genesee County planners came up with a five-item “to do list” for the owners of a proposed Tim Hortons Café & Bake Shop at 1106 Main Road (Brick House Corners) in the Town of Pembroke

At a meeting Thursday night at County Building No. 2, the board recommended approval of a special use permit and area variances for Clark Holdings Inc. to construct a 1,776-square-foot restaurant, with drive-thru, but not before several modifications have been made.

The panel noted that it is concerned about traffic on Route 77, primarily a lack of visibility to drivers making left-hand turns out of the Route 77 driveway to head north, and the safety of students crossing Route 77 in an area with no sidewalks.

“The proposal is missing documentation, it’s just not ready yet,” said Planning Director Felipe Oltramari. “For one thing, a traffic study needs to be done when school is in session.”

Two of the modifications focus on traffic issues, specifically that the applicant should obtain driveway permits from the New York State Department of Transportation for the proposed driveways onto routes 5 and 77; and that there should be no northbound turns onto Route 77 from the proposed driveway leading to that highway.

Other modifications are that the applicant eliminate at least one wall sign, obtain documentation from the State Historic Preservation Office as to the project's impacts on archaeological resources, and obtain documentation from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) as to the project's impacts on endangered or threatened species.

Clark Holdings Inc., headquartered in Williamsville and owned by Bryan Clark, owns and operates a dozen Tim Horton shops in Western New York.

A call to Clark this morning was not immediately returned.

In other action, the Planning Board:

-- Approved, with modifications, a site plan review for the 21,000-square-foot (140x150) L&M Specialty Fabrication metal fabrication facility at East Saile Drive and Bank Street in the Town of Batavia.

The manufacturing and repair business, owned by Lee Shuknecht and Matt Geissler, previously was approved by the Genesee County Economic Development Center for a seven-year, $200,000 loan from the Growing the Agriculture Industry Now fund to purchase equipment.

Planners recommended that the applicants obtain documentation from the State Historic Preservation Office as to the project’s impacts on archaeological resources in light of a form submitted to the SHPO that erroneously stated that the project is not located in an archaeologically sensitive area.

They also asked that any proposed signage conform to the Town’s zoning requirements.

-- Approved, with modifications, a site plan review for Evelyn Jaeger of Batavia to open a consignment shop at 102 S. Main St., Oakfield, an existing commercial building. Modifications include obtaining a driveway permit from state DOT for change in use prior to final approval by the Village of Oakfield.

-- Approved, pending an amended site plan showing all the buildings on the property, a site plan review to construct a 1,920-square-foot (40x48) equipment storage building at Select Collision, 5273 Clinton Street Road.

-- Approved a site plan review from East Saile Properties LLC to build a 2,936-square-foot addition to an existing tractor trailer repair shop at 4736 E. Saile Drive in the Town of Batavia.

-- Approved wind energy systems’ special use permits requested by Paul and Debbie Harris of Bethany and Harold Sinemus of Elba, as well as a solar system special use permit requested by Cynthia Jones of Byron. 

September 8, 2016 - 4:48pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, Le Roy, Milestones.

(Submitted photo. Jennifer Bertrand, who teaches in Le Roy, with a display about their winning innovative teaching idea.)

Press release:

Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA), a leading provider of retirement plans for educators, announced today that Jennifer Bertrand, Robert Blake and Julie Colemana group of teachers at Le Roy Central School District in Le Roy, have received a $2,000 grant as part of the company’s 2016 Voya Unsung Heroes awards competition.

This group of teachers is one of only two winning teams statewide! The other winning group is in New York, NY.

Through the Voya Unsung Heroes program, Voya Financial awards grants to K-12 educators nationwide to honor their innovative teaching methods, creative educational projects, and their ability to positively influence the children they teach. This year marks the program’s 20th anniversary. Since 1996, it has awarded nearly $5 million in grants to more than 2,000 educators across the United States.

Video testimonials sent in by winners from the past two decades underscore how the Voya Unsung Heroes program has made a significant difference in the lives of these amazing teachers and their students. In looking back at the winning projects from the program’s 20-year history, Voya has also been able to track the popular trends and compelling concepts that have shaped our country’s education system. (See infographic: “Voya Highlights 20 Years of Teaching Trends”).

“At Voya, we not only have the privilege of helping teachers plan for their retirement, we also have this unique opportunity to help them dream big in the classroom and inspire their students to do the same,” said Heather Lavallee, president of Tax-Exempt Markets at Voya Financial.

“We are proud to recognize those exceptional teachers who work every day to raise the bar of their profession and find new ways to spark a love of learning. As we help Americans plan, invest and protect their savings to build a secure financial future, we’re honored to help this group of teachers go above and beyond to prepare their students for their own bright future.” 

The Le Roy team’s innovative teaching idea, “Knights of the Makerspace,” is focused on providing the opportunity for students to collaborate while boosting their potential for creativity and innovation through the use of technology. Students involved in the program will have access to the use of a makerspace, a creative, "do-it-yourself" space where students can gather to create, invent, and learn.

The goal for “Knights of the Makerspace” is to create a space within the Le Roy Central School District building for fourth-, fifth- and sixth-grade students wherein they can use robots, circuits, computer coding, 3D printing and more and ultimately tap into their problem solving potential. Students will have access to the makerspace during or after the school day. Additionally, the space will be used to assist in the recruiting efforts of the school’s female population, which is a priority to empower and energize students within the computer sciences field.

Selected from a group of more than 1,350 applicants, the group is among only 100 winners across the country who will receive this award to help fund and bring their program to life. In addition they will now compete with other finalists for one of the top three prizes — an additional $5,000, $10,000 or $25,000 from Voya Financial.

To learn more about this year’s winning projects, as well as those from previous years, visit the Voya Unsung Heroes website (unsungheroes.com). Applications for the 2017 Voya Unsung Heroes awards are currently being accepted through the website until April 30, 2017.    

About Voya Financial®

Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA), helps Americans plan, invest and protect their savings — to get ready to retire better. Serving the financial needs of approximately 13 million individual and institutional customers in the United States, Voya is a Fortune 500 company that had $11 billion in revenue in 2015. For more information, visit voya.com.

September 8, 2016 - 4:36pm
posted by Billie Owens in genesee county republican women's club, news.
Press release:
The New York State Federation of Republican Women (NYSFRW) will continue the 2016 Regional Republican Meetings with a stop in Batavia on Saturday Sept. 17th. Jo-Ann Clear, president of the NYSFRW, will provide updates and discuss opportunities for the 2016 state and national campaigns. 
“This is a very exciting year in politics with the election of a new president and many contested state races that could change the balance of power in Albany,” Clear said. “My 2016 meeting series continues in Western New York to get more citizens engaged in the political process, connect like-minded men and women that value the principles of the Republican Party, and to bring the NYSFRW to each region of our state to listen to our current and prospective members.”
The Luncheon meeting will be held on Sept. 17, at Terry Hills Banquet Facility, 5122 Clinton Street Road, Batavia. The event will run from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. and lunch will be served. Cost of the program is $25 and RSVPs are due by Sept. 14th to Rachael Tabelski, 585-409-4008 or [email protected]
“The Genesee County Women’s Republican Club (GCWRC) is proud to have members from across Western New York and the Finger Lakes gathering in Batavia for this exciting program,” said Tabelski, president of the GCWRC. "I encourage anyone interested in campaigns, politics, and issues facing today’s woman to come to this meeting.”
The meeting is being held for Republican women within the 7th  and 8th Judicial districts, which includes the counties of Allegany, Cattaraugus, Cayuga, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Niagara, Ontario, Orleans, Seneca, Steuben, Wayne, Wyoming and Yates.  
About the New York State Federation of Republican Women: The NYSFRW encompasses all 62 counties, with 26 active clubs, in New York with a mission to inform and involve Republican women in government and politics. The Federation also seeks to provide grassroots support for elected officials and candidates at every level of government.  The NYSFRW is a member of the National Federation of Republican Women.
About the Genesee County Women’s Republican Club: Founded in circa 1930 the Geneseee County Women’s Republican Club is one of the most active grassroots political organizations in the county. We empower women from all backgrounds in the political process and provide a forum for women to serve as leaders in the political, government, and civic arenas.
September 8, 2016 - 4:28pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, sports, RUS, racing under saddle, Batavia Downs, batavia.

(The race to the finish line in Batavia Down's first-ever "racing under saddle" contest Sept. 7.)

By Tim Bojarski, for Batavia Downs

Wednesday night (Sept. 7) was historic for Batavia Downs as the first ever racing under saddle (RUS) contest was held at the oldest lighted harness track in America. And the show put on by the competitors in the $4,000 RUS New York championship race had the fans on their feet and cheering.

Five horses went postward before My Friend Charlie (Andrea Pratt) went right for the lead as the race began. But shortly after getting away second, Funny Photo (Sophie Engerran) came early, pulled alongside the leader and immediately pushed the issue.

The two trotted side by side setting fractions of :30 and 1:00.3 to the half before Funny Photo made a break past the five-eighths pole. At that point My Friend Charlie was alone on top but Admirable Hanover (Vanessa Karlewicz), who inherited second after the break, was right on her tail. As the race moved off the last turn, Karlewicz pulled Admirable Hanover and drew alongside the leader. The pair trotted in step in a thrilling race to the wire before Admirable Hanover got a slight advantage and won by a neck in 2:03.4.

My Friend Charlie was second and Jeanie Marie closed sharply for third after an early race miscue in the non-betting event.

It was the third win in six starts under saddle for Admirable Hanover this year. This is the fourth year the 9-year-old gelded son of Cantab Hall has competed in RUS and the 2:03.4 clocking was a new lifetime mark under saddle for him. 

Admirable Hanover is owned by Peter Gerry and is trained by his rider, Vanessa Karlewicz.

“The crowd loved this race” said Todd Haight, Director/General Manager of Live Racing. “They were on their feet at the rail cheering as the two horses battled down the stretch. The girls put on a great show and we hope this isn’t the last we’ve seen of RUS at Batavia Downs.”

Since this was the first-ever RUS event at Batavia Downs, the winning time of 2:03.4 is a new track record. 

September 8, 2016 - 3:16pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in City Schools, batavia, news, schools, education, sports.

Press release:

The Batavia City School District has always been committed to its girls’ athletic program. We are proud of our student athletic program and continuously work toward achieving equality across all sports. This is of paramount importance to the District.

The District has recently received the Court’s decision awarding attorneys’ fees (totaling $68,000) to the Empire Justice Center in the 2013 lawsuit concerning the girls’ softball fields. The District disagrees with, and is disappointed by, the award of attorneys’ fees to the Empire Justice Center. Most importantly, the lawsuit was simply unnecessary – and only served to waste taxpayers’ money.

The improvements to the girls’ softball field were already approved by the Board before the lawsuit was filed, and they were commenced immediately upon taxpayer approval of the funding. The changes would have been made regardless whether the lawsuit was filed. This was conveyed to the Empire Justice Center, but their attorneys chose to proceed with the lawsuit – and generating unnecessary legal fees for their organization – anyway.

In the end, the Empire Justice Center achieved almost nothing outside this award of fees. There were no substantial differences between the settlement and the capital improvement plans that the Board of Education proposed and approved at its February 2013 meeting for presentation to the voters in May 2013. In addition to routine maintenance, there was only one additional improvement requested in over and above the capital improvement project – the addition of a safety cap to the track and field fence that is adjacent to the no longer used JV softball field.

The District looks forward to continuing to provide a safe and nurturing environment to develop students with high moral character who are able to meet life’s challenges. 

September 8, 2016 - 2:54pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in nursing home, news.

The sale of the Genesee County Nursing home to Premier Healthcare won't exactly lead to the county government pocketing a cool $15.2 million and walking away from the deal scot-free.

Getting disentangled from the white elephant of a facility will take months and cost millions of dollars.

"The costs don't stop on the day of the sale," said County Manager Jay Gsell.

The revenue to the county, as insufficient as it's been for the past decade, stops the day Premier takes over, but some of the costs will drag out, such as final payments to employees' retirement accounts, paying out unclaimed vacations and leaves, paying ongoing workers comp claims, closing out obligations for patient care, among other expenses.

It could be at least a year before the county knows how much of that $15.2 million is left over after all of the expenses are covered.

Right now, best guess, those expenses will eat up at least 75 percent of the sale price, Gsell said.

It will be up to the county legislature to decide what to do with the balance, whether put it back into the general fund, put it into roads and bridges or toward building a new jail.

There are also unpaid bills from patients to be collected. The floating balance of unpaid bills, called accounts receivable, is about $1.3 million.

The county will need to make a decision on how to handle those accounts, whether sell them to Premier at a discount or assign staff -- perhaps more than one staff member, plus attorney time -- to try and collect those payments, or the accounts could be turned over to a contractor for collection. An accountant with Freed Maxick  is working to determine which option might be best for the county.

The county is also owed money from the federal government, which passes through the state, called IGT funds. This money is designed to help county governments fill the gap between revenue and expenses on facilities such as the nursing home. That is money owed the county for expenses already incurred, but by law, the money must be paid to the nursing home, so Premier will need to transfer the money to the county, once the funds are received.

Whatever the final "net proceeds" from the sale might be, the county will never be able to claim it made a "profit" on the sale, Gsell said.  

The sale will close after Premier receives its second regulatory approval, called a certificate of need, from the state's Health Department. One has been approved, for the skilled nursing home, but the other, for the adult home, is still pending.

Gsell expects the deal to close in the fall, meaning between Oct. 1 and the first day of winter.

The nursing home has been bleeding money from the county's general fund for the last 10 years, and to a tune of more than $2.5 million a year for the past five. Those are deficits on operations that will never be recovered.

"We will never be able to use the word 'profit' when it comes to the Genesee County Nursing Home," Gsell said. "That equation has left the building."

September 8, 2016 - 2:17pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, sports, Announcements, Alabama, alabama gun club.
The Alabama Hunt Club will host a Fall Black Powder Shoot from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 17-18.
The event is open to the public and features traditional black powder and inline muzzleloader matches.
There will be 25, 50, 75, 100 and 200 yard ranges available to compete; or it is a good time to sight in your hunting gun.
New for 2016 -- INLINE MUZZLELOADER matches with or without a scope.
Lunch will be available.
The club is located at 1857 Lewiston Road, Basom.
For additional info contact: John at 716-714-5514 or Sam at 585-297-7747.
September 8, 2016 - 2:06pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, ILGR, Taste of Independence.

Press release:

The Third Annual Taste of Independence food-sampling extravaganza is being held by Independent Living of the Genesee Region (ILGR) on Wednesday, Sept. 21, from 5:30 to 8 p.m.

Taking place at Batavia County Club, 7909 Batavia-Byron Road, Batavia, the event will offer guests a chance to try some signature dishes of the Genesee Region’s finest restaurants, plus a basket raffle and 50/50 split club.

The participating restaurants include: Applebee’s Grill & Bar, Amber Lantern Brewing Company, Arby’s, Batavia Downs, Big Pauly’s Pizza, Carter’s Restaurant & Bar, Chap’s Elba Diner, Cutaia’s Meat Market, D&R Depot, Rancho Viejo Mexican Restaurant, John & Mary’s, Kati’s Place, Lori’s Delectable Edibles, Main Street Pizza Company, Mooney’s Sports Bar & Grill, Sweet Pea’s Cupcakery Café, T.F. Brown’s Restaurant, The North Pole, Waggin Wheel Restaurant & Lounge, and Yancey’s Fancy.  

Our thanks to non-restaurant event Sponsors, Tompkins Insurance Agencies, Dr. Bradford C. Berk, Dr. Coral Surgeon, and Stephen Hawley & Associates, LLC.

Tickets are $15 and can be picked up at the ILGR office, 113 Main St., Suite 5, Batavia. Space is limited! To R.S.V.P., become a sponsor, or get more information call Donna at 585-815-8501, ext. 411, or email [email protected]

New this year: ILGR is running a sign-spotting contest! A yellow, white and red Taste of Independence Contest poster will be moved among various stores and other locations in the greater Batavia area. If you are the first person to spot it at its current location and inform us where it is on Facebook (Independent Living-Batavia), you’ll win a free beverage at Tim Horton’s, and be entered into a drawing for a free ticket to the event!  

ILGR expects the event to increase awareness of its programs to help individuals with disabilities living in Genesee, Orleans and Wyoming counties to remain independent and empowered, to which programs the funds raised will be directed. Its services include independent living skills training, advocacy, peer counseling, transportation, Braille transcription, a loan closet of medical equipment, housing assistance, information and referral, and many more.

September 8, 2016 - 2:00pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Elections, news.

There is one registered member of the Reform Party in Genesee County, and with a potentially contested race for the nomination in the 61st Senate District, there must be, under state law, a countywide primary election.

That would be the case even if there wasn't also a primary in the 61st District for the Working Families Party, which has 221 registered members in the county.

Those two primaries could have cost county taxpayers $17,000, but election commissioners Dick Siebert and Lorie Longhany worked out a plan and developed a new policy, with guidance from state election officials, to have one consolidated polling station, in County Building #1, for the Sept. 13 primary.

Rather than expending $150 per election machine to have them moved to each of the 17 polling locations in each town and the city, a member of the county's maintenance staff will move five or six machines to County Building #1, the location of the election board's offices, eliminating that cost.

The plan also means fewer ballots need to be printed.

Siebert said the expected turnout is only 15 to 16 voters.

"That might be a high estimate," Longhany said.

The commissioners briefed members of the county's Ways and Means Committee at yesterday's meeting.

The members of both parties were notified of the polling place change through First Class mail and told that if the change presented a hardship, the voter could request an absentee ballot. The commission has received one ballot request.

"I think we have all the bases covered," Longhany said.

For the Reform Party, Sen. Mike Ranzenhofer is the sole official nominee, but a member of the party in the district filed a request  for an "opportunity to ballot," which opens the door for a write-in vote.

For Working Families, there are two nominees for the 61st District line, Thomas A. Loughran and Andre N. Liszka.

County Building #1 is located at 15 Main St., Batavia. The polling stations will be on the second floor and will be handicap accessible through the building's elevator, which is by the entrance on the west side of the building near Ellicott Street.

September 8, 2016 - 2:00pm

Genesee, Orleans & Wyoming Public Health Column

Press release:

September is National Preparedness Month! In our area we generally think of snow and ice-related emergencies, however it is also important to be ready for threats caused by flooding, high winds, earthquakes, fires, chemical spills and infectious diseases.

Thankfully, getting prepared for all types of emergencies is made easier with the assistance of Mobile Apps like Ready Genesee, Orleans Aware and FEMA. These apps are similar in nature in that all connect consumers to weather alerts, planning features and information on available shelters. Apps like these are user-friendly and give consumers the tools to take part in their own preparedness, which will positively impact the outcome of any emergency.

If you live, work, or visit Genesee or Orleans Counties download the Ready Genesee and Orleans Aware Apps, available on apple and android devices, as well as in English and Spanish, too.

“The Emergency Management Offices’ and Health Departments’ in both counties teamed up to have these apps made available in an effort to have a local focus," said Bill Schutt, deputy coordinator of Emergency Management Services. "County officials can use this app not only to get information to users before, during, and after emergencies in a more direct and modern way but also to share knowledge on a regular basis, too.

"Since Ready Genesee and Orleans Aware became available to download earlier this year, the counties have utilized the apps to notify users of road closers, a boil water notice, a gas leak, rabies clinics, as well as sharing of informational articles on the recent drought, Zika virus, Lyme Disease and lighting safety. If you don’t travel to either county, the FEMA app is a good, reputable option, too, but it is important to note that users will not receive notifications or general information from their county officials."

Features of Ready Genesee and Orleans Aware Mobile Apps

My Plan

By answering five simple questions, the app will create a customized emergency supply checklist and plan based on your family’s needs, including pets and relatives with special needs.

Get information from the National Weather Service and local county officials.  Local officials can instantly inform you of situations including, but not limited to, road closers, evacuation notices, boil water notices, gas leaks, an active shooter or missing persons.

My Status

With the push of a button let friends and loved ones know “I’m Safe” or “I Need Help.”

EvacMap& Shelters

Find evacuation routes and shelters with on and offline mapping.

Need to Know

E-books on various topics including Public Health Emergencies, Need to Know Preparedness for Pet Owners, Emerging Infectious Diseases, Floods  and Fire Safety.


Have contact information to services helpful in an emergency.

“The full potential of these new apps will be recognized more so as different emergencies arise and I predict at that utilization will increase too,” stated Al Cheverie, Public Health Emergency Preparedness Coordinator for Genesee and Orleans. “After downloading your App, please take the time to collect the emergency supplies for your home and car.

"Being ill prepared for a situation where you are unable to leave your house or car can be dangerous if certain supplies such a necessary medications, blankets, food and water aren’t on hand."

To download the apps visit:

Ready Genesee or Orleans Aware: http://eocready.com/counties

FEMA: https://www.fema.gov/mobile-app

For information about Health Department services contact:

September 8, 2016 - 11:52am
posted by Howard B. Owens in STOP-DWI, crime, news.

For 2017, the STOP-DWI program will spend a little more of its reserves, with the extra money allocated toward increased DWI enforcement and educational programs, Assistant County Manager Matt Landers told members of the County Legislature's Ways and Means Committee at Wednesday's meeting.

The increase in spending follows a year in which revenue from DWI fines lags behind the previous year, but the program has more than $200,000 in reserves against an approximate annual spending plan of $200,000 and the state agency that overseas STOP-DWI programs thinks that level of reserves is too high, so Genesee County needs to spend its program reserves down a bit.

The law enforcement leaders on the STOP-DWI committee also want to see an increase in spending on anti-drunk-driving efforts, so spending reserves now doesn't worry them.

"Everybody understands this could mean cuts in the future," Landers said.

The program is funded through fines paid by drivers convicted of DWI.

The number of arrests for DWI in the county declined steadily from the 1980s until 2014, when changes in laws brought about a slight uptick in arrests.

In 2015 there were 228 arrests, generating $190,000 in paid fines. For 2016, the fine revenue is projected to be $183,000.

The projected revenue for 2017 is $190,000. Landers is proposing a 2017 budget of $226,000.

That would require transferring $36,000 from reserves.

The portion of reserves earmarked for law enforcement is $16,000.

Spending more on enforcement could mean more arrests, which means more revenue, but that really isn't the goal, Landers said after the meeting.

"It’s both sides," Landers said. "Obviously when arrests are up, it generates more revenue and it shows that we’re getting drunks off the road, but then again, when arrests are up, it shows there are more drunks out there. The idea is that in a perfect world the program would go away someday because there are no more drunks on the road.

"So, yes, it’s a double-edged sword. It’s good when arrests are up for revenue purposes. We can do more initiatives, but it means there are more drunks out there and it shows there is more work to be done."

September 8, 2016 - 11:41am

oltramari_laurie.jpgFacing a reduced budget for the coming year, Laurie Oltramari said she decided that the time was right to reassess her personal goals and submit her resignation as director of the Batavia Downtown Business Improvement District.

Oltramari, speaking publicly today for the first time since informing BID directors last week that she will be leaving effective Oct. 2, said that “after re-evaluating myself and the BID, taking into account a budget that is drastically limited this year, I felt it was the best thing for me to move on.”

Oltramari, a native of Wellsville, took the full-time position a year ago following a four-year stint as the assistant to then-director Don Burkel.

She said she has mixed feelings about resigning – “I really enjoyed meeting everyone downtown and working with the businesses,” she said – but was quick to add that “the time has come to think about myself.”

The downtown taxing jurisdiction’s budget has been scrutinized, of late, primarily by the Batavia City Council, which on Tuesday night passed a local law amending the BID plan to address district assessment charges that exceeded the amount authorized for operations and debt service payments under the General Municipal Law, and adherence to Open Meetings and Freedom of Information Laws.

The city actually is holding onto $49,571 in BID assessment money that has been designated as “excessive.”

Despite these proceedings, Oltramari said that had no effect on her decision.

“It’s more about what I want to do,” she said. “I understand why the BID’s funding had to be downsized, it was by law.”

Oltramari said the BID’s annual budget has decreased from $120,000 to $55,000, and with only 20 percent of that latter amount available for use for operations, “it really puts a constraint on the organization.”

“I figure that my leaving will help a little bit. They won’t have to pay a full-time director, who really won’t be able to do that much.”

She said she suggested to the board that it should hire a part-time director, with a salary considerably less than the “just over $30,000” that she earned.

Oltramari said she is going to “take it slow” before seeking another full-time position. She and her husband, Felipe, director of the Genesee County Department of Planning, have two children who attend Batavia Middle School.

A telephone call to BID Board President Victor Gautieri for comment was not returned. 

September 8, 2016 - 10:08am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia MS, batavia, City Schools, news, education, schools.


It's the first day of school, but not just for students, but for some staff, too, including Batavia Middle School's new principal, Ashley John Grillo.

Grillo, originally from Albion, was most recently assistant principal at Holley Central School and was appointed to his new role this Spring.

He said he's very excited by the prospects of his new position.

“Fortunately, I’ve got a great team I’m working  with; the staff I’ve met so far have been wonderful," Grillo said.  "They’ve been very welcoming, very helpful. I’m very excited about this year. I only see nothing but positive things happening."

Grillo said he also received a warm welcome from the student's this morning.

"It’s been a blast," Grillo said. "I’ve been shaking hands all morning with kids and saying hi and introducing myself, and they’ve been coming to me, too, so it’s been nice."

September 8, 2016 - 9:00am
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, Le Roy, batavia, Darien.

Erik Robert Motquin, 34, of Route 5, Batavia, is charged with one count of second-degree burglary and two counts of third-degree burglary.  Motquin was arrested following an investigation in the Town of Darien regarding an incident which occurred at 9 a.m. on Aug. 15 on Harper Road. Motquin allegedly entered a residence and a storage shed on the property on Harper Road and stole several items. He was jailed in lieu of $25,000 cash bail. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Bradley Mazur

Oliver Thomas, 25, of Dellinger Avenue, Batavia, is charged with second-degree harassment. He was arrested at 10:38 a.m. on Sept. 4 on Summit Street after allegedly sending threatening / alarming text messages to another person. He was jailed on $500 cash bail or bond. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk.

Rebecca E. Hershey, 18, of East Main Road, Le Roy, is charged with petit larceny and unlawful possession of alcohol by a person under 21. Hershey was arrested at 2:15 a.m. on Sept. 3 on Park Road in Batavia after she allegedly stole alcohol from a business while in an intoxicated condition. Hershey was issued an appearance ticket for City Court on Sept. 6. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk.

September 7, 2016 - 5:01pm
posted by Billie Owens in accidents, Pavilion, news.

The Genesee County Sheriff's Office is investigating a single motorcycle accident involving two occupants that occurred on Route 20 in the Town of Pavilion on Sept. 6.

A nearby resident reported the accident at 7:27 p.m.

Sheriff's deputies responded and located a motorcycle, driver and passenger. The driver was identified at Christopher R. Stowell, 39, of Silver Springs, and the passenger was identified as Stuart A. Edwards, 46, of Caledonia.

Both men were transported by Mercy ambulance to Strong Memorial Hospital for non-life-threatening injuries.

Assisting at the scene were Mercy medics and members of the Pavilion Volunteer Fire Department.

Charges are pending in the matter and the investigation is continuing by Deputy Eric Meyer.

(Initial report.)

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