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September 20, 2018 - 2:00pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in GCEDC, news, notify.

Local government agencies are enjoying an additional $4.84 million in new revenue derived from projects approved for assistance from the Genesee County Economic Development Center since 2006, according to a report by CEO Steve Hyde to the County Legislature yesterday.

A key tax abatement awarded to qualifying projects is Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILOT). While PILOTS afford companies some temporary tax relief on the increase in the assessed value of a property, the company is making PILOT payments and as the PILOT matures, new tax revenue is also generated.

Hyde said once all of the current PILOT projects on the books mature, additional tax revenue will surpass $7.5 million.

IN 2017, school districts in Genesee County received an additional $2.93 million in revenue from GCEDC projects, the county an additional $1.26 million, and local governments, $640,000.

"For every dollar, the county invests in economic development, we're seeing about $25 coming back in property taxes," Hyde said.

While GCEDC generates revenue for itself from fees charged to businesses that it assists, Hyde said it also relies on the financial support of the county, which has been reduced by 33 percent in recent years.

Meanwhile, GCEDC's workload has increased and the agency is actively marketing WNY STAMP in Alabama, which Hyde said continues to generate interest among site selectors, but for that $50 million project the IDA has only been able to budget $50,000 for marketing.

"That’s a bit of challenge right now but we work it and we’ll continue to work it," Hyde said.

GCEDC's support for business projects, Hyde said, have added 2.38 million square feet in new construction and another 1.28 million square feet in renovated space.

The number of PILOT projects in Genesee County in 2002 was 38. The peak was 2010 with 99. The number has fallen off steadily since then to 71 in 2017.

"Just because the number of our PILOTs are trailing off the past few years doesn’t mean it’s a bad thing," Hyde said. "It’s a good thing. It means we're graduating projects."

GCEDC is also working to help to finalize financing for the Ellicott Station project in Batavia. Hyde said it's the most complicated financing scheme he's worked on, and bringing state and federal requirements into line is a challenge. He's meeting today with the chief financial officer for Savarino Companies to work on some of those details. The IDA may need to adjust its initial PILOT plan for the project to help bring the pieces together.

The project has been delayed for months because of the difficulties faced by Savarino, the city and GCEDC in putting the financing package together.

September 19, 2018 - 4:48pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in chris collins, NY-27, Nate McMurray, notify.

Rep. Chris Collins announced on Twitter today that he will "actively" seek reelection to the NY-27 seat he's held through three terms despite being under federal indictment for alleged securities fraud, wire fraud and lying to the FBI.

Collins released his statement in a graphic. Below is the graphic:

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Below is a response from Nate McMurray, who is challenging Collins in the November election:

Nate McMurray, the Democratic and Working Families Party Candidate for New York’s 27th Congressional District, reacted to today’s news that indicted member of Congress and master insider trader Chris Collins would suspend suspending his campaign.
 
“It looks like the criminal is returning to the scene of the crime – and I’m not just talking about insider trading, lying to the FBI and everything else he’s been accused of – I mean the derelict(ion) of duty he did by ignoring his constituents and their interests for every second of his elected life.

"I’m curious to know what Mr. Collins means by ‘actively campaign’ because he hasn’t talked to his constituents, hasn’t held town halls, and has been hiding in his penthouse since the FBI arrested him. Now he thinks that the voters of this district who are getting hurt by a trade war, are struggling to make ends meet, and know that Washington is more corrupt than ever, he thinks they’re going to trust him? Give me a break. He looks out for himself. And maybe his donors.

"Chris Collins has been charged with a crime. He can’t buy his way back into his job.

"Chris Collins thinks the rules don’t apply to him. They do.

"Chris Collins represents everything that’s wrong with Washington.

"Chris, if you’re listening from Manhattan, here are a few words you may remember, ‘lock him up’ ‘drain the swamp’. I hear your next court appearance is on October 11. I bet some folks from NY-27 may take a road trip.

"In the meantime, I welcome you on the campaign trail, sir. Bring it.”

September 19, 2018 - 1:11pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in county highway, tim hens, news, notify, infrastructure.

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During the Public Service Committee meeting Tuesday, Highway Superintendent Tim Hens updated members of the County Legislature on the work of his department.

On funding, the proposed county road budget for 2019 is $5,527,130. Asphalt prices have increased 20 percent in 2018. Salt prices are up 16 percent. Gas prices have gone from $2 a gallon to $2.35 and climbing, though prices should stabilize in 2019, Hens said. The department has 57 employees (54.25 full-time equivalents), working in administration, highway, parks, airport, fleet, and facility maintenance.     

Besides a share of the general fund, the department receives grants for projects. State aid in 2018 has been $1.6 million, plus $382,193 from the PAVE-NY fund, $240,498 for extreme weather recovery.

Federal aid, Hens said, is still limited.

The county, including applications from towns, has 31 applications made to BRIDGE-NY, with an announcement for funding expected in the fall. 

Hens anticipates needing $2,131,466 for roach machinery in 2019. The department is making lease payments on a dozer, loader, an excavator, and needs a wheel loader, pickup, 2.5-ton truck, and mid-sized track excavator.

The county is responsible for 260 miles of highway. There are 92 bridges longer than 20 feet and 278 bridges and culverts longer than five feet and less than 20 feet. 

"We need to replace two bridges a year to keep our heads above water and we have been doing one bridge a year based on available federal funding," Hens said. 

The rating for the Lyons Street Bridge has been reduced from eight tons to seven. Pratt Road Bridge has been reduced from 19 tons to seven and is scheduled for replacement next year.

Reconstruction of the Stroh Road Bridge is nearly complete and it should open Oct. 1, three weeks ahead of schedule. 

Four culverts in the county of less than 20-foot span were replaced this summer.

The county also completed paving or overlay projects on Indian Falls Road, North Lake Road, North Byron Road, Prole Road Extension, South Street in Pavilion, Colby Road, Hickox, Walker, and Gillate roads in Alexander. 

These projects often included shoulder widening to 30 feet.

The widening has gone over well with residents in those areas, Hens said, who now have more room for walking and biking.

Much of the material used for this work is recycled asphalt from the work at the County Airport to replace the runway and taxiways. This has produced more than 16,000 tons of asphalt for the county to process and reuse.

"It's cheap material," Hens said. "But it's not free. We still have to process it and handle it."

As for county parks, Hens praised the work of Shannon Lyaski, conservation education program coordinator, and Paul Osborn, parks director.

"We've seen year-over-year growth in the environmental programs," Hens said. "We've hit record numbers for revenue and people attending events at the County Park." 

He said Lyaski has done a good job with programming for events at the Interpretive Nature Center.

The revenue generated by these programs cover her salary, Hens said.

As for Osborn, Hens said he's a master at rounding up volunteer workers and scavenging for material for structures in the parks.

"He flips over rocks and pulls people out and he's got people down there cleaning, cutting and trimming," Hens said.

One of the annual programs at the County Park is Camp Hard Hat, which brings in high school students in to build a project under the supervision of a BOCES instructor.

This year, the crew built a footbridge using guardrails Osborn scavenged from the old Stroh Road Bridge.

Attendance has also been up at the DeWitt Recreation Area.

Hens said work on a bridge through the wetlands in the park for the Ellicott Trail should be completed by fall. The county is waiting on the Town of Batavia to finish its part of the trail and Hens is hopeful the trail will open next spring.

For facilities, significant projects in 2018 include a new jail elevator, a security system, new fire alarm for the County Courthouse, and completion of an energy performance contract. For 2019, the county is waiting on a grant for the stonework on the facade of the jail building and a grant is pending for energy upgrades at the Animal Shelter.

In the 20 years since Hens became highway superintendent, the County has invested $30 million in capital improvements, which includes new hangars, a new terminal, and a new runway and taxiways. The funds were all generated by grants or fees for use of the airport and fuel so there have been no direct costs to local taxpayers.

There are 21 jobs at the airport, including private employers, and generates $2.35 million in economic impact.

The airport has brought in more money than it cost in 16 of the past 17 years. Hens anticipates the airport will only break even in 2018 due to a prolonged winter and construction projects.

Pete Zeliff is building a new hangar for corporate jets, which should help generate more revenue for the county through additional fuel sales.

Hens has also been heavily involved in public water projects with several new projects starting this year and more planned for 2019.

PHOTO: Tim Hens in the foreground and Laura Wadhams, the county's new assistant engineer, who started her job a little over a week ago.

September 19, 2018 - 11:42am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, news, notify, batavia, Alabama.

Rachel B. Solomon, no age provided, no residence provided, is charged with two counts of criminal contempt, 2nd, obstructing governmental administration, resisting arrest, and three counts of harassment, 2nd. Solomon was arrested following an investigation in an alleged violation of an order of protection. She was jailed on $2,500 bail or $5,000 bond.

Frank Bergholtz, 41, of Franklin Street, Batavia, is charged with possession of a dangerous weapon. Bergholtz allegedly possessed a knife while at the Probation Department office.

Paul J. Doctor, 40, no permanent address, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear. Doctor was jailed on $500 bail or $2,000 bond.

Zackary Seeley, 21, of Central Avenue, Batavia, is charged with criminal contempt, 2nd. Seeley is accused of violating an order of protection.

Danny D. Williams, 29, no permanent address, is charged with two counts of criminal contempt, 2nd. Williams allegedly violated two orders of protection during a disturbance on Thorpe Street at 9:41 p.m., Sept. 13.

Joshua D. Beardsley, 29, of Groveland, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear. Beardsley allegedly failed to appear in City Court on an appearance ticket stemming from a traffic ticket. He posted $250 police bail and was released.

Douglas Scott Sprague, 51, of Judge Road, Alabama, is charged with criminal mischief, 4th. Sprague is accused of breaking items in a residence on Judge Road at 6 p.m. Monday during an argument. He was jailed without bail.

September 18, 2018 - 10:17pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, news, Darien, notify.

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A structure fire is reported at 483 Alley Road, Darien.

That's between Gadd Road and Countyline Road.

The fire has gone to a second alarm.

It was initially reported as a shop fire but it reportedly quickly spread to a residence. A caller reportedly went into the house to assist an elderly resident with getting out.

Darien fire dispatched along with mutual aid companies.

UPDATE 11:34 p.m. (By Billie): The house closest to the blaze was never in danger; there was no flame damage to the house. A neighbor assisted an elderly resident to the back of the property, where the elderly resident's son resides. Meanwhile, a neighbor and the woman's son removed propane tanks from the building. But the all-metal construction of the shop was nonetheless destroyed. The son is a road construction electrical contractor.

UPDATE 1 a.m. (by Howard): The structure was fully involved when the first firefighters arrived on the scene, according to Capt. Ray Felski, so crews immediately took a defensive posture toward fighting the fire.

"Tthe initial report said it was a shop fire and then it was updated that it might have gotten to the residence," Felski said. "On our arrival, it had not gotten into the residence. It was contained to the shop building, which was fully involved on our arrival."

The structure is a total loss, along with four commercial vehicles parked in the building.

Firefighters from three counties and seven companies responded to the fire. No injuries were reported. The humid night required crews to rotate regularly so they could stay hydrated. There is a large pond on the property near the shop, which was a key source of water, Felski said. Tankers were also dispatched to the fire. "Water was not an issue," Felski said.

The property is owned by the Osborn family.

PHOTOS: First four photos submitted by a reader. The rest of the photos by Howard Owens.

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September 18, 2018 - 4:06pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in alexander, alexander csd, Tri-Town, news, notify.

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Last spring, a proposal by the Alexander Central School District to charge fees to the Tri-Town Youth Athletics Association for use of the high school's football field upset many parents of young athletes.

It could have added another $4,000 to the cost of the football program.

Now, according to Lisa Lyons, president of the association, the proposal may have been for the best.

Rather than pay the fee, volunteers banded together and reconstructed a field in need of repair so it could serve as Tri-Town's new football field.

"Somebody mentioned this week as we were cleaning up at the field, and somebody said, 'I think maybe we should write and thank her, thank Ms. Huber (Superintendent Catherine Huber),' " Lyons said. "This has been a really good thing. Our concession stand is thriving. We have everything in one place. It's made things on game days a lot easier. We're not hauling equipment and concessions to the football field and back. It's been a lot better for us. It really has."

The field -- which is on property used by Tri-Town behind the Alexander Fire Department Recreation Hall off of Alexander Road -- was used for soccer and other activities but over the summer, volunteers brought in heavy equipment and stripped the existing grass from the field, regraded it, leveled it and planted new sod. The only expense -- which Lyons said she would need board permission to disclose -- was the new grass.

The new field has brought back a lot of Tri-Town alumni back to check things out and attendance at the youth football games has increased, Lyons said.

"I feel like people have come out to the woodwork to see what’s going," she said.

Tri-Town hasn't completely worked out what it will do for basketball. It's probably unavoidable to use school facilities for practices, which means paying a fee for usage and chaperons (a new requirement from the district) but Lyons indicated they may have other options than using the school on game days.

"We have to weigh out our options and see what the best financial option is," Lyons said.

Photos: Football photos by Howard Owens from Saturday. Construction photos submitted by Lisa Lyons.

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September 17, 2018 - 4:32pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, batavia, notify, Alabama.

D'andre J. Cramer, 19, of West Main Street, Batavia, is charged with: third-degree burglary; fourth-degree criminal mischief; and petit larceny. Cramer was arrested and arraigned on Sept. 11 following an investigation into a burglary which occurred a year ago this month at a shop in the City Centre mall. He was jailed and bail was set at $5,000. The defendant is due in Batavia City Court on Sept. 20. The case was investigated by Batavia Police Det. Thad Mart.

Rachel M. Penepinto, 27, of Vine Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree harassment. Penepinto was arrested on Vine Street at 4:20 p.m. on Sept. 15 after being accused of threatening to fight a neighbor and kill their dog. She was released on an appearance ticket and is due in Batavia City Court on Sept. 18. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Jason Ivison.

Ryan Matthew Norton, 44, of Bloomingdale Road, Alabama, is charged with fourth-degree criminal mischief and second-degree harassment. Following an investigation into a domestic incident which occurred 8:15 p.m. on Sept. 11 on Bloomingdale Road. Norton was arrested, arraigned and put in jail on $2,500 bail. He is due in Alabama Town Court on Oct. 4. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Kevin Forsyth.

Danny D. Williams, 29, of Pearl Street, Batavia, is charged with first-degree criminal contempt and second-degree harassment. Williams was located on Thorpe Street in Batavia and arrested following an investigation into an incident which occurred at 3:39 a.m. on Sept. 8 on Wood Street in Batavia. He was jailed on $20,000 cash or bond bail. He is due in City Court on Sept. 20. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Felicia DeGroot, assisted by Officer Christopher Lindsay.

Marissa B. Royse, 28, of South Main Street, Batavia, is charged with: driving while ability impaired by drugs -- combined influence of drugs; following to closely; speed not reasonable and prudent; moving from lane unsafely; and failure to keep right on a two-lane road. She was arrested on Sept. 10 at 11:12 a.m. at 27 Walnut St. in Batavia following an investigation into an accident with injuries. She was issued multiple tickets and released; she was due in City Court this morning (Sept. 17). The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Marc Lawrence, assisted by Officer Stephen Quider. Forty minutes later, at 17 Walnut St., she was allegedly found to be in possession of marijuana following the investigation into the personal injury motor-vehicle accident earlier that hour at 27 Walnut St. She is due in City Court on Tuesday, Sept. 18 to answer that charge. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Stephen Quider, assisted by Officer Marc Lawrence.

Aaron M. Hatt, 22, no permanent address, Batavia, is charged with: unlawful possession of marijuana, criminal obstruction of breathing; criminal mischief in the fourth degree; and second-degree harassment. Hatt was arrested following an investigation into a domestic incident which occurred at 2:30 p.m. Sept. 14 at an apartment on Thomas Avenue, Batavia. He was arraigned and jailed on $2,000 cash bail or $4,000 bond. He was due in Cioty Court this morning (Sept. 17). The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Kevin DeFelice, assisted by Officer Christopher Lindsay.

Latiqua Shonnel Jackson, 25, of East Main Street, Batavia, is charged with introducing dangerous contraband into prison in the first degree and criminal use of drug paraphernalia in the second degree. On Sept. 10 at about 2:20 p.m., Jackson was being processed into GC Jail. It is alleged that she knowingly entered the jail while in possession of a controlled substance and drug paraphernalia. She was arrested on the charges Sept. 13 and jailed on $10,000 cash bail. She is due back in City Court on Sept. 20. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Jeremy McClellan, assisted by Deputy Susan Mattice.

Joseph Buckley, 57, is charged with having an open container of alcohol in a city park. At 10:23 a.m. on Sept. 12, Buckley was arrested in Austin Park on Jefferson Avenue. He was jailed on $250 bail and was due in City Court on Sept. 13. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Kyle Krtanik, assisted by Officer Kevin DeFelice.

Scott D. Larnder, 42, Tracy Avenue, Batavia, is charged with failure to appear. He was arrested on Sept. 13 for failing to appear on previous charges. After arraignment, he was released on his own recognizance. He was due back in City Court on Sept. 14. The  case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Catherine Mucha, assisted by Officer Jason Davis.

September 17, 2018 - 1:02pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in chris collins, NY-27, news, notify, Nate McMurray.

Rep. Chris Collins, the three-term congressman representing the NY-27 who was arrested on insider trading charges, will remain on the ballot in the November election.

Collins, in contradiction with prior statements, has decided not to cooperate with the efforts of GOP leaders in the district to have his name removed from the ballot and replaced by a new candidate.

Below is the only statement released by the Collins' campaign about the decision:

“Because of the protracted and uncertain nature of any legal effort to replace Congressman Collins we do not see a path allowing Congressman Collins to be replaced on the ballot.”

Statement by Mark Braden, legal counsel for Rep. Chris Collins

GOP county chairs were scheduled to meet tomorrow in Albany to select the person they hoped would replace Collins. WBTA reached Genesee County Chair Dick Siebert this afternoon and he said he was as surprised by the sudden of plans as everybody else.

In response to the news of the decision, Nate McMurray, running as the Democratic opponent to Collins in the election, released the following statement:

Today, Nate McMurray, the Democratic and Working Families Party Candidate for New York’s 27th Congressional District, responded to the breaking news that his opponent, indicted Congressman Chris Collins, the first Member of Congress to endorse President Trump, will remain on the ballot despite long-pushed rumors that he would removed before November.

This morning several local news outlets reported and local Republican leaders confirmed that Congressman Collins, on advice from his attorneys, will choose to remain on the ballot.

“Well, it’s nice to finally know who I’m running against. But, in truth, we always knew we were running against Chris Collins. There are laws for a reason. There is accountability in our society for a reason. And in the greatest democracy in the world, voters weren’t going to take this kind of sham switching around names on a ballot at the whims of local party bosses,” McMurray said.

“I credit the people of Western New York for standing up in town after town saying ‘don’t force him on the ballot in my town.’ They saw through this fraud. They weren’t going to fall for the bait-and-switch strategy by the same team that endorsed, celebrated, took pictures with and defended Chris Collins.

“There is an incredible grassroots movement in NY-27. Like me, the voters want to Fight Like Hell against the political machine that has let them down for so long. They like that I’m an underdog. Every day when I’m out meeting voters, we talk about affordable, accessible healthcare for all, defending Social Security, investing in our infrastructure, protecting our farms. But in this region, we’re still always talking about corruption. Voters have a chance to end that once and for all in NY-27 and I’m excited for the next 50 days.”

McMurray heard the news as he was on stage opening his new office headquarters, his fourth in two months, standing with Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez. Chairman Perez announced the news to a raucous crowd of more than 120 volunteers and supporters as he announced that the DNC was “all in” for Nate’s campaign.

September 15, 2018 - 8:55pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Nate McMurray, NY-27, news, notify.

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Standing in front of about 100 members of the Democratic Party -- volunteers who signed up walk precincts on his behalf -- Nate McMurray, candidate for Congress, said something you might find surprising: Donald Trump is right about a few things.

"Let's be honest, a lot of people voted for Donald Trump because they knew they needed help," McMurray said. "It was a Hail Mary. They felt like there wasn't a party representing them and maybe they needed somebody on the outside to say, 'hey, I can shake the system up.'

"I'm going to tell you something to a lot of people in the Democratic Party will not say," McMurray added. "Mr. Trump may be a master salesman. He may be a lot of things but his message was right in many respects. The message of the fact that a lot of Americans get left behind or forgotten about."

Many of Trump's voters are now disappointed in Trump, McMurray suggested, because he hasn't delivered on his promises.

"The problem is, Mr. Trump's message has been nothing but bluster," McMurray said. "He's is not doing anything to help people in this country. We hear about a booming economy but do you think the people here in this part of the region or the people in Attica, do you think they feel things are booming and moving and things are going great?"

McMurray promised not only to fight for jobs if elected, including opposing bad trade deals, but to support health care for all, protect Social Security, and follow through on a campaign promise Trump seems to have forgotten: infrastructure.

"Within 60 days in office, we will present a joint infrastructure bill in the house," McMurray said.

Right now, it's unclear who McMurray is running against. The man he planned to beat, Rep. Chris Collins, is under federal indictment on insider trading charges. The Erie County businessman continues as the singular target in McMurray's crosshairs, at least until, and if, the GOP NY-27 chairs are able to remove Collins from the ballot and replace him with another nominee.

Next week, Democratic Party Chair Tom Perez is going to visit the NY-27 but there was a time in McMurray's congressional quest, he said, when the party bosses told him he couldn't possibly beat Chris Collins and he should save his political capital for another fight, he said he told them Collins needed to be taken out.

"I said no someone has to stand up to Chris," McMurray said. "We know he has an ethics violation. We know he has this history of saying 'I only represent my constituents who are my donors.' He had this horrible record and all knew his record even before he was a congressman. We knew about his record when he was county executive when he would fire people and defund libraries and defund all kinds of projects important to the community just because he felt like it."

There was only one person in Washington, D.C., back then willing to encourage McMurray's run, said: Louise Slaughter.

It was Slaughter, he said, who wanted to know if McMurray would "fight like hell," which has become the campaign motto. 

"She said something else," McMurray said. "She said, 'this man has used the house of the people not to do people's business but to make money for himself and his family. Are you ready to stand up against that?' and I said yes and she said, 'Will you stand on his neck?' She said that.

"Now that's mean and it sounds tough but there comes time for accountability. It is time for accountability, not just for Collins but for the entire party that supported him."

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September 14, 2018 - 4:54pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in District Attorney's Office, news, notify.

Changes in technology and criminal law in New York have increased the workload in the District Attorney's Office, according to DA Lawrence Friedman, to a point that is unsustainable and either some cases won't get prosecuted by his office or good attorneys will quit their jobs.

Friedman described the burdens on his office in a letter to the County Legislature to support his request for additional staffing.

"Without such additional resources, our attorneys will not be able to continue to shoulder all of the added responsibilities and time commitments that have been placed on us over the years," Friedman said. "Instead, we will need to figure out how we will implement a reduction in services. We don’t know exactly what that will look like, but we do know that it will not be good for public safety in this community."

Reduced services could include:

  • Discontinue the prosecution of violations of probation, leaving probation officers to handle the violations themselves;
  • Discontinue the prosecution of non-criminal offenses, such as disorderly conduct, harassment, and unlawful possession of marijuana, leaving it up to the arresting officers to prosecute those cases;
  • Reduce the time spent educating new officers about criminal and court procedures.

Friedman is asking for at least one new full-time assistant DA. There are four now. 

When Friedman was himself an assistant, there were seven part-time (30 hours a week) prosecutors in the DA's office for a total of 210 attorney hours a week. In 1996, Friedman, newly appointed to DA, learned the county could obtain state money to fund a full-time DA so the county eliminated three part-time positions in favor of two full-time positions. When the county switched to five full-time prosecutors, it reduced the number of total attorney hours to 187.5, which helped save the county money, according to Friedman.

In recent years, the workload for prosecutors has increased substantially, Friedman said, because of: 

  • Body-worn cameras, video-recorded suspect interviews, more surveillance footage of crime scenes. Before the age of ubiquitous video, most cases involved written documents that could be reviewed in minutes. Now, sometimes, a prosecutor must spend hours watching video, and sometimes the video must be viewed more than once, including times to prep witnesses, review with police officers, besides the initial review to see what if any evidence the videos might contain.
  • The DA's office has been hit with numerous serious crimes over the past couple of years that assistant DAs help with during the investigation and then if an arrest has been made, handle the prosecution. These crimes include a gang-assault case, a homicide at the Sunset Motel, a deputy-involved shooting, a homicide on Liberty Street, a shooting on Jackson Street, a shooting on Thorpe Street, a series of residential burglaries, a stabbing and murder on Central Avenue, child sex offenses, a fatal hit-and-run in Darien, an attempted murder and arson on Maple Street, vehicular assaults in Corfu and Pavilion, a stabbing in the Town of Batavia, a stabbing on Ross Street, two first-degree rape cases, and follow up on a cold case murder.
  • There has been an increase in search warrant applications.
  • New state laws, such as Jenna's Law, Megan's Law, and Leandra's Law has added time and tasks to the prosecution of some criminal cases.
  • Big Box stores have increased the number of reported larcenies and forgeries.
  • DNA is helping to open cold cases.
  • Since Friedman became DA, new courts have opened, including Drug Treatment Court, DWI Treatment Court, Mental Health Treatment Court, Veterans Court, Domestic Violence Court, and now the new Youth Court opening next month.

Assistant DAs work a lot of hours beyond their standard "9-5" shift, Friedman said. In additional evening hours for town courts, they are on call 24/7.

A  recent example, Friedman said, was the fatal hit-and-run in Darien. ADA Shirley Gorman was called into the case on an early Sunday morning and worked 12 hours. Friedman and First Assistant District Attorney Melissa Cianfrini also assisted that Sunday with the case. 

"Altogether, the attorneys in our office spent about 40 hours on this case in the first three days and many more hours since then," Friedman said. "Unfortunately, this type of scenario is becoming more and more common. I am concerned that this could result in our attorneys becoming 'burned out' and/or leaving for 'greener pastures.' "

He concluded the letter calling the current situation a "crisis."

"This is the most serious staffing concern that I've ever faced," said Friedman, who has worked in the DA's office for 37 years, and who plans to retire in 2021. 

"I sincerely hope that an inability to get the help we need will not become the next impediment to the effective prosecution of crimes committed in Genesee County," Friedman said. "The current District Attorney truly hopes that his legacy will not be that of leaving an office that is understaffed and thus unable to properly serve the citizens of this County and he assumes that our County Legislature does not want that to be their legacy either."

September 14, 2018 - 1:41pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy, Le Roy Ambulance, news, notify.

One way or another, the Town of Le Roy is not expecting to spend $40,000 in 2019 to support Le Roy Ambulance, according to Supervisor Steve Barbeau.

Barbeau presented his tentative 2019 budget to the town council at Thursday's meeting and then discussed the future of the Le Roy Ambulance after the meeting.

Barbeau said based on his discussion with representatives of the ambulance service, Le Roy Ambulance has reached a point financially where it either needs the tax support of a special district or the nonprofit corporation must be dissolved.

If the proposed budget doesn't change before approved, Le Roy residents would find their town property tax rate reduced by a nickel, from 90 cents to 85. The total levy would be $206,248.

In all, Le Roy, excluding special districts, will need $1,427,441 to operate in 2019.

The proposed budget includes raises for non-union staff of varying amounts depending on which department the staff serves. 

Town board members will be able to start going through more detail at its Sept. 27 meeting.

Some adjustments may be necessary because since Barbeau prepared the tentative budget, he's received new information, including a reduction in workers' compensation insurance costs, a reduction in  STOP-DWI money transferred from the state to the town's justice department, and a $5,000 expense for the town to work with the county on a records archive project.

Ambulance Service
As for the ambulance service, a public meeting planned for next week has been canceled because the attorney for the ambulance service has had some health issues. It hasn't been rescheduled yet but the attorneys are working on finding a new date.

At the meeting, the public will learn about the options for the ambulance service and about the prospect of setting up a special district.

After that meeting takes place, Barbeau would like to conduct a straw poll of residents. It would be a non-binding vote held at the Town Hall. Like a school budget election, all residents at least 18 years old would be eligible to cast votes.

The results, Barbeau said, could help the Town and the Village decide whether to support a special district for the ambulance service. If the vote was lopsided one way or another, officials could gauge whether voters would likely support a special district. A close vote would make the difficult decision even more difficult, Barbeau acknowledged.

Either the Town or the Village could approve the formation of a special district without a voter referendum. Residents could challenge any decision by either jurisdiction through a  petition (100 signatures required) for a public referendum to overturn the decision. 

In other words, if the Town board voted against the formation of a special district, through a petition drive, the decision could be challenged by voters. Or if the board agreed to form a district, that decision could be challenged as well.

The same goes for the Village.

Barbeau speculated that if only the Town supported a special district and the Village didn't, it wouldn't be financially feasible for the ambulance service to continue; however, the district could successfully form if approved by the Village but not the town.

Even with the $40,000 from the Town, Le Roy Ambulance has been losing money, Barbeau said. It's his understanding that a big issue for the service is patients' failure to pay their bills. He said last year, Le Roy Ambulance had $75,000 in uncollected fees.

A lot of people, Barbeau said, get their insurance check after an ambulance ride and instead of paying their ambulance bill say, "oh, Christmas in July" and pocket the money.

"I think by November of this year a decision needs to be made (about the future of the ambulance service)," Barbeau said, "because the $40,000 is not going to be in the budget for the ambulance. Imagine what their deficits are going to be without it. So they're either going to have to start taxing in 2019 or start exhausting the assets that they do have."

There is a complex process to wind down a nonprofit, Barbeau said, so without a special district, Le Roy Ambulance would begin that process in 2019 until it discontinued service.

Barbeau is seeking clarification from Mercy EMS on what level of service it will provide Le Roy if Le Roy Ambulance closes. Right now, there is an agreement that ensures Mercy EMS is the backup service for the Town and Village. 

If Le Roy Ambulance closes, Mercy EMS would by default become the primary ambulance service at no cost to the Town of Village.

Previously, Mercy officials have indicated they would consider making Le Roy their base of operations for the eastern part of the county if Le Roy Ambulance shut down. Barbeau would like to confirm that suggestion.

"The issue has always been, for the town board -- response time," Barbeau said. "Le Roy Ambulance has a response time that averages less than five minutes. If they're out on a call, Mercy comes from Batavia. They have a response time that's just shy of 20 minutes, and that comes from years' worth of data. So the rationale behind our subsidy has been to keep that response time for folks knowing we still have Mercy as a backup."

Barbeau praised both services. He's had experience with both. Ambulances were called twice to his late father's house. In the first instance, Le Roy took three minutes to respond. In the second, Le Roy wasn't available and Mercy EMS responded from Batavia, which took 18 minutes.

In that case, he said, it wasn't life or death but for a person suffering a heart attack or stroke, those 15 minutes could be critical.

County Sales Tax
During the meeting Thursday, Barbeau also discussed his understanding of a new proposal from the County on how to divvy up the local share of sale tax revenue.

Before getting into what Barbeau said, some background:

Currently, local consumers pay 8 percent sales tax on qualifying purchases. The state takes 4 percent and 4 percent is supposed to stay in Genesee County. 

The county could keep that 4 percent to itself but has traditionally shared the revenue with the other municipalities in the county. If the County didn't share with the City, the City of Batavia could institute its own sales tax. The villages and towns don't have that option.

Under the current formula, the County keeps half of the local 4-percent share, or 2 percent of the sales tax. The City gets 16 percent. The remaining 34 percent is divided among the towns and villages, using a formula derived from the assessed value of properties in each jurisdiction.

It's Barbeau's understanding based on his conversations with other officials, including County Manager Jay Gsell, that the County and City are set to enter into a new agreement that would keep the City's share in the 16 percent range, but that amount could fluctuate depending on the amount of sales tax revenue flowing into the county. It would never be less than 14 percent and the City couldn't receive more than a 2-percent share of anything over the prior year's amount of sales tax.

The villages and towns are not included in the agreement. Instead, they would each be asked to sign identical revenue distribution agreements.

All of the agreements would last for 40 years.

For the villages and towns, their share of sales tax revenue would be capped at the absolute dollar amount of 2018, but their share could go down if sales tax revenue goes down.

There would be no adjustments for inflation.

Barbeau said it's his understanding of the county's perspective on the agreement is based on three factors:

  • The county is facing a state mandate to build a new, expensive jail. The bond on that jail will take 40 years to pay off.
  • The new "Raise the Age" law, which mandates new rules for criminal cases involving 16- and 17-year-olds, will also increase County expenses. The State will reimburse the County for those additional expenses but only if the County keeps its property tax levy below the tax cap level of 2 percent per year.
  • The County is also facing substantial infrastructure expenses, particularly for bridges and culverts.

The Town of Le Roy's anticipated share of sales tax revenue for 2019 is $722,000, or nearly 51 percent of the town's total revenue.

Elected representatives, including county officials, are expected to discuss the sales tax issue at the monthly Genesee Association of Municipalities (GAM) meeting Sept. 20 at 7 p.m. at County Building #2 on West Main Street Road in Batavia.

September 13, 2018 - 3:37pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, batavia, Le Roy, elba.

Andrew Michael Pridmore, 34, of Mechanic Street, Elba, is charged with grand larceny with a credit card, petit larceny and criminal possession of stolen property -- a credit card. Pridmore was arrested at 11:48 a.m. on July 26 on Cedar Street in Batavia. He allegedly stole a credit card belonging to his employer and withdrew money from numerous ATMs throughout Genesee County on two different days. He was arraigned in Batavia City Court on Sept. 12 and released under supervision of Genesee Justice. He is due in City Court again on Sept. 26. Additional charges are pending in the towns of Le Roy and Pavilion. The case was investigated by Genesee County Sheriff's Investigator Joseph Loftus.

Patrick O. Spikes, 37, of South Swan Street, Batavia, is charged with third-degree assault -- with intent to cause physical harm, and criminal obstruction of breathing. He was arrested, arraigned and jailed on Sept. 9 following a domestic incident which occurred at 3 p.m. on Sept. 2 at an apartment on Hutchins Street in Batavia. He is due in City Court at a later date. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Marc Lawrence, assisted by Officer Stephen Quider.

Erica Bomberry, 38, of 18 Crittenden Way in the City of Rochester, is charged with one count of petit larceny, a Class A misdemeanor. She was arrested Sept. 10 by Le Roy Police Department following a four-month investigation. She is allegedly a member of a Rochester-based larceny ring. The investigation started on May 14 when a business on West Main Street in the Village reported a larceny in progress. The suspect vehicle was located by patrols; the alleged thieves fled, creating a short-lived police chase which was called off because of the dangers it posed. A follow-up investigation tracked the alleged thieves showing numerous similar cases both in the City of Rochester and in different towns in Monroe County. Eventually there was allegedly enough evidence to charge one member of the ring and an arrest warrant was issued. The investigation is ongoing. Bomberry was transported to the Le Roy Court from the Monroe County Correctional Facility for arraignment and put in Genesee County Jail. Bail was set at $1,000.

Christopher J. Parker, 29, of Morse Place, Batavia, is charged with criminal mischief. On Sept. 10, Parker was arrested for allegedly damaging property at another person's residence. The incident took place shortly after midnight on Sept. 8 on Thorpe Street in Batavia. He was jailed in lieu of $1,000 bail and is due in City Court on Sept. 18. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Catherine Mucha, assisted by Sgt. Dan Coffey.

Paulette M. Conley, 42, of Mill Street, Le Roy, is charged with DWI -- common law, no headlights, and DWI with a BAC of .08 percent or greater. She was arrested at 2:27 a.m. on Sept. 9 on Main Street in Batavia following a traffic stop. She was arrested, processed and is due in Batavia City Court on Sept. 26. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Mitchell Cowen, assisted by Officer Matthew Lutey.

Sasha M. McDuffie, 26, of 14th Street, Buffalo, was arrested at 7:14 p.m. on Sept. 11 on East Main Street in Batavia for speeding and driving with a suspended driver's license. Following a traffic stop, an investigation found McDuffie's license was suspended. She was arrested, processed, then posted bail and was released. She is due in City Court on Sept. 26. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Nicole McGinnis.

Tyrone L. Richardson, 43, of Brooklyn Avenue, Batavia, was arrested on Sept. 10 on a bench warrant out of Batavia City Court. He posted bail and was due in City Court on Sept. 11. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Arick Perkins, assisted by Officer Nicole McGinnis.

James E. Murray Jr., 29, of North Spruce Street, Batavia, was arrested on Sept. 8 on an arrest warrant out of Batavia City Court. He allegedly failed to appear in court after being issued an appearance ticket to be there on Aug. 28. He was due back in City Court on Sept. 10. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Mitchell Cowen.

Justin T. Gladney, 29, or North Spruce Street, Batavia, was located and arrested on East Main Street in Batavia after police were called to the area for an unrelated matter. He was found to have an active bench warrant out of Batavia City Court and was arrested on Aug. 10. He was due back in City Court on Sept. 11. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Nicole McGinnis, assisted by Officer Matthew Lutey.

September 12, 2018 - 5:13pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in chris collins, NY-27, news, notify.

The GOP chairs in the NY-27 will apparently meet soon now that a way has been found to remove the name of Chris Collins from the ballot in the race for the NY-27 congressional seat.

Collins dropped out of the race after being arrested Aug. 3 for alleged insider trading. He is charged with securities fraud, wire fraud, and lying to the FBI.

Dick Siebert, the Genesee County chair for the GOP, said he can't disclose any details and that he doesn't even know all of the details.

"I received a call from a source in Erie County and was led to believe that we will get Collins' name off the ballot with the opportunity to replace him with another candidate," Siebert said.

Siebert doesn't know yet when the GOP chairs will meet to discuss this latest development or pick a replacement candidate.

Both the Democrats and the Reform Party have candidates in the race. Nate McMurray, the Democrat, has issued statements blasting the Republicans for any attempt to remove Collins from the ballot and Larry Piegza has issued statements arguing he is the logical pick for the GOP chairs since he's a Trump supporter. Piegza has expressed frustration that none of the GOP chairs will even return his calls.

There are at least eight people vying for the GOP selection, including Batavia's own Steve Hawley, whom Siebert said he favors.

Whatever scheme the Republicans use to remove Collins from the ballot, the Democrats have vowed to fight it in the courts.

September 12, 2018 - 4:57pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Darien, news, notify.

serranojennifer2018mug_1.jpg

A woman accused of driving drunk, fatally hitting an 18-year-old on Sumner Road in Darien, fleeing the scene, and not telling police about it later when she was arrested after nearly striking a Sheriff's patrol vehicle, was in court today with a pair of new, sharply dressed attorneys from Buffalo.

Frank LoTempio tried to convince Judge Charles Zambito, that his client, Jennifer L. Serrano, 48, of Charles Street, Irving, should get her bail reduced.

She was indicted by a grand jury this week on second-degree vehicular manslaughter, leaving the scene of an accident that resulted in death, DWI, and aggravated unlicensed operation. She faces a prison term of up to 14 years.

She came into court shackled and in a tan Niagara County Jail jumpsuit, still in custody on $100,000 cash bail or $200,000 bond.

LoTempio argued that Serrano has strong local ties. He said she owns a home in Irving that is worth $115,000 and she has $30,000 equity in the property, that she owns her own business -- Jenny Marketing Group -- and has four significant clients, and that she has joint custody of her three children -- ages 12 through 21.

"She's very involved in their lives and she's a very good mother," LoTempio said.

While she has suffered from depression, LoTempio said he and co-attorney Jack Sanchez had met with her and felt she had no current mental health issues. He said her depression stemmed from her divorce a year and a half ago.

She also has no prior criminal record.

"I feel cash bail of $25,000 to $40,000 is reasonable," LoTempio said.

Zambito heard these same arguments the last time Serrano appeared in court but District Attorney Lawrence Friedman said he felt it necessary to address the counter-argument to LoTempio's assertions.

While Serrano claims to own a house in Irving, there's no proof of its value or her equity in it, and she says if she's out of jail, she's going to live with her sister in Amherst. Also, she claims to own a business but Friedman has seen no documentation to prove that she does. 

As for her children, "According to our investigation, we're told they are estranged from her," Friedman said.

He also said he doesn't believe her attorneys are qualified to assess her mental health. 

As for the crime itself, Friedman said, she's accused of killing Connor Lynskey, of Hinckley, on Sumner Road, on Aug. 11, and fleeing the scene. Lynskey's body landed in a ditch and he wasn't found until the following day. About 30 minutes later, Serrano's vehicle was stopped after she nearly struck a patrol vehicle on Route 77 and she was charged with DWI. Friedman said Serrano went through the arrest process, through court, through booking at the jail, and she never said a word to anybody that she might have struck a pedestrian. 

At that time, police didn't know Lynskey had been struck by a car but he had been reported missing.

As Friedman completed this narration of events, Lynskey's mother, sitting in the first row of the gallery with a box of tissues her hands, began to sob.

Friedman also pointed out that Serrano went back to her car after being released from custody and drove to Amherst. He said his office has reason to believe she was still intoxicated at that time and she certainly knew her driver's license had just been revoked but she drove anyway.

"I don't understand how defense counsel can say she is not a flight risk," Friedman said. "She's already fled. Now she's been indicted and has even more reason to flee."

Zambito, in denying her bail reduction, cited many of the reasons Friedman just shared -- she left the scene and she didn't notify law enforcement even while in custody, and that her flight risk was a "significant concern."

Serrano is due in court again at 1:30 p.m., Nov. 15, when attorneys will address any motions filed in the case.

September 12, 2018 - 12:05pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Botts-Fiorito Post #576, American Legion, Le Roy, news, notify.

Press  release:

Botts-Fiorito Post #576, American Legion, Le Roy, would like to announce with great pride and pleasure Robert Boyce as its selection for the 2018 “LeRoyan of the Year Award.”

Robert, or “Bob” as he is known to most, was born in Hamburg and graduated from Hamburg High School. Upon completion of high school, he joined the Army and served in Korea, after which he was honorably discharged. He then continued his education at The University of Buffalo.

Bob came to Le Roy with his family in 1968 to join the Ernest Townsend & Son Insurance Agency, now known as Tompkins Insurance Agencies. He and his wife, Beth, have three children, daughters Ann (Alan) Nordyke, and Tracey (Jim) Carter, and son David Boyce. They also have six grandchildren.

Bob immediately became active in the community by first joining the Le Roy Jaycees. Today, he continues service with the Le Roy Rotary Club, where he has been active for 45 years and served as president in 1975. The R.E.A. Milne Scholarship arm of the Rotary is of special interest to him.

He was president of the Genesee Community College Foundation for three years, was appointed a trustee of GCC by the Genesee County Legislature in 2014, and presently serves as vice-chairman on the Le Roy Republican Committee. Bob is also one of two trustees of Our Lady of Mercy Catholic Church.

Bob has also been a member of the board of the Le Roy Ambulance Service for 27 years and has been president for the past 13 years. One of his goals for the ambulance service is to make sure it continues to be a viable service in our community with quality pre-hospital care.

To honor Bob, the 50th annual LeRoyan of the Year Award Dinner will be held on Oct. 6. Social hour is at 6 p.m. with dinner served at 6:45 p.m., at the American Legion at 53 W. Main St., Le Roy.  Tickets are available at the American Legion or at Mickel’s Nickels at 80 Lake St. Le Roy. Cost is $25 per ticket.

September 11, 2018 - 3:15pm
posted by Billie Owens in Grand Jury, crime, news, notify, bergen darien, Le Roy.

Jennifer L. Serrano is indicted for second-degree vehicular manslaughter, a Class D felony. It is alleged that on Aug. 11 on Sumner Road in the Town of Darien that she caused the death of a male, and she drove a 2014 Jeep in violation of the law, and as a result of intoxication or impairment by use of a drug or the combined influence of drugs or alcohol, drove the Jeep in a manner that cause the death of a person. In count two, she is accused of leaving the scene of an accident with reporting it, a Class D felony, and the personal injury involved resulted in death. In count three, she is accused of driving while intoxicated, as a misdemeanor, for driving on Sumner Road and on state Route 77 on Aug. 11 in Darien while intoxicated. In count four, she is accused of aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle in the second degree, a misdemeanor. It is alleged in count four that she drove that day while knowing, or having reason to know, that her driver's license in New York was suspended, revoked or otherwise withdrawn by authorities; and the revocation was based on a refusal to submit to a chemical test, in violation of vehicle and traffic law.

Ralph E. Stevenson is indicted for the crime of failure to verify as a sex offender, a Class E felony. It is alleged that this convicted Level 3 sex offender, in the Town of Bergen, on Jan. 26 failed to provide a current photograph of himself in the manner and within the time periods provided by law.

Jessie P. Polito AKA Jesse P. Polito is indicted for the crime of fourth-degree grand larceny, a Class E felony. It is alleged that on Oct. 8 in the Town of Le Roy that the defendant stole property -- a Capital One Mastercard. In counts two and three, he is accused of the same crime for allegedly stealing a second Mastercard and a Le Roy Federal Credit Union card, respectively. In count four, he is accused of petit larceny, a Class A misdemeanor, for stealing property.

September 11, 2018 - 11:48am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news, Oakfield, notify, bergen, Stafford, Le Roy.

Shawn Michael Walburn, 45, of East Main Street Road, Le Roy, is charged with: DWI; driving while ability impaired with alcohol; driving without a vehicle inspection; and speeding. Walburn was stopped at 3:07 a.m. Sunday on Main Road, Stafford, by Deputy Andrew Mullen.

Ryan Brent Callison, 41, of 14th Street, Zimmerman, Minn., is charged with: DWI; driving with a BAC of .08 or greater;and failure to yield right of way. Callison was stopped at 9:39 p.m. Monday on Main Street Road, Batavia, by Deputy Howard Wilson.

Karen M. Gath, 57, of Rochester, is charged with conspiracy, 6th, and petit larceny. Gath was arrested by State Police and ordered held on bail for an incident in the Town of Batavia. No further details released.

Jacob R. Lorek, 24, of Rochester, is charged with two counts of unlawful possession of marijuana and speeding. Lorek was stopped by State Police at 6:04 p.m. Thursday on Route 19, Bergen.

Stevie R. Marshall-Carter, 20, of Rochester, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana. Marshall-Carter was stopped on Route 33, Bergen, by State Police.

Dale J. Wissinger, 38, of Oakfield, is charged with assault; 3rd; and criminal mischief. Wissinger was arrested by State Police on charges related to an incident reported at 1:47 a.m. Saturday and ordered held on bail. No further details released.

September 10, 2018 - 3:31pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy Central School District, Le Roy, news, notify.

leroysro2018.jpg

A new arrangement this year between the Village of Le Roy and the Le Roy Central School District will ensure both Wolcott Street School and Le Roy MS/HS will have a nearly constant law enforcement presence.

The arrangement is possible with the retirement of Officer Eric Miller, who was the School Resource Officer at the high school, splitting some time with Wolcott, since 2003, and a change in state law that allows Miller to now become an employee of the district to perform the same duties, and the willingness of the Village to continue to partially fund an SRO position.

The state has created a classification of school employees known as "special patrol officers." These are former law enforcement officers who remain qualified to perform the duties of an officer.

In Miller's case, not only is he still qualified, he has returned to Le Roy PD as a part-time officer, which will help him maintain his qualifications.

While Miller is at the high school, Le Roy PD has assigned two part-time officers to rotate coverage, one week on, one week off, at the elementary school.

"I think when we looked at what the county proposed, though we were interested in that idea, we felt that getting coverage in both buildings was non-negotiable," said Superintendent Merritt Holly. "I think the setup that we have here provides us with the opportunity to have an armed police officer in this building and a special patrol officer in the other building, so it gives us now the coverage that we're looking for."

His SRO position was created in 2003 shortly after Columbine (the April 1999 high school massacre in Jefferson County, Colo.) and he served both campuses.

His job, both as an SRO and as it's defined now, isn't just to provide security for the school. It's a job that involves getting to know students, assist them where he can, and providing information about school and personal safety.

Chief Chris Hayward said the new state law helps make the situation more flexible.

"I'm not a one of those who believes that in order to keep our kids safe there have to be uniformed police officers," Hayward said. "Do I believe that it should be someone like Eric who has that experience and has that training? Absolutely. But I don't think that it has to be an active police officer because there are requirements of Eric. Even if he hadn't been hired back by us, there are still those requirements where he has to go to the annual training with firearms, use of deadly physical force etc., so there still those safeguards, for want of a better term, in place to make sure that they're maintaining that level of training to respond in an appropriate manner."

Photo: Eric Miller, Tim McArdle, middle school and high school principal, Carol Messura, Wolcott principal, and Officer Heath Mattingly, one of two part-time officers assigned to Wolcott.

September 10, 2018 - 3:23pm

Todd A. Gailie Jr., 27, of Myrtle Street, Le Roy was arrested on Sept. 7th by the Le Roy Police Department for petit larceny and obstructing governmental administration in the second degree, Class A misdemeanors. Le Roy Police Department responded to a business on Lake Street in the Village after receiving a complaint of a male allegedly leaving a restaurant without paying for food and drinks that he consumed. Upon arrival, the patrols located Gailie on the railroad tracks in the area and when the patrol confronted Gailie, he allegedly ran from officers. After a brief foot chase Gailie was taken into custody. Gailie was arraigned and put in Genesee County Jail in lieu of $1,500 cash or $3,000 bond. Gailie is to return to Le Roy Town Court on Sept. 20th.

Roy A. Watson Jr., 29, of Porter Avenue, Batavia, is charged with having two unlicensed dogs. He was arrested at 9:35 a.m. on Sept. 4 at 24 Porter Ave. following an investigation into a complaint that his dogs were unlicensed. He was issued an appearance ticket for City Court and is due there Sept. 18. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Stephen Cronmiller, assisted by Officer James Sheflin.

Marissa Eve Michaels-Connors, 26, of LaSalle Avenue, Buffalo, is charged with: first-degree aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle; DWI, first; operating a vehicle while using a cell phone; refusal to take breath test; and moving from lane unsafely. She was arrested at 5:09 p.m. on Sept. 9 on Vallance Road in Le Roy after a one-vehicle accident in which her vehicle struck a guard rail. It is alleged that she was driving while intoxicated and that she drove while her license was suspended for alcohol-related circumstances. She was jailed in lieu of $1,500 cash or $3,000 bond. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Howard Wilson.

Matthew Vincent Pragel, 23, of Forest Hill Drive, Williamsville, is charged with: operating a motor vehicle while impaired by drugs; driving while ability impaired -- combined influence of drugs; unlawful possession of marijuana; and moving from lane unsafely. At 10:30 p.m. on Sept. 4 on Bloomingdale Road in the Tonawanda Indian Reservation, Pragel was arrested after an investigation of a single-vehicle accident. He is to appear in Alabama Town Court at a later date. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Travis DeMuth.

Adam Robyn Chaddock, 31, of Virginia Manor Road, Rochester, is charged with: DWI; DWI with a BAC of .08 percent or higher; failure to keep right. Chaddock was arrested at 10:46 p.m. on Sept. 9 on Clinton Street Road in Stafford following a traffic stop. He was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Stafford Town Court on Oct. 19. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Mathew Clor, assisted by Deputy Andrew Mullen.

Giancarlo A. Miranda, 20, of West Saile Drive, Batavia, is charged with possession of a dangerous weapon on county property. At 2:32 p.m. on Sept. 4, Miranda was arrested for allegedly possessing a knife while entering the Genesee County Probation Building. He was issued an appearance ticket for City Court and is due there Sept. 11. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Catherine Mucha, assisted by Officer Chad Richards.

Ian Kyle Leblanc Chatt, 33, of Hart Street, Batavia, is charged with: petit larceny; criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree; criminal possession of a hypodermic instrument; criminal use of drug paraphernalia; and sixth-degree conspiracy. Le Blanc Chatt was arrested at 1:59 p.m. on Sept. 7 following a larceny complaint at Walmart in Batavia. It is alleged that he walked past the point of sale with an 18-ounce can of Rain X. He was arrested and released with an appearance ticket for Town of Batavia Court on Sept. 20. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Andrew Hale, assisted by Deputy Lonnie Nati.

Brandon James March, 33, of South Main Street, Batavia, is charged with: criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree; possession of a hypodermic instrument; criminal use of drug paraphernalia; and sixth-degree conspiracy. March was arrested at 1:59 p.m. on Sept. 7 following a larceny complaint at Walmart in Batavia. March allegedly conspired with another person to steal property and was found in possession of a controlled substance and drug paraphernalia. He was arrested and released with an appearance ticket for Town of Batavia Court on Sept. 20. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Travis DeMuth, assisted by Deputy Andrew Hale.

September 10, 2018 - 2:10pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, news, notify, uber.

Press release:

Uber today announced that Batavia native Rebecca Messina will join the company’s executive leadership team as global Chief Marketing Officer.

As Uber’s first-ever CMO, Messina will bring together Uber’s marketing teams around the world, building a global marketing organization that can support the company’s growth going forward.

“Rebecca brings deep experience in building global brands, and she’ll be a terrific leader for Uber’s marketing teams around the world,” said Barney Harford, Uber’s Chief Operating Officer. “We’re excited to learn from her as we work to make Uber one of the world’s most valuable brands, supported by cutting-edge marketing systems.”

“Joining Uber is a once in a lifetime opportunity and a true privilege. My focus has always been on three things: people, growth and brands,” Messina said. “Uber checks all three boxes: a rapidly growing global business, with the opportunity to build an iconic brand alongside a team that’s committed to transforming the future of mobility. I couldn’t be more excited about what lies ahead.”

“I’m thrilled to welcome Rebecca to Uber. She’s exactly the right leader to build our marketing efforts globally and to showcase the ways Uber is igniting opportunities for our customers around the world,” said Dara Khosrowshahi, Uber’s CEO. “Very few brands become verbs; for Uber to have achieved this shows how we’ve captured imaginations and become an important part of our customers’ lives. I’m excited to bring on Rebecca as a steward for our brand moving forward.”

Messina joins Uber from Beam Suntory, the world's third largest premium spirits company, where she has served as global Chief Marketing Officer since 2016. Prior to Beam Suntory, she spent 22 years at The Coca-Cola Company, where she most recently served as Senior Vice President, Marketing & Innovation for Ventures & Emerging Brands. Previously she served in a number of different marketing leadership roles across the company, both in the United States and internationally.

Messina currently serves on the boards of the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) and the Ad Council, and has also served on the National Board of Directors of the American Marketing Association (AMA), the Georgia State Marketing Roundtable and the Atlanta Executive Board of the AMA.

She holds a bachelor’s degree from Miami University (Oxford, Ohio). The Batavia High School alumna speaks English, Spanish, Italian and French. She is married, with two children, and currently lives in Chicago.

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Contact: Howard Owens, publisher (howard (at) the batavian dot com); (585) 250-4118

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