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December 31, 2020 - 5:11pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, Grand Jury, batavia, Le Roy.

Desiree M. Hutchinson is indicted for the crime of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the third degree, a Class B felony. It is alleged that on Aug. 12 in the City of Batavia that Hutchinson knowingly and unlawfully possessed a narcotic drug -- cocaine -- with intent to sell it. In count two, she is accused of the same crime for allegedly possessing fentanyl that day with intent to sell it. In count three, she is accused of criminal possession of a crontrolled substance in the fourth degree, a Class C felony, for allegedly knowingly and unlawfully possessing one or more substanes containing a a narcotic drug -- cocaine -- which had an aggregate weight of one-eighth of an ounce or more.

Montell L. Cunningham is indicted for the crime of first-degree burglary, a Class B violent felony. It is alleged that on Sept. 13 in an upper apartment on Tracy Avenue in the City of Bataiva that he unlawfully entered a dwelling with the intent to commit a crime and while there caused physical injury to a female victim. In count two, his is accused of second-degree strangulation, a Class D violent felony, for allegedly applying pressure to her neck or throat, with the deliberate intention of impeding normal breathing or blood circulation, and thereby caused stupor, loss of consciousness or physical injury or impairment. In count three, Cunningham is accused of second-degree harassment, a violation. It is alleged in count three that on that day, with intent to annoy or alarm a person, that he struck, shoved, kicked or otherwise subjected the female victim to physical contact.

Anthony J. Welch is indicted for the crime of criminal possession of a controlled substance -- cocaine -- with intent to sell it, a Class B felony. It is alleged that on May 22 in the City of Batavia that Welch possessed cocaine with intent to sell it. In count two Welch is accused of tampering with physical evidence, a Class E felony. It is alleged in count two that on May 22 that he acted with intention to conceal evidence -- upon being confronted by a uniformed police officer, he hid a quantity of cocaine between his buttocks. In count three, Welch is accused of the crime of promoting prison contraband in the frist degree, a Class D felony. It is alleged in count three that on that day he knowingly and unlawfully introduced cocaine into a detention facility -- the Genesee County Jail. In count four, Welch is accused of criminally using drug paraphernalia in the second degree, a Class A misdemeanor. It is alleged in count four that on that day he knowingly had scales used to weigh or measure controlled substances and that he intended to use them for unlawfully packaging or dispensing a narcotic drug or stimulant.

David P. Grossman is indicted for the crime of second-degree burglary, a Class C violent felony. It is alleged that on Aug. 4 that Grossman entered and remained unlawfully in a dwelling on Highland Park in the City of Batavia with the intent to commit a crime. In count two, he is accused of third-degree criminal mischief, a Class E felony. It is alleged in count two that one that day he damaged property belonging to another person in an amount exceeding $250 -- a City of Batavia police patrol vehicle. In count three, he is accused of fourth-degree criminal mischief, a Class A misdemeanor, for damaging property belonging to another person -- a door and the face of a clock. In count four, he is accused of resisting arrest, a Class A misdemeanor, for preventing or attempting to prevent a police officer from arresting him. In count five, Grossman is accused of obstructing governmental administration in the second degree, a Class A misdemeanor, for impairing or attempting to impair a public servant from performing an official function by means of intimidation, force or unlawful act. In count six, the defendant is accused of third-degree coercion, a Class A misdemeanor, for making a demand of an officer and instilling fear that if the demand was not complied with, the defendant would cause physical harm to the officer. In counts seven and eight, respectively, Grossman is accused of endangering the welfare of two children, a Class A misdemeanor, for knowingly acting in a manner likely to be injurious to the physical, mental or moral welfare of children less than 17 years old.

Jennifer D. Abrams and Tarus O. Fluitt are indicted for the crime of third-degree burglary, a Class D felony. It is alleged that on Sept. 16 at the Crosby's store on Clinton Street Road in the Town of Batavia that these defendants committed the crime of second-degree criminal mischieg, a Class D felony. It is alleged that on Sept. 16 they intentionally damaged property belonging to another person in an amount exceeding $1,500 -- mutiple doors, a kitchen sink and merchandise at that Crosby's location. In count three, they are accused of third-degree grand larceny, a Class D felony, for allegedly stealing porperty having a value of more than $3,000 -- cigarettes worth $3,500. In count four, they are accused of fifth-degree conspiracy, a Class A misdemeanor, for allegedly intentionally engaging in conduct that constituted a felony and they agreed and engaged in such conduct.

Aurelio A. Figueroa is indicted for the crime of third-degree grand larceny, a Class D felony. It is alleged that between July 2014 and July 2019 that Figueroa stole property valued at greater than $3,000 --- a total of $9,321 in SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) benefits. In count two, he is accused of offering a false instrument for filing in the first degree, a Class E felony. It is alleged in count two that on July 5, 2017 in the Town of Batavia that Figueroa offered a written instrument -- a SNAP application/recertification, knowing that it contained false information and presented it with the intent to defraud a public authority. In count three, he is accused of the same crime for filing another written instrument -- a Landlord Statement -- allegedly knowing it contained false information and presented it with the intent to defraud a public authority. In count four, it is alleged that on Jan. 19, 2018 in the Town of Batavia that Figueroa offered a written instrument -- a SNAP application/recertification, knowing that it contained false information and presented it with the intent to defraud a public authority. In count five it is alleged that on Jan. 19, 2018 in the Town of Batavia that Figueroa offered a written instrument -- a Shelter Verification, knowing that it contained false information and presented it with the intent to defraud a public authority. In count six, it is alleged that on June 19, 2017 in the Town of Batavia that Figueroa offered a written instrument -- a SNAP application/recertification, knowing that it contained false information and presented it with the intent to defraud a public authority. In count seven, it is alleged that on June 19, 2018 in the Town of Batavia that Figueroa offered a written instrument -- a Shelter Verification, knowing that it contained false information and presented it with the intent to defraud a public authority. In count eight, it is alleged that that on Jan. 14, 2019 in the Town of Batavia that Figueroa offered a written instrument -- a SNAP application/recertification, knowing that it contained false information and presented it with the intent to defraud a public authority. In count nine, it is alleged that on Jan. 11, 2019 in the Town of Batavia that Figueroa offered a written instrument -- a Shelter Verification, knowing that it contained false information and presented it with the intent to defraud a public authority. In count 10, it is alleged that on July 9, 2019 in the Town of Batavia that Figueroa offered a written instrument -- a SNAP application/recertification, knowing that it contained false information and presented it with the intent to defraud a public authority. In count 11, it is alleged that on July 9, 2019 in the Town of Batavia that Figueroa offered a written instrument -- a Shelter Verification, knowing that it contained false information and presented it with the intent to defraud a public authority. In count 12, it is alleged that on July 16, 2019 in the Town of Batavia that Figueroa offered a written instrument -- a SNAP application/recertification, knowing that it contained false information and presented it with the intent to defraud a public authority. In counts 13 and 14, Figueroa is accused of falsifying business records in the first degree, a Class E felony, for allegedly making a false entries into business records by submitting Shelter Verification forms which had information crossed out on Jan. 19, 2018 and Jan. 14, 2019, respectively.

Ana M. Uribe is indicted for the crime of third-degree grand larceny, a Class D felony. It is alleged that between August and November 2019 in the Town of Batavia that she stole property with a value exceeding $3,000 -- a total of $3,218 in SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) benefits and public assistance. In count two, Uribe is accused of offering a false instrument for filing in the first degreem a Class E felony. It is alleged in count two that on Sept. 4, 2019 in the Town of Batavia that she submitted a SNAP/Public Assistance Recertification to public authorities knowing that is contained false information and did so with the intent to defraud them.

Robert A. Bell Jr. is indicted for the crime of criminal possession of stolen property in the third degree, a Class D felony. It is alleged that on March 13 of this year that Bell, in the City of Batavia, knowingly possessed stolen property with the intent to benefit himself and its value exceeded $3,000 -- a 2008 Hummer H2.

Craig L. Fien is indicted for the crime of criminal possession of a weapon in the third degree, a Class D felony. It is alleged that on July 22 on Lake Street in the Village of Le Roy that Fien possessed a dangerous instrument -- a bat -- with intent to use it unlawfully against another person. In count two, he is accused of second-degree menacing, a Class A misdemeanor. It is alleged in count two that on that day he intentionally placed a person in reasonable fear of physical injury, serious physical injury or death by means of displaying a dangerous instrument -- a bat. In Special Information filed by District Attorney Lawrence Friedman, Fien is accused of having been convicted of: petit larceny, a Class A misdemeanor, on Oct. 22, 2014 in Monroe Couny Court, and the same crime on Nov. 15, 2016, in Town of Batavia Court; criminal possession of stolen property in the fourth degree, a Class E felony, on Aug. 14, 2019 in Genesee County Court; and these convictions form the basis for count one in the current indictment.

December 31, 2020 - 2:34pm

With the start of a new year less than 10 hours away, it certainly would be nice if the world could just turn the page and put 2020 – a year marked by a global pandemic known as COVID-19 – in the rearview mirror.

Unfortunately, however, the challenges and stress caused by the coronavirus will continue for at least several more months and words such as quarantine, contact tracing, asymptomatic testing and vaccine will continue to be part of our everyday vocabulary.

Earlier today, Paul Pettit, public health director for Genesee and Orleans counties, with support from Genesee County Manager Matt Landers and Legislative Chair Rochelle Stein, updated the media on the latest developments and statistics via Zoom videoconferencing.

Pettit touched upon all the buzzwords mentioned above, as well as addressing what could be a new and even bigger problem – an apparently more contagious variety of SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes Covid-19) that is spreading throughout the United Kingdom and has been identified in California and Colorado.

“About the strain, what we do know is that it is a lot more infectious, so it spreads a lot easier, which is the concerning part,” Pettit said, responding to a question from The Batavian seeking to know if local health officials have the capacity to test for the variant mutation of the virus. “But what we do know is that it is not any more aggressive or severe – it appears anyways – than the strain that we have been dealing with locally, but that again could change as time goes on.”

Pettit said not much is known about the new strain, but worries that due to the higher level of infectiousness, more people could get sicker at a quicker rate.

New Strain Could Overload Hospitals

“That again is a concern with higher positivity rates and mainly with the stress on our health care system,” he said. “If we have more folks getting infected, specifically more at-risk folks that will be infected, (that will) put a strain on our bed capacity and the ability to deal with those folks who need a higher level of care … and that could lead to a quicker overwhelming of our medical system.”

Pettit said the new strain has not been identified in New York, but "it being in California and Colorado, it's more than likely -- it's just a matter of time before it is identified (in New York)."

"It is being tested for out of Wadsworth (a state facility), so the state lab is looking for this variant," he said. "The 3,000 or 4,000 tests that they've run or analyzed has not shown it yet. We do not have the local ability to look for it in our rapid testing, but we did reach out to Wadsworth to see if they would like us to be part of a sentinel process where we can send them -- or make sure they get samples from around here to test for that variant."

Pettit also talked about the Moderna vaccine – a two-step process that is said to be about 95-percent effective against the virus – and outlined the pecking order, so to speak, of those who will receive it.

Again, responding to a question from The Batavian regarding who comprises the 1B group, which follows the 1A group of healthcare personnel, Pettit said he wasn’t sure beyond “certain essential workers” such as law enforcement and firefighters.

“We have a general idea … but the state has not really fleshed out the details of the 1B group … they want us to focus on (vaccinating) the 1A group,” he said, previously mentioning that the 1B group in Genesee County is estimated at around 13,000 people and in Orleans County at around 9,000 people.

After that, there is a 1C group (with close to the same numbers) and then “bucket 2” or the general public, he said.

Pettit mentioned the procedural challenges once it’s time to vaccinate those in 1B (hopefully in late January) because those in the 1A group likely will be ready for their second shot.

“We need to make sure we're giving that second shot at that four-week mark while trying to vaccinate new people in the 1B group. So, this is where it gets into the complexity and logistical challenges of this vaccination campaign,” he said.

Volunteers Play Key Role in the Process

When asked about utilizing volunteers from the community – namely the Medical Reserve Corps in Genesee and Orleans counties – Pettit said he is open to enlisting as many people willing to help in the testing and vaccination process as possible. Currently, many citizens have stepped up on an individual basis to support the cause, he noted.

“We actually have had one (a Medical Reserve Corps) in Orleans County for many years now and the Genesee County Legislature approved expanding the Orleans County one into Genesee about a year and a half ago,” he said. “Medical Reserve Corps do have an important role to play in medical emergencies.”

Pettit admitted that the local MRS is not “overly robust and populated” but mentioned that Serve New York is the statewide program by which those – especially healthcare workers – can sign up to help out.

“As we need volunteers, we can call up and activate those members who are part of Serve New York,” he said. “They are automatically adopted into our Medical Reserve Corps … and we will be utilizing folks through Serve New York.”

He said that he is hopeful that by the time the campaign is over in “three, four, six months, we’ll have about 200 to 300 people in our Medical Reserve Corps because once we have them captive, we’re going to keep them.”

Other new information shared during the 50-minute presentation:

Current Statistics

Genesee County: 2,374 positive cases; 65,126 negative; 173 active cases in isolation; 489 in quarantine; 29 deaths; 1,854 have recovered, which means they have cleared the 10-day isolation period.

Orleans County: 1,342 positive cases; 34,209 negative; 195 active cases in isolation; 601 in quarantine; 61 deaths (mostly from long-term care facilities last spring); 914 recovered, which means they have cleared the 10-day isolation period.

Regionally (Finger Lakes): The Genesee County seven-day positivity rate is 11.2 percent and 14-day is 11.5 percent. The Orleans County seven-day positivity rate is 9.1 percent and 14-day is 8.4 percent.

Genesee County is higher than most of the region but is leveling off, Pettit said, adding that it could qualify for Yellow, Orange or even Red Zone status, but that Gov. Andrew Cuomo is “pivoting away” from micro-cluster analysis to focus on hospitalization rates.

Vaccination

Pettit said the University of Rochester Medical Center is the “hub” that oversees COVID vaccination in the Finger Lakes Region but that he is part of the task force that will help ensure equitable allocation of the vaccine.

“This is unlike anything we’ve ever seen in New York State,” he said. “The vaccine is flowing – coming in slowly – and we’ll get it to residents as quickly as we can.”

The first group of people – the 1A group – is being vaccinated, with 284 staff members at United Memorial Medical Center already receiving the initial dose.

He said the vaccine is not available to the general public yet and that aspect is under the control of New York State. He noted that those who try to circumvent the system are subject to revocation of their medical license and fines of up to $1 million.

Pettit revealed the number of people who qualify for the vaccine in each of the groups as follows:

Group 1A – 4,892 in Genesee County; 3,421 in Orleans County;

Group 1B – 13,000 in Genesee County; 9,000 in Orleans County;

Group 1C – 13,000 in Genesee County; 9,500 in Orleans County;

Bucket 2 – General public.

Pettit also said that testing will continue in both counties – on Tuesday and Thursday in Genesee and on Wednesday in Orleans – and that contract tracing, while “difficult and challenging,” also is ongoing, but is in the hands of state authorities after contacts are made by local health officials -- a fact emphasized by Stein as she opened the media briefing.

Stein: Stay Safe & Support Local Business

"Genesee County does the initial investigation on positive cases and identifies those who are positive," she said. "The process usually takes 24 hours of receiving a test result."

She said after that state contact tracers handle the cases and that is where the delay comes in -- sometime four to six days.

Stein asked residents to be patient with this process before encouraging them to support local businesses, especially restaurants, while continuing to follow the safety protocols.

Pettit also said the state has changed the 14-day quarantine period to 10 days to line up with Center for Disease Control guidelines.

When asked if the data provides any sense of hope, Pettit said the “hope is the vaccine.”

“Getting folks vaccinated, getting them protected – the most vulnerable. The nursing homes, seniors, those with underlying health conditions – that’s really where we need to focus right now,” he responded. “As we start to get them vaccinated and protected, I think that is going to put us in a whole different position as we start to move forward with risk and exposure potential, which I think is going to move us hopefully to where we need to be.”

December 30, 2020 - 7:36pm
posted by Press Release in covid-19, coronavirus, news, notify.

Press release:

  • Genesee County received 142 new positive cases of COVID-19.
    • The new positive cases reside in the:
      • West Region (Alabama, Darien, Pembroke)
      • Central Region (Alexander, Batavia, Bethany, Elba, Oakfield)
      • East Region (Bergen, Byron, Le Roy, Pavilion, Stafford)
  • The individuals are in their 0-19s, 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s.
  • Sixty-eight of the previous positive individuals have recovered and have been removed from the isolation list.
  • Four of the positive individuals are hospitalized.
  • Twenty of the new positive cases are residents at LeRoy Village Green Residential Healthcare Facility.
  • Eight of the new positive cases are residents at the New York State Veterans Home – At Batavia.
  • Two of the new positive cases are residents of Genesee Senior Living.
  • One of the new positive cases is a resident of Premier Genesee Center for Nursing & Rehabilitation.
  • One of the new positive cases is a resident of the Batavia VA Medical Center.
  • We are saddened to report the COVID-related death of a resident who resided at LeRoy Village Green Residential Healthcare Facility and a resident who resided at New York State Veterans Home – At Batavia.
  • We are saddened to report the COVID-related death of a community resident under the age of 65 years old.
  • We will not be releasing any further information to protect the privacy of the individual and their family.  Our deepest condolences go out to the families and friends of these individuals during this difficult time.

  • Orleans County received 40 new positive cases of COVID-19.
  • The new positive cases reside in the:
    • West Region (Yates, Ridgeway, Shelby)
    • Central Region (Carlton, Gaines, Albion, Barre)
    • East Region (Kendall, Murray, Clarendon).
  • The individuals are in their 0-19s, 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s and 70s.
  • Four of the individuals were on mandatory quarantine prior to testing positive.
  • Sixteen of the previous positive individuals have recovered and have been removed from the isolation list.
  • Twenty-one of the current positive individuals are hospitalized.

covidchartdec302020.png

Genesee County's positivity rate on a seven-day rolling average is 11.5 percent.

December 30, 2020 - 7:16pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, notify, Batavia Town Board, solar farms, Article 10.

The Batavia Town Board this afternoon called for a “timeout” as it attempts to keep up with the changing landscape of the solar farm industry.

During a special meeting via Zoom videoconferencing, the board passed a resolution to hold a public hearing to consider Local Law No. 1 of 2021 entitled, “A Local Law, Establishing a Town of Batavia Moratorium on Solar Energy Systems.”

The public hearing is set for 7 p.m. Jan. 20 at Batavia Town Hall on West Main Street Road.

The board also voted to declare lead agency status with regard to an environmental review per the State Environmental Quality Review Act and will prepare an assessment form for this action.

Supervisor Gregory Post said that several key changes have taken place since the board passed the town’s solar ordinance five years ago.

“This is something that probably was going to be addressed during the course of the past 2020 year along with a revisit to our comprehensive plan and other things that were budgeted in our planning budget,” Post said. “We continue to work to be an energy efficient community – and have received a lot of grant money as a result – but so much has changed and now is the time for a review.”

Post pointed to the following aspects pertaining to community and large-scale solar projects that must be considered:

  • New York State Article 10

“In my opinion, solar farms also serve as an ag protection plan in that the ground remains fertile and available for farming in the future,” he said. “But now, New York State has jumped in with Article 10 and started taking over towns' rights.”

He said that “giant corporate entities” are taking thousands of acres without local participation or control, specifically mentioning huge projects in Byron, Oakfield and Elba.

“I’ve also talked to the Town of Le Roy Supervisor (James Farnholz) and he was expressing some frustration in that they had spent an enormous amount of time and energy to come up with a solar law, only to have the governor and the state change it almost on the same day they were prepared to adopt it,” Post offered. “And it caused them to have to go back and revisit it.”

The supervisor said there’s much to learn about Article 10 (and a new state regulation to replace it).

“That’s another reason to hold things up until we all are better understanding of the Article 10 process and the changes to Article 10, and the experiences of other communities that are in Article 10,” he said. “Planning and zoning board members need to be educated about this stuff because it is a big deal and it is bound to be more time consuming than expected.”

  • Building More Than What is Needed

Post said the recommendations of so-called experts has led developers to “overbuild capacity.”

“They’re building solar and wasting energy because the price to develop solar now is so cheap … instead of building what you need, they build 130, 150, 200 (megawatt) -- maybe three times what you need, and if you don’t have a place for it, that’s all right because it’s cheap to build,” he said. “That wasn’t the thinking five or six years ago.”

  • Battery Storage

Post said the advancement in battery stations likely have expanded the solar farm feasibility map.

“At the outset, we were comfortable that there would be very few places available for solar development because of the need for the connectivity to part of the grid that was able to handle the output,” he explained. “There was essentially a limitation on the number and locations of solar because National Grid’s network wasn’t able to connect all these farms – it had to be where there was capacity and those places on that map were limited.”

Now, Post said that he and the town’s engineering staff suspect that the mapping has changed.

“With these battery things, maybe you can store it up and feed it back in little bits and quantity. So, we have to address it,” he said.

  • ‘Hidden’ Costs to Municipalities

Post said increasing administrative costs are cause for a discussion about whether a tax should be imposed upon solar farms, which (to varying degrees) already are subsidized by tax dollars. Currently, the town does not tax property owners who are leasing land for solar.

“Again, five years ago we didn’t expect there would be any cost to service a solar farm. They got a driveway cut, and they don’t request any services from the town. There’s no need for police or fire or highway or water or sewer. Essentially, it’s like driving past a field of alfalfa – there’s nothing there. So, we weren’t looking to exploit that because we didn’t anticipate any costs,” he said.

Today, the town is “really seeing how expensive the administration of these applications is – with the engineering review and the decommissioning bonds and our attorney’s fee, and just the overall cost of the community’s resources because we are stretched thin,” he advised.

Post said he had no opinion either way but sees the need to get people to the table to look at the cost issue.

He said the moratorium will not affect solar projects that are in the pipeline – it should be noted that the town has permitted numerous solar farms thus far – and that “anything new coming in can wait 90 days or so.”

“Once the public hearing is held and we pass the moratorium, hopefully we will have more public participation … and hopefully we will be in a better place with COVID and have a better idea of our revenues,” he added.

December 29, 2020 - 6:51pm
posted by Press Release in covid-19, coronavirus, news, notify.

Press release:

  • Genesee County received 52 new positive cases of COVID-19.
    • The new positive cases reside in the:
      • West Region (Alabama, Darien, Pembroke)
      • Central Region (Alexander, Batavia, Bethany, Elba, Oakfield)
      • East Region (Bergen, Byron, Le Roy, Pavilion, Stafford)
  • The individuals are in their 0-19s, 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s.
  • One hundred and eighteen of the previous positive individuals have recovered and have been removed from the isolation list.
  • Thirty-four of the positive individuals are hospitalized.
  • Seven of the new positive cases are residents at the New York State Veterans Home – At Batavia.
  • Six of the new positive cases are residents at LeRoy Village Green Residential Healthcare Facility.
  • Three of the new positive cases are residents of Premier Genesee Center for Nursing & Rehabilitation.
  • One of the new positive cases are residents of Genesee Senior Living.
  • We are saddened to report the COVID-related death of a resident who resides at Genesee Senior Living and a resident who resides at Premier Genesee Center for Nursing & Rehabilitation.
  • We are saddened to report the COVID-related death of three community residents. Two of the residents were over 65 years old and one was less than 65 years old.
  • We will not be releasing any further information to protect the privacy of the individual and their family.  Our deepest condolences go out to the families and friends of these individuals during this difficult time.

  • Orleans County received 63 new positive cases of COVID-19.
    • The new positive cases reside in the:
      • West Region (Yates, Ridgeway, Shelby)
      • Central Region (Carlton, Gaines, Albion, Barre)
      • East Region (Kendall, Murray, Clarendon).
    • The individuals are in their 0-19s, 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s, and 80s.
    • Eleven of the individuals were on mandatory quarantine prior to testing positive.
    • Thirty-nine of the previous positive individuals have recovered and have been removed from the isolation list.
    • Nineteen of the current positive individuals are hospitalized.

covid19chartdec292020.png

healthalertsdec292020.png

December 29, 2020 - 1:35pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, Le Roy.

Tyler B. Williams (inset photo left), 19, of Summit Street, Le Roy, was arrested by the Le Roy Police Department on Dec. 17 and charged with: second-degree burglary, a Class C felony; possession of burglar tools, a Class A misdemeanor; and second-degree criminal trespass, also a Class A misdemeanor.

Williams was arrested after he allegedly unlawfully entering an occupied village residence at 3 a.m., while the occupants were asleep upstairs. They awoke upon hearing noises in the upstairs hallway and the homeowner confronted Williams at gunpoint, holding him until the police arrived.

It is alleged that Williams unlawfully entered the residence with intent to commit a crime therein and while inside the residence possessed a cell phone he used as a flashlight to assist in the burglary. No one was hurt during the incident and no shots were fired.

This investigation is ongoing and anyone with information or having similar incidents is asked to contact the Le Roy Police Department at 345-6350.

UPDATE Dec. 30, 6:23 p.m.: The defendant was released on his own recognizance after processing.

December 28, 2020 - 4:56pm
posted by Press Release in news, covid-19, notify, coronavirus.

Press release:

Data Update – Including data since Thursday, Dec. 24th after 2 p.m.

Due to the increased numbers from the holiday weekend, we anticipate to have the data updated over the next couple of days in order for staff to make sure the date is properly vetted.

  • Genesee County received 101 new positive cases of COVID-19.
    • The new positive cases reside in the:
      • West Region (Alabama, Darien, Pembroke)
      • Central Region (Alexander, Batavia, Bethany, Elba, Oakfield) 
      • East Region (Bergen, Byron, Le Roy, Pavilion, Stafford)
  • The individuals are in their 0-19s, 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s.
  • One hundred and forty-eight of the previous positive individuals have recovered and have been removed from the isolation list.
  • Correction: Six recoveries have been retracted from today’s number as four previously reported are residents of the NYS Veterans Home at Batavia and two are residents of Le Roy Village Green Residential Healthcare Facility. Persons reported recovered are community members only. 
  • Thirty-eight of the positive individuals are hospitalized.
  • Three of the new positive cases are residents at Le Roy Village Green Residential Healthcare Facility. 
  • Three of the new positive cases are residents of Premier Genesee Center for Nursing & Rehabilitation.
  • Two of the new positive cases are residents of Genesee Senior Living. 
  • Two of the new positive cases are residents at the New York State Veterans Home – At Batavia. 
  • One of the new positive cases is a resident at The Grand Rehabilitation and Nursing at Batavia. 

 

  • Orleans County received 80 new positive cases of COVID-19.
  • The new positive cases reside in the:
    • West Region (Yates, Ridgeway, Shelby) 
    • Central Region (Carlton, Gaines, Albion, Barre) 
    • East Region (Kendall, Murray, Clarendon).
  • The individuals are in their 0-19s, 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s. 
  • Fourteen of the individuals were on mandatory quarantine prior to testing positive.
  • Seventy-eight of the previous positive individuals have recovered and have been removed from the isolation list.
  • Eighteen of the current positive individuals are hospitalized.
  • Nineteen of the new positives are inmates of the Orleans Correctional Facility.
December 28, 2020 - 1:01pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, crime, notify, alexander, batavia.

Brodes J. Gibson, 59, of Bank Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree assault and criminal possession of a weapon in the third degree. Gibson was arrested on an unrelated incident by Medina PD and later turned over to Batavia PD on a City of Batavia Court arrest warrant. The local charges stem from a domestic incident at 3 a.m. Oct. 20 at a lower apartment on Bank Street in the city. Gibson allegedly stabbed a person with a knife. Following arraignment, he was jailed without bail. He was due back in court on Dec. 23. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Stephen Cronmiller.

Christopher A. Sewar, 34, of Liberty Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree burglary and second-degree criminal contempt. He was arrested Dec. 19 after an investigation into an incident at 3:38 p.m. Dec. 19 at an upper apartment on Maple Street in Batavia. It is alleged that he violated a court order and burglarized a residence. He was arraigned in Batavia City Court and put in jail. Bail status not provided. He is due back in court on Jan. 25. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Samuel Freeman, assisted by Officer Wesley Rissinger.

Aaron Michael Hatt, 24, of Broadway Road, Alexander, is charged with: operating a motor vehile while impaired by drugs; driving while impaired by a combination of drugs and alcohol; aggravated unlicensed operation in the third degree; unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle; vehicle at a standstill on a public highway. Hatt was arrested at 9:22 a.m. on Dec. 24 on Old Creek Road in Alexander after an investigation of a vehicle parked in the roadway with a male slumped over the wheel. He was issued tickets and is due in Alexander Town Court on Feb. 9. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Jacob, assisted by Deputy Ryan DeLong.

Jason W. Wolf, 44, of Maple Street, Batavia, is charged with: insufficient turn signal; consumption of alcohol in a motor vehicle; refusal to take a breath test; aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle in the first degree; and unlicensed operator. Wolf was arrested at 8:30 p.m. on Dec. 20 on Elm Street in Batavia. The arrest was made after a complaint about an allegedly intoxicated driver on East Main Street. The vehicle was located and a traffic violation was allegedly observed. Wolf was arraigned in Batavia City Court and put in jail. Bail status not provided. He was due to return to city court on Dec. 23. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Sean Wilson, assisted by Officer Wesley Rissinger.

December 26, 2020 - 1:26pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, pembroke, Pavilion.

Brent Joseph Graham, 32, of Sand Hill Road, Akron, is charged with: driving while intoxicated -- with two previous convictions within 10 years; aggravated DWI -- a BAC of .18 percent or more -- with two previous convictions within 10 years; aggravated unlicensed operation in the first degree; reckless driving; failure to reduce speed under special hazard; operating a vehicle without an ignition interlock device as required; and operation in violation of restrictions. After a personal-injury accident on Main Road in the Town of Pembroke at 10:13 p.m. on Oct. 25, Graham was arrested. He was issued appearance tickets and is due back in Town of Pembroke Court on Jan. 21. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Kyle Krzemien, assisted by Sgt. Jason Saile. They were also assisted by the New York State Police, City of Batavia Fire Department Special Operations Water Rescue Team, Mercy EMS, and Pembroke and Indian Falls fire departments.

Alyssa Jade Garrett, 22, of North Street, Geneseo, is charged with: driving while intoxicated; operating a motor vehicle while having a BAC of .08 percent or more; and moving from lane unsafely. Garrett was arrested at 6:35 p.m. on Dec. 20 on Perry Road in the Town of Pavilion following a property-damage accident. She was released on appearance tickets and is due in Pavilion Town Court on Jan. 5. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy David Moore, assisted by Sgt. Andrew Hale.

December 24, 2020 - 8:38pm
posted by Press Release in covid-19, coronavirus, news, notify.

Press release:

Data Update – Due to the Christmas holiday, we will not be reporting out on Friday. Monday’s report will include Friday and the weekend coverage. We would like to take this time to wish everyone a healthy, safe and Merry Christmas! Please limit contact and time with non-household members, wash hands frequently and wear a mask/face covering to limit the spread.

o Genesee County received 123 new positive cases of COVID-19.

The new positive cases reside in the:

    • West Region (Alabama, Darien, Pembroke);
    • Central Region (Alexander, Batavia, Bethany, Corfu, Elba, Oakfield);
    • East Region (Bergen, Byron, Le Roy, Stafford and Pavilion);
    • The individuals are in their 0-19s, 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s.
    • Thirty-eight of the previous positive individuals have recovered and have been removed from the isolation list.
    • Twenty-nine of the positive individuals are hospitalized.
    • Thirteen of the new positive cases are residents at Le Roy Village Green.
    • Seven of the new positive cases are residents at New York State Veterans Home – At Batavia.
    • Twenty-three of the new positive cases are residents at Genesee Senior Living.
    • One new positive case is an inmate at the Buffalo Federal Detention Center.
    • One positive case previously reported as a resident of Premier Genesee is actually a resident of Genesee Senior Living.
  • Orleans County received 26 new positive cases of COVID-19.
    • The new positive cases reside in the:
    • West Region (Yates, Ridgeway, Shelby);
    • Central Region (Carlton, Gaines, Albion, Barre) and the
    • East Region (Kendall, Murray, Clarendon).
    • The individuals are in their 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s.
    • Two of the individuals were on mandatory quarantine prior to testing positive.
    • Nineteen of the previous positive individuals have recovered and have been removed from the isolation list.
    • Eight of the current positive individuals are hospitalized.
    • Eight of the new positives are inmates of the Orleans Correctional Facility.

covidchartdec242020.png

December 23, 2020 - 9:35pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Michael Tomaszewski, crime, news, batavia, notify.
tomaszewskimugjuly2020.jpg
     Michael Tomaszewski

Funeral home owner Michael S. Tomaszewski, arrested in July after an investigation that uncovered multiple incidences of potential fraud, was arraigned in Genesee County Court today on more than 200 counts of grand larceny, falsifying business records, offering a false instrument in filing, scheme to defraud, and failure to deposit.

As he did when first arrested and arraigned in Town of Batavia Court, Tomaszewski entered a not guilty plea.

Tomaszewski waived his right to have a grand jury review the evidence against him and potentially issue indictments against him. He was arraigned on what's known as Superior Court Information (SCI) that lays out all the charges in the same form as a grand jury indictment.

It is 101 pages long.

Tomaszewski is accused of taking money people used to prepay for funerals and instead of depositing the money in appreciate bank accounts then using the money for other purposes.

The SCI indicates the majority of customers lost from more than $2,000 up to $15,500 each.

The charges include: 67 counts of third-degree grand larceny; 28 counts of fourth-degree grand larceny; four counts of falsifying business records; 93 counts of failure to deposit; seven counts of petit larceny; and counts of offering a false instrument for filing in the first degree; and scheme to defraud.

During the virtual arraignment today, the attorneys discussed the possibility of reaching a plea deal within the next six weeks.

Tomaszewski remains released from custody on his own recognizance. His next scheduled court appearance, which will also be virtual, is 1:30 p.m., Feb. 2.

Alecia Kaus/Video News Service contributed to this report.

Previously:

December 23, 2020 - 8:55pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, news, batavia, notify.

A 52-year-old Batavia man already previously convicted on child pornography charges has been indicted once again in Federal Court.

Matthew Barber is charged with receipt and possession of child pornography, which carries a minimum mandatory penalty of 15 years in federal prison.

According to the U.S. Attorney's Office of Western New York was previously convicted in 2007 and was sentenced in 2007 to 74 months in federal prison. He was given five years of supervised release but he failed a sex offender treatment program.

Barber reportedly had a job in Batavia. He was dismissed after allegedly placing a USB flash drive into a work computer. He May, he was charged locally with unauthorized use of a computer.

As a condition of his parole, Barber was required to notify NYS Parole if he was terminated from employment. That day, U.S. Probation and NYS Parole searched his residence and seized a cellular phone and a flash drive.

According to the U.S. Attorney's office, investigators found 1,100 images and 40 videos of child pornography on the drive. Several hundred other images and 200 videos were allegedly found on the phone.

Barber was arraigned today in Federal Court. 

The indictment is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Stephen Belongia; the Cheektowaga Police Department, under the direction of Chief Michael Sliwinski; and the Batavia Police Department, under the direction of Chief Shawn Heubusch.

December 23, 2020 - 8:32pm
posted by Press Release in covid-19, coronavirus, news, notify.

Press release:

Data Update - COVID-19 is widespread throughout Genesee and Orleans counties. With the high prevalence of active cases, we are changing the way we are reporting the positive cases to regionally rather than listing each of the towns. Detailed demographic data is still being captured by the state

  • Genesee County received 50 new positive cases of COVID-19.
    • The new positive cases reside in the:
      • West Region (Alabama, Darien, Pembroke)
      • Central Region (Alexander, Batavia, Bethany, Corfu, Elba, Oakfield)
      • East Region (Bergen, Byron, Le Roy, Stafford and Pavilion)
    • The individuals are in their 0-19s, 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s.
    • Seventy-four of the previous positive individuals have recovered and have been removed from the isolation list.
    • Twenty of the positive individuals are hospitalized.
    • Sixteen of the new positive cases are residents at Le Roy Village Green.
    • Six of the new positive cases are residents at Premier Genesee.
    • Three of the new positive cases are residents at New York State Veterans Home – Batavia.
    • We are saddened to report the loss of a community member. The individual was over 65. We do not provide any further information to protect the privacy of the individual and their family. Our deepest condolences to the family and friends during this very difficult time.
  • Orleans County received 15 new positive cases of COVID-19.
    • The new positive cases reside in the:
      • West Region (Yates, Ridgeway, Shelby)
      • Central Region (Carlton, Gaines, Albion, Barre) and the
      • East Region (Kendall, Murray, Clarendon).
    • The individuals are in their 0-19s, 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 70s and 80s.
    • One of the individuals was on mandatory quarantine prior to testing positive.
    • Fourteen of the previous positive individuals have recovered and have been removed from the isolation list.
    • Eight of the current positive individuals are hospitalized.
    • Four of the new positives are inmates of the Orleans Correctional Facility.
December 23, 2020 - 2:35pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, notify, Western Regional OTB, Steven Cohen, Daniel Oliverio.

Four and a half years after a reorganization at the top of the Western Regional Off-Track Betting Corporation – action that advanced the careers of Michael Nolan of Elma and Henry Wojtaszek of North Tonawanda – things have turned ugly for the public benefit company that operates Batavia Downs Gaming, Batavia Downs harness racetrack and OTB parlors across 15 counties plus the cities of Rochester and Buffalo.

As reported by the Buffalo-based Investigative Post earlier this week, Nolan, WROTB’s chief operating officer until his dismissal last Friday, has enlisted the services of Steven Cohen of the HoganWillig law firm with the intent to file a civil lawsuit for at least $5 million in damages.

Nolan, in a Notice of Claim submitted on his behalf in September, alleges that he has been the target of a “deliberate, relentless and malicious campaign of harassment and hostility” by his superiors, President/Chief Executive Officer Wojtaszek and Board Chairman Richard Bianchi.

Both Cohen (this morning) and Daniel Oliverio of Hodgson Russ, the attorney representing WROTB (on Tuesday), spoke to The Batavian about the situation.

“Michael Nolan promoted transparency and believes in the organization, and his superiors wanted him to sweep things under the rug, which he refused to do,” Cohen said. “And now he’s being punished for it.”

Cohen said that Nolan has been ostracized and shut out of OTB developments since April of 2019 for sharing information with federal and state authorities as part of an inquiry into practices such as health insurance plans for board members, use of sports tickets and luxury boxes, and awarding of contracts.

“After speaking with other members of the board, the federal and state authorities were referred to Michael for specific answers to specific questions. Michael gave honest answers, and Michael’s superiors have maintained a policy of obfuscation and opacity, and are punishing Michael for being honest with the authorities,” Cohen added.

Oliverio said evidence gained through months of examination and interviewing of more than 30 witnesses does not substantiate Nolan’s claims, and that his termination was carefully considered and appropriate as it pertains to job performance.

“We are so sick of Steve Cohen and Mr. Nolan offering up absolutely false, unsupportable allegations about OTB and its officers and directors, none of which have been supported by any witnesses whatsoever,” Oliverio said. “We have done a thorough investigation over months – interviewed witnesses that Mr. Nolan told us to talk to and nobody supports his stories.”

Oliverio said that he has tried to sit down with Nolan to “find out what is on his mind, but his story shifts like grains of sand in the wind.”

Cohen: Problems Needed to be Addressed

Cohen said that Nolan “wanted to make OTB all that it could” by trying to rectify some problems, “but the greed of his superiors prevented him from doing so.”

“They didn’t want to put an end to board members receiving a lifetime health insurance (plan) that was valued at approximately $33,000 per year per board member,” he said, offering that opinions of the state attorney general and comptroller indicate that board members’ compensation should be limited to $4,000 per year.

Cohen said Nolan wanted to end that policy and his action caused Wojtaszek and Bianchi to retaliate against him. He also said Nolan shined a light on the improper use of luxury boxes and tickets to Sabres and Bills games and the “improper use of the VLT fund, or purse fund.”

“That purse fund is only supposed to be used to remunerate racehorse owners, but instead it was used as a general revenue source by OTB and Michael tried to put a stop to that,” he said.

Cohen said OTB officials have tried to stop the civil suit from being filed.

“They have invoked sections of the law, and they’re trying to delay us from filing this lawsuit,” he said.

Oliverio: Motivation is in Question

Oliverio said Nolan is not a whistleblower and is out to “impugn the integrity of the OTB board, Wojtaszek and others who operate the business from day to day.”

“He will tell you that the FBI called him as they were hearing some things that were going on at OTB that they wanted to look into. Now, Mr. Nolan’s a whistleblower,” he said. “Mr. Nolan has admitted to our investigators there’s nothing there regarding any of the allegations that have been made – regarding tickets and contracts, what have you.”

Oliverio said he can’t wrap his head around Nolan’s motivation.

“We don’t know if this is some type of political attempt to undermine the leadership of OTB; we can’t quite figure it out. But we don’t do press conferences like Mr. Cohen and Mr. Nolan. We do courtrooms, evidence, witnesses under oath and facts. If he’s going to make allegations, let’s prove them in a courtroom,” he said.

He said it could be “an attempted coup” by Nolan to replace Wojtaszek as president.

“Really, we have no idea. But, I’ll tell you what, we have spent a lot of money investigating these allegations and all these allegations about workplace harassment, and we can’t come up with one fact,” he said.

Health Insurance Ruling to Come

Oliverio acknowledged that directors receive a quality health insurance plan.

“They’ve never hid that, but it’s up to the comptroller of the State of New York to decide whether it’s appropriate or not and the comptroller is looking at it,” he said. “The comptroller has been asked to render an opinion and if the comptroller says you shouldn’t get it, then they’ll just discontinue it. If the comptroller says it is fine, then it is fine.”

Regarding tickets and corporate suites at sporting events, Oliverio said it is a nonissue.

“What a laugh. Nolan admits himself in an interview with our investigator, which was witnessed by two other people, there are no problems with the tickets. The tickets were used properly,” he said.

Oliverio pointed out that Nolan thought some contracts should have been put out to bid, but agreed that no laws were broken by not bidding them.

“His (Nolan) objections, as far as we can see, were with policies and process – not with any violations of the law. But there have been no allegations of violations of the law,” he said. “Certainly, Mr. Nolan has no right to offer that up because he’s not a federal prosecutor or state prosecutor, and we have not been told by any state or federal prosecutor or law enforcement officer that we violated any law whatsoever regarding tickets, contracts, promotions, anything else.”

The attorney said the matter is “frustrating” for WROTB and its board.

“That’s why we can’t wait to get into court,” he offered. “We hope that it will all come out why Mr. Nolan, if he continues his lawsuit, … was dismissed from OTB. We will do that in a courtroom, under oath, and not in a press conference. We look forward to it and we look forward to clearing some people’s reputations and names.”

Cohen Calls it ‘Pure Vindictiveness’

Cohen said Nolan found out that he was fired when he reported to work last Friday.

“When he went to show up for work, he was told he had been previously terminated,” he said. “Also, on Dec. 3 when his daughter broke her arm, that is when he learned that they had simply stopped his health insurance without prior notice. And that is pure vindictiveness – pure spitefulness – and that’s quintessential Wojtaszek and Bianchi.”

Cohen said the timing of Nolan’s termination speaks volumes.

“Had Michael’s termination not occurred over a year after he shared with his superiors that, at the request of other members of the board, he honestly answered questions of the FBI, U.S. Attorney and various New York State agencies, one might be inclined to entertain the possibility that Michael’s termination was performance based,” he said.

“But for over a year, after eight years of sterling performance evaluations, Michael was stripped of his duties as FOIL (Freedom of Information Law) officer and other key roles; he was ostracized by the president and chairman, and isolated and not permitted access to the data he needed to do his job.”

Oliverio disputes the contention that Nolan was wrongfully terminated.

“He was constructively discharged from OTB, and he makes a host of allegations about that, again, none of which we can find to be true by any witness or by any facts,” he said.

Nolan was set to receive a salary of $119,704 in 2021. In 2016, as the corporation’s executive vice president and chief operating officer, his annual pay was $102,096.

December 22, 2020 - 7:48pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in chris collins, NY-27, Donald Trump, news, notify.

collinspresseraug82018b.jpg

President Donald Trump, in the final month of his one term, issued 15 pardons today, including a pardon for former NY-27 congressional representative Chris Collins, who entered a guilty plea more than a year ago to federal crimes stemming from insider trading activity. 

Collins also admitted to lying to the FBI about using information that wasn't available to the public about Innate Immunotherapy to tip his son and other associates that led them to dump stock in the company before news of a failed trial reached other investors.

Even while under federal indictment for the crimes, Collins ran for reelection and won.

Collins was the first member of Congress to endorse Donald Trump for president in 2016 and served on the transition team after Trump beat Hillary Clinton.  

The second member of Congress to endorse Trump was Duncan Hunter Jr., of El Cajon, Calif. Hunter was also convicted of federal crimes related to his misuse of campaign donations for his personal benefit. Today, Trump also pardoned Hunter.

Photo: File photo: Collins, with his wife standing beside him, at a press conference in August 2018 when he denied the insider trading charges that had been filed against him that day in New York City.

December 22, 2020 - 7:13pm
posted by Press Release in covid-19, coronavirus, news, notify.

Press release:

  • Genesee County received 75 new positive cases of COVID-19.
    • The new positive cases reside in Alabama, Alexander, Batavia, Bethany, Bergen, Byron, Corfu, Darien, Elba, Le Roy, Oakfield and Stafford.
    • The individuals are in their 0-19s, 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s.
    • Fifty-seven of the previous positive individuals have recovered and have been removed from the isolation list.
    • Sixteen of the positive individuals are hospitalized.
    • Seven of the new positive cases are residents at Le Roy Village Green.
    • Three of the new positive cases are residents at Genesee Senior Living.
    • One of the new positive cases are residents at Premier Genesee.
    • Due to the increased positive cases reported yesterday, there was a mistake in calculating the number of active cases…today’s number has been corrected.
  • Orleans County received 44 new positive cases of COVID-19.
    • The new positive cases reside in Albion, Carlton, Clarendon, Gaines, Kendall, Murray, Ridgeway, Shelby and Yates.
    • The individuals are in their 0-19s, 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s.
    • Two of the individuals were on mandatory quarantine prior to testing positive.
    • Nineteen of the previous positive individuals have recovered and have been removed from the isolation list.
    • Seven of the current positive individuals are hospitalized.
    • One of the new positives is a resident of Orchard Rehabilitation and Nursing Center.
    • One of the new positives is an inmate of the Orleans Correctional Facility.

covidchartdec222020.png

Percent positive seven-day average as of Dec. 20, 2021 (https://forward.ny.gov/percentage-positive-results-county-dashboard):

  • Genesee:  10.5 percent
  • Orleans:  8.7 percent
December 22, 2020 - 3:56pm

laurie_picture_2.jpg

Other than “a little arm soreness,” Laurie Kilbury Taylor, DO, an attending physician in the Emergency Department at United Memorial Medical Center, said she had no problem with the initial dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine and is looking forward – for a number of reasons – to completing the process.

Kilbury Taylor (pictured above) was among the first UMMC staff members to receive the vaccine – “I felt very privileged to be invited to be in the first group,” she said – and said all of her colleagues are on board with being vaccinated.

She took part in a Zoom videoconference interview this morning to give an update on how she is feeling and share some of her other thoughts after getting the first of two shots last Thursday.

“Right afterwards, I felt normal. There was no pain .. I had no side effects; I had no allergic reaction,” she said. “And then, I think later on in the day, I felt a little arm soreness and that extended until the next day.”

She said she took some ibuprofen when she got home and again the next day.

“That was about it. Since then, then I’ve been fine,” she added.

Kilbury Taylor said the procedure is similar to the flu and other vaccinations, noting that the arm soreness “is to be expected when they stick a sharp needle in your arm.”

“Maybe it was a little bit more than what the flu shot was, but much less than, say, the tetanus shot,” she said.

Still, she said she had no restriction of motion and was able to do everything she needed to do.

According to the Food & Drug Administration, side effects of the vaccine typically begin within two days and are resolved a day or two after that. The most common consequences listed are tiredness, headache, muscle pain, chills, joint pain and fever.

On a personal note, Kilbury Taylor shared that her 83-year-old mother, who has some medical issues, lives with her.

“I am always worried about coming home and having to take care of her and possibly transmitting COVID to her unknowingly because there are some asymptomatic carrier people,” she said. “Also, myself, if you haven’t noticed, I’m a little older and I do have asthma. So, for me being working in an environment where I’m constantly confronted with patients that have COVID or suspected COVID – although I’m wearing PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) -- it only takes once to touch your face when you don’t realize you’re doing it.”

Kilbury Taylor said the vaccine provides hope of ending the pandemic and help “to reduce this so we can get back to somewhat normal lives.”

“I am very hopeful that this can help us take care of our patients better, with more confidence. I hope that it will reduce transmission, and I hope, most importantly, is to reduce the severity,” she said. “Some of these people get very, very sick, and it may not prevent getting infected but it may – as the flu shot does – decrease the severity of the illness if you do get sick.”

She said she is scheduled to get the second of the two doses on Jan. 4. The two doses combined reportedly are 94- to 95-percent effective.

She also encourages people to not believe everything they read or hear on the internet or on social media.

“Despite the fear you see on the internet, those aren’t reputable sources … It was very easy, very little discomfort,” she said. “I’m excited. It’s something you can do for your family and the community …”

Kilbury Taylor said the vaccine gives her some “reassurance” that eventually she will have some protection against the virus.

“It’s not instantaneous. It takes a few weeks to build your immunity and get the booster shot. We, of course, will continue to use the PPE and wear our gowns and our masks and our shields, our gloves – and wash in and out – but it’s a sense of hope that eventually these restrictions will be relaxed,” she said.

Other doctors and medical professionals are ready and willing to get the vaccine, she said.

“They can’t wait to get the vaccine, and they’re worried. 'Are they going to run out before I get mine?’ is the biggest concern of the physicians.”

Photo courtesy of Rochester Regional Health.

December 22, 2020 - 12:11pm

As the Genesee County Police Reform and Reinvention Collaborative checks off the items it needs to cover per Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Executive Order 203 on community policing, Sheriff William Sheron is taking it a step further by adding increased community input to the list.

Sheron addressed three more topics mandated in the executive order during Monday night’s Zoom videoconference meeting – hot spot policing, focused deterrence and crime prevention through environmental design – but also spoke at length about his department’s need to connect with the public.

“One of the things that needs to come out of this project is to develop a program to meet on a regular basis with the citizens of our county to identify their concerns about criminal activity,” Sheron said.

During the 40-minute meeting, the sheriff outlined several areas that could be improved by regular communication with government and civic leaders as well as residents.

  • Annual Crime Statistics Report

Sheron said the plan is to put out a report within the next few months for 2020, detailing the types of crimes by town.

“I think it is very important that we get that out there so the citizens have a clear understanding of what the community is like, what kind of crimes that we are investigating. It’s transparency and I hope to resurrect that for 2020.”

  • Regular Town Hall Meetings

Sheron said he looks to meet with community leaders and citizens to find what areas the community would like officers to focus on.

“We don’t formally hold meetings, but again that is an area of improvement. Typically, (we connect through) phone calls, emails, posting on our Facebook page or web page.”

  • Speaking at Town & Village Board Meetings

Sheron said he hopes to contact town and village boards to have a spot on their meeting agendas to let them know what activities that are going on in their communities and to get some feedback and suggestions.

“That is something that I would include in the report (to the state by April 1) as that’s an area where we can improve,” he noted.

  • Promoting the Tipline ((585) 343-3020) and a Webpage Link for Suggestions

The sheriff said the department receives calls on a regular basis about drug activity and other crimes, but agreed that it needs to be reinforced through public service announcements and other initiatives.

He also said that prior to the next committee meeting on Jan. 4, a link will be added to the Genesee County Sheriff’s Department website that citizens may utilize to submit comments, suggestions, complaints, etc., directly to the agency.

“I think that’s a great idea,” he said. “(Now, we really don’t have an area for suggestions and complaints. We will have a link on there for citizens to ask questions and provide information – good, bad and indifferent – and then we can follow up on that.”

HOT SPOT POLICING

Sheron defined hot spot policing as identifying and analyzing specific crime problems and locations and targeting resources toward solving those problems.

“We’re a little bit different in that we cover mostly a rural area opposed to an urban area, so our hot spot policing usually gets developed from citizen complaints – many to do with drug activity, a lot of vehicle and traffic complaints, or that we may be seeing an increase of burglaries or so forth,” he said.

Tools used in this regard, he said, including the Genesee County Drug Task Force (in conjunction with the other county police agencies), confidential informants, the City of Batavia Neighborhood and Enforcement Team, Police Traffic Safety grants, STOP-DWI, Monroe Crime Analysis Center and dedicated patrols in areas of potentially high drug, theft and traffic activity.

“We also have a patrol assigned to a 'hot spot' which is the core detail – Veterans Memorial (Drive) and that area with all the big box stores … where there is tremendous amount of traffic and considerable amount of theft in that area,” he offered.

“Again, this is much different than what you would see in an urban area like Rochester or Buffalo, where they have concentrations on violent crimes, shootings. We don’t have that in this area, thank God, but we do have ‘hot spot’ policing for specific situations."

FOCUSED DETERRENCE

Focused deterrence is a crime-reduction strategy, which aims to deter crime by increasing the swiftness, severity and certainty of punishment, usually directed at a specific crime problem such as gun violence, and primarily administered through prosecution and the courts, Sheron said.

Initiatives utilized in this area include KOPER Patrol, officers assigned to specific areas of suspected criminal activity; cooperation with the district attorney’s office, and the Genesee County Drug Task Force.

“Over the years, county court judges have been harsh with their punishment -- very stern with their sentences – and it sends a message clearly to those individuals that are coming in from outside this area to deal drugs in our communities,” he said.

CRIME PREVENTION/ENVIRONMENTAL DESIGN

The sheriff explained that attention to environmental design can help to increase the probability that an offender will be caught. Studies show that increased probability of capture tends to deter the commission of crime.

Examples of crime prevention through environmental design would be better lighting in crime-prone areas, conspicuous placement of security cameras with attendant conspicuous signage, elimination of shrubbery where it could serve as a hiding place for an attacker, etc.

In Genesee County, the Sheriff’s Office works with businesses, schools and individuals on crime prevention and personal safety issues; employs Civilian Response to Active Shooter Training, Neighborhood Watch, school resource officers, information about scams against the public, compliance checks at establishments that sell or serve alcohol and responsible server training.

He mentioned that cooperation among all law enforcement agencies in Genesee County goes a long way in the success of these programs.

“We do have a tremendous sharing of information and cooperation between the city and county,” Sheron said. “Genesee County as a whole … I don’t know if I’ve ever seen the cooperation as good as it is now.”

December 22, 2020 - 11:13am
posted by Press Release in Chris Jacobs, NY-27, news, notify, covid-19, coronavirus.

Press release:

Congressman Chris Jacobs (NY-27) helped pass a targeted, bipartisan COVID-19 relief package today in the House of Representatives.

“After months of deliberation, countless calls for targeted aid from my Republican colleagues and me, and hours of hard work, we have finally passed a bipartisan COVID-19 relief package through the House of Representatives,” Jacobs said. “This relief has been long overdue, and I am disappointed in the last-minute, rushed process that got us here. But I am glad this necessary aid is finally making its way to the people of NY-27.”

“Notably, this relief includes key provisions I strongly advocated for the past few months, including more small business relief through the successful Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and tax-deductibility for PPP loan-covered expenses. For months, $138 billion in appropriated funding has sat waiting to be used.

"Now, that money and more will be available to millions of small businesses and employees. This aid comes at a critical time when New York small businesses are facing new restrictions and arbitrary shutdowns. We are also tackling key priorities like funding for the safe reopening of our schools, direct assistance to families in need, supporting farmers, and ensuring Americans receive safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines.”

The bipartisan COVID-19 Package includes important priorities:

  • $284 billion to extend the Paycheck Protection Program and allow for both first and second-time borrowers to receive loans.
  • $15 billion in aid for entertainment venues, movie theaters, zoos, and museums.
  • Makes Paycheck Protection Program loan-covered expenses tax-deductible.
  • $48 billion for the purchase and distribution of vaccines and state testing assistance.
  • $600 stimulus checks for both adults and dependents.
  • $300 per week in supplemental unemployment benefits.
  • $92 billion to support the safe re-opening and operating of universities, schools, and childcare centers.
  • $7 billion for high-speed internet development, including $300 million in rural broadband funding.
  • $13 billion in funding to support American farmers, including funding for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP).

“Finally, although regrettably not included in this package – I remain committed to fighting for aid for local governments,” Jacobs said. “There is still work left to do in the new Congress, but this legislation is a major step toward supporting the American people and bipartisan cooperation.”

December 21, 2020 - 8:55pm
posted by Press Release in covid-19, coronavirus, news, notify.

Press release:

  • Genesee County received 159 new positive cases of COVID-19.
    • The new positive cases reside in Alabama, Alexander, Batavia, Bergen, Byron, Corfu, Darien, Elba, Le Roy, Oakfield, Pavilion and Stafford.
    • The individuals are in their 0-19s, 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s.
    • One hundred and 12 of the previous positive individuals have recovered and have been removed from the isolation list.
    • Fourteen of the positive individuals are hospitalized.
    • Twenty-eight of the new positive cases are residents at New York State Veterans Home at Batavia.
    • Two of the new positive cases are residents at the Le Roy Village Green.
    • We are saddened to report the loss of a resident of the Batavia VA Medical Center. The individual was over 65. We do not provide any further information to protect the privacy of the individual and their family. Our deepest condolences to the family and friends during this very difficult time.
  • Orleans County received 76 new positive cases of COVID-19.
    • The new positive cases reside in Albion, Barre, Carlton, Clarendon, Gaines, Kendall, Murray, Ridgeway, Shelby and Yates.
    • The individuals are in their 0-19s, 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s and 70s.
    • Eight of the individuals were on mandatory quarantine prior to testing positive.
    • Seventy-two of the previous positive individuals have recovered and have been removed from the isolation list.
    • Six of the current positive individuals are hospitalized.
    • One of the new positives is a resident of Orchard Rehabilitation and Nursing Center.
    • Two of the new positives are inmates of the Orleans Correctional Facility.
    • We are saddened to report the loss of an Orleans County community member. The individual was over 65. We do not provide any further information to protect the privacy of the individual and their family. Our deepest condolences to the family and friends during this very difficult time.

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