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March 8, 2019 - 2:31pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, batavia, Le Roy, bergen, pembroke, Alabama.

Axel E. Antongiorgi-Colon, 32, of Prospect Street, Lockport, is charged with second-degree criminal mischief. On Dec. 8 at 10 p.m. on Main Road in Pembroke, the defendant allegedly damaged a vehicle in the parking lot of his ex-girlfriend's residence. He is due in Pembroke Town Court on March 21 to answer the charge. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Investigator Christopher Parker, assisted by Deputy David Moore.

Cynthia H. Owens, 43, of Rochester Street, Bergen, was arrested on March 4 on three separate outstanding bench warrants out of Batavia City Court. She was also charged with three separate counts of third-degree bail jumping. Owens was arraigned in city court then jailed with bail set at $5,000 cash or bond on each warrant. She was due back in city court on March 7. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Nicole McGinnis.

Nicole M. Albrecht, 35, Pleasant Street, Le Roy, is charged with petit larceny. She was arrested for allegedly stealing a television from Target at 1:27 p.m. on Feb. 8. She is due in Batavia Town Court at 1 p.m. on March 14 to answer the charge. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Investigator Christopher Parker.

Douglas Mitchell Smith, 39, of Tara Drive, High Point, N.C., is charged with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle in the third degree. Smith was arrested on a bench warrant out of Town of Alabama Court after he failed to answer a summons to appear in court Jan. 31 for allegedly operating a motor vehicle while his privilege was suspended in New York. He was arraigned on March 7 and sentenced to time served. He is to reappear in Alabama Town Court on Oct. 3 to pay his fines and surcharges. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Michael Lute.

Zachary G. Garigen-Johnstone, 22, or Birch Circle, Rochester, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana, running a red light, unregistered motor vehicle and uninspected motor vehicle. Garigen-Johnstone was stopped at 12:44 a.m. on East Main Street in Batavia for a traffic violation. Upon further investigation, he was allegedly found to have a grinder containing marijuana and a marijuana pipe. He was processed roadside and issued three traffic tickets. He was released on an appearance ticket and is due in Batavia City Court to answer the unlawful marijuana charge on March 26. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Miah Stevens, assisted by Jason Davis.

Joshua Patrick Johnson, 21, of Redfield Parkway, Batavia, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and a window tint violation. He was arrested following a traffic stop at 9:42 p.m. March 2 on Lewiston Road in Batavia. He was released on an appearance ticket and in due in Town of Batavia Court on March 18. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Eric Meyer, assisted by Deputy Michael Lute.

March 8, 2019 - 11:15am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, news, batavia, notify.
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      Quinton Spinks
      (2010 photo)

Quinton L. Spinks, 33, thanked Judge Charles Zambito in County Court today for the state prison time he was about to receive on a drug-dealing conviction.

"I would like to say first, I apologize to my family and to the community for my actions," Spinks said. "I would also like to thank you for this time because I was out there hurting myself and hurting my family. I appreciate the time to rehabilitate myself and get my life back on the right path and back to doing the right thing."

Under the terms of a plea agreement reached in April, when Spinks admitted selling drugs to agents of the Local Drug Task Force, his sentence was capped at two years in state prison. Zambito said he was bound by that agreement and handed down that sentence.

This will be the second stint for Spinks in state prison for selling drugs in Genesee County. He was arrested in 2010 and committed in 2012 to two years in prison on a criminal possession of a controlled substance, 5th, conviction.

Spinks also faces federal charges in Maine, where he is named in an indictment along with several other individuals. In the federal indictment, he is named in only count one of the indictments, for conspiracy to distribute a mixture of heroin and cocaine.

As part of his sentence, Spinks must make a $200 restitution payment to Genesee County for payments he received from an agent of the Local Drug Task Force.

March 7, 2019 - 1:57pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in GCEDC, news, notify, STAMP.

Since 2004, the Genesee Economic Development Center has assisted companies in adding 12.6 million square feet in commercial space in Genesee County, GCEDC CEO Steve Hyde told the Ways and Means Committee during an annual department review Wednesday.

That's a 37-percent increase in commercial space in the county, Hyde said.

There are 30 companies operating in the seven industrial parks developed by GCEDC.

The big park with the biggest vacant area, of course, is the 1,200-acre Science and Technology Advanced Manufacturing Park or STAMP project in Alabama.

The project lost a chance to land direct-wafer solar pioneer 1366 Technologies a year ago and has yet to land a new company for the park but Hyde said there is one big project pending that may yet sign and another in early-stage discussions.

The state has already invested about $10.9 in STAMP for initial infrastructure development. Those funds were approved in the 2014 state budget but released until 1366 signed on as the site's first tenant. The infrastructure work was started before 1366 withdrew from the project because of its inability to reach terms with the Department of Energy on a loan guarantee. Last week, 1366 announced the anticipated opening of its production facility in Malaysia.

At Wednesday's meeting, Hyde announced that the Empire State Development has just authorized another $8 million for major infrastructure -- sewer and water -- for STAMP. The upgrades in infrastructure plans are necessary, Hyde said, because the companies exploring the site now are going to need more infrastructure capacity. 

The state is also providing another $2 million grant for the Corfu/Pembroke sewer project.

During Wednesday's meeting, Hyde expressed some concern about the future of the economy, with some economists warning that tariffs and the trade war with China is taking its toll on growth both here and aboard.

GCEDC is forecasting IDA-backed projects in 2019 will create only 90 new jobs. That's a conservative number because companies have become more conservative in their job creation estimates for incentive-backed expansions because of clawback provisions initiated in state law a couple of years ago.

A clawback is a requirement for a company to return some incentive money if they fail to meet job creation guarantees.

"Companies are unwilling to be as aggressive in forecasted jobs so they tend to under-promise and over deliver," Hyde said.

A clawback is at the local IDA's discretion and Hyde said the GCEDC's board is hesitant to initiate a clawback if there is a reason outside of a company's control for not reaching job projection numbers, such as a slowing economy.

"We don't like to kick a company when it's down," Hyde said. 

He said the board has canceled incentives when companies have failed to perform but only when there is a sound reason to believe the company has failed at its obligations absent of external business cycle factors.

"That's not anything we're afraid to do," Hyde said.

Much of what Hyde presented will be part of GCEDC's annual meeting at 11:30 a.m., tomorrow, at Batavia Downs.

March 7, 2019 - 11:20am
posted by Howard B. Owens in prevailing wage, economic development, GCEDC, news, notify.

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Downstate labor unions are pushing legislation that would require private-sector construction projects that receive even $1 of government assistance to pay "prevailing wage."

If this law goes into effect, it will kill economic development in Upstate, GCEDC CEO Steve Hyde told the Ways and Means Committee on Wednesday.

"This is just over the top," Hyde said. "You can go back in history across the U.S. and see that when government tries to mandate wages and tries to tinker with the mechanisms of free market systems, you get bad results."

Prevailing wage is the amount of compensation, including benefits, the Department of Labor sets for workers employed by companies doing projects for government agencies.

Supporters of the proposed change in the law equate prevailing wage with market-rate wages but that's just factually incorrect, Hyde said. A prevailing wage requirement would drive up the cost of projects backed by an IDA (Industrial Development Agency) by 25 to 30 percent.

That will drive business out of the state, Hyde said.

For small companies looking to expand, it will make projects financially unfeasible and for companies looking to locate new plants to New York, it will make the state even less competitive.

The IDAs in Ulster County and Yonkers have previously tried imposing similar requirements on projects they helped finance and in both cases, the IDAs had to back off the prevailing wage requirement because economic development came to a grinding halt in those jurisdictions.

"This is really a 'turn the lights out' for economic development if this were to happen in New York State," Hyde said.

With less development, Hyde said, there will be fewer jobs and the fallout would hurt huge sectors of New York's economy, from construction to architects and engineers.

While the major push for the bill is coming from Downstate labor unions, Hyde said he hasn't heard what position, if any, labor unions in Western New York are taking. One of the bill's cosponsors is from Rochester, Assemblyman Harry Bronson.

A similar bill has previously passed the State Assembly but died in the then-Republican-controlled State Senate. Now that Democrats control the Senate, the bill's defeat is far less certain.

Hyde asked members of the Legislature to write to state representatives expressing their opposition to the bill in the hope that it could be defeated.

Photo: Jim Krencik, marketing and communications director for GCEDC, and Steve Hyde, CEO.

March 6, 2019 - 3:40pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in GO ART!, news, arts, notify, batavia.

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Members of Human Services Committee expressed satisfaction with the job Gregory Hallock has done as director of GO ART! since being appointed to the job in July 2017.

Since Hallock was promoted, he's instituted a number of new and innovative programs, expanded gallery shows, acquired a liquor license for beer and wine sales at Seymore Place, instituted profitable fundraisers, and generally raised the profile of GO ART! in the community.

"We've had a new philosophy," Hallock said. "In the past, the philosophy was just to stay alive so they stopped doing some things to save money. Now we do things so people see us doing things and then they support what we're doing."

In each of the past year, GO ART! has taken in more money than it has spent but because of depreciation on Seymore Place, the organization officially lost money, at least until 2018, when GO ART! was in the black by $40,000.

All of the organization's debts, except for a mortgage on Seymore Place, taken out for building maintenance, have been paid off.

One of the most successful fundraisers for GO ART! over the past year was the celebrity bartender challenge. Various prominent community members competed as celebrity bartenders with tips going to GO ART! as donations. The series of nights with celebrity bartenders bought in $13,000.

Hallock said he wants to continue the concept by bringing in a celebrity bartender every Thursday. One of the benefits is the guest bartenders invite a bunch of their friends. 

Nearly 40 percent of the people who attended these events last year had never been to GO ART! before, Hallock said, and the events also helped attract a younger audience, which has been hard for GO ART! to reach in recent years.

The director is continuing to pursue big plans. He wants to get an elevator installed in the building and wants to expand the art garden behind the building. He is seeking grants for both projects.

"You've done an excellent job to bring exposure to GO ART! and the building," said Andrew Young, chairman of the committee. "It's heads and shoulders above what we've seen in recent years. I see and hear about GO ART! activities everywhere and it seems to be paying dividends for you."

Hallock said the credit doesn't belong to just him alone.

"We have an awesome board and staff," Hallock said. "I'm the only one with a degree but everyone is passionate about it."

March 5, 2019 - 5:23pm

From Thomas Hancock, on behalf of Batavia High School Class of '86:

On Aug. 31st, Michael A. Tenebruso, 50, succumbed to the complications of battling cancer for the better part of six years.

During those six years, Mike had many setbacks but continued his courageous and valiant fight by focusing on his many victories.

Victories such as: putting his cancer in remission for a time; being hired as a principal at Hillary Park Academy within the Buffalo Public Schools; being asked to be the guest speaker for the Pink Hatters; and most importantly, raising his three beautiful children Nick, Anna and Nate.

The positivity that he invoked in others was awe-inspiring. Not only was he a role model to his family and friends, but to the thousands of young lives that he impacted through his educational leadership.

It is with that in mind, the members of the Batavia High School Class of 1986 want to honor Mike's memory with an ongoing educational scholarship.

Over the last six years, through multiple fund-raising efforts and events, people have come to aid Mike and his family through his ongoing battle against cancer.

The love and support present at each of the events was overwhelming, but of course well placed, because it was for Mike.

For those of us who were blessed enough to know Mike, we knew him for the following traits: positivity, tolerance, belief in others, friendship, passion, and his love for his fellow man.

Cancer was not a trait that I ever thought of when I thought of Mike. Granted, that insidious disease eventually took him from us, but it never defined him.

"The challenge and benefit of physical, mental and emotional growth isn't realized when you're knocked down. It comes when you decide, beyond all obstacles, beyond all naysayers, and beyond all pain to rise up and say 'AGAIN!' " -- Michael Tenebruso

Going forward we would like to celebrate Mike’s passion for education and life through a memorial scholarship in his name.

To do that, we are asking for your support.

I know we are just one of the many organizations and fundraisers that you support, but we would appreciate your donation to the March 30, 2019 Michael A. Tenebruso Scholarship bowling event. Currently it is a one-time event, but the goal is to make it an annual event until the scholarship can be self-funded.

About the Michael A. Tenebruso Scholarship bowling event hosted by BHS Class of 1986:

  • When and Where: Saturday, March 30 starting at 2 p.m. at T.F. Brown's Bowling Lanes (Registration starts shortly after 1 p.m.);
  • Who benefits: BHS Class of 1986 Michael A. Tenebruso Memorial Award;
  • Cost: $25 per bowler -- Teams of five, adults only, No Tap Tourny;
  • To sign up: email [email protected] or [email protected];
  • What's included in registration: Three games of bowling (nine pins=strike) and shoes, pay cash prize to top three places for both men and women ($150/$100/$75);
  • What will be available to buy: Your own food and drinks, Chinese auction chances, special items, Strike Pot, 50/50, gift certificates, additional raffles.

Attention Business Sponsors*:

  • Business sponsors of $250 or more get their name at the end of a lane on a 3' X 5' sign and registration for five bowlers.
  • Business sponsors of $150 to $249 get their name above a lane on 2' X 2' sign.
  • Business sponsors of $100 to $149 get their name above a lane on 1 1/2 ft. by 1 1/2 ft. sign.
  • Business sponsors of $50 to $99 get their name on an 8 1/2 inch by 11 inch sign.

*In addition, please email a digital copy of your company’s logo to Tom Hancock at:  [email protected]

Questions? Call Tom Hancock at (814) 758-9220.
 
DEADLINE -- no later than Friday MARCH 15th. Please make all checks out to the Batavia High School Class of 1986 (Memo: MAT Bowling Event) and send to: Ms. Rachel Berardini, 228 Grandview Terrace, Batavia, NY 14020.
 
About the BHS Class of 1986 Michael A. Tenebruso Memorial Award
 
Type of scholarship/award: One-time award for payout over eight semesters.
 
Sponsor name, contact(s), address, email, phone number:
  1. BHS Class of 1986, Rachel Berardini, (585) 409-4838  email: [email protected]
  2. BHS Class of 1986, Thomas Hancock, [email protected]  /  phone (814) 758-9220

Recipient is chosen by: High School Scholarship Committee.

Amount of Award: To Be Announced.

Criteria:

  • Student pursuing an education at SUNY College at Brockport;
  • High school GPA of 85 or better;
  • Must possess positivity, tolerance of others, belief in others, passion & love to mankind just as Mike did;
  • An essay describing the candidate's qualifications for this award is required.

Other information:

  • This award is to be used for non-tuition-related expenses (ie: books);
  • The recipient will receive the award each semester he/she remains in the education field during undergraduate studies (to a maximum of eight semesters);
  • The recipient must submit to the Batavia City School District Foundation Inc.** an unofficial transcript, copy of syllabus listing textbooks/required materials and receipts;
  • The recipient's name will be shared with other members of the BHS Class of 1986;
  • For reading and/or presenting the award to the recipient, first preference will be given to Mike's children and/or parents.

**The BCSDF is a nonprofit organization under Internal Revenue Code Section 501(c)(3). Your donation may be tax deductible. For more information about BCSDF click here.

March 5, 2019 - 5:20pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in health department, news, notify.

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New York's proposed budget for the coming fiscal year includes several public health policy changes that health officials support, Paul Pettit, director of Health Services for Genesee County, told the Human Services Committee during a department review Monday.

But the changes don't necessarily come with flexible or increased funding to help pay for the programs.

This could create new unfunded mandates for the county.

Providers for the Early Intervention Program haven't received a raise in 20 years and the governor's budget includes a 5-percent increase in the reimbursement rate but the burden for the additional expense will fall largely on the county.

"Providers have been loaded with additional administrative responsibility without additional resources and funding resulting in a continued exodus of providers, creating waiting lists, especially in rural areas like Genesee County," Pettit said.

The state is also looking at changes in residential lead monitoring programs. Currently, pediatricians able to conduct blood test for lead poisoning rates -- though not all pediatricians provide this service and not all parents take advantage of the service -- and those results are reported to a state database. County officials are then able to identify children with higher levels of lead in their system. A five-part level leads to a health worker contacting the family to provide education and information on best practices to avoid lead poisoning.  

Action to remediate exposure to lead isn't required for the property owner -- whether the family is renting or owns the home -- unless a level of 15 mg/dL is detected.  

The state is proposing lowering the rate -- thereby prompting more costly intervention -- to 5 mg/dL. This would mean an additional 50 to 60 inspections each year for the county with no additional funds from the state to cover the costs.

The Preschool Supportive Health Program remains the department's most expensive locally supported program, Pettit said. The state has been slow to provide mandate relief. There is a shortage of providers and reimbursement rates set by the state are not competitive. 

"This shortage creates a waiting list for children who have been identified as needing our providers," Pettit said.

There needs to be changes in the program, Pettit said.

The state's county health directors continue to work with the governor's office on these and other issues, Pettit said, in an attempt to bridge the gap between mandates and funding.

March 5, 2019 - 4:04pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, Grand Jury, alexander, batavia, Le Roy.

Ranelle E. Reuben is accused of driving while intoxicated, a Class D felony. It is alleged that on Dec. 18 she drove a 2010 Dodge on Route 5, Route 98 and Batavia-Elba Townline Road while intoxicated. In count two, she is accused of aggravated DWI, per se, for having a BAC of .18 percent or more at the time. In count three, she is accused of aggravated unlicensed operation in the first degree, a Class E felony, for driving while her driver's license was suspended or revoked and while she was intoxicated. In count four, she is again accused of aggravated unlicensed operation -- for driving without a license while knowing it was withdrawn because she refused to submit to a chemical test, and while she was under the influence of alcohol or a drug. In count five, the defendant is accused of circumvention of an interlock device for driving a vehicle which was not equipped with a court-ordered ignition interlock device. In count six, Reuben is accused of following too closely in violation of vehicle and traffic law. It is alleged in count six that Reuben followed another vehicle more closely than was reasonable and prudent, in regard to speed, traffic and roadway conditions. In Special Information filed by the District Attorney, Reuben is accused of having been convicted of DWI as a Class E felony on Dec. 20 2012 in Genesee County Court. That conviction forms the basis for the suspension or revocation referred to in count three of the current indictment; and she knew or had reason to know about the 2012 conviction and the subsequent loss of her driver's license.

Rodney S. Schwartz is indicted for the crime of driving while intoxicated, as a Class E felony. It is alleged that on Nov. 25 in the Town of Alexander that Schwartz drove a 2014 Ford on Route 20 while intoxicated. In count two, he is accused of aggravated unlicensed operation in the first degree, also a Class E felony, for driving that day without a driver's license, which had been suspended or revoked. In count three, Schwartz is accused of second-degree obstruction of governmental administration, a Class A misdemeanor. It is alleged in count three that he intentionally obstructed, impaired or perverted the administration of law or other governmental function by means of intimidation, physical force or interference, or by any independently unlawful act. In Special Information filed by the District Attorney, Schwartz is accused of having been convicted of DWI, as a Class E felony, on April 16, 2010 in Supreme Court, City of Buffalo, Erie County and that conviction forms the basis of the suspension or revocation referenced in the current indictment.

Trisha A. Park is indicted for the crime of aggravated driving while intoxicated, as a Class E felony. It is alleged that on Nov. 30 in the Town of Le Roy that Park drove a 2012 Chevrolet on Wolcott Street while her ability to do so was impaired by the use of a drug and while a child 15 years of age or less was a passenger. In count two, she is accused of driving while ability impaired by drugs, as a misdemeanor. In count three, she is accused of endangering the welfare of a child by knowingly acting in a manner likely to be injurious to the physical, mental or moral welfare of a child less than 17 years old.

March 4, 2019 - 2:47pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, corfu, batavia, Le Roy.

Brian Wilson, 30, no address noted, of Corfu, was arrested on two counts of reckless endangerment after deputies say he was driving in wintry conditions without his headlights on. Wayne County Sheriff's deputies said he drove without headlights in two separate incidents on Route 104 and Lake Avenue in Williamson early this morning in the predawn hours (March 4). Deputies allege he was driving at a high rate of speed on Lake Avenue. Both of those incidents, deputies say, took place before sunrise and during snowy weather conditions, with roads covered in snow. Wilson was put in Wayne County Jail on $250 cash or $500 bond.

Armando M. Teruel, 35, of Black Spruce Court, Amherst, is charged with second-degree contempt. He was arrested on Feb. 25 on a Batavia City Court warrant. He is accused of violating a stay away order of protection that was issued on May 13 by contacting the protected party. He was released on his own recognizance. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Jason Ivison.

Spencer Alan Luthart, 22, of Mill Street, Middleport, is charged with: driving while intoxicated -- first offense; DWI with a BAC of .08 percent or more; unlawful possession of marijuana; operating a motor vehicle without an inspection certificate. Luthart was arrested at 1:32 a.m. on March 3 on Wolcott Street in Le Roy after he was stopped for alleged traffic and vehicle violations. He was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Le Roy Town Court on April 11. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Andrew Mullen, assisted by Deputy Jenna Ferrando.

Aiken R. Ahdeosun, 20, of Ellicott Avenue, Batavia, was arrested March 1 by Batavia police after he was spotted walking on Thorpe Street. He had a bench warrant out of Batavia City Court for failure to appear on a charge of petit larceny that occurred at 1:30 p.m. on Jan. 18 at the M&T Express Mart at 100 W. Main St. in Batavia. He was also charged with bail jumping back in September for failing to appear in court on another matter in August. After his arraignment, he was jailed in lieu of $5,000 cash or $10,000 bond. He was due to return to city court today (March 4). The cases were handled by Batavia Police Officer Christopher Lindsay, assisted by Officer Stephen Quider.

Joseph W. Freeman, 34, no address provided, is charged with petit larceny. He was arrested at 10:27 a.m. on Feb. 27 at Tops Market in Batavia after allegedly shoplifting. He was arraigned in Batavia City Court and found to have a bench warrant issued Jan. 31 for failure to appear concerning an unspecified incident. After arraignment, he was jailed in lieu of bail and is due in city court on Tuesday (March 5). The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Stephen Cronmiller, assisted by Officer Frank Klimjack.

March 3, 2019 - 4:26pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Chamber Awards, chamber of commerce, news, notify.

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It was a celebratory evening at the Quality Inn and Suites on Saturday as the Chamber of Commerce honored local businesses and individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the community. 

For more on each award winner, click on the story links below:

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Dan Fischer, emcee.

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Jay Gsell, emcee, with the "Genesee Is Great Already" (GIGA) hat that he introduced at the event and gave to each honoree.

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Tom Turnbull, president of the Chamber of Commerce.

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Bob Stocking and Penny Arnold.

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Larry Webster and Mike Davis representing Upstate Niagara Cooperative.

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The Harrower family, Genesee Lumber.

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Jim McMullen and Sue Schuler representing the Rotary Club of Batavia.

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Videos, produced by Paul Figlow, were used to introduce each award winner.

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Bob Stocking's hat.

March 3, 2019 - 3:08pm

Brian Carl Falk, 36, of 12 Irving Parkway, Oakfield, is charged with second-degree criminal tampering. On Feb. 26, the Genesee County Sheriff's Office was contacted by the Village of Oakfield Department of Public Works for the report of a larceny. It was alleged that a resident in the village unlawfully made a connection with the main water line to his residence after being advised that the connection was terminated. Following an investigation, it is alleged that Falk, without having any right to do so, nor any reasonable ground to believe he had such right, made a connection with the Village of Oakfield's water line. He was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Town of Oakfield Court at 6 p.m. on Monday, March 4, to answer the charge. The case was investigated by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Ryan DeLong.

Ronald G. Besemer-McLean, 37, of Portland Parkway, Rochester, was arrested on Saturday, March 2, by the Le Roy Police Department and charged with: one count of aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle in the first degree, a Class E felony; one count of tampering with physical evidence, a Class E felony; and one count of resisting arrest, a class A misdemeanor. On Saturday at approximately 8:12 a.m. the on-duty patrol was requested to respond to the area of Route 19 and the onramp to the Thruway entrance for the report of a subject passed out at the wheel of a vehicle in that area. Upon arrival, the officer found Besemer-McLean asleep in the driver’s seat. During the investigation, it is alleged that he drove there after leaving an unknown location in Greece. Besemer-McLean has a revoked NYS driver’s license. When attempting execute the arrest, Besemer-McLean allegely failed to comply with the officer’s orders and a struggle ensued. Besemer-McLean allegedly took an item that was evidence pertaining to the investigation, placed it in his mouth and swallowed it. A portion of the investigation was conducted by members of the Genesee County Sheriff’s Officer and NYS Police also assisted. Additional charges are pending. After arraignment in Le Roy Town Court, Besemer-McLean was jailed in lieu of $15,000 bail. He is to return to the Le Roy Town Court on March 5 to answer to the charges. The report says: "The Le Roy Police Department would like to say a special thank you to the citizens that took the time to stop and assist the officer."

Philip Joseph Severino, 42, of Pratt Road, Pembroke, is charged with second-degree assault and endangering the welfare of a child less than 17 years old. Severino was arrested March 1 after an investigation into a domestic incident involving an assault victim and two children that occurred at 4:30 p.m. on Feb. 20 on Pratt Road in Pembroke. After his arraignment in Town of Batavia Court, the defendant was jailed in lieu of $2,000 cash or $4,000 bond. He is due Town of Pembroke Court on March 12. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Michael Lute, assisted by Deputy Mathew Clor.

Lawrence John Isaac, 66, of Brant Reservation Road, Irving, is charged with second-degree harassment -- physical contact. Following an incident that occurred on Bloomingdale Road on the Tonawanda Indian Reservation on Feb. 16, Isaac was arrested on Feb. 28. It is alleged that he shoved a person while at the Community Center. He was arraigned in Town of Alabama Court and is due to return there on March 7. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Jeremy McClellan.

Eric J. Bratcher, 30, of Fargo Road, Stafford, was arrested on March 1, by the Le Roy Police Department and charged with one count of endangering the welfare of a child, a Class A misdemeanor, and one count of harassment in the second degree, a violation. The Le Roy Police Department investigated a complaint alleging that Bratcher made threats to harm another individual, at the time the incident occurred Bratcher was holding an 18-month-old child. After a brief investigation, Bratcher was located and taken into custody without incident. Bratcher was arraigned in the Le Roy Town and released under supervision of Genesee Justice. He is to return to the Le Roy Town Court on March 14 to answer to the charges.

Jessica R. Sylvester, 26, of Myrtle Street, Le Roy, was arrested on Feb. 28 by the Le Roy Police Department and charged with three counts of criminal contempt in the second degree, a Class A misdemeanor. The Le Roy Police Department investigated a complaint alleging that on three occasions Sylvester violated a court order restricting her contact with the victim. Sylvester was arraigned in the Le Roy Town Court and released under supervision of Genesee Justice. She is to return to the Le Roy Town Court on March 14 to answer to the charges.

Derrick E. Pickard, 59, of Genesee Street, Le Roy, was arrested on March 1 by the Le Roy Police Department and charged with: one count of driving while impaired by drugs, a misdemeanor; one count of consumption of alcohol in a motor vehicle, a violation; and one count of failure to keep right, a violation. On March 1 at about 11:24 a.m. the Le Roy Police Department was notified by an off-duty patrol that they had almost been struck head on and had the operator of the vehicle detained. It is alleged that Pickard failed to maintain his lane while operating his motor vehicle, almost causing an accident. Following a brief investigation, it was determined that Pickard was allegedly operating the motor vehicle under the influence of drugs. He was taken into custody without incident. He was issued several tickets and turned over to a family member. Pickard is to appear in the Le Roy Town Court on March 14 to answer the charges.

Jason Jonathan Forte, 47, of Trelawne Drive, Irondequiot, is charged with: driving while intoxicated with a BAC of .08 percent or more; DWI; and failure to yield the right of way when entering the roadway. Forte was arrested following the investigation of a motor-vehicle accident which occurred at 7:48 p.m. on Feb. 28 on West Main Street Road in Batavia. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy James Stack, assisted by Deputy Mathew Clor.

Elizabeth Mary Johnson, 39, of Batavia, no address noted, is charged with: driving while intoxicated with a BAC of .08 percent or more and drinking alcohol in a motor vehicle on a highway. Johnson was arrested at 1:24 a.m. on March 2 on Indian Falls Road in Pembroke after she was allegedly found by law enforcement while she was asleep in a motor vehicle with its engine still running. Johnson is due in Town of Pembroke Court on March 21 to answer the charges. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Austin Heberlein.

March 2, 2019 - 8:11pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, business, batavia, notify, upstate niagara, ag park.

An executive with Upstate Niagara Cooperative Inc. announced that it has signed a purchase agreement to buy the Alpina Foods plant in Batavia.

Larry Webster, chief executive officer of Upstate Niagara, broke the news at tonight's Genesee County Chamber of Commerce awards ceremony at Quality Inn & Suites in Batavia.

The Alpina plant is located in the Genesee Valley Agri-business park at 5140 Ag Park Drive West. The plant operated by the yogurt maker closed in January.

UPDATE 10:20 p.m. (by Howard): After tonight's Chamber awards, Webster said Upstate's immediate plans for the former Alpina plant aren't settled but that acquiring an ultramodern dairy-processing facility in a strong milk shed where Upstate has been looking to expand was too good of an opportunity to pass up.

"The way I termed it, it's the farm next door," Webster said. "When it came up for sale we were looking to expand and so it just kind all worked out well."

The plant represents a $60 million investment by Alpina, a Colombia-based company that attempted to crack the U.S. greek-yogurt market by opening the plant in the Genesee Valley Ag-Business Park five years ago. Webster said Upstate will pay somewhere in the neighborhood of the $20 million to $25 million asking price on the plant but said he wasn't ready to disclose the purchase price.

"We just knew that it was an opportunity to pick up a production-ready plant in our area and so we did," Webster said. "We're not 100-percent sure exactly what we're going to do there yet."

The plant will be filled, Webster said and he expects that the plant is ready to employ 40 to 60 people, and more if the plant expands. Part of what attracted Upstate to the property is that while the plant sits on a 10-acre parcel, there is a 10-acre parcel next to it that is vacant but is included with the purchase.

"That makes room for expansion, which we were interested in," Webster said. "It's in the right place at the right time and ready to go. We've got some customers that we think could fit in there quite well and we could utilize it fairly quickly."

Frequently, Upstate operates on a co-packing basis with clients who need a production facility for their dairy-product brands. Webster indicated he expects that's how the former Alpina plant will be used.

The purchase offer was signed Thursday and is contingent on a due-diligence process but Webster didn't expect any issues to arise before the acquisition is final.

The project will likely also be eligible for an incentive package from the Genesee County Economic Development Center, which also provided more than $700,000 to Alpina to build and expand the plant, according to a source who was at Saturday's dinner. The scope and nature of the incentive package has not yet been settled on. 

When Massachusetts-based HP Hood bought the former Muller Quaker plant, which is also in the ag park, it also negotiated an updated tax-abatement package with GCEDC.

Webster said he doesn't expect Upstate will follow the example of Dairy Farmers of America, which purchased the former Muller Quaker plant across the street and flipped it to HP Hood a year later without ever producing any product at the plant.

"That's not in our plans at all," Webster said. "We bought it for our use and our history is just that. We've been operating plants for quite awhile and didn't buy it because we thought it was cheap and we could turn around and resell it or anything like that. We felt we paid a fair price for it but it's for our use."

February 27, 2019 - 2:35pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, batavia, Stafford.

Michael L. Jackson, 38, no address provided, was charged at 10:45 a.m. on Dec. 3 with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle in the second degree and unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle. He was arrested at or near the JCPenney store in Batavia City Centre, arraigned in Batavia City Court and released on his own recognizance. He was to appear in city court at 9 a.m. on Jan. 10 to answer the charge. Then at 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 18, he was arrested at the Sav-A-Lot grocery store on Ellicott Street in Batavia and charged with petit larceny. He was also to appear in city court at 9 a.m. on Jan. 10 to answer the second charge. When he failed to appear at the appointed time in city court to answer the charges, an arrest warrant(s) was issued for him. He was subsequently arrested on the warrant(s) by the Genesee County Sheriff's Office and turned over to Batavia police. After his arraignment at 4:47 p.m. on Feb. 25, he was jailed in lieu of an unspecified amount of bail and is due in city court Thursday (Feb. 28). The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Stephen Cronmiller, assisted by Officer Felicia DeGroot.

Othello Garwo, 19, of Halford Street, Rochester, is charged with: operating a motor vehicle while registration suspended; unlawful possession of marijuana; unlicensed operator; and driver's view obstructed. At 2:26 a.m. on Feb. 26, Sheriff's deputies conducted a traffic stop on Clinton Street Road in Stafford (Route 33) and Garwo was arrested on the charges. He was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Stafford Town Court on March 28. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Erik Andre, assisted by Deputy Andrew Mullen.

February 27, 2019 - 12:46pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news, notify.
leachdarylmug2019.jpg
       Daryl Leach

A robbery at the Speedway at Oak and Main in Batavia was reported at about 9:55 p.m., Tuesday.

Det. Eric Hill said Daryl Leach, 37, of State Street, Batavia, has been identified as the suspect and taken into custody.

Leach, who is currently on parole, made off with an undisclosed amount of cash.

The suspect was found at a location on Swamp Road and taken into custody with the assistance of NYS Parole and the Sheriff's Office.

It's believed Leach acted alone.

Nobody was hurt in the robbery.

In October 2003, Leach was sent to prison by a judge in Livingston County on a 12- to 15-year sentence on convictions for grand larceny, 4th, attempted robbery, 1st, attempted assault, 1st, and robbery, 3rd. He was released from prison in July with parole lasting into 2023. He also had an attempted robbery conviction in 1999.

February 26, 2019 - 4:09pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, crime, notify, batavia, bergen, alexander.

Brian Andrew Simpson II, 38, no permanent address, is charged with: promoting prison contraband in the first degree, which is a felony; criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree; criminal use of drug paraphernalia in the second degree; driving while ability impaired by drugs; unlawful possession of marijuana; and a window tint violation. At 11:04 a.m. on Feb. 12, Simpson was stopped on Ellicott Street in the City of Batavia following the alleged observation of a vehicle and traffic violation. After an investigation, the defendant was allegedly found to be driving while impaired by drugs. After Simpson's arrest, he was processed at the Genesee County Jail and allegedly found to possess drug paraphernalia and a white powdery substance identified as cocaine. Simpson was arraigned in Town of Batavia Court and jailed without bail. In the same incident, his passenger was charged with unlawful possession of marijuana: Walter S. Bennett, 29, no address noted, of Rochester, was issued an appearance ticket for City of Batavia Court. The case was investigated by Deputy Ryan DeLong, assisted by Deputy Lonnie Nati, and other members of the Genesee County Sheriff's Office, including Corrections officers.

Paul G. Avery, 41, of Indian Falls Road, Pembroke, is charged with: driving while intoxicated; aggravated DWI wwith a BAC of .18 percent or more; throwing trash on a highway; driving left of pavement marking; and failure to keep right on a highway with four lanes or more. Avery was arrested at 9:21 p.m. Feb. 23 on West Main Street Road in Batavia following a traffic stop. Avery is due in Batavia Town Court on March 21. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Mathew Clor, assisted by Dpeuty Lewis Henning.

Nathan S. Bowes, of Buffalo Street Road, Alexander, is charged with: driving while intoxicated; DWI with a BAC of .08 percent or more; and moving from lane unsafely. He was arrested at 6:41 p.m. on Feb. 23 following the investigation of a motor-vehicle accident in the Town of Alexander. He was released on an appearance ticket and is due in Alexander Town Court on March 19. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Mathew Clor, assisted by Deputy Travis DeMuth.

Joseph Dimitri Rivera, 36, of Cole Avenue, Gates, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana. Rivera was arrested on the charge at 4:30 p.m. Feb. 24 on Lake Avenue in Bergen following a traffic stop. He is due in Bergen Town Court on March 13. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy James Stack.

Kelly Anne Vanbortle, 32, of Parkwood Lane, Hilton, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana. It is alleged that she possessed a quantity of marijuana and a glass smoking pipe with burnt marijuana residue following a traffic stop at 5:14 p.m. Feb. 23 on Clinton Street Road, Bergen. She was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Bergen Town Court on March 13. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Jeremy McClellan.

February 25, 2019 - 3:28pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, batavia.

Phillip P. Heale, 40, of Linwood Avenue, Batavia, is charged with aggravated unlicensed operation in the second degree and inadequate or no stop lamps. Heale was arrested at 3:54 p.m. on Feb. 17 on Cedar Street in Batavia after he was allegedly observed driving a vehicle and he has a suspended driver's license. Additionally, he was ticketed regarding the stop lamps. He was arraigned in Batavia City Court and is due to return there at a later date. The  case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Stephen Quider.

Michael E. Weichman, 24, of Pratt Road, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny and criminal possession of a hypodermic instrument. Weichman was arrested at 12:30 p.m. on Feb. 23 at Tops Market in Batavia after he allegedly attempted to leave the store with a cart full of items which he did not pay for. He was also allegedly found in possession of a hypodermic instrument at the time of his arrest. He is due in Batavia City Court on Tuesday, Feb. 26. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Mitchell Cowen.

Brittany L. Bolton, 18, of Cedar Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. She was charged after a complaint of a larceny of a gold chain from a vehicle. The defendant turned herself in at Batavia Police Department headquarters and was processed. She was issued an appearance ticket for Batavia City Court and is due there Tuesday, Feb. 26. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Darryle Streeter.

February 24, 2019 - 5:11pm
posted by Billie Owens in weather, news, notify, genesee county.
From the National Weather Service in Buffalo:
 
Dangerous winds and flash freeze are forecast for late this afternoon and evening in Genesee County.
 
Very strong and damaging winds will continue late this afternoon and early this evening from the Lake Erie shore northeastward across the Niagara Frontier and Genesee Valley, including the Buffalo and Rochester areas. Peak wind gusts will reach 75 mph at times. 

Winds of this magnitude will result in extensive damage to trees and power lines, widespread power outages, and property damage to roofs and siding.
 
Buildings which are under construction and older deteriorating buildings may experience significant damage or even collapse. 

This is a particularly dangerous situation!
 
If you must travel be prepared for extensive damage and downed power lines. Always assume power lines are live. Falling trees and power lines will create a very dangerous environment to be outside in, including in vehicles. Seek shelter in a substantial building until the strongest of the winds begin to subside. 

In addition to the very strong winds, temperatures will also fall below freezing as we progress through the late afternoon and early evening hours. This will result in the rapid freezing up of water on untreated roadways, leading to areas of ice that could make travel hazardous, particularly on bridges and overpasses.
 
If you must travel, be sure to slow down and exercise caution.
February 24, 2019 - 3:24pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, weather, power outage, genesee county, notify.

According to the National Grid Outage Map, which they update every 15 minutes, there are currently 1,018 Genesee County customers without power. They are still assessing damages.

A total of 26,948 customers are served here by the utility company.

To view the interactive map, click here.

UPDATE 4:03 p.m.: Checked the map and nothing has changed since we first posted it at 3:24 p.m.

UPDATE 5:16 p.m.: There's been an uptick in the number of Genesee County customers without power. National Grid reports 1,066 customers without power, up from 1,018 almost two hours ago.

February 24, 2019 - 2:35pm
posted by Billie Owens in weather, corfu, batavia, alexander, notify, news.

Unknown wires are down in the roadway at Colby Road and Genesee Street. Corfu Fire Department is responding.

******

A tree is down on wires, which are smoking, at 2679 Galloway Road, Batavia. East Pembroke Fire Department is responding. National Grid has been informed.

*****

UPDATE 2:38 p.m.: A broken tree branch is pulling wires from a house at 3104 Dodgeson Road, Alexander. Lines are in the roadway. The location is between Beaver and Seward roads. Alexander Fire Department is called.

UPDATE 2:42 p.m.: City of Batavia Fire Department is called for a tree and wires down at 66 Franklin St. between Davis Avenue and the dead end.

UPDATE 2:56 p.m.: A tree and wires are down, completely blocking the roadway, at 7116 Tripp Road, Byron. Byron and South Byron fire departments are called. National Grid crews are no longer on scene (after responding earlier when seven poles toppled into a field).

UPDATE 2:58 p.m.: A tree and wires are down at 2623 Brown Road, Corfu. The location is between Wilkinson Road and Ridge Road. East Pembroke Fire Department is responding.

UPDATE 3:02 p.m.: A tree and wires are down at 3650 Batavia Oakfield Townline Road. Town of Batavia Fire Department is called to respond.

UPDATE 3:07 p.m.: A fire alarm is sounding at city Public Works Department, 147 Walnut St. A power failure has occurred and the "supervisory alarm" has been tripped. City Fire Department is responding.

UPDATE 3:15 p.m.: A tree is down in the roadway at 2879 Batavia Oakfield Townline Road. Town of Batavia Fire Department is called.

UPDATE 3:52 p.m.:  A tractor-trailer has tipped over on Bank Street Road at Cockram Road. Byron and South Byron fire departments are called to respond along with Mercy medics.

UPDATE 3:53 p.m.: A tree is down and wires are on fire at 10498 W. Bethany Road. Alexander Fire Department is responding.

UPDATE 3:57 p.m.: A tree and primary wires and secondary wires are down at 3073 Pearl Street Road, Batavia. East Pembroke Fire Department is called. The location is between Upton and Wortendyke roads.

UPDATE 4:08 p.m.: Wires are down on a house and arcing at 8885 Keeney Road in Le Roy. The home is being evacuated. Le Roy Fire Department is responding. The location is between West Main Street and Quinlan Road.

UPDATE 4:11 p.m.: A celler pump detail is requested at a house at 7509 Mechanic St. in Byron. The power is out there. Byron and South Byron fire departments are called.

UPDATE 4:53 p.m.: Power lines are down in the road and in water on Powers Road, Batavia. East Pembroke Fire Department is called.

UPDATE 4:58 p.m.: Town of Batavia Fire Department is called to 3658 Batavia Elba Townline Road for wires down in the roadway.

UPDATE 5:56 p.m.: A tree and wires are down at 8151 Kelsey Road, Batavia. East Pembroke is called to respond.

UPDATE 5:58 p.m.: A tree is down across the front steps of a residence at 7041 N. Pearl Street Road, Oakfield. Oakfield Fire Department is responding.

UPDATE 6:07 p.m.: East Pembroke command requests mutual aid from Town of Batavia fire to shut down traffic at Kelsey and Galloway roads because of multiple trees and wires down in the roadway.

February 24, 2019 - 12:32pm
posted by Billie Owens in Le Roy, news, accident, notify.

Photo and information from Alecia Kaus, of Video News Service.

The three male occupants who crashed into a house on Clay Street in Le Roy in the wee hours this morning were from out of the area, authorities say, but their identities have not yet been released.

The front-seat passsenger died at the scene at 77 Clay St., and the driver and back-seat passenger were transported to Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, although Le Roy Police Chief Chris Hayward said he's not sure which one of them was taken by Mercy Flight and which by ambulance.

"It's very early in the investigation," Hayward said.

The Crash Management Team arrived shortly after 6 a.m. and code enforcement was there at that time determining whether the house with an upstairs and downstairs apartment was habitable. The downstairs unit was unoccupied. The upstairs tenant was not injured.

The victims who were transported both had severe injuries.

"They were extensive," Hayward said. "I don't really want to specify."

The car -- and Haywood said they could not tell if it was a sedan or a coupe based on looking at the wreckage -- was coming from the south around 3:30 a.m., heading northbound on Route 19 (Clay Street at the crash site), when it failed to negotiate the Wolcott Street curve and smashed into the house.

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