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August 16, 2019 - 10:31am
posted by Howard B. Owens in pratt road bridge, infrastructure, batavia, video.

RIck von Kramer shared with us this quick video of new spans that have been delivered for installation over the Tonawanda Creek for the new Pratt Road Bridge.

Here's a video we did previously about the project:

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August 16, 2019 - 9:33am
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-27, chris collins, Nate McMurray, politics, video.
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Rep. Chris Collins paid a visit Thursday to the Child Advocacy Center in Batavia (more on that later) and after his visit we spoke with him about his campaign plans and his criminal case.

August 15, 2019 - 3:18pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in video, City Fire, batavia, hydrant flushing.
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I happened upon city firefighters Jamie Call and Tom Douglas about to flush a hydrant at Morton and Ganson avenues so with the camera I had on me, I shot a quick video of the action.

August 13, 2019 - 5:52pm
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The Genesee Symphony Orchestra prepares for the annual Summer Serenade, a joint fundraiser with United Way and held each year at the La Royan in Le Roy.

The 2019 concert is Aug. 25. Social hour begins at 4:30 p.m., with dinner at 5, the concert at 6:15, and dessert to follow.

Tickets are $75 a person. Garden party attire recommended.

Tickets available at Tompkins Bank of Castile in Le Roy and Roxy's Music Store or online at  www.uwrochester.org/summerserenade

Proceeds benefit the United Way Backpack Program and the GSO.

August 11, 2019 - 1:48pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Beertavia, video, downtown.
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August 11, 2019 - 9:40am
posted by Howard B. Owens in The Ridge NY, Frost Ridge, Le Roy, video, music, arts, entertainment.
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It was Southern Rock weekend at The Ridge NY in Le Roy. Here's Black Stone Cherry performing "It's In My Blood." 

Yesterday, we posted a video of a performance by Friday's headliner, Bishop Gunn.

August 10, 2019 - 6:57pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Whole Life Fitness, batavia, video.
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August 10, 2019 - 3:49pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Nate McMurray, NY-27, chris collins, video.
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Today, Nate McMurray, who narrowly lost to Chris Collins in the NY-27 congressional race in 2018, formally announced he will seek the office in 2020.

One of the first things did after finalizing his decision to run was call The Batavian and ask for an interview, so we met this afternoon at The Coffee Press.

McMurray said that while other Republicans have said they are mounting a primary challenge to Collins, Collins is the front-runner and there is no reason to believe Collins won't be on the general election ballot in November. Collins, McMurray said, is the person he's running against.

"I think a lot of people always assume he's going to give up or go away, but he's proven that he doesn't go away easily," McMurray said. "I think that he needs to hold onto this seat to maintain his freedom. It's the best leverage point he has in his trial (on Federal insider trading charges). I think until he's gone you have to assume he's the candidate."

Collins has to go, McMurray said, because with Federal charges pending and a congressional ethics investigation that is still open, Collins is unable to effectively represent the people of the 27th District.

In 2018, McMurray opposed efforts to impeach Donald Trump. Since the release of the Mueller Report, he's changed his position. He said he realizes this stand may cost him votes in this district.

"Anyone who respects the rule of law and reads (the report), as I've read it, you'll come away very troubled," said McMurray, who is an attorney. "You'll come away thinking that Congress and the Senate have a duty to act. They really shouldn't be playing politics with this. It's too important.

"And I think that whether you support President Trump or not, if read that report, you're going to see a portrait of a man who tried to obstruct justice, who tried to manipulate the law, and who thought he was above the law."

August 10, 2019 - 10:11am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Frost Ridge, The Ridge NY, music, arts, entertainment, video.
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Bishop Gunn played The Ridge NY in Le Roy on Friday night. Here they are performing their song "Let the People Know."

Tonight, Black Stone Cherry takes the Frost Ridge stage.

August 8, 2019 - 11:04am
posted by Howard B. Owens in GCEDC, kathy hochul, video, business, education.
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Press release:

Manufacturers, agribusinesses and the skilled trades have been sounding the alarm about the needs to bring more awareness and preparedness for a future workforce in order to meet the demands of the ever-changing workplace and the wave of retirements anticipated as a result of an aging workforce.

In the Genesee, Livingston, Orleans and Wyoming County (GLOW) Region, economic development agencies, workforce development leaders and educators are doing just that through a new initiative formally announced today by New York State Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul.

The daylong hands-on career exploration event – GLOW With Your Hands – will be held on Sept. 24 at the Genesee County Fairgrounds.

More than 1,000 students from 28 school districts across the GLOW Region are expected to attend the event where they will be able to experience first-hand activities associated with careers, like welding, bricklaying, electrical wiring, heavy equipment operation, advanced manufacturing, and many others.

"As our economy evolves with growing opportunities in clean energy, construction, and advanced manufacturing fields, New Yorkers will have increased access to workforce development and training for jobs of the future," said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul, who spoke at today's event.

"Collaborative visions to bring together events like these are part of our ongoing effort to ensure young people have the skills they need to get a good-paying job and achieve their fullest potential.”

The economic and workforce development agencies and education groups are collaborating to make students aware that there are real family-sustaining jobs in the GLOW Region that do not necessarily require a four-year college degree.

More and more school districts in the GLOW Region are creating a curriculum to meet the workplace needs of employers. The demand by employers for workers to fill these jobs is growing every day and organizers of the event want to communicate to students that they can have successful careers immediately after high school graduation.

GLOW With Your Hands organizers include the Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC), the Livingston County Economic Development, Orleans County EDA, Wyoming County IDA, GLOW Workforce Development Board, Genesee, Livingston and Wyoming counties' Business Education alliances and the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership.

Major employers in the GLOW Region and various construction trades unions will be attending the event to simulate the functions and skills of the various jobs that are in demand.

August 7, 2019 - 9:00pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, video, National Night Out, Batavia PD.
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For the first time, the annual National Night Out, an event of the Batavia Police Department, was held at City Church's St. Anthony's.

Below: A bonus short video of firefighters hoisting a stokes basket.

August 7, 2019 - 4:47pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in kathy hochul, Ellicott Station, batavia, video.
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Last month, the Genesee County Economic Development Center issued an open letter to Gov. Andrew Cuomo asking for his help in getting final approval on a complex financial package -- involving private investment, state and local tax incentives, grants, and investment credits -- from state officials.

Following an event today about workforce development (more later), we asked Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul about the delay of the project. She says the governor's office is working to finalize a financial package for Ellicott Station.

The Ellicott Station project will transform the former Della Penna property on Ellicott Street from a crumbling and distressed property into a mixed-used development that will include housing, office space, and a restaurant/brewery.

August 7, 2019 - 3:36pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in agriculture, farm labor bill, kathy hochul, video.
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In an interview with The Batavian following an event at the Genesee County Fair Grounds, where Lt. Kathy Hochul participated in the announcement of a new workforce development program (more later), Hochul defended passage of the farm labor bill.

She said it was needed, even though it was opposed by farmers and farmworkers, because it will improve working conditions for farmworkers and help farmers attract more qualified job candidates.

Hochul said what's missing in complaints about the farm labor bill is that farmers participated in crafting compromise legislation.

August 7, 2019 - 1:55pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in chris collins, NY-27, kathy hochul, video.
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Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul says she has no interest in running for Congress again, not even after redistricting in 2022 because she thinks she is having a more positive impact for the people of Western New York in Albany than she could have in Washington, D.C.

Hochul represented WNY in Congress in 2011 and 2012 before losing a close election to Rep. Chris Collins.

She did say, however, if she ran this year, she would win.

Collins, fighting a federal criminal indictment and facing a House Ethics Committee investigation, has made no official announcement regarding his reelection plans. But he has transferred $500,000 of personal funds to his campaign. He is facing at least two primary challengers and if he runs the Democrats may send Nate McMurray up against him again, who narrowly lost to Collins in 2018.  

Regardless of who runs against Collins, Hochul said Collins will soon be known as "the former congressman" because "he will lose the election."

Hochul was in Batavia for the announcement of a new workforce development program. We will have more coverage on that later.

August 5, 2019 - 12:42pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in hardcore happening, Le Roy, video, classic cars, hot rods.
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Over the past 14 years, Jesse and Jolene Coots have thrown a party at their home on Linwood Road that has steadily grown into what is the largest classic car and hot rod event in Genesee County but outside of the gearheads who enjoy it, only a few other people in the county, apparently, have known about it.

More than 2,000 people attend now and until The Batavian showed up Saturday -- to a warm welcome from Jesse and Jolene -- no news outlet in the region had ever covered the Hardcore Happening.

August 4, 2019 - 6:01pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Upton Monument, batavia, veterans, video.
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One hundred years ago, in August 1919, the folks of Genesee County dedicated the Soldiers and Sailors Monument, better known as the Upton Monument. To commemorate the centennial of the monument, the Veterans Council and the American Legion conducted a rededication ceremony on Saturday.

August 3, 2019 - 7:57pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Downs, video, music, arts, entertainment, tanya tucker.
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August 3, 2019 - 5:50pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Camp Hard Hat, Genesee County Park, Bethany, video.
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A new pier into one of the ponds at Genesee County Park, suitable for relaxing and taking in nature and wildlife, was dedicated Friday by the leaders of Camp Hard Hat and the students participated along with their supporters and family members.

This is the sixth project completed in the park by Camp Hard Hat students over the past six summers.

August 3, 2019 - 1:24am
posted by Howard B. Owens in YWCA, my sister's closet, video, batavia.
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The staff at the YWCA of Genesee County in Batavia has taken what was once a kind of drab thrift store and turned it into a hip, modern boutique.

In this video, Executive Director Millie Tomidy-Pepper explains the transformation and gives us an update on how the YWCA is doing following its financial troubles a year ago.

August 2, 2019 - 11:24pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in UMMC, Rochester Regional Health, YWCA, Healthy moms, video.
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It can be tough being a mom and Friday, UMMC and the YWCA came together for a Mom's Health Resources Fair at the Y to provide local moms with help and advice.

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