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Village of Bergen

July 3, 2020 - 2:44pm

Photo: This is the new façade on Morgan’s Place on Bergen’s North Lake Street (Main Street). The bar is one of the buildings being restored or repaired with a New York Main Street grant.

Updating and preserving the property in her hometown has been a priority Anna Marie Barclay for many years, especially since she became the mayor of the Village of Bergen.

She was involved for 12 years in the application process to obtain a New York State Main Street grant for Bergen’s downtown, so when they were finally approved last year, she was ecstatic. 

The grants were made available for villages to complete visually prominent projects on Main Street, which included renovation of residential units or projects with historic value or historic properties in danger of being lost in part or in total due to disrepair or damage.

Bergen received $475,000, which is dispersed to property owners on Main Street who may each receive up to $50,000 in matching funds. 

Barclay said the application process was complicated and time consuming, requiring each building owner to submit a plan for improving their property. All applications had to be approved by the New York State Historic Preservation Office.

Recently, Joe Chimino, a member of Bergen’s Hesperus Masonic Lodge #837, and Barclay inspected damage on the front of their buildings, which will be repaired, thanks to the grant.

Barclay said permits have been acquired and a new contractor hired in preparation for work to begin.

The Lodge building, as well as Barclay’s adjoining one, will undergo renovations including replacement of rotted wood, new paint and refinishing front doors. Several store fronts will receive new windows, as well as new heating and air conditioning in the building.

Barclay’s husband, David, has already spent months working in the exterior of their brick building, which will also have the brick repointed. That is the process of renewing the pointing -- the external part of mortar joints -- in masonry construction. Over time, weathering and decay cause voids in the joints between masonry units, usually in bricks, allowing the undesirable entrance of water.

When the Barclays first bought the building, they thought they would fix the front and two apartments upstairs. They put up $25,000 toward the work. David was planning to restore the façade and then they were going to decide what to do with it from there. The building is Victorian, having been built in the 1800s, Barclay said. 

“We want to bring it back to its original status, with historically correct colors,” she said. “We are going to keep the tin ceiling.”

Most recently, the downstairs was a church and rows of pews are still there. Barclay said they envision the space as suitable for a small bistro or an art gallery.

North of Buffalo Road is the block that houses the village offices. Five buildings, all part of the historic renovation, include Morgan’s Place, a totally redone bar with a new façade, new H-vac system, new insulation and new glass front. Work is also being done on two apartments upstairs. The building formerly housed a bank and post office.

Across the street, B.A. Photography, owned by the Schmidts, has an apartment upstairs. The grant will take care of restoring the entire exterior, while keeping the façade original, Barclay said.

Part of the grant was called “Streetscape,” and allows for work enhancing Downtown. Across from the village office, Zuber Park will have a little sidewalk library.

The village’s DPW is building new planters for Downtown and all buildings will have new signs and lighting, paid for by the Streetscape grant. A parking lot adjacent to B.A. Photography will have new planters. An old metal guardrail will be replaced by a wooden one. 

In other Bergen news, Barclay said during the coronavirus pandemic, she has been meeting virtually with all lawmakers throughout Genesee County to discuss how they are all coping during this time. 

“Our budget has been crushed,” she said. “With businesses closed, our sales tax revenue is basically nil.”

On a positive note, Barclay said she and local volunteers delivered 3,200 meals to deserving families since the public health crisis began March 27. Food was donated and meals were prepared at a local church. 

“Our volunteers were amazing,” she said.

Barclay said she was worried about some of individuals and wondered how they would fare now that meal deliveries have stopped. Those names she referred to the county Office for the Aging, she said. 

The village office, which has been closed since March, reopens by appointment next week.

Above photo: Village of Bergen Mayor Anna Marie Barclay points to the tin ceiling in the building at the corner of South Lake Avenue and Buffalo Road, which she and her husband, David, purchased several years ago. The Barclays are planning to renovate the building with assistance from the Main Street Grant, for which the village was approved last year.

Above photo: Joe Chimino, a member of Bergen’s Hesperus Masonic Lodge #837, and Village of Bergen Mayor Anna Marie Barclay look at the building’s deteriorating storefront, which will be repaired with money received from the Main Street Grant.

Photo above: Village of Bergen Mayor Anna Marie Barclay and village administrator Cortney Gale stand in the entrance to the village office on North Lake Street. The office, which has been closed since the coronavirus pandemic began, will open by appointment starting Monday.

Photos courtesy of Virginia Kropf.

May 26, 2020 - 2:21pm

Press release:

The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) today (May 26) announced more than 300 communities across the state have earned the Clean Energy Community designation, completing more than 1,700 total high-impact clean energy actions.

In Genesee County, which is part of the Finger Lakes Region, only the Town of Batavia and the Village of Bergen earned the designation.

The designation recognizes community leadership in reducing energy use, cutting costs, and driving clean energy, all of which are advancing Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s Green New Deal – the nation-leading clean energy and jobs agenda putting New York on the path to a carbon-free power grid by 2040 and a carbon-neutral economy.

“Under his unwavering leadership, Governor Cuomo is empowering more local communities to join in the State’s efforts to reduce statewide emissions and combat climate change through programs like this," said Alicia Barton, president and CEO, NYSERDA.

"Congratulations to all the Clean Energy Communities across New York for taking on a leadership role with these significant actions to reduce their energy use and costs while helping to support New York’s nation-leading clean energy goals.”

Announced by Governor Cuomo in August 2016, the $16 million Clean Energy Communities initiative, administered by the New York Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), supports local governments across the state by providing grants to eligible municipalities to implement energy efficiency, renewable energy, and sustainable development projects in their communities.

Overall, more than 1,700 high-impact clean energy actions were completed by communities representing more than 91 percent of the state’s population in 61 counties and all 10 Economic Development Council regions.

Some of the largest communities across New York State have been designated Clean Energy Communities, including the City of New York, Erie County and City of Rochester. View a map showing Clean Energy Communities, actions completed, and communities engaged in the Clean Energy Communities Initiative.

More than 570 communities are participating in the Clean Energy Communities initiative and have completed at least one high-impact action.

Finger Lakes Region (which includes Genesee County)

  • Designated Clean Energy Communities: 33 -- In Genesee County there are two -- Town of Batavia and Village of Bergen
  • Participating Communities: 75
  • Clean Energy Actions Completed: 208

"New York State’s Climate Smart Communities program (CSC) works in partnership with NYSERDA’s CEC program to help local governments take action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to our changing climate," said New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos.

"At a time when the federal government is rolling back critical environmental programs and protections, we congratulate NYSERDA on reaching this milestone and working with communities to combat climate change.

"In New York State, 45 percent of the population lives in a registered CSC and 21 percent of residents are now living in certified CSCs. Including New York City’s program, more than 60 percent of the state’s residents live in communities taking action to help protect the environment for future generations.”

Under the Clean Energy Communities program, cities, counties, towns and villages that completed at least four of 10 high-impact clean energy actions are designated as Clean Energy Communities and were eligible to apply for funding of up to $250,000 to finance additional clean energy projects.

Areas with fewer than 40,000 residents were eligible to apply for up to $100,000 in funding.

Grants, which have historically been provided through the Clean Energy Fund and the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, are fully exhausted at this time.NYSERDA expects to release a new update to the Clean Energy Communities Program in the coming months to provide communities new opportunities for grants and recognition while driving the next level of impact.

Key highlights of clean energy actions communities completed across the state include:

  • 100 cities, towns and villages across New York have converted approximately 290,000 streetlights to light-emitting diode (LED);
  • More than 630 electric vehicles deployed as part of clean municipal fleets;
  • Nearly 1,000 electric vehicle charging ports installed;
  • 930 code officers and other municipal officials completed energy code enforcement training;
  • 342 communities adopted the New York State Unified Solar Permit.

Please visit NYSERDA’s website for the list of 10 High Impact Actions local governments can take to earn a Clean Energy Community designation.

DEC's Climate Smart Communities (CSC) program was launched on Earth Day in 2009, and is an interagency initiative that helps local governments take action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to a changing climate.

It is jointly sponsored by the following seven New York State agencies: Department of Environmental Conservation; NYSERDA; Department of Public Service; Department of State; Department of Transportation; Department of Health, and the New York Power Authority.

The program offers grants, rebates for electric vehicles, and free technical assistance to interested communities.

Local governments across New York State have mobilized in response to the current public health crisis to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and protect their residents.

NYSERDA remains open for business to support communities and local businesses in assessing and benefitting from clean energy actions and combatting the effects of climate change when they are able to do so.

Clean Energy Community coordinators are available at no charge to help communities develop and prioritize clean energy goals; access easy-to-use resources, such as guidance documents and case studies; and take advantage of available funding and technical assistance opportunities. Local government officials or employees can find contact information for their respective coordinator here for assistance in completing the actions.

For more information on Clean Energy Communities, please visit NYSERDA’s website.

New York State's Green New Deal
Governor Cuomo's Green New Deal is the most aggressive climate and clean energy initiative in the nation, putting the state on a path to being entirely carbon-neutral across all sectors of the economy and establishing a goal to achieve a zero-carbon emissions electricity sector by 2040, faster than any other state.

It builds on New York's unprecedented ramp-up of clean energy including a $2.9 billion investment in 46 large-scale renewable projects across the state, the creation of more than 150,000 jobs in New York's clean energy sector, a commitment to develop nearly 1,700 megawatts of offshore wind by 2024, and 1,700 percent growth in the distributed solar sector since 2012.

The recently passed Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act mandates the Green New Deal's nation-leading clean energy targets: nine gigawatts of offshore wind by 2035, six gigawatts of distributed solar by 2025, and three gigawatts of energy storage by 2030, while calling for an orderly and just transition to clean energy that creates jobs and continues fostering a green economy.

The CLCPA also directs New York State agencies and authorities to collaborate with stakeholders to develop a plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 85 percent from 1990 levels by 2050 and aim to invest 40 percent of clean energy and energy efficiency program resources to benefit disadvantaged communities.

May 15, 2020 - 12:29pm
posted by Billie Owens in Village of Bergen, Emergency Declaration, covid-19, news.

A statement from Village of Bergen Anna Marie Barclay:

"The declaration (below) allows the Mayor discretion to use all facilities, equipment, supplies, personnel and other resources of the Village of Bergen to cope with the COVID-19 emergency. I anticipate that it will be critical to have Village of Bergen personnel available to respond to various needs arising in the Village. I am sure we will all rise to the occasion to help each other, safely, during this time."

Public Notice

The County of Genesee and the State of New York have declared States of Emergency in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The outbreak poses and immediate danger to public health and safety which endangers the residents and businesses of the Village of Bergen.

I believe it is in the best interest of the Village of Bergen and our residents/businesses for me to issue a State of Emergency in the Village of Bergen, which will allow me the discretion to use any and all facilities, equipment, supplies and other resources of the Village of Bergen in such a manner as may be neceesary or appropriate to cope with the disaster of emergency resulting there from.

In particular, but with no limitation, I anticipate that it will be critical to have the Village of Bergen personnel available to respond to specific, but currently unforeseen, needs arising in the Village. The Village of Bergen will be coordinating efforts with the Town of Bergen.

Therefore I have exercised the authority given to me and the Mayor and Chief Executive Officer of the Village of Bergen, pursuant to Article 2B of the Executive Law of the State of New York, and hereby declare a state of emergency effective this date, May 15, 2020 at 3 p.m. in the Village of Bergen, Genesee County, New York.

This state of emergency shall remain in effect for the next 30 days unless and until rescinded or extended by me for additional 30-day period.

Any residents in need of special or emergency assistance are advised to contact 9-1-1. All residents are advised to monitor the Village of Bergen website, local media reports for continued updates and advisories.

Anna Marie Barclay

Mayor

Village of Bergen

April 15, 2020 - 1:10pm
posted by Billie Owens in Village of Bergen, State of Emergency, covid-19.

From Village of Bergen Mayor Anna Marie Barclay:

After much consideration, and collaboration with the Village Board of Trustees, Town Supervisor Ernest Haywood, and the Bergen Volunteer Fire Department, and determining what is in the best interests of the Village of Bergen and our residents and businesses, a new State of Emergency for the Village of Bergen will take effect at 3 p.m. today, April 15.

The declaration allows the Mayor discretion to use all facilities, equipment, supplies, personnel and other resources of the Village of Bergen to cope with the COVID-19 emergency.

It is anticipated that it will be critical to have Village of Bergen personnel available to respond to various needs arising in the Village. Assuredly, we will all rise to the occasion to help each other, to keep everyone as safe as possible, during this time.

Public Notice

The County of Genesee and the State of New York have declared States of Emergency in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The outbreak poses and immediate danger to public health and safety which endangers the residents and businesses of the Village of Bergen.

I believe it is in the best interest of the Village of Bergen and our residents/businesses for me to issue a State of Emergency in the Village of Bergen, which will allow me the discretion to use any and all facilities, equipment, supplies and other resources of the Village of Bergen in such a manner as may be neceesary or appropriate to cope with the disaster of emergency resulting there from.

In particular, but with no limitation, I anticipate that it will be critical to have the Village of Bergen personnel available to respond to specific, but currently unforeseen, needs arising in the Village. The Village of Bergen will be coordinating efforts with the Town of Bergen.

Therefore I have exercised the authority given to me and the Mayor and Chief Executive Officer of the Village of Bergen, pursuant to Article 2B of the Executive Law of the State of New York, and hereby declare a state of emergency effective this date, April 15, 2020 at 3 pm. in the Village of Bergen, Genesee County, New York.

This state of emergency shall remain in effect for the next 30 days unless and until rescinded or extended by me for additional 30-day period.

Any residents in need of special or emergency assistance are advised to contact 9-1-1. All residents are advised to monitor the Village of Bergen website, local media reports for continued updates and advisories.

Anna Marie Barclay

Mayor

Village of Bergen

April 7, 2020 - 1:18pm
posted by Virginia Kropf in Village of Bergen, senior meals delivery, news, coronavirus.

When the Village of Bergen was forced to scale down its workforce due to the coronavirus, Mayor Anna Marie Barclay told administrative assistant Cortney Gale she needed a project to keep her busy.

“Little did I know I’d end up running a meal delivery program for the village and town to support our seniors who are not getting out, as well as families struggling financially through this crisis,” Barclay said. “The worst is not being able to hold my little grandsons. We are down to one person in the office and one person in each department, so it’s hard to get much accomplished.”

Barclay started looking for something to do to support the community, especially those who are vulnerable or elderly. She checked with the Bergen Methodist Church who was not able to prepare their weekly Wednesday night meals, with the social distancing mandate. She also checked with St. Brigid’s Church in Bergen and Our Lady of Mercy in Le Roy, where she learned chef Don Antinore was no longer able to prepare his Friday night fish fries.

Dawn Brinson, who cooks at the Methodist Church with volunteers Connie Fiedler and Carrie Wies, said they would be willing to prepare a meal on Monday and Wednesday for home delivery, and Antinore agreed to prepare a Friday meal with support from Father Matthew Phelan and many of their volunteers at Our Lady of Mercy. 

Barclay asked all of her staff at the village office to give her names of people they knew who might benefit from a home-delivered meal. This included seniors and families who might be out of money.

She made 70 phone calls and on March 27, Barclay, her husband, David, and village volunteers made their first delivery of 40 fish dinners. Last Friday, that number had increased to 55.

David Barclay made a spreadsheet of homes who wanted meal delivery and developed a route for each driver.

Volunteers included one lineman, one DPW employee, one water treatment plant employee and one member of the office staff. Village employees rotate their volunteer duties.

Village resident Kathy Fink also delivers meals. The Barclays drive to Le Roy to pick up the Friday meals and bring them to the volunteer drivers. 

When word spread of their mission, Leslie Hill, who does wedding flowers, donated carnations for each meal recipient. 

One day, Bob Bausch, the former Genesee County legislative chairman, volunteered to deliver a route. He lives in Bergen.

Barclay said they are taking every precaution when delivering meals. Drivers wear masks and place the meals on the recipient’s porch, or in some cases on a chair the resident has placed there. Then they ring the doorbell and go back to their vehicle. 

Barclay said they have received monetary donations from the community to help with purchase of food, and ANG Supermarket in Churchville donated 20 pounds of ground beef.

In addition to their home delivered meals, Bergen supported their community with a $500 donation from the Friends of Bergen to the North Bergen Presbyterian Church’s food pantry. Barclay said the food pantry is open on Wednesday and Saturday. 

The village also wants to bring some cheer to the children in Bergen, and on Saturday, the Easter Bunny will ride on a fire truck through the village.

Barclay said she is confident they are doing some good in this time of crisis.

“It’s great to be able to help,” she said.

Photos courtesy of Anna Marie Barclay.

Top photo: Sandy and Norm Pawlak, left, and David and Anna Marie Barclay load their vehicles with meals for seniors who are confined to their homes during this coronavirus pandemic.  

Below, Bergen Mayor Anna Marie Barclay, left, and village lineman Matt Sluberski set off to deliver meals to seniors, a service Barclay started to fill time while village operations are scaled back during the coronavirus pandemic.

Bottom, Zack Kuter, an employee of the Village of Bergen DPW, is one of the volunteers who delivers meals to seniors during the current coronavirus pandemic.

March 18, 2020 - 1:19pm
posted by Billie Owens in Village of Bergen, State of Emergency, news, covid-19.

Public Notice

The County of Genesee and the State of New York have declared States of Emergency in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. The outbreak poses an immediate danger to public health and safety which endangers the residents and businesses of the Village of Bergen. 

 I believe it is in the best interest of the Village of Bergen and our residents/businesses for me to issue a State of Emergency in the Village of Bergen, which will allow me the discretion to use any and all facilities, equipment, supplies, personnel and other resources of the Village of Bergen in such a manner as may be necessary or appropriate to cope with the disaster or emergency resulting there from.

In particular, but with no limitation, I anticipate that it will be critical to have Village of Bergen personnel available to respond to specific, but current unforeseen, needs arising in the Village. The Village of Bergen will be coordinating efforts with the Town of Bergen.

Therefore, I have exercised the authority given to me as the Mayor and Chief Executive Officer of the Village of Bergen, pursuant to Article 2B of the Executive Law of the State of New York, and hereby declare a state of emergency effective this date (March 18, 2020) at 3 p.m. in the Village of Bergen, Genesee County, New York.

This state of emergency shall remain in effect for the next 30 days unless and until rescinded or extended by me for an additional 30-day period.

Any residents in need of special or emergency assistance are advised to contact 9-1-1. All residents are advised to monitor the Village of Bergen website, local media reports for continued updates and advisories.

Anna Marie Barclay

Mayor

Village of Bergen

October 3, 2019 - 2:15pm
posted by Virginia Kropf in Village of Bergen, news, Hickory Park.

BERGEN – Thirty cyclists who are members of HeartCycle’s Touring Club stopped to visit with Bergen Mayor Anna Marie Barclay and village administrator Cortney Gale on Sept. 25 during a nearly two-week ride from Grand Rapids, Mich. to Rochester.

Barclay and Gale welcomed the cyclists in Hickory Park.

This is year four of the HeartCycle’s Coast to Coast, which was originally formed as a cardiac research project, but has long since become simply a nonprofit bicycling club.

The riders departed Sept. 8 from Michigan on their 660-mile ride. They proceded south through rural Indiana, spending the first night in Battle Creek. In Bowling Green, Ohio, they stopped for a day of rest, before continuing on to Lake Erie and Downtown Cleveland.

From there, they rode the next three days near the Lake Erie shoreland, then into Pennsylvania and New York. From Dunkirk, they headed toward Buffalo, mostly on bike paths, arriving at Niagara Falls, where they spent two nights.

The 57-mile ride to Batavia took them a day, where they spent the night before heading to Bergen and the Erie Canal, where they planned to finish their ride to Rochester along the canal.

(Photo: Bergen Mayor Anna Marie Barclay, center, and village administrator Cortney Gale welcomed the Heart Cycle Touring Club to the village's Hickory Park during their ride from Grand Rapids, Mich., to Rochester. Photo courtesy of Anna Marie Barclay.)

September 25, 2019 - 11:11am

Editor's Note: This post was updated Sept. 26 to include more information about Genesee County, see below ***.

From the NYS Association of Counties:

Across New York State, local governments are enacting local laws, adopting energy-saving initiatives, taking steps toward climate resiliency, and collaborating to develop programs for supporting more resilient communities.

“As we celebrate Climate Week, it must be noted counties across New York are investing in hundreds of initiatives to combat climate change and promote more climate resilient communities,” said Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz.

Through state programs such as Climate Smart Communities and Clean Energy Communities, counties are acting to both mitigate their environmental impact and save taxpayer dollars in the process.

Counties will also be key partners with the state in meeting the goals established by the recently-enacted New York State Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act. This legislation set the most aggressive greenhouse gas emission (GHG) reduction goals of any major economy and will put New York State on a path to carbon neutrality.

“Our county leaders are in a unique position to work with state, federal, and local agencies on environmental issues, and to develop partnerships to mitigate and prepare for the impact of climate change on our communities,” said NYSAC Executive Director Stephen Acquario. “During this Climate Week, we are highlighting the programs underway in our communities.”

________________________________

***Genesee County received a Smart Growth grant from the NYS Department of State for climate resiliency planning: 

When the grant was announced last September, Genesee County Legislature Chairman Robert Bausch said, "The Smart Growth grant program has provided some of our State's most vulnerable counties with the resources they need to ensure they are prepared for the next severe weather event.

"We can never be sure when the next disastrous storm will hit. With this funding to build more resilient communities and fight against the devastating effects, Governor Cuomo is creating a more sustainable New York for all."

Genesee County was among five Upstate counties chosen to divvy up a total of $1 million to develop resiliency plans and identify projects while incorporating the principles of smart, sustainable growth and development.

The plans funded through the grant will address:

  • An increase in frequency and severity of storm and precipitation events;
  • Sea-level rise;
  • Storm surge;
  • Coastal and riverine flooding;
  • Drought; and
  • Debris and ice jams.

For the first phase, they mapped the whole county and worked closely with four municipalities (see below). Now, for Phase 2, they're hoping to work with as many communities as possible.

The person overseeing the local Smart Growth planning and projects is county Planning Director Felipe Oltramari ([email protected]).

The Green Geneese/Smart Genesee plan is available online here.

________________________________

 To learn more about the climate actions counties have undertaken, check out the NYS Energy Research & Development Authority's Clean Energy Communities map here.

Village of Bergen (2010 Census population: 1,176)

Clean Energy Community -- designated

  • 4 High Impact Areas Completed: Unified Solar Permit; LED Street Lights; Energy Code Enforcement Training; Benchmarking.

Town of Batavia -- (2010 Census population: 6,809)

Clean Energy Community -- designated

  • 4 High Impact Areas Completed: Unified Solar Permit; LED Street Lights; Energy Code Enforcement Training; Benchmarking.

Village of Corfu (2010 Census population: 709)

Clean Energy Community -- participating

  • 1 High Impact Action Completed: Energy Code Enforcement Training

Town of Pembroke (2010 Census population: 4,292)

Clean Energy Community -- participating

  • 1 High Impact Action Completed: Energy Code Enforcement Training
September 12, 2018 - 3:47pm
posted by Billie Owens in clean energy, town of batavia, Village of Bergen, news.

Press release:

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced more than 200 communities across the state have earned the Clean Energy Community designation, completing more than 1,250 total high-impact clean energy actions. Two of them are in Genesee County: The Town of Batavia; and the Village of Bergen.

The designation recognizes community leadership in reducing energy use, cutting costs and driving clean energy, all supporting the state's clean energy goals.

In the Finger Lakes Region, which includes the Town of Batavia and Village of Bergen, a total of 56 communities are participating in the Clean Energy Community designation efforts; a total of 139 Clean Energy actions have been completed to date; and a total of 22 communities have earned the designation so far.

The Clean Energy Community initiative advances the Governor's Reforming the Energy Vision strategy by demonstrating the importance of communities in helping New York achieve the state's goal to supply 50 percent of its electricity from renewable energy resources and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent by 2030.

"New York is a national leader in combating climate change, and this significant milestone demonstrates that communities in every corner of this great state are committed to our efforts to create a more sustainable future," Governor Cuomo said. "These 200 communities serve as a model for cities and towns across this state and this nation to reduce energy use and preserve our environment for generations to come."

Announced by Governor Cuomo in August 2016, the $16 million Clean Energy Communities initiative supports local governments across the state by providing grants to eligible municipalities to implement energy efficiency, renewable energy and sustainable development projects in their communities.

"Communities across the state are undergoing projects to help cut costs and support clean energy," said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. "More than 200 communities in New York have earned the Clean Energy Community designation, further advancing our aggressive clean energy goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

"New York is leading in our efforts to combat climate change, and municipalities statewide are helping to make sure our environment is clean and safe now and for future generations."'

Overall, the 1,255 high-impact clean energy action items were completed by communities representing more than 86 percent of the state's population in 60 counties and all 10 Economic Development Council regions. View a map showing Clean Energy Communities, actions completed and communities engaged in the Clean Energy Communities initiative.

More than 450 communities are participating in the Clean Energy Communities initiative and have completed at least one high-impact action.

The Clean Energy Communities initiative was recently honored as a recipient of the Clean Energy States Alliance 2018 State Leadership in Clean Energy Award. Clean Energy Communities was one of six programs nationwide to win the 2018 award for its outstanding accomplishments with public benefits and results, cost effectiveness, leadership and innovation, and replicability.

Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Segos said, "New York recognizes and supports community efforts to help achieve Governor Cuomo's ambitious greenhouse gas reduction goals. I applaud the achievements of the designated Clean Energy Communities across the state and hope that others are inspired by their outstanding example."

Richard Kauffman, chair of Energy and Finance for New York State said, "Congratulations to all the Clean Energy Communities for taking significant actions to reduce their carbon footprint and cut costs. Communities continue to play an important role in supporting Governor Cuomo's Reforming the Energy Vision strategy to advance and build a cleaner, more resilient and affordable energy system to combat climate change."

Alicia Barton, president and CEO, NYSERDA, said, "I congratulate the Clean Energy Communities across the state that are realizing the opportunities to reduce their energy usage and costs while providing a cleaner environment for their residents. Governor Cuomo has made it a priority to ensure local communities have access to resources and technical assistance to assist them in their efforts to reduce their carbon footprint."

Senate Energy and Telecommunications Committee Chair Joseph Griffo said, "There are now 200 communities throughout New York State that have received a Clean Energy Community designation, which is given to communities who have shown leadership in their efforts to reduce energy use. I would like to congratulate all the Clean Energy communities across the state for serving as an example of sustainable energy practice for all New Yorkers."

Assembly Energy Chairman Michael Cusick said, "Encouraging communities to use clean energy alternatives is an important step toward reaching our State's energy goals. By investing in green energy products, we are creating a more sustainable future for the next generation of New Yorkers to building a cleaner, more resilient New York for all. I'm encouraged by these results and look forward to seeing more communities implement clean energy practices."

Cities, counties, towns and villages that complete at least four of 10 high-impact clean energy actions are designated as Clean Energy Communities and are eligible to apply for funding of up to $250,000 to finance additional clean energy projects. Areas with fewer than 40,000 residents are eligible to apply for up to $100,000 in funding. NYSERDA is accepting applications for funding on a rolling basis through Sept. 30, 2019 or until funds are exhausted, whichever comes first. Grant funds are being provided as part of the Clean Energy Fund and the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.

The 10 High Impact Actions local governments can to take to earn a Clean Energy Community designation and qualify to apply for grant funding include:

  • Benchmarking energy use at municipal and large privately owned buildings;
  • Performing energy efficiency and renewable energy upgrades to municipal buildings;
  • Replacing street lights with energy-efficient LED lighting;
  • Streamlining local approval processes for solar projects through adoption of the NYS Unified Solar Permit;
  • Undertaking a community-based Solarize campaign to reduce solar project costs through joint purchasing;
  • Providing energy code enforcement training to code officers;
  • Earning Climate Smart Communities Certification by reducing the community's impact on the environment;
  • Passing a local law to allow aggregation of residents to gain greater choice and control over energy use as a group (called Community Choice Aggregation);
  • Installing electric vehicle charging stations and using alternative fuel vehicles, such as electric cars, for municipal business; and
  • Establishing an Energize NY Finance Program that enables long-term, affordable Property Assessed Clean Energy financing for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects at commercial buildings and not-for-profits.

Clean Energy community coordinators are also available at no charge to help communities develop and prioritize clean energy goals; access easy-to-use resources, such as guidance documents and case studies; and take advantage of available funding and technical assistance opportunities.

Local government officials or employees can find contact information for their respective coordinator here for assistance in completing the actions.

For more information on Clean Energy Communities visit www.nyserda.ny.gov/cec.

June 21, 2017 - 2:34pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, Village of Bergen, 'Think & Drink'.

Press release:

BATAVIA, NY – Start-Up Genesee announced that the group will hold the next “Think & Drink” event on Thursday, June 22 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Participants should plan to meet at the Bergen Village Hall on 11 North Lake Ave. and be prepared for an entrepreneurial walking tour.

The theme of the event is “Doing Business on Main Street- An Entrepreneurial Walking Tour” that will provide attendees the opportunity to tour the successful Bergen business district, tours of existing space for sale and lease, a recreational trail tour and a stop at the Bergen farmer’s market in the park.

The event will begin with remarks from Bergen Mayor Anna Marie Barclay, who has made downtown business development and recreation a top priority for the village. Following remarks from the Mayor, attendees will go on a tour of vacant buildings for sale and lease that could be ideally suited for startup business and entrepreneurs.

During the downtown business district tour, attendees will stop at various businesses including Pivot Acupuncture and Physical Therapy, Morgan’s, Gregory’s, L Salon, Reynolds Auto Parts, Craft Supplies Unlimited, Ralph & Rosie’s, the Bergen School of the Arts, and Harris Wilcox offices. The event will conclude at Hickory Park to experience the interactive exercise trails and disk golf course and a then visit to the new downtown farmer’s market.

Sponsors for the event include Canandaigua National Bank & Trust, FreedMaxick, Merrill Lynch, Del Plato Casey Law Firm LLP, the University at Buffalo New York State Center of Excellence in Material Informatics and Bioinformatics & Life Sciences, Tompkins Bank of Castile and Tompkins Insurance and West Main Wine and Spirits Liquor Store. For more information or to RSVP please contact Rachel Tabelski at 585-343-4866 or [email protected].

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