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Tuesday, October 21, 2014 at 5:00 pm

Collins honored by Farm Bureau for effort to ditch new EPA waterway rule

post by Howard B. Owens in agriculture, chris collins, EPA, NY-27

Rep. Chris Collins was honored today by the American Farm Bureau for his efforts on behalf of the agriculture community, not only in Genesee County and New York, but throughout the United States.

Collins spearheaded an effort to get the EPA to back off waterway rule changes that farmers -- and others -- say will drive up the cost of business, if not put them out of business.

It's a top legislative priority of the Farm Bureau, said New York bureau President Dean Norton, to convince the EPA to "ditch the rule," which he says would change the definition of navigable waterways to include small ditches and puddles, which are common on farms.

Norton presented Collins with an award from the Farm Bureau at a gathering at Post Farms in Elba.

Jeff Post thanked Collins for taking up the cause.

"If you look across the back of our farm, which we've been farming for 100 years, we have a lot of ground that would fall into the rule to be permitted," Post said. "It would have a large impact on a small producer like us."

At the urging of Norton, Collins took up the cause with the goal of getting 100 members of Congress to sign a letter urging the EPA to ditch the rule. Collins had 100 signers in a week. In another week, Norton said, he had 200. Eventually, 240 members of Congress, Republicans and Democrats signed the letter.

"This goes to show you just how flawed the rule is," Norton said. "Then when you have other organizations like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce coming out and saying, 'ditch the rule,' and when you have the small business administration telling their partner agency, 'you need to rewrite this thing, it's really flawed,' it tells you it is flawed."

Collins also said the fact the letter would garner such bipartisan support shows how seriously off track the EPA has gotten on the proposed rule change.

"I was able to get majority of Congress, which is very hard to do today, Republicans and Democrats alike, over 240 members, to send a letter to the administrator to the EPA asking, demanding, that they withdraw the rule and start over," Collins said. "There was too much ambiguity, too much worry in a rule that was out for comment."

In a hearing, Collins said, a deputy at the EPA "effectively admitted" that the proposed rule is flawed. The official said the comment period, which has been extended again, to Nov. 15, is designed to give the EPA information to fix any flaws in the rule.

"They said, we can fix it after the comments are done," Collins said. "My comment to them was, 'we don't trust you. No one trusts you. The public doesn't trust you. Farmers don't trust you. Congress doesn't trust you not to overreach yet again.' "

Collins, left, Post and Norton.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014 at 1:50 pm

Incoming medical director briefs first responders on Ebola protocols

Every fire department in Genesee County was represented at a mandatory briefing Monday evening by Dr. Sara Connolly, the incoming medical director for the county.

Connolly briefed the chiefs and department representatives on protocols for dealing with Ebola patients.

It's a long shot that there will ever be a person carrying the Ebola virus in Genesee County, but county and state officials agree it's better to be prepared, trained at thinking ahead than to be caught off guard.

Such briefings are mandated for all first responders by the NYS Department of Health.

Connolly said she addressed triage and isolation issues and answered questions. EMS responders are instructed to ask patients at emergency scenes if they've traveled to West Africa within the previous 30 days. 

If the answer is yes, then first responders need to find out if the patient has had any of the symptoms of Ebola, such as high fever, diarrhea or vomiting. If yes, then the patient needs to be isolated as quickly as possible and the first responders need to avoid further contact with the patient.

Some misunderstandings were cleared up during the Q&A session at the end of the talk, Connolly said. For example, not everybody who gets Ebola dies, and we don't even have any idea how lethal, or not, it would be in the U.S. since there's been only one case of a person in this country who has died from it.

"We don't know what it's mortality rate would be in this country, with a good sanitation system and developed healthcare system," Connolly said.

Connolly is not yet officially the new county health director. That appointment could be finalized as soon as today.  

She is a physician at UMMC and specializes in emergency department medicine. She's a graduate of Princeton University with a medical degree from the University at Buffalo.

Every county is required to have at least one medical director, accounting to Emergency Management Coordinator Tim Yaeger, who overseas emergency response medical personnel. The position is responsible for training and ensuring that policies and protocols from the Department of Health are implemented and properly followed.

The director works closely with the Emergency Management Office and the county's Department of Health.

The Ebola briefing was required by the state, but Yaeger said it is a wise thing to ensure all emergency responders are prepared to deal with an Ebola patient, no matter how remote the possibility.

"We want to be prepared," Yaeger said. "Hopefully, nothing occurs here, but if it does, we want the public to know that we are prepared and ready to respond, and primarily to make sure those first responders are safe."

Tuesday, October 21, 2014 at 9:55 am

Vehicle reportedly stolen in Stafford

post by Howard B. Owens in crime, Stafford

Troopers are investigating the report of a vehicle stolen from a location on West Main Road, Stafford.

No further information available at this time.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014 at 9:49 am

Law and Order: Allegedly - friends smoked pot while a kid's in the car, man spits in victim's face during domestic argument

post by Billie Owens in batavia, crime, Le Roy, Oakfield, Stafford

Joshua M. Gaudioso, 25, of 114 Lake St., Le Roy, was arrested by the Le Roy PD on Monday and charged with one count of Petit Larceny, a Class A misdemeanor. It is alleged that on or about Sept. 24, Gaudioso stole a laptop computer valued at under $1,000 from an acquaintance. Gaudioso was issued an appearance ticket and is scheduled to answer the charge in Le Roy Court on Oct. 27.

Jeremy M. Fridman, 27, of Pearl Street, Batavia, is charged with leaving the scene of a property damage accident and aggravated unlicensed operation, 2nd. He was arrested Oct. 18 on West Main Street, Batavia, after an investigation determined that he allegedly operated a motor vehicle that was involved in an accident at 390 W. Main St. in the city two days prior, Oct. 16. He was jailed in lieu of $2,500 cash bail or $5,000 bound. The incident was investigated by officer Nedim Catovic.

Michele Louise Bialy, 47, of East Main Street, Batavia, is charged with driving while intoxicated and aggravated DWI, per se, with a BAC of .18 or more. She was arrested at 4:21 p.m. on Oct. 11 following an investigation into reports of a vehicle driving erratically in the City of Batavia. She was released after being cited with traffic tickets and is to appear in city court on Oct. 29. The incident was investigated by officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk.

Marcos A. Torres, 32, of Sunrise Parkway, Oakfield, is charged with second-degree harassment. He was arrested Oct. 16 following an investigation into a domestic incident that occurred on Oct. 13 in which an argument allegedly took place and Torres allegedly spit in the victim's face. He was released on an appearance ticket and is to return to city court this afternoon. The incident was investigated by officer Eric Foels.

Falicia N. Tuczai, 23, of Horseshoe Lake Road, Stafford, is charged with driving while intoxicated, first offense, and operating a motor vehicle with a BAC of .08 or more. She was arrested Oct. 13 following a complaint for a suspicious condition on Washington Avenue in the city. Tuczai was issued two traffic tickets. She is to appear in city court on Oct. 29. The incident was investigated by Devon Pahuta.

Jennifer L. Stack, 28, is charged with disorderly conduct for obstructing pedestrian traffic. On Oct. 17, Stack and her boyfriend, Ryan Warner, both of 48 S. Main St. (lower), Batavia, were allegedly creating a disturbance by interfering with the flow of pedestrian traffic of customers in the Court Street Plaza. They were issued appearance tickets and are to return to city court on Wednesday to answer the charge. The incident was investigated by officer Frank Klimjack, assisted by officer Jason Davis.

Morgan B. Powell, 31, of Harvester Avenue, Batavia, had an active arrest warrant for failing to appear for a suspended/revoked registration ticket issued Sept. 7. She was released on her own recognizance and is to appear in city court on Wednesday. The incident was investigated by officer James DeFreze assisted by officer Nedim Catovic.

Danielle M. Weaver, 23, of Chestnut Street, Batavia, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and endangering the welfare of a child less than 17. The charges stem from an incident that allegedly occurred on Ellicott Street on Oct. 15. Weaver allegedly possessed marijuana and allegedly admitted smoking the drug inside a vehicle while a 5-year-old child was inside. The incident was investigated by officer Chad Richards, assisted by officer James DeFreze.

Melissa C. Cicatello, 23, of Evans Street, Batavia, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and endangering the welfare of a child. The charges stem from an incident that allegedly occurred on Ellicott Street on Oct. 15. Cicatello was locked out of her vehicle and officer James DeFreze responded to assist her. While opening the vehicle, the officer allegedly observed marijuana in her vehicle. It was subsequently determined that Cicatello allegedly smoked marijuana with a friend while in close proximity to her 5-year-old daughter. She was issued an appearance ticket. The incident was investigated by officer James DeFreze, assisted by officer Chad Richards.

Landrea D. Wroten, 42, of Lewis Place, Batavia, had two active bench warrants for failing to appear on petit larceny charges that were issued April 26. She was located by officer James DeFreze while he was handling an unrelated complaint. Wroten was released on her own recognizance.

A 17-year-old from Batavia was arrested for second-degree harassment with physical contact, and endangering the welfare of a child following an investigation of a physical altercation that took place on Oct. 10 on Bank Street. It is alleged that the youth fought with a juvenile at that location. The defendant was released on an appearance ticket and is to appear in city court on Nov. 18. The incident was investigated by officer Nedim Catovic.

A 16-year-old, of Ridge Road, Medina, is charged with second-degree harassment and endangering the welfare of a child following a short foot pursuit in the Thorpe / Watson Street area on Oct. 13. The defendant to accused of punching a juvenile in the back of the head while on Thorpe Street in the city. The youth is to be arraigned this afternoon. The incident was investigated by officer Jason Ivison, assisted by officer, Chad Richards.

A 16-year-old, of Maple Street, Batavia, is charged with disorderly conduct. The defendant was arrested Oct. 16 at about 7:50 p.m. while on State Street for allegedly repeatedly using obscene language in the direct presence of numerous bystanders and police. The youth was released on an appearance ticket and is to appear in city court on Nov. 4. The incident was investigated by officer Nedim Catovic, assisted by officer Chad Richards.

A homeless 17-year-old from Mt. Morris had two active bench warrants out of the City of Batavia. One for failing to appear on a charge of endangering the welfare of a child on Wood Street, and the other for disorderly conduct on Wood Street on May 17. The defendant was taken into custody Oct. 17 by Mt. Morris PD then custody was transferred to Batavia PD. The youth was jailed in lieu of $1,000 bail and is set to appear in city court on Thursday. The incident was investigated by officer James DeFreze, assisted by officer Felicia DeGroot.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014 at 8:50 am

Batavia Radiation Oncology Associates closes today for weeks of renovation

post by Billie Owens in batavia, business

Press release:

Beginning today, Oct. 21, Batavia Radiation Oncology Associates, now part of UR Medicine Wilmot Cancer Institute, will close for several weeks for renovations.

The renovations on the building will include the addition of an outpatient blood draw laboratory, larger clinical examination rooms, as well as space to provide medical oncology and infusion services. Significant information technology upgrades will also be made so that medical records and other information can be shared across the Wilmot Cancer Institute network.

The project is expected to be completed by the end of December.

During the construction, patients undergoing treatment through Batavia Radiation Oncology have been scheduled to be seen at either the Pluta Cancer Center in Henrietta or the Cancer Center at Park Ridge in Greece.

Kevin J. Mudd, M.D., who has been medical director for Batavia Radiation Oncology since 2000, will continue to see patients as a member of the University of Rochester Medical Center faculty.
Throughout the project, Mudd and his staff will be available by telephone at (585) 344-3050.

With the renovated and expanded space, the clinic will provide fully integrated cancer care, incorporating both radiation therapy and chemotherapy, as well as access to clinical trials. The chemotherapy services are expected to be available in Batavia by Spring.

These renovations will allow us to offer more comprehensive care closer to home for our patients from Batavia and neighboring communities” said Jonathan W. Friedberg, M.D., M.M.Sc., director of Wilmot Cancer Institute.

The Wilmot Cancer Institute is the Finger Lakes Region’s leader for cancer care and research. As part of UR Medicine, Wilmot provides specialty cancer services at the University of Rochester Medical Center and at a network of satellite locations. Wilmot Cancer Institute is a component of Strong Memorial Hospital. The Institute also includes a team of scientists who investigate many aspects of cancer, with an emphasis on how best to provide precision cancer care.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014 at 8:41 am

Car vs. cement truck accident in Pavilion, minor injuries

post by Billie Owens in accidents, Pavilion

A car vs. cement truck accident is reported at South Lake and Junction roads. Injuries are believed to be minor. Pavilion Fire Department and Mercy medics are responding.

UPDATE 9:35 a.m.: The assignment is back in service. No one was transported to the hospital.

Monday, October 20, 2014 at 3:55 pm

Law and Order: Darien resident accused of not turning in lost wallet at Walmart

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Darien, Oakfield

Stephen Douglas Urban, 37, of Walkers Road, Darien, is charged with grand larceny, 4th. Walker is accused of picking up a wallet that contained two debit cards from the floor of Walmart that was dropped by another shopper. Rather than turn the wallet in to customer service, Urban allegedly searched through the wallet and discarded it, rendering it unrecoverable by the wallet's owner.

Luis Ortiz, 42, of Batavia, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. Ortiz was stopped for allegedly speeding on Southwestern Boulevard, West Seneca, by State Police as part of a DWI detail in conjunction with the Buffalo Bills game on Sunday.

Coretta Pitts

Coretta M. Pitts, 46, of Batavia, is charged with acting in a manner injurious to a child less than 17 years old; endangering the welfare of a child; and criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th. Pitts was arrested by State Police as a result of an investigation into an alleged domestic incident involving a 13-year-old child. In the course of the investigation, troopers allegedly found two glass pipes containing cocaine residue. Pitts was jailed on $1,000 bail or $2,000 bond.

Harold Chinn, 49, of North Main Street, Oakfield, is charged with petit larceny. Chinn is accused of taking the mobile phone of another customer at Walmart after the customer left the phone behind on a counter top at checkout. 

Jennifer Lynn Sprague-Clark, 31, of Vine Street, Batavia, is charged with assault, 2nd, criminal possession of a weapon, 3rd, and menacing, 2nd. Sprague-Clark was arrested by Niagara Falls PD on a warrant for alleged failure to appear on the listed charges. Sprague-Clark was jailed pending arraignment.

Joseph Michael Marranco, 43, of Walnut Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Marranco is accused of shoplifting $209.96 worth of merchandise from Kmart.

Michele Antonia Martinez, 45, of Applegate Drive, Medina, is charged with petit larceny. Martinez is accused of shoplifting at Kmart.

Andrea Marie Gray, 36, of South Main Street, Batavia, is charged with two counts of criminal contempt and resisting arrest. Gray allegedly used profanity and became combative while being escorted from Batavia City Court. While being arrested, she was allegedly combative and had to be restrained.

Monday, October 20, 2014 at 2:27 pm

STOP-DWI announces DWI enforcement detail for Halloween

post by Howard B. Owens in STOP-DWI

Press release:

Genesee County STOP-DWI coordinator Matt Landers announced today that the Genesee County Sheriff’s Department, City of Batavia Police Department and Village of Le Roy Police Department will participate in a special enforcement effort to crackdown on impaired driving.

While we spend Halloween trick-or-treating and hosting parties with our loved ones, law enforcement officers across New York State will take to the roads in an effort to stop impaired driving, prevent injuries and save lives. The statewide STOP-DWI Crackdown efforts start on Oct. 31st and will end on Nov. 2nd. New York State Police, county Sheriff and municipal law enforcement agencies across the state will be out in force.

Research shows that high-visibility enforcement can reduce drunk-driving fatalities by as much as 20 percent. Sobriety checkpoints play a key part in raising awareness about the problem. Undersheriff Sheron is a believer when it comes to the positive effect extra patrols have on holiday weekend safety.

“Holidays are a time of relaxation and celebration," Sheron said. "Part of our job is to make sure that the celebration doesn’t spill over onto our highways. DWI continues to be a leading cause of accidents, injury and death. For this reason, we will have extra patrols out on and around Halloween.”   

The STOP-DWI Halloween Weekend Crackdown is one of many statewide enforcement initiatives promoted by the New York State STOP-DWI Association. Throughout the remainder of the year the Statewide STOP-DWI Crackdown Campaign will also target the national Holiday Season in December.

While STOP-DWI efforts across New York have led to significant reductions in the numbers of alcohol- and drug-related fatalities, still too many lives are being lost because of crashes caused by drunk or impaired drivers. It is significant to note that in 2012, 19 percent of the fatal pedestrian crashes on Halloween involved drunk drivers. Stay safe this Halloween, don't drink and drive -- get a ride. Highly visible, highly publicized efforts like the STOP-DWI Crackdown Campaign aim to further reduce the incidence of drunk and impaired driving.  Have a safe and happy Halloween Weekend!

Monday, October 20, 2014 at 1:35 pm

Field fire off Lewiston Road, Alabama responding

post by Billie Owens in Alabama, fire

A field fire is reported in the area of 1147 Lewiston Road. Alabama fire is responding.

UPDATE 1:50 p.m.: Alabama commands reports the fire is under control.

UPDATE 1:54 p.m.: Fire is out. Alabama is returning and in service.

Monday, October 20, 2014 at 1:29 pm

Batavia woman, partner, accused of $200K heist in Greece

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime
Jessica Moscicki
Greece PD photo

A 24-year-old woman from Batavia is facing federal charges following an investigation into a robbery in Greece earlier this month where the suspects got off with more than $200,000 in cash, diamonds and luxury watches.

Jessica Jane Moscicki is charged with possession and brandishing of a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence, obstructing commerce by robbery and aiding and abetting a federal offense. She faces from seven years to life in prison, if convicted, under federal sentencing guidelines.

Also arrested was Clarence Lambert, 22, residence unknown. He is charged with obstructing commerce by robbery, and possessing and brandishing a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence. 

The duo is accused of going to a jeweler's location in Greece and using a firearm to steal more than $200,000 in cash, diamonds, and luxury watches.

The victims were allegedly pistol whipped and locked in a closet.

Moscicki was picked up by federal authorities following a period of police surveillance. She was pulled over while driving on Niagara Falls Boulevard in Amherst. 

According to investigators, Moscicki went the jeweler's place five days prior to the robbery and asked for a person unknown to the victim. 

Lambert allegedly tried to sell a stolen Rolex watch at a pawn shop in Rochester on Oct. 14, and Moscicki was reportedly with him at the time. 

Rochester Police responded to the pawn shop and attempted to apprehend Lambert, who allegedly fled on foot. He was located later hiding in a box in a garage on Frankfurt Street and was later identified by the jeweler as one of the alleged robbers.

When she left the pawn shop, Moscicki was reportedly driving the same vehicle she was in when stopped in Amherst. 

Both Moscicki and Lambert are being held by federal authorities without bail. 

Monday, October 20, 2014 at 12:47 pm

Lost beagle found in Byron

post by Howard B. Owens in animals, byron, pets

Bobbie Jo M. Klycek found this beagle wandering in her backyard this morning. She lives on Lymon Road, Byron. She left a message with the animal shelter, but took the dog to work with her this morning (she works in Batavia). If this is your beagle, call her at (585) 507-5656.

UPDATE: It appears the owner has been located.

Monday, October 20, 2014 at 11:28 am

City firefighters and Mercy medics arrive at Batavia home just in time to deliver baby

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia

Press release:

SPECIAL DELIVERY: On Thursday October 16th at 1:56 p.m. City of Batavia Firefighters were dispatched to a woman in labor. Firefighters Marinaccio and Gowanlock arrived with Mercy EMS Paramedic Cieri and EMT Alwardt at 1:57pm. Once inside the residence it became clear they were not going to make it to the hospital in time and were able to successfully deliver a baby boy. Dispatchers and others listening to the radio were able to hear the baby crying in the background as firefighter Gowanlock asked Genesee County Emergency Dispatchers to mark the time of birth: 2:03pm. Please join us in congratulating both crews on a job well done.

Monday, October 20, 2014 at 11:20 am

Sign-ups announced for Junior Blue Devils hoops program

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Junior Blue Devils, sports, youth sports

The Batavia Junior Blue Devils Boys Basketball program, for grades one through six in City Schools, opens Nov. 8.

The Saturday programs at John Kennedy School are free, though there is a fee for league play.

The program is coached by Jim Fazio, youth coaches, and current Blue Devils varsity players. It will focus on offensive fundamentals, including shooting, passing, dribbling and ball handling. There will be contests with full and half-court games. 

Participants will have the option to join league play, which runs January through March.

For more information, contact Jim Fazio at (585) 356-0901 or [email protected].

Download: Sign-up form (pdf)

Monday, October 20, 2014 at 11:02 am

Hydrant flushing announced for Wednesday, south of East Main Street

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia

Press release:

The City of Batavia Fire Department will be flushing fire hydrants on Wednesday, Oct. 22, from approximately 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the general area south of East Main Street and east of Jackson Street. Homes and businesses nearby will be affected. These tests may result in a temporary discoloration of water in that area. As in the past, please do not attempt to wash any clothing if your water appears discolored.

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