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Committee outlines preliminary plan for making Batavia more vibrant

For six months a committee of Batavia citizens took apart and reconstructed recommendations for the city by consultants czb and Tuesday committee member Brian Kemp presented the group's findings to city council.

Conclusion: What czb proposed can probably be done for less money and with a part-time staff member, but the committee didn't work up a formal proposal.

Instead, the committee wanted feedback from the council on whether to proceed with its work before putting together a budget.

While there was no formal vote Tuesday, the council seem largely supportive of the committee's efforts so far.

"You have my support," Councilman Brooks Hawley said. "You should go and come back and tell us what you want."

The committee, known as Vibrant Batavia, recommends a marketing effort to re-brand Batavia, ongoing economic development, neighborhood spirit building and neighborhood restoration.

Some of these functions are already part of the mission of existing agencies, which is why a full-time person to oversee the efforts is probably not necessary.

The recommendation from czb was for the city to kick in $50,000 for the effort with the community raising $42,000. While there's no budget, the committee doesn't see the need for that kind of expenditure, Kemp said.

Vibrant Batavia hopes to come back to the city with a proposal over the winter and get the project going in the spring.

Besides Kemp, the committee includes Mary Valle, Steve Maxwell, Jill Babinski, Felipe Oltramari, Kelly Kiebala, Don Burkel, Dave Snyder, Marty McDonald, Lynne Bezon, John Cascell, Julie Pacatte, Rachael Tabelski along with city council members Patti Pacino, Kris Doeringer and Pier Cipollone.

Thomas Mooney
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this could be a great thing , we need to get the vacant and non caring landlords on board . Untill that happens our neighborhoods are doomed . everytime a cheap rental comes up for sale , it is scooped up by these landlords that turn then into pathstone properties . In fact you have a landlord on your commitee that does this very thing . one of the other landlords in question is good friends with our city manager .

I don't see change coming anytime soon . I wouldn't dare mention who they are . That would be name calling even if its a true statement and pointing out these people are not tolerated in this blog or for the matter of fact this city .

Taking back our city would have to include some teeth into the currant laws regaurding landlords and the percentage of pathstone properties compared to what it used to be 10 years ago needs to addressed .

The other thing that needs to be addressed is the money drain that occurs with city school system . Our top five adminstartion account for over a half million dollars . Non of wich live in batavia . So where does you tax money go to ? Why isn't there a residence requirement for our top Admin.

Good enough to work here but not good enough to live here mentality has to go .

We need those good paying jobs to go to people that are invested or will invest in our city .

Jeremy Yasses
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I love uneducated individuals who take pot shots from behind a computer. Instead of complaining, be part of the solution. Put your own money up, buy those "cheap" properties and help turn around the city by not renting to Pathstone. If its that easy, make it happen.

Kyle Couchman
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Thomas, your generalizations really are annoying at best. Pathstone is a good program that gets families into houses, gives them a financial education and establishes a tax base that ends up lowering all of our taxes. There are gonna be failures of course but its a step in the right direction. As for the landlords, well I worked for a landlord managing over 200 tenants and 4 commerical tenants. There are laws in place and plenty of them, however corwardly actions by people like you who have accusations but use excuses to not name them and what you accuse them of are part of the problem. The character of my residential tenants I took care of is very adversarial they were cornell students who were very abusive to properties and to personnel. I had many jobs I had to go to because I had workers who refused to deal with the tenants.

However there is one thing also you arent considering, once someone is in an apartment, by law you arent allowed to to alot of things I see landlords doing here as well. Evictions and the process they do them by are one area. The interference of the tenants living arrangements is another. As well as major violations like locking people out of properties, disposing of personal items before the thirty days they are required to keep personal property once assuming posession of property and illegal evictions. The landlord problem is actually a tenant problem too. And it will get worse as taxes climb because you cant afford to rent properties at a loss, not without sacrificing costs elsewhere in the budget which means cheaper materials for the apartments, less maintenence, and more acceptance of undesirable types who are willing to pay and rent for such conditions. Its a circle and just like a circle you cant point at one area of it and say thats the problem and solution.

As for the schools, I think most here agree that the admin is bloated and overpaid to a degree. But that is expectation nowadays, and it is tolerated. In the schools it is farther along so we are beginning to see a lapse in quality and services. But just like GCEDC its one of those areas that lack of people speaking and voting their minds is what contributes to the admin's expectations and empowers them to do what they do and think it's ok.

Jeremy... its easy to make statements like you have but, those uneducated people that take potshot from behind a computer are still part of the community and each have a vote in who gets into office and represents them. Putting money up isnt the only way to affect change, it doesnt cost anything to do what I did and go before a legislative body and air your grievence. If enough people did it you might actually start to see them listen, city and county is where "the people" have the strongest voice and power to change what the Govt does. Until that begins to happen at this level you wont see things change at the state or federal level. So belittling their voice and making them feel powerless with comments like yours doesnt do much but muffle "the people"s voices.

Fred GUNDELL
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I could not agree more. Not just in Batavia either. These overpaid Administraters suck up all the taxpayers money, and give very little or nothing back. especially if they do not even bother to live in the community.

John Roach
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One interesting thing will be what to do with the 'temporary' Economic Development person the city has. She was hired for two years at a cost of $20,000 of City tax money and about another $100,000 in money set aside for business loans and grants. That gave her about $70,000 a year. For the job to become permanent, she was to meet some sort of mystery criteria that Council could never define. And they still have not, nor has the City Manager. This person could be the part time position mentioned by Mr. Kemp.

Brenda Gill
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Vibrant Batavia - after all that effort to secure a downtown grocery store FIX THE PARKING LOT before we as a city are sued from a patron falling. Anyone ever notice the areas around the handicap parking spots infront of SAL ? Really, does that parking lot shared by so many businesses say,"we want you shop Downtown Batavia" or we could care less if you break an ankle ?

So how do we change this non-residency requirements ?

Thomas Mooney
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Uneducated !, Jeremy you are the one uneducated . Do you live next to any pathstone properties . Of course not , and pathstone is not the problem , it is the lanlords who want the money from Pathstone and don't care about tearing apart the fabric that makes a good neighborhood . Either way I live between two pathstone properties and both are drug dealer havens . With more than four different tenenats every year and yet they all bring drugs and violence along with utterly disgusting habits and language without any care in the world for the property or the neighbors to an other wise nice neighborhood . Who am I to blame ? Before these properties were pathstone properties by other landlords who actualy lived in Batavia , there were good neighbors who lived here . Can you explain your stance on how I am not educated and that you are when you don't wake up and go to bed in the neighborhoods that you say I am uneducated about . I live and breath it everyday . Vacant lanlords are a major problem in this city , Jeremy are you one of them because I seemend to hit a nerve .

Mary E DelPlato
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was my post deleted? cmon really?

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