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Basketball and pickleball courts added at Holley school district

Posted 25 October 2017 at 10:34 pm

Photos courtesy of Holley Central School

HOLLEY – Students demonstrate how to play pickleball on a repurposed tennis court at Holley Central School.

As part of the final phase of the capital project at the school district, the existing tennis courts at the Middle School/High School were repurposed as tennis, pickleball and basketball courts.

In addition to adding outdoor physical education stations for students, these areas are available for community use when school is not in session. The remodeled courts opened earlier this month, and students and community members have been using them daily ever since.

Finishing touches are being applied to the new tennis courts installed on another part of the MS/HS campus, but they are not open for use yet.

Students enjoy playing tennis on the newly remodeled court.

Through the Capital Project, over $30 million of improvements have been made to district facilities, at zero impact to taxpayers.

“The entire project has provided the district with one of the finest facilities in Western New York,” said District Superintendent Robert D’Angelo. “I’m pleased to be able to bring these benefits to our students and community. Our long-term goal for the campus is to maintain it as a state-of-the-art school facility and learning environment. We thank the community for their patience and continued support of this project as we’ve completed each phase.”

Students play a quick game of pick-up basketball on the new court.

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Holley Elementary School will debut new report cards

By Kristina Gabalski, Correspondent Posted 17 October 2017 at 9:36 am

Photos by Kristina Gabalski: Holley Central Pre-K teacher Amie Callen, left, received the Soaring to New Heights Award from Elementary School Principal Karri Schiavone during the Board of Education meeting Monday evening.

HOLLEY – The elementary school will soon unveil new student report cards with a 4-point scale that indicate how students are progressing towards meeting standards.

“There will be no more A’s, B’s or C’s,” Eelementary School Principal Karri Schiavone told the Board of Education on Monday.

The new report cards will, “measure students’ mastery of learning standards, we want them to master standards,” she said.

Schiavone provided board members with a draft of the new report cards elementary students will be receiving this school year.

“You are the first to see this,” Schiavone told the BOE. “It is a totally different way of reporting to parents.”

Schiavone said the school has been working for three years to develop a report card that is standards based.

Report cards will indicate when students have met district and state standards. “You can’t put a percentage on that,” Schiavone said.

Holley Central Board of Education members were honored during Monday’s regular meeting for their service to the district.  School Board Recognition Week is October 23-27.  Each board member received a travel mug filled with candy. The mugs have a district logo on one side and a note of thanks on the other side for the time and dedication members give to students, staff and the Holley community.

She explained report cards will also show an assessment of students’ learning behaviors such as participating in school discussions and demonstrating behaviors good students have.

Schiavone said the school will plan a parent information night for primary and intermediate grades before the First Quarter report cards are sent home.

“We want clarity for parents,” she said.

In other action at the board meeting:

• Pre-K teacher Amie Callen received the Soaring to New Heights Award. Schiavone said Callen had applied for and received a $500 scholarship to obtain books for her classroom library.

“I know the time and energy she puts into her classroom,” Schiavone said of Callen, who was nominated for the award to recognize the extra effort she makes to provide learning supplies for her students.

• Monroe 2-Orleans BOCES district superintendent Jo Anne Antonacci reported to board members regarding the services BOCES is currently providing to the district.

During her report, she commended Holley graduate Steven Klatt, whose team from Braised in the South, recently won the Food Network’s “Great Food Truck Race.”

The 31-year old Klatt studied culinary arts at BOCES and was a student of chef Kevin Bedard.

“It’s a wonderful accomplishment,” Antonacci said. “Congratulations to all of you.”

Antonacci said Klatt’s success is evidence of what students can accomplish after graduation, and that students of BOCES programs find meaningful employment. “It’s a tribute to the culinary program,” Antonacci said.

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Holley Rotary donates $1K for music supplies at school

Staff Reports Posted 16 October 2017 at 11:35 am

Provided photo

HOLLEY – The Holley Rotary Club has donated $1,000 for music supplies for students at Holley Central School. Past Club President John Heise, left, presents a check for $1,000 to Zachary Busch, the High School/Middle School band teacher. A portion of the allocation was recently given to elementary and secondary bands to purchase reeds and music scores for students who could not afford them.

The Holley Rotary Club supports youth in other ways. The club sponsors families at Christmas, annually sends four students to a leadership weekend in Canada, is active in Youth Exchange, sponsored the High School Interact Club, annually provides $2,000 in scholarships, provides needed school supplies for students, sponsors students for trips, and supports Eagle Scout projects and other efforts.

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Murray canal bridge reopens today after repairs

Posted 16 October 2017 at 11:13 am

Press Release, NYS Department of Transportation

MURRAY – The New York State Department of Transportation today announced that the bridge carrying Telegraph Road over the Erie Canal in the town of Murray, Orleans County, is open after being closed for repairs the last three weeks.

The bridge was closed on September 26. Steel repairs were made to restore use of the bridge for vehicles with a maximum weight of 4 tons.

The bridge is one of seven canal bridges in Orleans County scheduled to be fully rehabilitated beginning next summer.

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Work gets started on replacing roof of historic chapel at Hillside Cemetery

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 12 October 2017 at 5:43 pm

Photos courtesy of Melissa Ierlan

CLARENDON – Workers from Leo J. Roth in Rochester have started working on the roof at the historic chapel at Hillside Cemetery, just south of the Village of Holley.

Roth will be removing slate shingles and installing new ones. The roofing company will place new copper in valleys on the roof and also will be replacing a rotted section of the roof near the flying buttress by the main entrance of the building. The project will cost about $80,000.

The Leo J. Roth roofing company set up scaffolding at the chapel last week. Today, the company started working on removing shingles.

A state grant is covering half of the bill, while donations and fundraisers are paying the local match.

The chapel and cemetery are owned by the Town of Clarendon. The state in December 2015 approved a $126,210 grant for work on the chapel.

In addition to the roof, the chapel will have windows repaired and other restoration work. The roof repair is the first of the projects, and the most critical for keeping water from seeping in and damaging the stone masonry, said Erin Anheier, secretary of the Clarendon Historical Society. She also took the lead in writing the grant for the project.

The community stepped up with donations and supported numerous fundraisers to cover the local share for the restoration and repair of the building, which was constructed in 1894. The cemetery is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The chapel a year ago was inducted into the Medina Sandstone Hall of Fame.

The Clarendon Historical Society has pushed to apply for the state grant, and raise the local share for the project.

The society would like to see the restored building used for community events, including concerts, lectures, arts and crafts fairs, family reunions, small weddings and funerals.

The building is a landmark on Route 237, leading into the village.

“It sets the tone as you enter Holley and see the other sandstone structures,” Anheier said. “It really sets the ambiance of what the Victorians were trying to achieve with their rural cemeteries.”

The town will be seeking bids from contractors to restore the windows at the chapel. Once the roof and window projects are done, Anheier said the building will be weather tight and the focus will shift to interior improvements.


The chapel was inducted into the Medina Sandstone Hall of Fame in October 2016. The elegant Gothic Revival style chapel was built in 1894 for $3,350 and is a primary feature of the cemetery. Originally constructed for burial services at the cemetery, the 20-by-32-foot chapel was designed by Rochester architect Addison Forbes and features Medina sandstone construction, a slate roof, and decorative glass windows. The chapel and cemetery was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2013.

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Holley’s $2 million water project will replace infrastructure on 237, northeast part of village

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 11 October 2017 at 6:46 pm

HOLLEY – The big state grant announced today for the Village of Holley will help the community replace old water infrastructure on Route 237 and the northeast quadrant of the village, Mayor Brian Sorotchy said.

Holley is planning a $2,090,000 project and the state will pay for $1,254,000 of the upgrade with a grant.

The work will follow the same area of improvements for new sidewalks. The governor in April announced a $1,780,000 state grant for Holley to construct curbs and sidewalks that are compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

“These two projects combined will result in new sidewalks and water main for about a third of the Village, installed over the next few years,” Sorotchy said today in an email. “We are very excited to have our project selected and thank everyone involved in putting the application together as well as all of the support we have received from our local, county, and state representatives!”

When the projects are done, the state Department of Transportation also plans to mill and repave routes 237 and 31 in the village.

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Holley, Medina get state grants for water system upgrades

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 11 October 2017 at 11:22 am

Photo by Tom Rivers: The top of the Holley water tank on Route 237 is shown in this photo from Sept. 2.

Governor Andrew Cuomo has $22 million in state grants for water system upgrades in the Finger Lakes region, including projects in Medina and Holley.

The Village of Holley is planning a $2,090,000 project. The state will pay for $1,254,000 of the upgrade with a grant.

The Village of Medina will receive a $282,000 state grant for a $1,128,000 water project.

The grants are part of a $255 million statewide that are funded through the Water Infrastructure Improvement Act, as well as the new Intermunicipal Water Infrastructure Grants Program.

“This unprecedented investment continues New York’s commitment to helping municipalities develop necessary infrastructure to protect our water resources,” Cuomo said today. “These investments are crucial to supporting the health and safety of our communities, and help lay the foundation for future growth and prosperity in every corner of this great state.”

Under the landmark $2.5 billion Clean Water Infrastructure Act of 2017, announced by Governor Cuomo in April, these grants are part of $255 million in funding available for municipalities statewide to support critical water quality infrastructure projects. The Act also made $30 million available for the new Intermunicipal Water Infrastructure Grants Program, which provides grant funds for two or more municipalities sharing water quality infrastructure.

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Holley buys 4 body cameras for police officers

By Kristina Gabalski, Correspondent Posted 11 October 2017 at 9:38 am

Village also approves ‘dangerous buildings law’

HOLLEY – The Village Board on Tuesday approved the purchase of four body cameras for the Holley Police Department.  The cost of the cameras is being covered by a $5,000 Division of Criminal Justice Services grant.

Village leaders had discussed obtaining body cameras in the past, and Police Chief Roland Nenni, who also serves as Albion Police Chief, said the cameras are being purchased now because he wanted to work out details of the program in Albion, before going ahead with body cameras in Holley.

Holley police officers will, “activate their camera any time they speak with anyone in public,” Chief Nenni said.

He noted that data from the cameras will be kept for a minimum of one year. He said the body camera policy in place in Albion can also be used in Holley. Trustees said they will review that policy.

In other action at the Village Board meeting:

• Holley adopted a dangerous buildings law which will help the village address dilapidated and unsafe buildings.

Mayor Brian Sorochty said during a public hearing in September that the new law is an, “extension of the current process” the village utilizes in getting property owners to bring their buildings up to code. The Village of Albion has passed a similar law, Holley leaders said.

Previously, the village had been able to serve citations to village property owners regarding violations of building codes and unsafe buildings, but the new law provides a process by which the village has recourse to the Supreme Court of the State of New York to obtain a court order to compel property owners to take action when their buildings become unsafe.

The law includes conditions constituting dangerous buildings; duties of Code Enforcement and Fire Prevention, which will enforce the law; the process of surveying a premises to determine if it is unsafe and deem it a nuisance; execution of court orders; and penalties for offenses.

Sorochty emphasized the law does not pertain to the old Holley High School, which the village would like to see renovated for a new use, potentially including village offices.

The new law does pertain to, “dilapidated (buildings) where the owners are resistant to working with the village,” either to bring the properties into compliance with village codes or to demolish buildings which have been deemed a nuisance, the mayor said.

Conditions stated in the law constituting dangerous buildings include structures, “which have become or are so dilapidated, decayed, unsafe, unsanitary or which so utterly fail to provide the amenities essential to decent living that they are unfit for human habitation; and those which have parts thereof which are so attached that they may fall and injure members of the public or property.”

Penalties for failure to comply with any order of the Supreme Court to demolish or repair a dangerous building include a maximum fine of $250, jail time of up to 15 days, or both, and, “each and every day such failure to comply continues beyond the date fixed for compliance by an order of the Supreme Court of the State of New York.”

• The Village Board approved the purchase of a hybrid lift truck as part of the Municipal Alternate Fuel Vehicle Program at a cost of $153,275.  Village Water & Electric Department Superintendent Matt Campbell said the purchase is necessary to replace the village’s aging lift truck.

The hybrid truck will be purchased on an interest-free loan to be paid for by an increase in monthly electric bills for village municipal electric customers.

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Photo of Holley canal culvert earns honorable mention in annual contest

Posted 5 October 2017 at 8:09 pm

This photo of a sandstone culvert in Holley, taken by Russ Bosch of Holley, earned honorable mention in the annual Erie Canalway Photo Contest.

Press Release, Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor

WATERFORD – Twelve images that capture the beauty and character of the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor have been selected as winners of the 12th Annual Erie Canalway Photo Contest.

Winning images will be featured in the 2018 Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor Calendar, which will be available for free in December. Winning photos can be viewed by clicking here.

“These outstanding images offer a snapshot of what makes this 500-mile ribbon of waterway connecting the Atlantic Ocean to the Great Lakes a national treasure,” said Bob Radliff, Erie Canalway Executive Director. “We hope they inspire people to protect and celebrate our unparalleled canal heritage.”

This photo that shows a tugboat at sunset in Fairport won a first place award in the photo contest. It was taken by Kathy Polino of Fairport.

Judges selected twelve winners from nearly 300 entries. First, second and third place photographs were chosen in each of four contest categories: Classic Canal, Along the Trail, On the Water, and Canal Communities. In addition, twelve photographs received an honorable mention.

This year’s winners include a strong showing from the greater Rochester area, including Fairport, Pittsford, Spencerport and Henrietta.

Free 2018 Erie Canalway calendars will be distributed starting December 1st throughout upstate New York. Locations where the calendars will be made available to the public will be posted in November at Funding support for the calendar comes from the New York State Canal Corporation.

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Planners support Murray business expansion on Ridge Road

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 29 September 2017 at 10:53 am

MURRAY – A company the creates and sells educational kits is doing a 9,225-square-foot warehouse expansion on Ridge Road in Murray.

Darren Coon, the company chief executive officer, founded the company in 2006. TeacherGeek currently works out of 6,500-square-foot facility at 16551 Ridge Rd. The company’s hands-on kits require students to use STEM (science, technology, engineering and math).

The Orleans County Planning Board on Thursday backed the site plan for the expansion, which also includes a parking lot with 31 spaces.

For more on TeacherGeek, click here.

In other action, the Planning Board:

• Approved the site plan for James Bitsas and Marc Massaro to operate a pizzeria in Medina at 11360 Maple Ridge Rd.

Cusimano’s Pizzeria will be in an existing 3,300-square-foot building that has been vacant for several years. It was formerly a K & K Food Mart and gas station.

• Approved a six-month moratorium for the Town of Carlton on freestanding or ground-mounted solar energy systems. (The moratorium does not include roof-mounted solar systems.)

The town’s zoning ordinance only briefly addresses solar energy systems. The six months will give Carlton time to update its zoning ordinance for siting solar energy systems, county planners said.

• Supported the updates in the Town of Albion’s zoning ordinance for solar energy systems. (Albion is the seventh municipality in the county to update its solar regulations since 2016.

Albion would allow large-scale solar (up to 15 kilowatts) in all zoning districts. However, a minimum lot size of 10 acres in residential areas might eliminate the systems in those areas.

Solar farms, which exceed 15 kilowatts, also require a minimum lot size of 10 acres. The solar farms need a decommissioning plan, mechanical equipment enclosed by fencing, screening with a vegetative buffer, warning signage and one parking space.

Roof-mounted systems do not need site plan approval from the town as long as the energy is used onsite.

• Opposed the special use permit request for a Kendall resident to store boats outdoors in a residential/hamlet district.

David Oschmann wants to have outdoor storage of boats at a boat maintenance and repair business at his residence, 1893 Kendall Rd. Oschmann wouldn’t sell materials, goods or services at the site.

Having boats outside is against the Kendall zoning ordinance which states, “no outdoor storage or display of materials, goods, supplies, or equipment related to the operation of the home business” shall be permitted.

Oschmann can seek a use variance with the Town of Kendall.

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