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Month: February 2017

Collins says President Trump outlined clear vision for American success

Posted 28 February 2017 at 11:17 pm

Press Release, Congressman Chris Collins

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) has released the following statement after President Trump’s address to Congress.

“Americans across the country tonight witnessed a leader committed to restoring American greatness,” said Congressman Chris Collins. “This past November, voters elected a change agent. In his first 40 days in office, President Trump is already delivering the results Americans, especially those in my district of Western New York, have demanded. Whether it’s fighting to return American jobs stolen by countries like Mexico and China, or securing our porous borders, President Trump has shown the world he is a president of action.

“If we are going to restore the hope of the American Dream for our children and grandchildren, tough choices need to be made. Unlike our last president, President Trump acknowledged that reality, and outlined a clear vision for us to overcome the challenges we will face. We are going to fight for the American worker, respect the rule of law, and harness the endless potential all Americans possess.

“I look forward to President Trump implementing the change Western New Yorkers voted for, and will continue to fight here in Congress for policies that improve the lives of my constituents.”

Gillibrand says Trump priorities ‘severely out of touch’ with NY values

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand issued the following statement after President Donald J. Trump’s speech to the Joint Session of Congress:

“President Trump made it clear in his speech tonight that many of his top priorities are still severely out of touch with our values in New York. I wanted to hear him outline a real plan to keep good-paying jobs in New York, but instead we heard more of the same talk about lowering taxes for rich corporations, building an expensive border wall, and gutting the Affordable Care Act that millions of Americans now rely on. These policies will not raise wages or create good-paying jobs for workers in New York.

“President Trump also acknowledged our urgent need for paid leave, and I encourage him to support my bill, the FAMILY Act, which would create a national paid leave plan for every American who works.”

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East rolls past Barker in Class C2 semifinal

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 28 February 2017 at 8:16 pm

Roaring out to a 21 point first quarter lead, No. 2 seed East High of Buffalo romped to an 86-40 victory over No 6 Barker in the semifinal round of the Section VI Class C2 boys basketball tournament this evening at Jamestown Community College.

Up 29-8 after the opening period, East went on to hold commanding leads of 43-12 at the half and 70-30 at the three-quarter mark.

Willard Anderson led East with a game high 29 points.

Nate Luckman scored 26, including five threes, for Barker as Malik Smith and Austin Sullivan both added 5 and Kyle Moeller 4.

Barker finishes the season at 9-13.

Class B1 Semifinals

No. 3 Newfane nipped No. 2 MST Seneca 65-63 in a Class B1 semifinal Monday.

Max Weber scored 25, including the game winner, to spark Newfane as Albert Kramp added 15.

Newfane will now face top seeded East Aurora in the B1 title game on Saturday at Buffalo State College. East Aurora downed No. 5 Dunkirk 59-55 in the other semifinal.

The Panthers led 18-13 after one period, 32-26 at the half and 46-40 at the three-quarter mark.

DEC approves changes in fishing regulations

Staff Reports Posted 28 February 2017 at 6:30 pm

18-inch minimum size and daily creel limit of 3 established for walleye at Waterport Reservior

File photo by Tom Rivers: These fishermen are pictured on Oct. 11, 2014 at the Waterport Dam.

The state Department of Environmental Conservation announced today that new fishing regulations will take effect beginning April 1, with one change in Orleans County.

The DEC has established an 18-inch minimum size limit and daily creel limit of 3 for walleye in the Waterport Reservoir.

“New York State is known for fantastic freshwater sport fishing opportunities,” said Commissioner Seggos. “These regulatory changes will help maintain these opportunities and enthusiasm for the sport.”

The modifications to the sport fishing regulations are a result of a two-year process that included biological assessment, discussions with anglers, and a formal 45-day public comment period. DEC used public input to finalize the changes. These regulations will be published in the 2017-18 Freshwater Fishing Regulations Guide that will be available at all license sales vendors and on-line in March.

To see highlights of the changes, click here.

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Report ranking Medina as among most affordable for housing seems flawed

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 28 February 2017 at 5:14 pm

File photo by Tom Rivers: A report about housing affordability in Medina underrepresented the property taxes for the Medina community.

MEDINA – The Medina community enjoyed some nice publicity recently when it was listed among the top 10 of most affordable communities for housing in New York. (Click here to see “Medina ranked one of most affordable housing markets in NY.”)

The listing for Medina at No. 9 in New York might have puzzled many people in Medina, who pay the highest overall tax rate in the Finger Lakes. The tax rates in the village, town, county, school and library are about $58 per $1,000 of assessed property. (Click here to see “Medina community has highest combined tax rate in region.”

However, the report from SmartAsset took a holistic look at household affordability, considering closing costs, real estate taxes, homeowners’ insurance and mortgage rates.

SmartAsset lists the average property tax bill in Medina at $2,786. With a $58 tax rate that would mean the average house assessed in Medina is about $48,000 in order for SmartAsset’s numbers to add up for average property tax bill.

However, the average house value is $81,220 when you consider other SmartAsset claims about Medina.

SmartAsset says the property taxes account for 3.43 of the average home’s value. The site lists $2,786 as the average property tax bill. However, it would take a house at an average value of $81,220 for SmartAsset’s numbers to work out for a tax bill of $2,786 representing 3.43 percent of the housing value.

The numbers go awry with an $81,220 value because Medina’s tax rate is $58. At that tax rate the total tax bill would be $4,710, nearly $2,000 more than what SmartAsset listed, and a number that would push Medina well out of the top 10 for affordability.

If the report looked at houses outside the village but with a Medina zip code the numbers still don’t add up. In Ridgeway and Shelby outside the village it’s about $17 cheaper per $1,000 of assessed property.

However, even Ridgeway and Shelby tax rates of about $41 per $1,000 of assessed property would be too high for SmartAsset’s math. For the average $81,220 home value (determined by calculating SmartAsset’s numbers), the property tax bill outside the village would be $3,330, which is $544 more than what SmartAsset has listed for the property tax.

Conclusion: The report from SmartAsset about Medina’s housing affordability misses the mark.

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2 from Orleans on Dean’s List at Binghamton

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 28 February 2017 at 3:17 pm

BINGHAMTON – Two students from Orleans County are on the Dean’s List at Binghamton University, State University of New York, for the Fall 2016 semester. This honor recognizes students who have achieved a grade-point average of 3.5 or higher.

Monica Benjovsky of Albion and Julia Smith of Kendall both are on the list of honored students.

4-H and Drug-Free Coalition adopt 2-mile section of Route 31

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 28 February 2017 at 2:34 pm

KNOWLESVILLE – Two groups have joined to adopt a 2.1-mile stretch of Route 31 from Long Bridge Road to Snell Road.

The 4-H Senior Council at the Cornell Cooperative Extension and the Orleans United Drug-Free Coalition pursued the project after several youths said they were concerned about litter along the roadway and wanted to beautify their community, said Patricia Crowley, the Drug-Free Coalition coordinator.

“Eliminating toxic debris allows plants and wildlife to thrive on land and in water without harm,” Crowley said in an email today. “Federal studies have found an average two-mile stretch of highway can contain roughly 32,000 pieces of litter.”

The 4-H group and DFC members are committed to collecting litter at least four times a year. They welcome some help from adults in the effort, Crowley said.

There will be an Adopt-A-Highway safety training session at 7 p.m. on March 20 at the 4-H Fairgrounds. For additional information, contact Crowley at

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Cuomo says health insurers in NY now required to provide 3-D mammograms

Posted 28 February 2017 at 12:16 pm

Press Release, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Office

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that health insurers are required under New York Insurance Law to provide medically necessary coverage for 3-D mammograms without co-pays, coinsurance, or deductibles.

3-D mammography screening, or tomosynthesis, can be more effective at detecting cancer in dense breast tissue, which is more common in women of color. This action builds on actions the Governor took earlier this year to support the health and reproductive rights of New York women, and legislation he signed last year to enhance access to breast cancer screenings.

“We are undertaking the most aggressive action in the nation to expand access to breast cancer screenings, because early detection is the best possible treatment,” Cuomo said. “By expanding access to cutting-edge, life-saving breast cancer screening options, like 3D mammograms, we are taking our efforts to protect our mothers, sisters and daughters another step further. We will continue working to further remove barriers to breast cancer detection and treatment to create a stronger, healthier New York for all.”

Tomosynthesis, or 3-D mammography, uses X-rays to collect multiple images of the breast from several angles that a computer synthesizes to create a 3-D image of the breast. Studies have shown that breast density is one of the strongest predictors of risk for breast cancer and that the risk of cancer for women with dense breast tissue, many of whom are women of color, is much greater.

In particular, Black women tend to have denser breast tissue, which limits the sensitivity of a screening mammography, thus requiring improved screening technologies such as early detection and screening by appropriate methods. Studies have shown that 3-D mammography appears to be more effective at detecting lesions in dense breast tissue than 2-D mammography.

Even though screening mammography rates for Black and White women are about the same, Black women’s cancers are detected later, in part due to access issues such as affordability, and they are more likely to die from breast cancer than White women. Breast cancer is the most common form of cancer among Black women and the second leading cause of death for Black women.

Linda Goler Blount, President and CEO of the Black Women’s Health Imperative, said, “I thank Governor Cuomo for his work in ensuring that all women, regardless of race or income, have unrestricted access to the care they need to live long, healthy lives. It is a bold step for a state to require insurers to cover 3-D mammography with no cost-sharing.  The fact that Black women now have access to 3-D mammography means there is a much greater chance they will get their difficult-to-detect cancers detected much earlier.”

The actions announced today continue a series of actions led by Cuomo to support women’s health and reproductive rights, including increasing access to breast cancer screenings and health insurance coverage in groundbreaking legislation that went into effect January 1, 2017; ensuring that all medically necessary abortion services are covered by health insurance policies without cost sharing; and ensuring that all women are covered by health insurance policies for contraceptives in amounts up to 12 month’s supply at a time without cost-sharing.

Legislation signed by Governor Cuomo in 2016, and now in effect, increases access to breast cancer screenings and health insurance coverage and built upon $91 million in investments to increase awareness and screening for breast cancer, including a public awareness campaign, community outreach programs, patient navigators, and mobile mammography vans.

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Legion nips Hearts to hold Euchre League lead

Contributed Story Posted 28 February 2017 at 10:14 am

Avenging a loss the week before, Legion trimmed Sacred Heart 36-34 in a key Medina Euchre League game Monday.

JR Wilson downed Vets Club 44-26 in the other match.

Now on top by 8 points, Legion is 761-709 on the season, Sacred Heart 753-717, JR Wilson 744-726 and Vets Club 682-788.

League competition continues on March 4 with JR Wilson at Sacred Heart and Vets Club at Legion.

NYC lawyers should do environmental impact of their travel in Squirrel Slam lawsuit

Posted 28 February 2017 at 10:09 am


It is a sure sign that there is a population explosion of New York City lawyers when the august law firm Winston and Strawn sends three attorneys to defend the squirrels of Holley.

I would suggest that that Winston and Strawn be required to file an environmental impact report as to whether this influx of high-powered legal providers might upset the delicate ecology of common sense in Western New York.

Charles F. Lind


Medina promotes firefighter/paramedic to captain

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 28 February 2017 at 9:45 am

Provided photo by Owen Toale

MEDINA – Matt Jackson, left, is congratulated by Medina Fire Chief Tom Lupo after Jackson was promoted to captain of the Medina Fire Department during Monday’s Village Board meeting.

Lupo is presenting Jackson with his captain’s badge and collar brass.

Jackson has worked as a firefighter/paramedic for Medina the past 10 ½ years. He replaces Josh Wolck who recently transferred to the Lockport Fire Department.

“I wanted the opportunity to help mold and develop our team,” Jackson said.

He said he enjoys working with Chief Tom Lupo and Jonathan Higgins, the other captain.

The captains oversee a platoon of firefighters and and take leadership at EMS and fire calls. They also have additional administrative duties.

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