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Month: April 2019

Barre should be working on revenue plan with Apex project, while experts look at other issues

Posted 30 April 2019 at 9:01 pm


After the positive responses I received from my letter outlining things to look for in a PILOT agreement in Barre with wind turbines, I received immediate personal responses from people in several townships expressing dissatisfaction.

The problems expressed were surprisingly insightful. In the previous letter I outlined ways that taxpayers’ money has been given away for almost 20 years without adequate safeguards or study. I would clearly like to help the town with the money end, even though I will probably see the towers from my back window.

I do not know what the environmental aspects are or how it will affect my or other Barre property owners property values. But everyone should know this. The impact should be known and it is extremely important that everything gets looked at. The law is clear that the lead agency can choose its experts and Apex must pay for them. Barre must insist on this.

The town needs to be fully informed. No matter what is officially done the Barre assessor should be involved with the review. Barry Flansburg, the town assessor, may not be popular because of his thankless job as assessor but he has valuable experience with tax reduction agreements gained from participation with them in more progressive taxing jurisdictions – other counties where money is not given away as freely.

The underfunding of our county’s economic development resources exacts a toll and we have seen the results for too long. With Apex, not only should the proper resources be brought to bear, but the local way of doing things needs to be funded and perhaps reorganized. We have to be sure that Apex will be more than a flashy announcement or a photo op for politicians.

Apex should be a money-maker for Barre, or it shouldn’t be done there. Guesswork is not sufficient.

Conrad F. Cropsey


Contractor adds dirt to smooth out canal embankments

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 30 April 2019 at 8:51 pm

Photos by Tom Rivers

ALBION – Contractors haul dirt to the canal embankment on the north side of the Erie Canal near Brown Street in Albion this afternoon.

Trees were removed from this section more than a year ago, and the stumps were also taken out. That left a steep embankment, but the contractor for this phase of the project has been hauling dirt to the embankments to smooth them out.

The Canal Corp. has a goal of having an easy to maintain, mowable slope by the canal. The Canal Corp. said it will be planting shrubs near the top of the towpath, grass and wildflowers on the slope of the embankments and small trees about 25 feet from the slope of the towpath.

The state Canal Corp. has hired Hohl Industrial of Tonawanda and Tioga Construction of Herkimer to remove tree stumps, and do packing and grading of the embankments where trees were cut down in late 2017 and early 2018.

The contractor takes another load of dirt to the canal embankment, west of Brown Street.

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Kendall ‘9’ in another suspended game

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 30 April 2019 at 8:20 pm

Kendall pulled even with Attica at 7-7 in the fifth inning this evening before umpires halted play in the Genesee Region League baseball game being played at Holley due to darkness.

Mickey Gardner hit a two-run home run to pull Kendall even in the fifth. He also belted a two-run homer in the first inning.

The suspended contest is the second in a week for Kendall which also still has to complete a suspended contest against Holley.

Attica defeated Holley 11-2 in the first game of today’s doubleheader.

Roy-Hart 30, Newfane 3
Defending champion Roy-Hart romped to a 30-3 win over Newfane in a Niagara-Orleans League makeup softball game this afternoon.

Mallory Steiner had 4 hits and Maddie Fry 2, including a home run, to lead the Lady Rams attack as Sam Choate picked up the win in the circle striking out 12.

Roy-Hart broke the game wide open by erupting for 11 runs on 9 hits in the third inning.

Roy-Hart is now 4-0 and Newfane 0-3 in N-O competition.

Holley 27, Mt. Mercy 10
Holley defeated host Mt. Mercy 27-10 in a non league game as winning pitcher Maddie Marsh and Rachel Howard both had 4 hits and Halee Passarell 3. Passarell drove in a total of 6 runs and Marsh 4.

In the circle, Marsh struck out 9.

Holley put a lock on the win by exploding for 14 runs in the top of the seventh inning.

Akron 3, Roy-Hart 2 1/2
Defending champion Akron improved to 5-0 by trimming Roy-Hart 3-2 1/2 this afternoon in an N-O makeup tennis match.

Akron swept the three singles matches on wins by Nate Chubb, Will Chubb and Morgan Wdowka.

Roy-Hart, which is now 5-2, won the three doubles matches with victories by the duos of Michael and Jason Kuchey, Aspen Moore-Kayla Hagen and Jose Campos-Mason Collins.

Albion and Medina split in N-O track meet

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 30 April 2019 at 7:55 pm

Photos by Cheryl Wertman – Albion’s Tre Yaskulski soars to a victory in the 110 Hurdles during the Purple Eagles home meet against rival Medina this afternoon.

The Albion boys track squad stayed undefeated at 3-0 by posting a 101-40 victory over visiting rival Medina this afternoon in a Niagara-Orleans League meet.

Medina did gain a split on the day by downing Albion 83-49  in the girls meet as the Mustangs improve to 2-1.

Albion’s Domnic DiGiulio lets go with a throw in the Shotput.

Tre Yaskulski was a double winner in the 110 Hurdles and Triple Jump for the Albion boys which also got individual event wins from Dom Burton (400 Hurdles), Kendyll Hadick (100), Ugene Harrison (200), Zach Collacecchi (400), Kirk Ellison (Shotput), Nick Perry (Discus), Nate Moore (Long Jump), Christian Drisdom (High Jump) and Alex Zaczek (Pole Vault).

Caelan Holland doubled in the 800 and 1600 for Medina as Cameron Casana took the 3200.

The Medina girls were led by two individual event double winners as Devin Griffin took the 100 Hurdles and High Jump and Olivia Carter the Long Jump and Triple Jump.

The Mustangs also had  Alex Strong  win the 400 Hurdles, Emma Schwartott the 400, Hannah Heil the 1500 and Jessie Granchelli the 3000.

Albion’s Cameo Haskins competes in the Shotput.

Abby Scanlan doubled in the 100 and 200  and Ashlyn LeBaron in the Shotput and Discus for Albion as Emma Mathes added a win in the 800.

Roy-Hart sweeps Barker
Roy-Hart’s track teams both improved to 2-2 by sweeping Barker as the Rams won the boys’ meet 72-64 and the girls’ competition 87-54.

The Roy-hart boys were led by a quartet of individual event double winners as Will Rickard took the 400 Hurdles and High Jump, Ozzy Moore the 1600 and 3200, Ethan Lindke the Long Jump and Triple Jump and Nate Bower the Shotput and Discus.

Josh Weekland won the 100 and 110 Hurdles for Barker which slips to 2-1.

The Roy-Hart girls were paced by a trio of individual event double winners as Kali Scharping took the High Jump and Long Jump, Anna Rickard the 1500 and 3000 and Nadia White the 400 and Triple Jump.

Katrina Clare doubled in the 100 and 200 and Shelby Ewald the Shotput and Discus for Barker.

Newfane sweeps Wilson
The Newfane track teams improved to 2-0 by sweeping rival Wilson taking the boys’ meet 76-65 and the girls’ 99-41.

Reese Casinelli was a quadruple winner for the Newfane boys in the 110 Hurdles, 100, 200 and 400.

Will Schwartzmueller doubled in the 1600 and 3200 and Marcell Wilson in the Long Jump and Triple Jump for Wilson.

Gina Shorter doubled in the 100 and 200 for the Newfane girls.

Skylar Munnikhuysen doubled in the High Jump and Long Jump and Izzy Dinse in the Shotput and Discus for Wilson.

Medina’s Kharise Johnson in action in the Long Jump

Medina’s Jarin Rhim in action in the High Jump

Holley students will install barn this week for community farm in Rochester

Posted 30 April 2019 at 6:56 pm

Press Release, Holley Central School

HOLLEY – Students in Holley’s Middle School/High School Geometry in Construction class on Thursday and Friday will install the barn they have built for Homesteads for Hope, a non-profit community farm that is open to people of all abilities in the Rochester region.

Weather permitting, the students will transport their “work in progress” to H4H on Manitou Road. Students are scheduled to be on site from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. each day to complete the installation of the barn that will house small animals.

Holley math teacher Russ Albright and technology teacher Tim Rogers co-teach Geometry in Construction, with students rotating between math days and building days each week. There are 12 students in this year’s class, with the majority in 10th grade.

The class helps students learn how math concepts can be applied to real-world problems to create solutions. Students combined their math and construction skills to build a 16’ x 20’ barn for H4H this year.

In the fall, students went on a fieldtrip to the H4H farm so they could better understand how this organization operates and where the barn will be placed on the property. By housing animals like chickens and rabbits in the barn, it will provide new opportunities for young adults to care for the animals on the farm. The barn installation is part of the Phase I plan for H4H.

The barn features a gambrel roof, sliding barn doors, windows and a loft on the second floor. Students constructed stairs to the loft, designed to maximize floor space. A metal skin siding will be added to the barn once it is in place. Students planned for the project by working on a scale model of the barn. The barn was staged on a specially built platform at school before it was dismantled and transported to H4H to be installed permanently.

The skills students learn in this class will be carried with them beyond high school to be used in future jobs or to make home repairs.

“Students enjoy this class because they can see the real-world application of math,” said Rogers. “Many students who don’t traditionally perform well in math class are performing much better in this class.”

The scores from last year’s Regents Exam continue to show that Geometry in Construction students score better than traditional geometry class students. Regardless of how they do on the Geometry Regents exam in June, they leave class feeling proud of completing a community service project that helps others.

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Ballot set for candidates for Board of Education at 5 districts

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 30 April 2019 at 4:01 pm

Kendall is moving polling place from school to the Town Hall

The slate is set for the May 21 elections for the local boards of education.

Here is who is running for the volunteer board seats at the local districts in Orleans County.

• ALBION – There are four candidates running for two five-year seats on the board. David Sidari is seeking re-election. He has served on the board for 20 years. Another incumbent, Wendy Kirby, isn’t seeking re-election. The other candidates include Joyce Riley, Gregg Boose Sr., and Linda Weller. Riley and Weller have previously served on the Board of Education.

• HOLLEY – There are two open three-year seats but only one candidate, incumbent John Heise. The other position will likely be determined by write-in votes.

• KENDALL – Chaley Swift is the incumbent and running for the five-year seat with no opposition. Kendall is moving the location of the polling place from the elementary school gym to the Kendall Town Hall. Voting will be from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.

• LYNDONVILLE – Three people – incumbent Harold Suhr, Vern Fonda and Kristin Nicholson– are running for three open seats. Terry Stinson and Rick Mufford, current board members, aren’t seeking re-election to three-year terms.

• MEDINA – In Medina, four people are running for three open seats, including incumbents Wendi Pencille and Lori Draper. Kellie Schrader-Hurrell and Mary Eileen Hare are also running. Brenda Lindsay isn’t seeking re-election.

The candidates with the two highest number of votes will receive a three-year term and the candidate with the third most votes will receive a two-year term.

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Local health departments promote National Infant Immunization Week

Posted 30 April 2019 at 2:28 pm

‘Vaccines are among the most successful and cost-effective public health tools available for preventing disease and death,’ – Paul Pettit, Public Health director for Genesee and Orleans counties

Press Release, Public Health Departments in Orleans and Genesee

National Infant Immunization Week ((April 27 to May 4) is an annual observance to highlight the importance of protecting infants from vaccine-preventable diseases and to celebrate the achievements of immunization programs in promoting healthy communities throughout the United States. This year marks the 25th anniversary of this significant observance! Paul Pettit, Public Health Director of Genesee and Orleans counties, proclaims the many benefits and accomplishments vaccines have on our communities.

“Vaccines are among the most successful and cost-effective public health tools available for preventing disease and death,” he said. “When you get vaccinated, you not only protect yourself but you also help protect the people around you who might be too young or too sick to get vaccinated themselves. This is called ‘community immunity’ or ‘herd immunity.’ If enough people stop getting vaccinated, more outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases, such as measles, will occur.”

Most parents choose the safe, proven protection of vaccines. Giving babies the recommended vaccinations by age two is the best way to protect them from 14 serious childhood diseases, like whooping cough and measles. These diseases can be especially serious for infants and young children. Parents are encouraged to talk to their child’s doctor to ensure that their baby is up-to-date on vaccinations. It is important to follow the recommended immunization schedule to protect infants and children by providing immunity early in life, before they encounter potentially life-threatening diseases.

The recent outbreak of measles in our country has reached the highest number of cases since the disease was eliminated in 2000.  Most recent data shows the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has confirmed 695 cases of measles from 22 states. The return of the disease occurs when an unvaccinated traveler visits a country where there is widespread measles transmission, gets infected with measles, and returns to the United States and exposes people in a community who are not vaccinated. Once measles enters an under-vaccinated community, it becomes difficult to control the spread of the disease. When measles enters a highly vaccinated community, outbreaks either don’t happen or are usually small. This is why taking proper precautions and receiving the vaccine is so important to the health of our community.

Below is a summary of the vaccines children should receive by 2 years of age:

  1. The Varicella vaccine protects against chickenpox. Symptoms of chickenpox include rash, tiredness, headache, and fever. Complications of the disease include infected blisters, bleeding disorders, encephalitis (brain swelling), and pneumonia (infection in the lungs). Children need 2 doses of chickenpox vaccine. CDC recommends children receive the first dose between 12–15 months and the second between 4–6 years.
  2. The DTaP vaccine combines protection against diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis. Symptoms of diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis include sore throat, mild fever, weakness, and swollen glands in neck. Complications of these diseases include swelling of the heart muscle, heart failure, coma, paralysis, death. Children need 5 doses of DTaP vaccine. CDC recommends infants receive the first dose at 2 months, the second at 4 months, the third at 6 months, the fourth between 15–18 months, and the fifth between 4–6 years.
  3. The Hib vaccine protects against Haemophilus influenzae disease. Symptoms of Haemophilus influenzae include fever and chills, headache, nausea, excessive tiredness, and altered mental status. Complications of these infections may include loss of limbs, brain damage, or hearing loss. Children need 3-4 doses of the Hib vaccine. CDC recommends infants receive the first dose at 2 months, the second at 4 months, the third at 6 months (if needed), and the last shot between 12–15 months.
  4. The Hepatitis A vaccine protects against the hepatitis A virus (HAV). Symptoms of HAV typically do not appear until 4 weeks after exposure or may not occur at all. Symptoms that may appear include fever, dark urine, abdominal pain, nausea, and jaundice (yellowing of the eyes and skin). Complications of the disease include liver failure, arthralgia (joint pain), kidney, pancreatic, and blood disorders. Children need two doses of the hepatitis A vaccine. CDC recommends babies receive the first dose when the child turns 1 and the second should be given 6-12 months later.
  5. The Hepatitis B vaccine protects against a liver infection caused by the hepatitis B virus (HBV). Symptoms of HBV are fever, nausea and vomiting, abdominal pain, dark urine, and jaundice. Complications of HBV can lead to cirrhosis, liver cancer, and death. Children need 3-4 doses of the HBV vaccine. CDC recommends infants receive the first dose at birth, the second dose is given at 1-2 months, the third at 4 months (if needed), and the last is given at 6-18 months.
  6. The Influenza (Flu) vaccine protects against flu virus. Symptoms of flu include fevers, chills, coughing, runny nose, fatigue, sore throat, and muscle or body aches. Complications of flu may include sinus and ear infections, pneumonia, inflammation of the heart, brain or muscles, organ failure, and even death. The influenza vaccine is started at 6 months and is needed every fall or winter for the rest of your life. CDC recommends children 6 months and older receive the vaccine once a year.
  7. The MMR vaccine combines protection against measles, mumps, and rubella. Symptoms of these diseases may include fever, headache, rashes, and eye irritation. Complications of measles, mumps, and rubella include deafness, brain damage, swelling of the spinal cord, infection of the lungs, and death. Children need 2 doses of the MMR vaccine. CDC recommends the first dose should be given between 12-15 months and the second dose between 4-6 years.
  8. The Polio vaccine protects against the infectious polio disease. Symptoms of the disease may include muscle and joint weakness and pain, sleep-related breathing disorders (such as sleep apnea), general fatigue (tiredness) and exhaustion with minimal activity, and muscle atrophy (muscle loss). Complications can include paresthesia (feelings of pins and needles in the legs), meningitis, paralysis, and death. Children need 4 doses of polio vaccine. CDC recommends the first dose should be given at 2 months, the second at 4 months, the third between 6-18 months, and the fourth between 4-6 years.
  9. The Prevnar vaccine protects against pneumococcal disease. Symptoms include coughing, fevers and chills, difficulty breathing, and chest pains. Complications of this disease include brain damage, hearing loss, blood infection, and even death. Children need 4 doses of Prevnar. CDC recommends the first dose should be given at 2 months, the second at 4 months, the third at 6 months, and the fourth between 12-15 months.
  10. The Rotavirus vaccine protects against the contagious rotavirus. Symptoms of rotavirus include diarrhea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. Complications of the disease include severe diarrhea and dehydration which can lead to death. Children need 2-3 doses of rotavirus vaccine. CDC recommends the first dose is given at 2 months, the second is given at 4 months, and the third is given at 6 months (if needed).

Protecting your baby from vaccine-preventable diseases begins even before your baby is born. Brenden Bedard, Director of Community Health Services of Genesee and Orleans Counties, educates on what vaccines mothers should get when they are pregnant.

“All pregnant women are recommended to receive the Tdap and influenza (flu) vaccine during each pregnancy,” he said. “The recommended time to get the Tdap shot is during the 27th through 36th week of pregnancy and the influenza shot can be given at any time during flu season, typically October through May. Pregnant women who receive these vaccines are also helping to protect their babies from diseases for the first several months after their birth, when they are too young to get vaccinated.”

In addition to mothers, it is also important for immediate family, such as spouses, grandparents, and anyone who will be in close contact with a new baby to receive the Tdap vaccine and the influenza vaccine during flu season.

While babies may experience some discomfort immediately after receiving vaccinations, it’s important to remember the pain is temporary, while the protection is long term. You work hard to help keep your baby safe and healthy!

For more information on infant immunizations, click here.

The Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments participate in the Vaccines for Children (VFC) program. This federally-funded program will assist families who are uninsured or underinsured receive childhood vaccines at no cost. For more information, please contact your local health department.

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Ribbon-cutting planned June 11 for addition to County Administration Building

Photo by Tom Rivers: The 23,000-square-foot addition to the Orleans County Administration Building is shown on April 9. The building has been under construction for about a year.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 30 April 2019 at 11:27 am

ALBION – Orleans County officials are planning on a June 11 ribbon-cutting celebration for a 23,000-square-foot addition to the County Administration Building.

Contractors have been working for a year on the $10 million project. The addition will be used by 50 county employees from the Health Department, Board of Elections, information technology department and the Legislative office and staff. The building is connected to the current Administration Building with the addition on the south side.

The new space will include a meeting room for the Legislature with about 60 seats. The current Legislative chambers has about 30 seats and is one of the smallest municipal meeting rooms in the county.

The county is receiving a state grant for $3,682,748 towards the project as part of a healthcare initiative. That state grant includes funds to create space at the neighboring Mental Health Building for a primary doctor from Oak Orchard Health. State Sen. Robert Ortt also secured a $200,000 state grant towards the addition.

The County Legislature last week voted to seek proposals from firms to relocate office supplies, files and IT equipment from the current county buildings to the new site for the departments affected by the move. Those materials and equipment are expected to be moved to the new addition on the weekend following the June 11 ribbon cutting.

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Medina hospital asked to help pay for new ambulance

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 30 April 2019 at 9:55 am

(Editor’s Note: This article was updated from an earlier version that said the Medina Memorial Hospital had agreed to help pay for an ambulance. The negotiations haven’t started, with no commitment yet from the hospital.)

MEDINA – The Medina Fire Department often transfers patients at Medina Memorial Hospital to hospitals in Buffalo and Rochester.

The first 22 days of April, Medina FD did 54 interfacility transfers from Medina Memorial, Fire Chief Tom Lupo told the Village Board last week.

Those trips occupy a crew for at least a couple hours, and put wear and tear on the ambulances.

Medina tries to replace an ambulance every two years, and the cost is typically about $160,000. Lupo and village officials are asking Medina Memorial Hospital to chip in for the cost of a new ambulance.

Lupo wants to ask Medina Memorial to contribute $5,000 annually towards a new ambulance, and with that contribution could rise to $10,000 in future years.

The village wants to set up negotiations with the hospital. The Village Board authorized Lupo to represent the village with the hospital.

The Village Board last week voted to declare a 2009 ambulance as surplus and donated the vehicle to the Orleans/Niagara BOCES program in Medina, where the vehicle and engine will be taken apart by students training to become mechanics.

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Lyndonville school district recognized with school safety excellence award

Posted 30 April 2019 at 9:27 am

Press Release, Utica National Insurance Group

LYNDONVILLE – Lyndonville Central School District is one of 156 school districts and Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) in New York State to receive the Utica National Insurance Group’s School Safety Excellence Award for 2018 at the Titanium with Honors level.

The honor is presented annually and recognizes school districts’ safety efforts as they work to help keep students, staff and visitors safe. Lyndonville Central School District received its award at Utica National’s 39th annual school safety seminar at Batavia Downs Gaming and Hotel in Batavia, one of seven such seminars the company hosts in the state.

Lyndonville officials accepted a certificate to commemorate the district’s safety efforts and a $500 award for use in furthering those efforts from Utica National representatives.

Utica National’s School Safety Excellence Award Program has three levels (titanium, platinum, and gold) in which schools can earn a meritorious distinction by meeting specific criteria to enhance overall safety. Through the program, schools with their own transportation, schools with contract transportation, and BOCES are evaluated. Categories covered include bullying prevention programs, playground safety and other areas, and are measured using specific, quantifiable surveys.

“Safety and health concerns continue to be a priority in our school districts,” said Brian Saville, Resident Senior Vice President in Utica National’s Educational Institutions Unit. “Districts that go ‘above and beyond’ to provide a safe, healthy and focused culture for learning are to be applauded, and we’re pleased to count Lyndonville Central School District among them.”

Saville noted that, beyond the recognition itself, an added benefit of following the safety program is the chance to pinpoint specific threats to safety. “The time to address those threats is before a loss happens, which really helps contribute to the safety culture that districts are working toward.”

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