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Month: March 2020

Our Letters Policy

Posted 12 August 2020 at 7:00 am

We appreciate input from our readers, and we publish letters to the editor without charge. While open speech and responsibility are encouraged, comments may be rejected if they are purely a personal attack, offensive or repetitive. Comments are the opinions of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Orleans Hub. Although care is taken to moderate comments, we have no control over how they are interpreted and we are unable to guarantee the accuracy of comments and the rationality of the opinions expressed. We reserve the right to edit letters for content and brevity. Please limit the length of your letter (we suggest no more than 500 words) and provide your name, telephone number, mailing address and a verifiable email address for verification purposes. Letters should be emailed to news@orleanshub.com.

Posted 12 August 2020 at 7:00 am

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Albion 15U diamond squad tops Batavia

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 12 August 2020 at 9:50 pm

Leading all the way, Albion 15U bested Batavia 9-5 this evening in a GLOW League baseball game at Williams Park in Batavia.

An RBI double by Javon Jones highlighted a three run first inning which put Albion on top to stay.

Jones had two hits on the evening as Jacob Hughson, Cade Wolcott and Caleb Fox each had one.

Wolcott picked up the win on the mound scattering 3 hits and striking out 5.

Improving to 3-1, Albion next faces Attica on August 18 at 7:30 p.m. at Williams Park.

Orleans reports no new Covid-19 cases, while Genesee has 1 more

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 12 August 2020 at 5:09 pm

Orleans County doesn’t have any new confirmed cases of Covid-19 to report today, while Genesee County has one more.

In Genesee, the new case is a person in the 20s from Batavia. The person was on mandatory quarantine prior to testing positive, the Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments reported.

Genesee also has three more people on precautionary quarantine due to travel from restricted states. There are two people from Genesee currently hospitalized due to Covid-19.

In Orleans, there are five more residents on precautionary quarantine due to travel from restricted states.

More from the Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments:

• Communication Survey: We need your help!  Please consider taking a few minutes to complete a survey to measure our Genesee-Orleans (GO Health) Health Departments communication efforts in response to our COVID-19.

Your response is appreciated!  The survey (click here) will be available for your input until August 24.

• Travel Advisory: The following states and territories are on New York’s travel advisory due to high Covid-19 infection rates: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia,  Virgin Islands, and Wisconsin.

People coming to New York from those states need to quarantine for two weeks.

• Traveler Health Form: For all out-of-state travelers from NYS restricted states, whether arriving by land or air, must self-identify by completing a traveler health form or be subject to a $2,000 fine. Click here for the traveler health form.

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Health Department offering free rabies clinics on Aug. 13, Aug. 15

Posted 12 August 2020 at 4:53 pm

Press Release, Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments

The Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments will be hosting free drive-through anti-rabies immunization clinics in August.

The Genesee County clinic will be on Thursday, Aug. 13, from 4 to 7p.m. at the Genesee County Fairgrounds (5056 E Main Street Road, Batavia).

The Orleans County clinic will be on Saturday, Aug. 15, from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at the Orleans County Fairgrounds (12690 Route 31, Albion).

Paul Petitt, Public Health Director for the two counties said this is the first time the departments will be offering a drive-through clinic.

“The drive-through style will allow for the health departments to provide a vaccination clinic to our communities, while adhering to the health and safety guidelines during the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said. “This will ensure social distance protocols can be maintained in an organized manner.”

Upon arrival, staff will instruct you to stay in your vehicle and form a single lane to the clinic area. Public health workers will be screening the occupants in each vehicle for COVID-19 symptoms.

County workers will be directing traffic flow. At the veterinarian immunization station, pet owners will be instructed to exit their vehicle and bring their pet(s) out for the veterinarian to vaccinate.

Once directed to do so, animals must be secured on a leash or in separate carriers at the immunization station. Face masks, cloth face coverings, or face shields are required when speaking to staff and when outside of their vehicle at the vaccination table. Please limit 4 animals per vehicle.

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Rare raptors draw bird lovers to Kendall

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 12 August 2020 at 1:21 pm

Pair of Swallow-tailed Kites have been spotted on 272, Creek Road

Photos by Tom Rivers: Josh Ketry, a bird enthusiast from Buffalo, scans the sky for a pair of Swallow-tailed Kites. Those raptors normally are in Florida but are making a rare appearance in New York.

KENDALL – The church parking lot at the Mount Olive Missionary Baptist Church in Kendall has been drawing a crowd of people from all over the state in recent days.

There have been as many as 40 to 50 people in the lot, holding binoculars or peering through telephoto lenses.

Josh Ketry was able to get a photo of one of the birds in flight. He has come to Kendall three of the past four days to observe the Swallow-tailed Kites.

They are chasing a “life bird,” a pair of raptors from down South. Two Swallow-tailed Kites are making a rare appearance in the state. Birding enthusiasts theorize they were knocked off their normal path from the hurricane.

The two raptors have been spotted in Kendall for the past 10 days. But they didn’t become a big draw until Sunday, when birders started sharing on social media and websites that the Swallow-tailed Kites were hanging around Route 272 (the Monroe-Orleans Countyline Road) near the Creek Road intersection.

Josh Ketry, 41, of Buffalo was in Pennsylvania on Sunday on a birding expedition when a friend texted him about the Swallow-tailed Kites in Kendall. Ketry immediately changed course and drove 3 ½ hours to Kendall. He was back Tuesday and again today.

“This is a lifer so I’m chasing it,” he said.

He has been able to photograph the two birds. They are bright white with black on their wings and back. They tend to glide in the air. Ketry said they have been observed eating cicadas and dragonflies while in Kendall.

Ketry started getting into birds about 3 ½ years ago. He enjoyed the outdoors and hiking and wanted to make it more exciting. He set a goal of seeing an owl on a hike. They it became seeing eight different types of owls.

His list has continued to grow and he has made many friends through the hobby.

“It gave me a quest,” he said. “I’m fascinated by them.”

Lisa Scheppke of Queens and Josh Ketry of Buffalo chat in the parking lot of the Mount Olive Missionary Baptist Church in Kendall late this morning. Crowds have been in the church parking lot since Sunday drawing birders from all over the state.

Cornell University has many online resources to help people identify birds, and alert them to rare bird sightings. Click here to see Cornell’s entry on the Swallow-tailed Kite.

The Swallow-tailed Kites have been crowd-pleasers so far. Ketry said hundreds of people have been able to make the sighting. They two have the added draw of flying in a pair, and they haven’t just passed through the area briefly. They have stayed for more than a week, allowing birders to mobilize to try to see them.

Lisa Scheppke, 53, made the trip from Queens in New York City. She has been a birder for about a decade. She will often go a trips with friends to see birds. It is typically a solitary hobby, with long walks through trails and the woods to see the birds.

She reached Kendall last evening but missed the two Swallow-tailed Kites. She was back at 8 this morning. She was feeling discouraged until they made their first appearance of the day at about 10:45 a.m. They tend to be spotted first in the day at 11 a.m.

Stacy Robinson left her home in the Adirondacks at 4:30 this morning to drive to Kendall to see the Swallow-tailed Kites.

“They are a beautiful bird,” she said, holding her binoculars. “This is unusual too because they are a pairing.”

Scheppke, after seeing the Swallow-tailed Kites, said she was likely headed to the Montezuma Wildlife Refuge in Central New York on the way back to NYC.

Stacey Robinson left her home in the Adirondacks at 4:30 this morning and arrived in Kendall at 10:30. Fifteen minutes later the trip felt worth it when she saw the Swallow-tailed Kites. Two of her friends from Albany and Ticonderoga also drove to Kendall and urged her to make the trip.

Robinson said she has been birding the past eight years “obsessively.” She is retired as an assistant at an animal hospital. She said birders check their social media and online communities to see if there have been life bird alerts.

“Birders are very good about sharing information,” she said. “You never know when the next one is coming.”

She said the hobby has taken her throughout the region, to small towns, nature preserves and wildlife refuges.

William Norton, 24, of Hamlin only had to drive about 5 miles to get in position to see the two Swallow-tailed Kites. He has been a bird watcher since he was 16.

He said there are many different colors among birds, and they make distinctive noises.

“It’s just relaxing,” he said about the hobby. “You’re out in nature.”

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NY set new record Tuesday for number of Covid-19 tests

Posted 12 August 2020 at 12:23 pm

Press Release, Gov. Andrew Cuomo

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that 87,776 Covid-19 tests were reported to New York State yesterday—a new record high for tests in a single day.

Of the 87,776 test results, 700 or 0.79 percent were positive.

Each region’s percentage of positive test results reported over the last three days is as follows:

“We’re continuing to move forward protecting New Yorkers, slowing the spread and saving lives as the Covid-19 pandemic rages throughout much of the country and threatens the reduction in the numbers we’ve achieved here at home,” Governor Cuomo said. “New York is reaching new heights in its ability to track and trace the virus, and that’s evidenced by the record number of tests—nearly 88,000—that were reported yesterday. As we prepare for the fall, I urge everyone to wear masks, socially distance and wash their hands, and I urge local governments to enforce state guidance on reopening.”

Today’s data is summarized briefly below:

  • Patient Hospitalization – 558 (+18)
  • Patients Newly Admitted – 89
  • Number ICU – 123 (+3)
  • Number ICU with Intubation – 62 (+2)
  • Deaths – 7 (Total Deaths – 25,218)

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COVA needs support from community

Posted 12 August 2020 at 12:11 pm

Greetings,

COVA EMS was established in 1979 for the sole purpose of treating and transporting the sick and critically injured patients in the Orleans County Community. This includes the Village of Albion, Towns of Albion, Barre, Carlton and Gaines. COVA has always been there not only for our community but for the surrounding communities in their times of need. Over the years COVA has continued to change with the times to meet and exceed this demand. The transformation of COVA has progressed from an all-volunteer agency to a blend of both paid & volunteer staff.

Due to the declining insurance reimbursements, default payments, as well as our increased operational expenses our ability to continue to operate and serve the community is in jeopardy. COVA wants to remain a community based ambulance and would like to secure ambulance services for the residents. We need you to contact your municipality to show your support. COVA EMS wants to continue to serve the people of this community to the best of our ability and the only way we can continue to do so is with your help.

WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT,

Central Orleans Volunteer Ambulance, Inc.

Sincerely,

Laurie J Schwab, Paramedic
Chief Operating Officer

Central Orleans Volunteer Ambulance
239 South Main Street
Albion, NY 14411

Office: 585-589-4163 x205
Cell: 585-322-4058
Fax: 585-589-0263

www.covaems.com

Orleans/Niagara BOCES sets 4 sessions on school reopening

Posted 12 August 2020 at 12:08 pm

Press Release, Orleans/Niagara BOCES

MEDINA – Orleans/Niagara BOCES District Superintendent Dr. Clark Godshall will be holding four informational sessions, on YouTube Live, to address concerns and procedures for reopening of all their sites.

Three of the sessions are directed towards parents and one session will be to address staff concerns.

The events are as follows:

  • August 17th at 7 p.m. – Reopening Informational Session for parents
  • August 18th from 3 to 5 p.m. – Reopening Informational Session for parents
  • August 18th at 7 p.m. – Reopening Informational Session for parents
  • August 19th at 3 p.m. – Reopening Informational Session for staff

There will be a link on the Orleans/Niagara BOCES website under the Covid-19 link.

The first day of school for students is September 8th.

Republicans should stand up to Trump for safe elections, right to protest

Posted 12 August 2020 at 11:54 am

Editor:

August 7th was designated “Purple Heart Day,” a time for Americans to pause to remember and honor the brave men and women who were either wounded on the battlefield or paid the ultimate sacrifice with their lives.

I received my Purple Heart in Vietnam in 1969. The Purple Heart is a symbol of the brave men and women who have put their live on the line to protect this nation’s founding values. Included in those values is the right to protest since this nation was born out of the act of protest.

While President Trump and his Republican sycophants storm the streets of Portland, Oregon and other cities, (unwanted and unwelcomed by local authorities) with officers, in unmarked and unaccountable uniforms, ostensibly to protect federal buildings, thousands of Americans die because of President Trump’s and Republicans’ failed leadership on the Covid-19 crisis.

Another founding value is the right of citizens of this country to vote in safe, secure and honest elections. Republicans have refused to take any measures to secure our elections from foreign interference.

The President has welcomed assistance from Russia, and tried to get the governments of Ukraine and China to assist in his re-election. When asked about foreign help for re-election, Mr. Trump stated: “I think I’d take it.”

While Democrats in the House have passed several bills strengthening our election laws the Republicans have failed to take any action on them. As a combat veteran and Purple Heart recipient I would like to ask newly elected Congressman Chris Jacobs does he support sending in unaccountable federal troops against the wishes of local officials and does he support foreign interference in our elections?

Does Mr. Jacobs support President Trump’s canoodling with President Putin while Russia puts a bounty on American troops?

William Fine

Brockport

Diamond action in the County U12 Division

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 12 August 2020 at 9:35 am

Photos by Cheryl Wertman – The new Orleans County Short Season Baseball League began the second week of its U12 Division competition on Tuesday evening. The action here is from the Carlton vs. Rotary game at the Midget League Field. At left, Carlton’s Drew Boyce bangs out a hit to help ignite an early inning scoring burst. At right, Rotary second baseman Noah Harrison makes a throw to get an out at first.

Deadline Aug. 28 for Erie Canal photo contest

Posted 12 August 2020 at 9:28 am

Frank Forte was one of the 2019 photo contest winners with this photo of The Max Jacob on the Erie Canal.

Press Release, Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor

WATERFORD – The Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor is calling for entries for its 15th annual Erie Canalway Photo Contest. Images should convey the unique character of New York’s canals and canal communities.

Entries must be postmarked by Aug. 28. Winning photos will be featured in the 2021 Erie Canalway calendar.

Images will be judged in four contest categories: On the Water, Along the Trail, Canal Communities, and Classic Canal. Judges will select first, second, and third place winning images in each category, as well as 12 honorable mentions.

Submitted images must be taken within the Erie Canalway National Heritage Corridor, which spans 524 miles across the full expanse of upstate New York. It encompasses the Erie, Cayuga-Seneca, Oswego, and Champlain canals and their historic alignments, as well as more than 230 canal communities.

Download official contest rules and an entry form by clicking here.

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Barre survey, even with 35% response rate, shows resounding opposition to turbines

Posted 12 August 2020 at 9:03 am

Editor:

On August 10, the Orleans Hub reported on the results of the survey compiled by George McKenna regarding acceptance or opposition to the proposed Heritage Wind project in Barre.

In summary, 735 surveys were sent out, with 258 returned (35 percent) and 176 of those 258 returned (68 percent) offering a resounding NO to the project.

A previous letter to the editor suggested that those results indicate only a 20 percent objection to the project (176 of 735). Sorry, but that math is completely invalid.

Using elementary statistics, one can calculate the “95 percent confidence interval” of the result.  In other words, what is the possible range of NO votes that would have been recorded had everyone responded to the survey?

The calculation yields a result of 63.4 percent to 72.6 percent would oppose the project. There is a 2.5 percent chance the actual result would be lower than 63.4 percent, and a 2.5 percent chance the actual result would be higher than 72.6 percent.

Proper mathematical methods are needed to produce accurate results.

Steve Royce

Appleton

Oak Orchard gives healthy kits to farmworkers on Agricultural Worker Health Day

Staff Reports Posted 12 August 2020 at 8:33 am

Photo courtesy of Oak Orchard Health: Farmworkers hold some of the kits that were distributed on Tuesday by Oak Orchard Health. About 100 kits were given out at local farms.

Oak Orchard Health distributed healthy kits to local farmworkers on Tuesday, which was Agricultural Worker Health Day.

The kits included hand sanitizer, tooth brushes, tooth paste, dental floss, soap, masks, digital thermometers and a water bottle.

Oak Orchard is celebrating National Health Center Week this week. Tuesday highlighted the importance of agricultural workers in the local community and Oak Orchard’s commitment to providing them with the best of health care.

“Agricultural workers in the US have been called the ‘invisible population’ as they are socially and geographically isolated from the rest of society,” said Mary Ann Pettibon, CEO of Oak Orchard Heath. “We want to recognize this population with gift bags of useful supplies and a cool drink to ease their otherwise extremely busy day.”

Originally founded in 1966, Oak Orchard has grown from a migrant health project into an integrated health center with multiple locations providing health care services for the entire community.

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Lyndonville Foundation approves funding for dialysis equipment at Medina Memorial

Posted 12 August 2020 at 8:11 am

Local agencies also approved for significant donations

Press Release, Lyndonville Area Foundation

LYNDONVILLE – At its recent July combined annual and quarterly meetings, the Lyndonville Area Foundation actively continues its mission of community support.

The Foundation in July approved full funding for new dialysis and dialysis-related equipment to Orleans Community Health/Medina Memorial Hospital.

The Foundation’s Board of Directors also approved significant donations and grants to the Genesee-Orleans Ministry of Concern, Christ Church Community Kitchen in Albion and the Arc of Genesee/Orleans.

At its previous quarterly meeting in April, the Foundation expedited nearly $40,000 in grants throughout Orleans County including several Orleans County food pantries that had exhausted supplies for the needy due to high unemployment rates and other Covid-19 related issues.

In June, the Lyndonville Area Foundation again provided numerous scholarships to college and/or military-bound graduates from Lyndonville Central School. The Foundation has provided annual scholarships each year for nearly 25 years. Initially beginning with three scholarships of less than $5,000, the Foundation’s annual scholarship fund has since grown to a dozen scholarships totaling nearly $50,000 per year.

Three current scholarships are made possible by private contributions in liaison with the Lyndonville Area Foundation. On behalf of its board of directors, current Foundation President, Darren D. Wilson, expresses his sincere thanks for the continued support and ongoing generosity of Lyndonville’s Cook family, former Lyndonville resident Mr. Donald O. Skinner and the estate of the late Frank B. Housel, Jr., a lifelong Lyndonville resident, for making the Trevor T Cook, Skinner-Wilson and Housel scholarships, respectively, possible.

The Foundation’s Board of Directors meet again in late October.

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Biden chooses well in VP with Harris, who has credentials, respect of both parties

Posted 12 August 2020 at 7:53 am

Editor:

Sen. Kamala Harris is a magnificently qualified VP choice. She first came to my attention several years ago with a successful initiative to help children. She knows good communities start there.

She got top marks as an executive running a huge law enforcement department. She quickly rose to prominence as a respected leader of both Republican and Democratic Attorney Generals.

Harris  is additionally ready from legislative service on foreign “Intelligence” protecting us and “Judiciary” protecting The Rule of Law.

Nothing was handed Senator Harris and she overcome obstacles anyone born with a silver spoon in their mouth cannot fathom. She cares but is no one to trifle with. She is no nonsense about getting consensus and the job at hand done.

Kamala has demonstrated detailed knowledge of the matters before her as a Senator. She knows the legislative process first hand and how to work with others. Even Lindsey Graham has voiced deep respect. (Let’s see if he is now forced to flip.) Calling her socialist or radical left does not square with her career.

If you have watched, anyone, left or right, trying to feed her a scripted or evasive answer will find her ability to strip them bare devastating. With her mastery of the actuals facts and reliance on very forthright questions, even brazen liars crumble. AG Sessions ended up mumbling. AG Barr stopped answering to avoid perjury.

Vote for her or not. But check her record yourself no matter what gets made up and thrown about in this election season. You will find she can listen, analyze, organize, communicate and lead.

Kamala Harris is an exceptional, historically talented and capable candidate.

Conrad F. Cropsey

Albion