Morning News Brief

Written by on September 8, 2022

NY Assemblyman Steve Hawley put out a press release saying he is disappointed in the Farm Laborers Board’s decision to lower the overtime threshold.  During the board’s hearings, the vast majority of testimony provided by farmers and farm workers opposed its implementation, warning that it threatened the livelihoods of both farm owners and laborers.  The concerns expressed by those opposed to lowering the threshold have been corroborated by a number of studies, as a report by Farm Credit East has stated that the total cost of lowering the overtime threshold to 40 hours, coupled with minimum wage increases, would result in an increase in labor costs by over 40 percent for New York’s farms. Another study by Cornell University found that 70 percent of New York farm labor guest workers would not return to New York were the threshold to be lowered and would instead seek work in other states where they have the opportunity to work longer hours.  “Now that the fate of farming as we know it here in New York state has been put in jeopardy by the Wage Board.”

A 29 year old man from Batavia pleaded guilty to possession and production of child porn in Rochester Wednesday.  Derek Hagen worked in several WNY teaching, substitute teaching, and child-care positions in the Western District of New York, including at the Brockport Childhood Development Center, the Batavia City School District, the Pembroke Central School District, and most recently with the Dansville Central School District.  While working in schools and child care he made sexually explicit images of children entrusted to his care aging from 6 months to 5 years.  He did this while changing diapers and helping in the restroom.  He shared videos and pictures of this online while also being found in possession of over 50,000 pictures and videos from others.  There has been no information released indicating that Hagen exploited children in Batavia.

Batavia County Sheriff Sheron says that they need more corrections officers, especially females.  At the Ways and Means committee meeting on Wednesday Sheriff Sheron said that the new jail which is under construction will house both male and female inmates and they need to expand the search for more corrections officers to counties outside Genesee.  He asked legislators for approval of an amendment to allow officers to be from contiguous counties as well as from the desired first choice of Genesee. Less than 40 people took the last Civil Service test, compared to 80 previously. The pool of candidates is growing “leaner and leaner,” he said.  Currently corrections officers must reside in Genesee County to be considered. 

Rehearsals start soon for the Genesee Chorale and the chorale is eager to accept new members into the group.  Rehearsals are Monday evenings starting at 7 p.m. and wrapping up by 9 p.m. at St. James Episcopal Church.  The first rehearsal is on Sept. 12.  The chorale is planning its seasonal concert for December.  Singers of all levels of experience are welcome.

The Buffalo Bills will be playing their season opener tonight at 8:20 in California against the Los Angeles Rams Rams.  The Rams are hosting at LoFi Stadium in Inglewood.  The Bill signed Sam Martin to a 1 year contract as punter to replace Matt Araiza who was initially signed and then released after allegations of rape at a Arizona college party came to light.  Wide receiver Marquez Stevenson is on injured reserve after a foot injury during training camp.

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