Morning News Briefing

Written by on January 19, 2021

Gas prices are sneaking up…today’s national average price for a gallon of gasoline is $2.39, up seven cents from last week. The New York State average is $2.47 – up eight cents from last week. Crude prices have been fluctuating and remain over $50 per barrel. Prices rose over market optimism that coronavirus vaccines will help crude demand recover this year.

Court action is pending for an Illinois man accused of strangling a Batavia resident. Police say they arrested 32-year-old Nathan Rich. He was charged with second-degree strangulation. He was arrested after a domestic incident that occurred on South Swan Street in Batavia. It is alleged that Rich put his hands around the victim’s throat and applied pressure. He was taken to Genesee County Jail and processed, then virtually arraigned in Batavia City Court. He was put in jail in lieu of bail.

As the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden is just a day away, lawmakers are looking forward to some much-needed federal support. Biden has announced a $1.9 trillion COVID relief plan, and now the New York Conference of Mayors (NYCOM) says it’s time for the state to release millions of dollars in withheld funds. The organization says the state’s current policy, announced last summer, is having a negative impact on the ability for localities to provide essential services and maintain budgets without tax increases. Now, NYCOM is calling for the withheld funding to be released and for the full amounts to be included in the next budget.

When Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are sworn in Washington Wednesday…there’s at least one prominent Democratic lawmaker who won’t be there. Governor Andrew Cuomo has said…he’s called off the plan…because, he wants to be in Albany….close to his own state capitol…in case there’s trouble.

The Genesee County Department of Planning is seeking community input for the Genesee2050 Comprehensive Plan and Recreation Plan at public hearings via Zoom. The workshops are set for this afternoon at 1 p.m. and again tomorrow at 5:30 p.m. Pre-registration is required. Information about both plans…available online at

44-year-old Charles J. Rodriguez of West Main Street in Batavia has been charged with third-degree bail jumping. Batavia Police arrested Rodriguez after the man allegedly missed several appearances in Batavia City Court. After his arraignment, Rodriguez was released under supervision of Genesee Justice. He is due back in court Feb. 25.

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