Morning News Brief
Written by Michael Baldwin on April 27, 2021
The Batavia City Council has approved hiring another police officer as well as two more firefighters. The Council also approved funding special police operations. The decision was made after the Council learned that an additional $262,000 was coming to the city in state Aid and Incentives for Municipalities’ funding. Lawmakers also agreed to apply for a grant for $328,000 which would cover 80 percent of the cost to upgrade water lines on Bank Street between Main Street and Washington Avenue in support of future development projects as well as improving water pressure for fire suppression. The City would be responsible for 20 percent – or $82,000 – of the project’s total cost.
Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced that the New York State Police will conduct “Operation Hardhat” enforcement activities all week in support of National Work Zone Awareness Week. During Operation Hardhat, members of the State Police patrol Department of Transportation and Thruway Authority work to enforce work zone speed limits and ensure that motorists are obeying flagging personnel. As part of this commemoration, DOT is unveiling a new social media campaign to promote work zone safety and the Thruway Authority unveiled new highway maintenance vehicles with large digital displays alerting motorists of their speed in work zones. Last year, 1,770 tickets were issued by State Police during “Operation Hardhat” activities, which surpassed 2019’s total by nearly 70 percent.
Genesee County reports 22 new positive cases of COVID-19 since the weekend. One of the new positive individuals was a resident of the NYS Veterans Home.
The implementation of New York’s recently passed legislation allowing the recreational use of marijuana for those 21 and over is likely a year or two away, but the Batavia City Council believes it’s not too soon to gather as much information as possible and to gauge the pulse of its citizens. At their Conference Meeting last night, Council members and City Attorney George Van Nest engaged in a 33-minute back-and-forth discussion about the new state law, officially known as the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act. Van Nest noted that municipalities can opt out “through a local law adoption” and they have to do so before the end of this year. What is required is a trigger of 10 percent of the voters for the last electorate – and then if a sufficient petition is filed with sufficient numbers before there could be a local vote.
New York will lose one seat in Congress as a result of population shifts… according to census data released Monday. The state’s population grew by more than 4 percent over the past decade, according to the 2020 census, but that increase didn’t keep pace with big jumps in other parts of the country. New York is one of seven states losing a member of congress as a result of the 2020 census. Five states will gain a seat in congress. Texas will gain two.
27-year-old Jared S. McDonald of South Street Road in Pavilion, was arrested by the Le Roy Police Department following the execution of a Search Warrant. McDonald was charged with grand larceny in the second degree, a Class C felony, and coercion in the first degree, a Class D Felony. As a result of the Search Warrant, McDonald is also facing several charges from the Genesee County Drug Task Force.
OurBus has announced a new cooperation with family-owned transportation company Niagara Scenic Tours to offer daily intercity bus service linking Batavia with seven cities in New York and one in Pennsylvania. The route goes through Niagara Falls, Buffalo, Batavia, Geneseo, Corning, Elmira, and in Pennsylvania — Sayre, en route to New York City, starting May 12. Also, passengers can make connections to points all across New York and New Jersey with stops at the Greater Binghamton Transportation Center in Binghamton and Bridge Plaza in Fort Lee, N.J. Niagara Scenic Tours’ charter-style motorcoaches will be used on the route, equipped with wifi, power outlets, and overhead storage. Tickets are sold on OurBus.com or on the OurBus App.