Morning News Brief
Written by Michael Baldwin on May 19, 2021
Batavia school district voters overwhelmingly approved the districts proposed budget. 490 people said yes, while just 104 people voted against the plan. Other propositions were also approved. In the school board race, John Reigle, Brenda Good and Jennifer Lendvay were all elected. The Le Roy school budget was also approved by a vote of 396-124. Elected to the Board of Education – Christine Dowell, William Mackenzie and Lucas Weaver. In other results, voters across the region widely supported school budgets.
The Batavia Town Planning Board approved a site plan for Dickinson’s Auto to construct a truck storage building on West Main St. Rd. The owner, Bob Dickinson had requested an area variance since the new building would be located 10 feet from the lot line instead of the required 30 feet in the Commercial District. Town planners were scheduled to reconsider a special use permit request by Batavia Solar for a ground-mounted solar system for the Genesee Gateway Local Development Corp. on R. Stephen Hawley Drive but…that discussion was paused again.
The New York statewide 7-day average COVID-19 positivity rate dropped to 1.07 percent, the lowest since September 27. The 7-day average positivity rate has declined for 43 straight days. Governor Cuomo says today marks a major reopening of New York State, a milestone reached thanks to the strength and grit of New Yorkers who banded together, stayed tough and fought as one to defeat this COVID beast.
COVID numbers continue to improve across the region. Health Commissioner Paul Pettit (Ped-it) has an update (GC). On Tuesday, 36 new positive cases were reported.
New York Farm Bureau highlighted several key pieces of legislation during a virtual press conference that are important to our members with four weeks to go until the end of the New York State legislative session. The bills include the Extended Producer Responsibility Act which aims to overhaul the state’s recycling system. The Act is a proposal that would create an entirely new statewide recycling program and shift the program responsibility from private recycling waste management companies and municipalities to “producers” including farms and agribusinesses that package their products in containers like milk cartons, wine bottles and maple jugs, along with the forest product industry. The concern is this will greatly impact food access and prices during a time that farms are trying to encourage food production and on-farm processing of food products, especially coming off a pandemic.
Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced more than 10 million New Yorkers have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. 118,879 doses have been administered across the state’s vast distribution network in the last 24 hours, and 806,782 doses have been administered statewide over the past seven days.
New York Attorney General Letitia James announced Tuesday night that her office’s investigation into the Trump Organization is now a criminal one. James is seeking information in a probe of whether the Trump Organization lied about the worth of its assets to secure loans or tax benefits.