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 State Budget Approved On Time

The state Assembly has signed off on the $141.3 billion budget after an emotional debate.

Many Republicans and some Democrats spoke out against the $90 million cut in services. Programs for the developmentally disabled were trimmed while provisions that aid the NFL and film industry were added. The budget also authorizes $350 tax rebate checks for families.

Lawmakers were racing against the clock to deliver a third-straight on-time budget ahead of the April 1 deadline. Governor Cuomo still has to sign the budget into law.

Absent $5 billion in federal storm aid and $1 billion in federal funding for the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, the budget totals $135.1 million.

Republicans and Democrats alike are unhappy over the amount of cuts to the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities in the budget deal.

The original $120 million planned cut to the office was reduced to $90 million, but leaders in both parties are vowing to take up the matter again after the budget is approved.

The Genesee ARC estimated that it could lose $600,000 under the original proposal. Executive Director Donna Saskowski said earlier this month that job losses and the elimination of some programs could result.

The OPWDD cuts were done in part to help pay down a $500 million cost to the federal government as part of the Medicaid overbilling dispute.


GCEDC Approves Tax Incentives for New Projects

The Genesee County Economic Development Center has given approved tax breaks for new projects.

Dick’s Sporting Goods is reportedly coming to Batavia. The GCEDC approved $1,052,104 in tax incentives for the developer, COR, to move into the former Lowe’s building on Veterans Memorial Drive.

The development will create an estimated 120 retails jobs in the Town of Batavia.

Clarification: The GeneseeCounty Economic Development Center board has announced its approval of developer COR’s project being set for a public hearing, but the project has not received final approval.

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Batavia Showtime at 6 Alva Place is planning a $52,200 investment for the purchase and installation of a digital movie projector.

The GCEDC approved a $4,176 tax exemption on the purchase. The release says the board is looking to assist in Batavia Showtime’s project because, being the only local movie theatre, it qualifies as a tourism destination.

An estimated three new jobs will be created and four jobs retained.

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LeRoy Plastics is investing $885,000 for the consolidation of all operations and processes into one facility, and the GCEDC approved more than $43,931 in tax abatements for the project altogether.

The company plans to renovate portions of the new facility and purchase furniture, fixtures and equipment. The project will create five new jobs.


Sheriff's Office Investigating Radio Shack Burglary

The Genesee County Sheriff's Office is investing a robbery at the Batavia Radio Shack on Veterans Memorial Drive, according to our news partner, The Batavian.

Authorities haven’t determined how much or what exactly was stolen, but the thief or thieves made off with at least a number of smartphones.

Dispatchers received the call for a break-in just after 12:30 in the morning. By the time law enforcement arrived, the glass door was broken through, the merchandise stolen and the perpetrators gone.

Investigator Roger Stone said that, via The Batavian, at this early stage there are few leads to go on. An attempt to obtain information from surveillance cameras has yet to yield results.

Anyone with information to assist in the investigation is asked to call the Sheriff's Office at (585) 343-5000.

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