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Most of Genesee County is seemingly operating as normal as the federal government shutdown drags on.

However the Soil and Water Department has been temporarily relocated to the Genesee County Park on Bethany Center Road in Bethany. Its offices are normally located at 29 Liberty Street in Batavia at the USDA Service Center. Manager George Squires says the rent is paid for by the federal government at the regular offices where it’s co-located with federal agencies.

Calling it an inconvenience is an understatement.

"Right now it’s a bit of a problem with simple day-to-day tasks that are involved: computer access, internet access, things like that,” Squires says. “Plus the fact that we have a lot of files in that office that we don’t have access to up here. Plus the inconvenience of people maybe not wanting to travel from Batavia out to Bethany to come visit us.”

Squires says there are occasional back-and-forth visits for important documents as well. He says most of the department’s field technicians are still getting out and visiting clients though people have had trouble finding them.

They have a new phone number at the office: 344-1122.

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