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Bergen mayor reflects on some of the successes in the village in 2021

By Virginia Kropf
Dec 2, 2021, 2:50pm

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As 2021 draws to a close, the village of Bergen can look back on a year of successes, while looking forward to new improvements.

This week, mayor Anna Marie Barclay reflected back on some of the positive advancements made in the village this year, the most notable being the buildings on Main Street which were restored with a Main Street grant which Barclay applied for and received two years ago.

As a result of the façade restoration, four new businesses have opened on Main Street – Pivot Acupuncture owned by Barclay’s son and daughter-in-law Derek and Lainy Barclay, TK Flooring, a laundromat, and Alvamar Healthy Foods.

Barclay would like to have a Main Street open house, perhaps in the spring when Covid is not a concern.

The village has recently redone several village streets with oil and stone, preserving them for another five years, the mayor said. They were able to carry over state money for road repair. Two small streets, Spring Street and Leroy Street are left to do, she said.

As part of the Federal American Rescue Plan, Bergen received $112,000, half of which is reserved for their stormwater, wastewater, and Covid mitigation issues.

“We wanted to come up with a plan for the most efficient way to use the money,” Barclay said. “Our proposal is to finish mapping our stormwater infrastructure. After that, we will use the funds left to update and repair our stormwater infrastructure. We have maintained our system but there is work that needs to be done.”

She added it has been 10 to 12 years since the stormwater infrastructure was mapped.

Now that people can be outside more, due to Covid, we plan to build a new restroom in Hickory Park.

“Our parks and trails and disc golf course are used extensively by our residents and those outside our village,” Barclay said. “The new restroom will have a utility section in the center, with the restrooms on each end. That will allow all the pipes to be in the center, making them inaccessible to vandals.”

Vandals were recently caught on camera tearing down and destroying a new fence village workers had just installed. They have been identified and dealt with by the Sheriff’s Department. The village has cameras in all their parks, the mayor said.

The last of the funds from the American Rescue Plan will be used for wastewater improvements.

“We’ve been wanting for a long time to have spare parts at our wastewater plant,” Barclay said. “This money will go toward the purchase of expensive supplies we need on hand.”

Barclay said they attended seminars and listen to webinars on how the money could be used.

Bergen didn’t receive a Genesee Valley Restoration/Rehabilitation grant, which the mayor applied for, but she is going to reapply, she said.

The money would be used for much-needed preservation work on the Tully Building, which houses the village offices. Barclay explained the building is made of Bergen brick and therefore is soft and porous. This allows water to come in through interior walls. They have secured an architect to design the painting scheme on the exterior. When the mural on the south wall was painted, the brick beneath that was sealed and preserved, Barclay said.

Another project the mayor is hoping to complete is paving the trail in Hickory Park because it is used extensively.

Since becoming mayor eight years ago, Barclay has secured $1.4 million in grants to improve the village. She said it would be late next spring or early summer before they will know if they receive the new grant she is re-applying for.

Top photo: Anna Marie Barclay, mayor of Bergen, stands in front of the American Legion building on Main Street, which is one which has completed façade restoration with a Main Street grant.

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TK Flooring is a new business in Bergen which has taken advantage of a Main Street grant to improve its façade.

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Brette-Ashley Wilcox Schmitt's photography studio was one of the first to have its façade restored. The building dates back to the mid-1800s.

Photos: Village of Bergen in the Christmas spirit

By Virginia Kropf
Dec 1, 2021, 9:18am

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The Village of Bergen ushered in the holiday season with a tree lighting and fire truck parade on Monday night.

The parade started at 6:30 p.m. at the fire hall and traveled throughout the village, ending in Hickory Park where Santa and Mrs. Claus placed a wreath on the veteran’s memorial.

Along the parade route, elves passed out gift bags to children, containing hot cocoa, candy canes, and a cookie. The Bergen Business and Civic Association put together 350 bags of goodies to be handed out along the parade route, according to mayor Anna Marie Barclay.

A stop was made in Ward Park, for the annual lighting of the Christmas tree. A limited number of artificial trees are set up there for village residents or businesses to decorate.

Submitted photos.  Top photo:  The Sapienza children are eager to help the Bergen Fire Department decorate its trucks for a parade through the village Monday night.

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Trish Hemmerl-Plucknette donned a Santa hat to video Bergen’s Christmas parade Monday night.

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Santa hangs from one of Bergen Fire Department’s trucks, which was decorated for a Christmas parade Monday night.

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Bergen’s Christmas parade Monday night ended in Hickory Park, where Santa and Mrs. Claus placed a wreath on the veteran’s memorial.

Law and Order: Batavia resident in jail faces new drug charge

By Howard Owens
Nov 22, 2021, 11:22am

Michael Robbins, 61, of Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance 7th. Robbins was allegedly found with an unidentified substance on him during an interaction with police at an incident at 7:20 p.m., Aug. 28. The substance was tested and found to allegedly contain methamphetamine and fentanyl. Robbins was arrested at the Genesee County Jail, where he is being held on other charges, and issued an appearance ticket.

Matthew W. Kurtz, Sr., 52, of Batavia, is charged with criminal mischief 4th, attempted assault 3rd, and harassment 2nd.  Kurtz is accused of shoving another person and throwing an object at that person during a disturbance reported at 7:10 p.m., Nov. 16, at a location on Liberty Street, Batavia.  He was arraigned in City Court and ordered released on his own recognizance. 

Jesslyn F. Bigelow, 24, of Batavia, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, driving without insurance, driving a vehicle with a suspended registration. Bigelow was stopped at 1:56 a.m., Nov. 13, on Jackson Street, Batavia by a Batavia patrol officer. Bigelow was issued traffic tickets.

Christine Caplis, no age or residence provided, is charged with theft of services. Caplis allegedly failed to pay for services provided by a local restaurant on Ellicott Street, Batavia, at 8 p.m., Nov. 4. She was issued an appearance ticket.

Ziyad Ziyad Alhojaji, 22, of Geraldine Parkway, Rochester, is charged with petit larceny.  Alhojaji is accused of shoplifting from Walmart in Batavia. He was released on an appearance ticket.

Tonya Marie Weber, 37, of Liberty Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Weber is accused of shoplifting from Five Below on Veterans Memorial Drive in Batavia. Weber was released on an appearance ticket.

Michael R. Mullen, 37, of Oakfield, is charged with 10 counts of sex abuse, 1st (contact with a person less than 11 years old), course of sexual conduct, 2nd, with a child less than 11 years old, and 10 counts of endangering the welfare of a child. Mullen was arrested by State Police on Saturday. He was ordered held in jail. No further information released.

Theresa A. Gillette, 44, of East Rochester, is charged with petit larceny. Gillette is accused of stealing in Bergen in an incident reported at 10:51 p.m., Sept. 14.  She was arrested by State Police and ordered held in jail. No further information released.

Sean M. Harloff, 31, of Farmington, is accused of grand larceny 4th. Harloff was arrested by State Police in connection with an incident reported at 12:53 p.m., July 6. He was ordered held in jail.  No further information released.

Michaela R. Bohn, 22, of Batavia, is charged with burglary 2nd and criminal mischief 4th. Bohn was arrested by State Police in relation to an incident reported at 11:51 p.m., Nov. 10, in the Town of Batavia. She was released to a third party. No further information released.

Law and Order: Man accused of assaulting in attack on North Lyon Street, Batavia

By Howard Owens
Nov 15, 2021, 12:34pm

Eric A. Spikes, 44, no permanent address, is charged with assault 2nd, two counts of burglary 2nd, menacing 3rd, and endangering the welfare of a child. Spikes is accused of physically attacking and injuring another person during an incident on Aug. 26 at 12:17 a.m. on North Lyon Street, Batavia, where multiple children were present.  He was arrested on a warrant. He was arraigned in City Court and jailed without bail.

Katherine Jessica Vail, 29, of Griswold Road, Bergen, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, and reckless endangerment 2nd.  Vail is accused of driving drunk and striking a pedestrian and his dog at 6:11 p.m., Saturday, on South Lake Road, Bergen.  VAil was released on an appearance ticket.

Jeffery Michael Johnson, 33, of Lake Street, Le Roy, is charged with DWI Drugs and driving left of the pavement markings.  Johnson was stopped at 3:46 a.m., Saturday, on Main Road, Stafford, by Deputy David Moore.  He was released on an appearance ticket.

Jonathan Micahel Reed, 28, of Lake Street Road, Le Roy, is charged with two counts of sex offender failure to report a change of address/status within 10 days. Reed is accused of failure to register a new internet service provider and account within 10 days.  He was arraigned in Town of Le Roy Court and jailed without bail.

Aaron Michael Reagan Hatt, 25, of Federal Drive, Batavia, is charged with driving while impaired by drugs, DWI, driving without a license, and failure to signal.  Hatt was stopped at 2:13 a.m, Sept. 19, on Wortendyke Road, Batavia, by Deputy Morgan Ewert. Hatt was released on an appearance ticket.

Zachary James Chittenden, 34, of Boyce Road, Pembroke, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, and no or inadequate plate lamps.  Chittenden was stopped at 2:38 a.m., Sunday, on Hartshorn Road, Batavia, by Deputy Zachary Hoy.

Philip M. Escobar, 32, of Kirvin, Texas, was arrested on a bench warrant for alleged failure to appear in Batavia City Court.  He was arraigned in City Court and released on his own recognizance.

Mark B. Havens, 59, of Batavia, is charged with criminal mischief 3rd, assault 3rd, and grand larceny 4th. Havens is accused of striking another person in the face causing injury and taking the person's mobile phone, and damaging a computer during an incident reported at 3:40 p.m., Nov. 7, at an address on Liberty Street, Batavia.  Havens was arraigned in City Court and released on his own recognizance.

Jason L. Johnson, 39, of Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance 7th. Johnson was reportedly involved in a physical altercation with another person at a business on East Main Street at 11:58 p.m., Nov. 5, and when police identified Johnson, they arrested him on charges from an unrelated incident.  He was allegedly found in possession of crack cocaine and a broken crack pipe in his jean pocket.

Jaequele M. Tomlin, 26, of Batavia, is charged with criminal mischief 3rd.  Tomlin is accused of damaging property on Watson Street during an incident reported at 10:24 a.m., Nov. 4.  She was arraigned in City Court and released on her own recognizance.

Paul A. Inostroza, 30, of Batavia, is accused of criminal obstruction of breathing or blood circulation, reckless endangerment 2nd, attempted assault 2nd, and harassment 2nd. Inostroza allegedly attacked another person at 12:50 a.m., Sept. 5, at a location on East Main Street, Batavia.  He was arraigned in City Court and released under supervision.

Erik Pokornowski, 30, of Byron, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08, failure to stop at a stop sign, and moving from lane unsafely.  Pokornowski was stopped at 1 a.m., Oct. 30 on East Main Street, Batavia, by a Batavia police officer.  He was released on an appearance ticket.

Gilberto N. Natal, 33, of Batavia, is charged with harassment 2nd. Natal allegedly grabbed another person during an argument and threw the person to the ground in an incident reported at 3:45 p.m., Oct. 27, on South Lyon Street, Batavia.  Natal was arraigned in City Court and released on his own recognizance. 

Timothy M. Henry, 26, of Le Roy, is charged with petit larceny.  Henry is accused of stealing $74.54 in merchandise from the Walmart in Warsaw. He was arrested by State Police and released on an appearance ticket.

Michael P. Jansma, 32, of Attica, is charged with DWI and driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. Jansma was stopped by State Police at 9:45 p.m., Saturday, in the Town of Pembroke. He was released on an appearance ticket.

Crystal S. Duncan, 36, of Batavia, is charged with DWI and driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. Duncan was stopped by State Police at 10:26 p.m., Friday, in the Town of Batavia. Duncan was released on an appearance ticket.

Allyson P. Lawrence, 27, of Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance 7th. Lawrence was arrested by State Police in the Town of Batavia, at 4:48 p.m., Nov. 7.  She was released on an appearance ticket. No further details released.

Valarie L. Mancini, 64, of Shortsville, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance 7th and driving while impaired by drugs. Mancini was stopped at 6:15 a.m., Nov. 10, by State Police, in the City of Batavia.

A 15-year-old resident of Batavia is charged with criminal mischief 3rd.  The youth was arrested by State Police in connection with an incident reported at 10:50 p.m., July 24.

Law and Order: Sheriff announces pair of DWI arrests

By Howard Owens
Nov 12, 2021, 3:44pm

Jameson Arland Crocker, 34, of Godfreys Pond Road, Stafford, is charged with DWI, refusal to take a breath test, failure to keep right, driving to the left on a crest grade or curve, driving left of pavement markings.  Crocker was stopped at 3:01 a.m., Thursday, on Clinton Street Road, Bergen, by Sgt. Mathew Clor.

James Michael Fodge, Jr., 49, of North Lake Road, Bergen, is charged with DWI and driving with a BAC of .08 or greater.  Fodge was stopped at 11:34 p.m., Thursday, on Buffalo Road in Bergen by Deputy David Moore.

Libertarian VP candidate visits The Firing Pin with message of limited government

By Howard Owens
Nov 9, 2021, 1:30pm

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Photos and story by Philip Casper.

Spike Cohen, 2020 Libertarian Vice Presidential Candidate, visited The Firing Pin in Bergen to raise money for the Erie County Libertarian Party in an event called “Shoot Guns With Bazookajew”.   Duane Whitmer, Erie County Libertarian Party Chair helped facilitate the event and while there, Spike introduced himself to everyone at the shop and listened while many voiced their concerns about the state of affairs in NY, and the United States as a whole.  Topics ranged from vaccine mandates to gun control, to widespread government overreach.

Cohen stated “We aren’t going to be able to set NY free if we continue to vote for the people that got us in this mess.  Republican, or Democrat.  There is an alternative out there, and this is it. You are the power.”  Whitmer, who recently ran for Erie County Comptroller said “Bringing a pro-second amendment candidate to one of the biggest defenders of the second amendment in the country was a wonderful experience and I’m glad to be a part of it. I’m thankful for the guys at The Firing Pin for all they do.”

Pat Kimball, owner and lead instructor of First Line Defense delivered a safety message before everyone entered the range, and gave brief one on one training sessions to promote safe, and proficient firearm handling.  The libertarian party believes that every person has a right to arm themselves in self-defense.

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Law and Order: Batavia man accused of violence against victim in Bergen

By Howard Owens
Nov 8, 2021, 5:33pm

Quentin Isiah Bloom, 24, of North Spruce Street, Batavia, is charged with criminal obstruction of breathing, unlawful imprisonment 2nd, and false personation. Bloom is accused of getting into an argument at 1:35 a.m., Nov. 3, at a residence on South Lake Avenue, Bergen, and of pushing a person to the ground and getting on top of the victim, which obstructed the victim's breathing.  The victim managed to break free, according to the Sheriff's Office, and Bloom pushed close the door of the apartment they were in, preventing the victim from leaving. A deputy on scene at that time managed to push the door open and separate Bloom from the victim.  Bloom allegedly provided the deputy with a fake name.  He was arraigned and ordered held in jail.

Dominque Sincer Betancourt, 19, of Lincoln Avenue, Rochester, is charged with petit larceny and criminal mischief. Deputies responded to Walmart at 3:14 p.m., Nov. 7 for a report of a larceny. Betancourt is accused of throwing merchandise outside of the store without paying for the merchandise. He was released on an appearance ticket.

Edward Joseph Allen, III, 32, of Pin Tail Crossing, Farmington, is charged with grand larceny 4th, DWI, and driving with a BAC of .08 or greater.  Allen allegedly stole a debit card from another person at 2:22 a.m., Nov. 6, at a residence on Emily Court, Bergen.  Allen is also accused of driving drunk the morning of the larceny incident. He was arrested by Deputy Kenneth Quackenbush and Sgt. Mathew Clor.

 

Law and Order: Bethany man arrested after report of a disturbance on Putnam Road

By Howard Owens
Nov 3, 2021, 12:26pm

Tyler Lynn Vanskiver, 25, of Putnam Road, Bethany, is charged with endangering the welfare of a child, criminal mischief 4th, criminal obstruction of breathing or blood circulation, unlawful imprisonment 2nd, and menacing 3rd.  Vanskiver was arrested after deputies responded to a report of a disturbance at a residence on Putnam Road, Bethany.  He allegedly obstructed the breathing of a woman and prevented her from calling 9-1-1 in the presence of two children.  He was arraigned in Town of Bethany Court.  His release status was not included in the press release.

Catherine Ann Klinkbeil, 53, of Bank Street, Batavia, is charged with DWI and driving while impaired by drugs.  Kilnkbeil was stopped at 4:32 p.m., Oct. 12, by Deputy Chad Cummings.  She was arrested Oct. 28 by Deputy Chad Cummings, processed at the jail, and released on an appearance ticket.

John William Murphy, 48, of Beaver Meadow Road, Bergen, is charged with criminal contempt 2nd.  Murphy is accused of not surrendering a firearm to authorities in accordance with an order of protection.  Murphy was released on his own recognizance.

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