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Wildlife Winter Wonderland at the Alt Farm - December 2023FLYER.
An event intended for the entire family and all ages: the Wildlife Winter Wonderland at the Alt Nature Center! Outdoor walkable displays will include holiday-themed nature scenes and wildlife educational displays!
Inside the holiday-decorated schoolhouse there will be free craft-making appropriate for all ages, including wildlife ornaments and woodland animal decorations. There will be wildlife and nature-themed gifts to purchase – perfect stocking stuffers! – and hot cocoa and cookies!
The event takes place from 6-9 PM on Saturday, December 9th and Saturday, December 16th. Wear your boots, dress for the weather, and come to engage in festive foofaraw while learning how wildlife survive and thrive in winter time! You can find more information and an option to RSVP at https://www.facebook.com/events/677439817859746/677439824526412 . The Wildlife Winter Wonderland takes place at the Alt Nature Center, located at 2489 Whitehaven Road, Grand Island, NY 14072.
100 Public Health Fellows and Counting - December 2023Erie County, NY - 100 Public Health Fellows and counting – multi-year program at Erie County Department of Health supports health and human service agencies. The Erie County Department of Health (ECDOH) filled its 100th public health fellow position in November, marking a milestone for the largest Public Health Corps program in New York State. Funded through the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH), public health fellows work full-time in county health departments or community-based organizations. New York State initially established the program to build public health capacity to support COVID-19 vaccination operations and increase preparedness for public health emergencies.
In Erie County, fellows have been assigned to the Cancer Services Program, Health Equity, Harm Reduction, public health clinics, Epidemiology and Public Health Emergency Preparedness. In addition, fellows are embedded with nearly 40 non-profits and community groups, focusing on projects that reduce health disparities and contribute to positive health outcomes. "Having these fellows helps our department and the greater community in two ways," said Commissioner of Health Dr. Gale Burstein. "First, they fill roles that organizations are not otherwise able to fund, which expands the reach of their work and allows them to build new programs and services." "Second, we know that the public health field is losing employees to retirements and other industries," she continued. "These fellows learn on the job, developing skills in data analysis, client outreach, patient education, risk communication and more – we expect that some of them will emerge as our future public health leaders."
"Our fellows have been wonderful additions to Buffalo Prenatal Perinatal Network - one of our fellows has written grants for almost $50,000," said BPPN CEO LuAnne Brown. "The fellowship program has been a great asset to our nonprofit and I am certain for many nonprofits." "The Public Health Fellows have provided significant support to 211 WNY through contributions to operations, marketing, outreach, and the development of community partnerships," 211 WNY Contact Center Director Dawn Vanderkooi said, "We are fortunate to have the talents of seven fellows to be better able to provide our core services and create innovative programs to help in sustainability of this important community resource."
"We deeply appreciate the New York State Public Health Fellowship and the chance to partner with skilled and enthusiastic individuals," said Tiffany Lewis, Founder and President of Confident Girl Mentoring Program, Inc. "This fellowship allows us to further our mission and focus on innovative and impactful initiatives such as Mentorship, Menstrual Health Equity and Mental Health Education, which unite communities and promote positive health outcomes. The work provided by these fellows and the knowledge they gain is invaluable. We take pride in being part of this program and supporting the upcoming generation of public health leaders in New York State."
"As a New York State Public Health Corps host site, Healthy Community Alliance is honored to be helping our region build public health capacity," offered Healthy Community Alliance CEO Ann Battaglia. "The fellows who have worked and continue to work within our organization have been instrumental in strengthening partnerships and referral pathways toward improved maternal and infant child health. Through this partnership with Erie County Health Department, the fellows have helped leverage the assets of our rural communities and foster cross-sector collaboration to strengthen family wellbeing." "MATTERS partnership with the public health fellowship program has been crucial to help link patients to care, distribute harm reduction supplies, and expand our program Statewide," said MATTERS Network Chief Medical Officer Dr. Joshua Lynch. "We are greatly appreciative of our amazing fellows that we have been fortunate to work with!"
Erie County began placing fellows in May 2022, and Fellowship Coordinator Tania Islam drew from a steady stream of applicants from backgrounds as varied as education, nursing, business, health care administration, mental health and public health. In addition to the organizations quoted above, other placement sites include Back to Basics Ministries, Buffalo and Erie County Public Library, D’Youville University, Feed Buffalo, Galactic Tribe, Grassroots Gardens, Healthy Home Headquarters, Jericho Road Community Health Center, Literacy Buffalo Niagara, Massachusetts Avenue Project, Our Mommie Village, Oishei Children’s Hospital, Ovarian Cancer Project, Partnership for the Public Good, Project Mona’s House, RAHAMA, Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Institute, Rural Outreach Center, University at Buffalo, Upstate NY Poison Center and Value Network. As fellows move to permanent positions with county government and other agencies, or leave to pursue further education, the program coordinator pulls from a pool of qualified applicants from across New York State. The program is expected to be funded through June 2024.
Christmas in the Woods - December 2023On Sunday, December 3, 2023 at 2 PM - NAN HOFFMAN, JOE TUMINO, KATHY DELOUGHRY & MARY BIEGER will present "CHRISTMAS IN THE WOODS!" at Island Presbyterian Church, 1822 Huth Road, Grand Island, NY 14072. The traditional holiday concert and carol sing includes carols, hymns, Hanukkah songs, and songs for peace and thanksgiving. Co-presented by Riverside-Salem UCC and Island Presbyterian Churches and located again at Island Presbyterian to provide better seating with plenty of parking and easy access. Followed again this year by a pot-luck dinner. Bring a dish to share if you wish. Free will offering to benefit the sponsoring churches. For info: email email@example.com or call 716-773-5315.
4th Annual Turkey Dinner Giveaway - November 2023For veterans, active military & first responders. 4th Annual Turkey Dinner Giveaway will take place at the Boulevard Mall, Niagara Falls Blvd side, near big B, on Wednesday, November 22nd, starting at 10:30 a.m. First come, first serve, 750 dinners available. See FLYER for sponsors and more details.
Election Results - November 2023Grand Island Supervisor
100% of precincts reporting (13/13) Votes Percent
Peter Marston Jr. (C) 3,510 58%
Michael Madigan (R) 2,543 42%
Grand Island Councilmember (2 seats)
100% of precincts reporting (13/13) Votes Percent
Thomas Digati (R) 3,953 32.8%
Daniel Kilmer (R) 3,247 26.9%
Wayne West (D) 2,771 23%
Kristen Obarka (D) 2,085 17.3%
Grand Island Town Clerk
100% of precincts reporting (13/13) Votes Percent
Patricia Frentzel (R) 4,693 72.7%
George Hauss (D) 1,760 27.3%
Veterans Day - A Day of Honor, A Day to Honor - November 2023Erie County, NY - Erie County Clerk Mickey Kearns Wants Everyone to Know... Veterans Day - A Day of Honor, A Day to Honor. "Thank-A-Vet" Program Pays Tribute to Veterans Throughout Year.
Veterans Day occurs every year on November 11th in honor of the “eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month" of 1918 that signaled the end of World War I, honoring the servicemen and women of all wars who have served our Nation and answered the call to defend it. The United States rose to greatness on the strength of their service and their stories are woven into the fabric of our Nation’s history.
Whether they served in times of war or peace, all veterans share a common bond, their belief in the cause of freedom. A belief so strong they are willing to give their lives, if need be, in its defense. We know them as our fathers and mothers, our family members, or perhaps our next-door neighbors. Here in Erie County we have over 50,000 proud veterans who have displayed an extraordinary legacy of patriotism. Their service embodies the highest form of citizenship and love of country, all while risking their lives to protect us and our nation. As Americans, we all must take the time to honor and thank them for their unwavering service.
Every Veterans Day, Erie County holds a number of memorial services to honor these men and women for their patriotism, love of country and willingness to serve and sacrifice. I encourage all Erie County residents to take time to honor and celebrate the heroism and courage of our local veteran community by attending a veteran’s event in your community or by simply displaying an American flag outside your home throughout the month of November.
At the Erie County Clerk’s Office, we proudly pay tribute to our veterans 365 days a year through our “Thank-A-Vet” Discount Card Program. I would like to remind veterans if they have not already filed their honorable discharge papers and received the “Thank-A-Vet” discount card, to come in and do so. Presently, over 1,500 Erie County businesses, both large and small, have registered in the program to give valuable discounts on goods and services to our deserving veterans. We constantly add participating businesses to our program and I encourage any interested business owner to enlist and join us today in “thanking” our veteran community.
When a veteran place their discharge papers (DD-214) on file with the Erie County Clerk’s Office, it safeguards the document and makes attaining their free certified copy quick and easy for the veteran and their loved ones. The “Thank-A-Vet” photo ID card is issued at no charge and our heroes walk away with a real benefit of potentially thousands of dollars in savings and local participating businesses benefit by assisting a veteran and earning the loyalty of a new or existing customer.
To obtain your complimentary “Thank-A-Vet” Discount Card, visit the Erie County Clerk’s Office located at 92 Franklin Street in Buffalo or the Clerk’s Outreach Center, located next to the Auto Bureau in the Southgate Plaza, Monday–Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Veterans and business owners can learn more about the Clerk’s “Thank-A-Vet” Discount Card Program at erie.gov/clerk/thankavet or call 716-858-6787.
Veterans Day Ceremony - November 2023The Town of Grand Island cordially invites veterans, family members and friends to attend the Veterans Day ceremony at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, November 11th at the Veterans Park Memorial Wall located at 1717 Bedell Road. There will be a reception following the ceremony at the Charles N. DeGlopper Post No. 9249, 2121 Grand Island Blvd.
Grand Island Candidates Night Update - October 2023All the candidates for office in the Town of Grand Island, who are on the November 7 general election ballot, have accepted an invitation to participate in the inaugural Candidates Forum, presented by the town’s Kiwanis, Lions, Rotary, and Zonta civic clubs, along with the Chamber of Commerce and assisted by students from Grand Island High School. John DiScuillo, a member of the Buffalo Broadcasters Hall of Fame and Operations Manager at WBBZ-TV, will serve as moderator of the event on Tuesday, October 23 from 6:30 to 9:00 pm in the William Kaegebein School auditorium at 1690 Love Road. The event is free and open to the public.
This is not a League of Women Voters sanctioned event, but most of its rules were followed and this is not a debate. Questions have been submitted by the public and the committee continues to accept them by visiting https://form.jotform.com/232684102299055. A representative from each organization will review the questions together and determine which will be presented to the candidates. The moderator will read the question, which will be confined to issues, not personalities. The questions will not be directed to a specific candidate but will be presented to each candidate to answer. Each candidate will be offered 2 minutes to respond and there will be no rebuttal. The timekeeper, who will be a GIHS student, will advise the candidate at one minute, 30 seconds, and 10 seconds to assure the program flows.
The candidates are:
Supervisor (4-year term, Vote for 1): Michael J. Maddigan (R), Peter J. Marston (C).
Council (4-year term, Vote for 2): Thomas A. Digati (R, C), Daniel F. Kilmer (R), Karen A. Obarka (D), Wayne M. West (D, WF).
Clerk (4-year term, Vote for 1): Patricia A. Frentzel (R, C, WF), Michael H. Hauss (D).
Justice (4-year term, Vote for 1): Mark Nemeth (R, D, C, WF)
Grand Island Candidates Night - October 2023The first Grand Island Candidates Night, presented by the Grand Island Zonta, Kiwanis, Lions, and Rotary Clubs and the Grand Island Chamber of Commerce, along with students from the Grand Island High School government club. The five organizations have agreed to work together, along with students from the school and we have agreed that each organization has an equal stake in this event, and it was being presented by all of us for the interest of the voters on Grand Island to present a Forum for the candidates to express their views.
This unique, insightful and informative Forum for the Supervisor, Town Board and Clerk candidates will be held Tuesday, October 24, 2023, from 6:30 to 9:00 pm in the William Kaegebein auditorium, 1690 Love Rd. Hyperlink for residents to send questions for the candidates of whatever office they would like the question directed. This was created by Eric Fiebelkorn, president of the GI Chamber of Commerce.
A representative from each of the 5 organizations will sort through the questions and create the questions our moderator will present on October 24. No one will see or know the questions before hand. It will set up in a way that each candidate will be asked the same questions with no rebuttal from the opponents. Candidate 1 will receive Question 1 while Candidate 2 will receive Question 2, etc. so the same question will not be asked to both or all of the candidates at once.
A letter went to each candidate with the party chairs copied. They have until end of day Wednesday to respond. The Forum will go on with or without all the candidates for an office if that should occur. If guests that evening have questions for the candidates, they can ask them after the event or we will have contact information in the program for them to send off their questions.
Erie County Cancer Services Program - October 2023ERIE COUNTY, NY – Fact: One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. Fact: Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths in New York State. Fact: Mammograms can detect breast cancer in early stages, when there are more treatment options and better outcomes. Fact: Breast cancer is treatable and beatable, and the Erie County Cancer Services Program (CSP) is committed to connecting uninsured and underinsured residents with mammograms.
Most health insurance plans in New York State cover the costs for mammograms, but for people without insurance, CSP can help. CSP helps people without insurance get life-saving screenings for breast, cervical and colorectal cancer. If more testing is needed, our program can pay for that too and help enroll eligible people in the NYS Medicaid Cancer Treatment Program if cancer is found. "Each October, we renew our message to the public that cost or lack of insurance should not be a barrier to getting a mammogram," said CSP Director Michelle Wysocki. "The fear of the unknown can lead to avoiding that regular screening. We are here to help people not only have that mammogram, but also provide any needed access to additional testing or treatment through our large network of local healthcare providers."
CSP covers the cost of a screening mammogram for those age 40-74 with little or no health insurance, as well as a provider visit for a Clinical Breast Exam if needed. If you or anyone you know needs breast, cervical or colorectal cancer screening, please call CSP at 716-858-7376.
National Blood & Platelet Shortage - October 2023BUFFALO — The American Red Cross continues to experience a national blood and platelet shortage and asks the public to book a time to give as soon as possible. Donors of all blood types are urgently needed, especially type O blood donors and those giving platelets. The Red Cross offers three ways to make a donation appointment that can help save lives:• Download the Red Cross Blood Donor App; • Visit RedCrossBlood.org; • Call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
The Red Cross experienced a significant blood and platelet donation shortfall in August, contributing to the current blood and platelet shortage. To ensure the blood supply recovers, the Red Cross must collect 10,000 additional blood products each week over the next month to meet hospital and patient needs.
"When blood and platelet supplies drop to critical levels, it makes hospitals and the patients they are treating vulnerable – especially if there is a major accident or emergency medical procedure that requires large quantities of blood during a disaster," said Dr. Baia Lasky, medical director for the Red Cross. "A single car accident victim can use as much as 100 units of blood. By making and keeping donation appointments, donors can help keep hospital shelves stocked with blood products and ensure patients have access to the timely care they deserve."
As a thank-you, those who come to give Oct. 1-20, 2023, will receive a $15 Amazon.com Gift Card by email. Details are available at RedCrossBlood.org/Together. In late summer, the Red Cross national blood supply dropped by about 25% on the heels of one of the busiest travel seasons and the beginning of back-to-school activities. As people settle back into fall school and work routines, a unique challenge to the blood supply remains – many employees continue to work from home or in a hybrid capacity, reducing the number of opportunities to give blood at business-sponsored blood drives. In fact, before the COVID-19 pandemic, more than 800,000 blood donations were made at blood drives hosted by businesses. Last year, the Red Cross saw only about 500,000 blood donations at these locations – a nearly 40% drop from pre-pandemic levels. This, coupled with an active disaster season, is creating a perfect “storm” and challenging the organization’s ability to collect a sufficient amount of blood products to meet the needs of hospitals across the country.
The Red Cross provides community blood drives and donation centers across the 27 counties that comprise the Western New York region. Those who may have previously given at a local business blood drive are encouraged to book a time to give at one of these locations by downloading the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
Charles DeGlopper Memorial Updates - September 2023
Robert Haag photo.The Charles DeGlopper Memorial final concrete pour took place on September 15, 2023. There are future projects including a Purple Heart monument and a Taps monument. Also granite benches are in the plans. There is space for 45 additional 12"x12" granite stones to remember your friends, family and loved ones available. See HERE.
6th Annual Grand Island E-Waste Recycling Drive - September 2023Drive through E-Waste Recycling Drive at Grand Island Town Hall, Saturday, October 14, 2023 9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. All accepted items are free to recycle (limit of 3 tvs per vehicle) Does not accept refrigerators, dehumififiers, microwaves or smoke detectors. See FLYER.
September is Passport Awareness Month - September 2023Erie County, NY - The Erie County Clerk’s Office is celebrating National Passport Awareness Month by reminding the traveling public that my office is an official Passport Application Acceptance Agent of the United States Passport Service for first-time customers and children. Further, I would like to remind current passport holders to ensure that their document is valid prior to traveling.
Most tourists know they need a passport to travel internationally to foreign lands, however many are unaware that in a number of foreign countries, your passport must be valid for six months beyond your date of return. If your travel document expires before that, you may be denied boarding your flight or entry to your destination and be sent back home immediately upon your arrival.
So how much will a passport cost you in total? There are a number of factors that go into the cost calculation, including the type of passport you want, whether you're renewing or getting your first one, and how fast you need to obtain your travel document. With the new fee, the cost of a first-time adult passport book comes out to $165, comprised of a $130 application fee and a $35 acceptance fee. The price for renewing an adult passport book now totals $130. The price for a minor passport book for those under age 16 is now $135, consisting of a $100 application fee and a $35 acceptance fee. According to the State Department, the turnaround time for routine service, including passport renewals, currently can take 7 to 10 weeks. For $60 more, an expedited renewal application can take 4 to 6 weeks. Processing times can change at any time, so it is important that you check the status of your passport application online at travel.state.gov/passports.
Payment for the passport or passport card must be in the form of check or money order. No cash or credit cards can be accepted. A certified copy of your birth certificate and proof of identity, such as a valid New York State driver’s license or non-driver identification card, is required in order for any application to be accepted. Those looking to obtain a passport or passport card for any children under the age of 16 need to make sure both parents are present in order to sign the application.
The Erie County Clerk’s Office is open to the public and applicants can apply for a passport card and /or passport book at Old County Hall, 92 Franklin Street, Buffalo, Monday – Friday 9:00am-5:00pm or at the County Clerk’s Outreach Center, 1088 Union Road, West Seneca next to the Auto Bureau in the Southgate Plaza, Monday- Friday from 9am to 5:00pm and on Thursday till 7:00pm. Passport photos can be taken at either office for a fee of $10. No appointments are necessary.
Current passport holders with less than 6 months validity remaining on their travel document(s) must submit the renewal application directly to the Passport Agency by mail. Such renewals cannot be completed through the County Clerk’s Office. A complete list of instructions on how to renew a passport by mail can be found at travel.state.gov/passports. However, the passport agents in my office will be happy to assist in making sure your renewal application is completed properly and also take your passport photo.
Additionally, U.S. travelers must meet the REAL ID compliance standard in order to board domestic flights and access certain federal facilities. A valid U.S. passport book, a passport card, a state-issued enhanced (EDL) driver license or enhanced non-driver identification card all meet the new security standard that goes into effect May 7, 2025. Passport applications, a list of all required documents, and detailed breakdown of the new fee schedule are available by visiting erie.gov/passports or by contacting the Erie County Clerk’s Outreach Center at (716) 858-8864.
Monarchs & Milkweeds Information - September 2023The Grand Island Nature Alliance (GINA) will sponsor "Monarchs & Milkweeds" on Saturday, September 23rd from 2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. at the Nike Base Community Center, 3278 Whitehaven Road. Dave O'Donnell, an expert on Monarch butterflies, will speak on protection, migration, and habitat. Dave runs the Eastern Monarch Butterfly Farm. Register by calling 716-774-8268.
School Tax Bills Mailed - September 2023Town Clerk Patricia A. Frentzel announced that the 2023/2024 School Tax Bills have been mailed. If you have changed banks, have paid off your mortgage or do not have an escrow account and did not receive a tax bill, please contact the Town Clerk’s office at 773-9600 ext. 620. The regular office hours are 8:30am - 4:30pm. The office will be open until 6:00pm on Friday, October 13, 2023 and Monday, October 16, 2023 and also on Saturday, October 14, 2023, 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM. Checks should be made payable to Town Clerk. The last day to pay without penalty is October 16. Envelopes must show a legible postmark of October 16 to be accepted on time. Taxpayers should call the office for correct amounts for payments made October 17 and later. Payments can be made until November 30, 2023. After this date, payments must be sent to the County.
Grand Island History Weekend - September 2023
Historic River Lea.A History Weekend is being planned for Saturday & Sunday, September 23 & 24. On Saturday, the historic Alt Farm on Whitehaven Road will be open for a tour from 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. The Grand Island Historical Society's museum River Lea will be open 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. On Saturday & Sunday, Kelly's Country Store & historic #5 school will be participating. See FLYER.
Citizen of the Year Awards - September 2023
The Grand Island Chamber of Commerce announces this year's recipients of Grand Island Citizen of the Year Awards.
Dr. Brian Graham for Outstanding Leadership, Dave Mazur for Exceptional Property Development, Elsie Martino for Community Service, the Family Justice Center of Erie County for Service Organization, and The Village Inn as Business of the Year!
Please join us on October 11, 2023, in celebrating their hard work, dedication, and passion for the community! Purchase tickets to the event here. For event program book advertising options and sponsorship packages, please visit: here. See more at our official Facebook event page.
Craft Fair Photos - September 2023
Mary Stewart Photos.A well attended craft fair was held this past Saturday at the Island Presbyterian Church. A wide variety of hand made craft items were available to purchase.
Registration for fall Community Education courses is now open. Please visit the Community Education page for more information and to check out the great classes that are being offered.
GICSD Fall 2023 Community Education Programs - September 2023
GICSD Fall 2023 Community Education - Booklet.
Buffalo News story posted September 4, 2023 by Jonathan D. Epstein. Long Road Commerce Center.
Long Road Commerce Center - September 2023
Ferry Village Tour - September 2023The next Ferry Village history tour will take place on Thursday, September 21st at 6:30 p.m. Cost is $10 each and meet at Casey's Cabana. Call Sharon at 716-773-2421 for reservations.
DeGlopper Park Improvements - August 2023
From left Ray DeGlopper, Joe Mesmer, Alan Lee and Paul Sommer.
On Tuesday, August 22nd, Galante Concrete Construction added a concrete area, that was previously stone at the Charles N. DeGlopper Memorial Park site. This will allow for better access.
Robert Haag Photos.
School Bus Safety - August 2023Erie County, NY - Erie County Clerk Mickey Kearns Wants Everyone to Know… Rules of the Road When it Comes to School Bus Safety. Motorists must stop when a school bus flashes its red lights – It’s the law.
As summer winds down, children across Erie County are heading back to school and the “Yellow School Buses” once again dot our roadways. For a majority of the over 121,000 students throughout Erie County, the school day begins and ends with a trip on a school bus. Many children will be going to school for the first time and may not be as careful when crossing the street or running to catch the bus. Older children know the routine, but may forget in their excitement to catch up with friends. Unfortunately, each year some bus trips to school end in tragedy - children are injured or killed in school bus incidents when motorists fail to follow the rules of the road. Data has shown that on a single school day, an estimated 50,000 drivers throughout New York State illegally pass stopped school buses. Although drivers are required to stop for a school bus when it is stopped to load or unload passengers, children should not rely on them to do so, a fact that parents should discuss with their children prior to the start of the school year.
The rules of the road in New York State are specific when it comes to school buses. Drivers need to know and obey the “flashing signal light system” that school bus drivers use to alert motorists of pending actions. Yellow flashing lights indicate that the bus is preparing to stop to load or unload children. That is the time to slow down and prepare to stop your vehicle. Red flashing lights and extended stop arms indicate that the bus has stopped, and that children are getting on or off the bus. Motorists must stop their cars at least 20 feet away from the bus and wait until the red lights stop flashing, the extended stop sign is withdrawn, and the bus begins moving before they can start driving again. When a school bus stops and flashes its red lights, traffic approaching from either direction must stop before reaching the bus: on a two-lane road, on multi-lane highways, or on divided highways.
All drivers should know that the fine for passing a stopped school bus ranges from a minimum of $250 and up to $400 and/or up to 30 days in jail for the first violation. Additionally, a conviction places 5 points on your driver’s license and may result in increased insurance premiums. If convicted of three violations in three years, your license will be revoked for a minimum of six months. It goes without saying that even one instance of passing a stopped school bus is unacceptable; it could mean the life of a child.
Parents, it is important to talk with your child, or children, about school bus safety. Children need to know to stand at least three giant steps (6 feet) away from the curb when waiting for the bus to arrive. Children must also wait until the bus comes to a complete stop, the doors open, and the driver says it is okay before stepping onto the bus. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the greatest risk is not while riding on the school bus, but getting on or getting off. Children need to be reminded to be cautious in and around the “danger zone” of the school bus, which is the 10 feet in front, behind and on each side of the school bus.
When the new school year begins in the coming weeks, I remind motorists not to drive distracted, slow down around school zones and be alert for children approaching or exiting school buses. If we all exercise a little extra care and caution, drivers and pedestrians can co-exist and together, and we can all enjoy the upcoming school year safely.
Fishing Tournament & Picnic Fundraiser - August 2023
Anchor Marine is hosting Casting for Courage Fishing Tournament & Picnic Fundraiser on Saturday, August 26th at 1501 Ferry Road, Grand Island. It will include Fishing Tournament, Picnic Lunch (Chiavetta's), Bounce Houses, Games, and more! All proceeds will go directly to The Courage for Carly Fund and Roswell Park. Help us reach our goal of $50,000 raised! The tournament is from 8:00 a.m. - noon, picnic etc is from noon - 4:30 p.m. See website for tickets and details.
Pete Marston for Supervisor Kickoff - August 2023
Friends of Pete Marston for Supervisor are hosting a campaign kickoff on Thursday, August 24th from 5:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. at the Sandy Beach Yacht Club, 1851 Winter Road. See FLYER.
John Whitney to Resign as Supervisor - July 2023
A Buffalo News article dated Wednesday, July 26th by Stephen T. Watson. See HERE.
Vendors Wanted for Grand Island Craft Show - July 2023
Looking for vendors for the Grand Island Craft Fair taking place on Saturday, September 2nd at Island Presbyterian Church, 1822 Huth Road. See FLYER.
Rabies Vaccine Air Drop & Ground Baiting - July 2023
The yearly rabies vaccine distribution for wildlife populations in Erie County is scheduled to start in early August. This vital service uses U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) aircraft and Erie County Department of Health (ECDOH) sanitarians on the ground to place oral rabies vaccine in places where wildlife will eat it. When foxes, skunks, raccoons, woodchucks and other mammals eat these small green packets the size of a quarter coin, they gain protection against rabies, a virus that is 100% fatal.. See FLYER.
2023 Rain Barrel & Compost Bin Sale - July 2023
Erie County is doing their annual rain barrel – compost bin sale. Grand Island residents are eligible for a 50-75% discount due the Tonawanda Environmental Benefits Program and some DEC funding. Orders can be placed at http://www.erie.compostersale.com/ and are due by August 15, 2023. See FLYER.
Grand Island Garden Walk Photos - July 2023
Mary Stewart Photos.Very successful Garden Walk was held on Sunday, July 9th at various homes.
Ferry Village Tours - July 2023
Ferry Village Tours - Thursdays, August 17 and September 21 at 6:30 p.m. Tours provided by Grand Island Historic Preservation Advisory Board. See FLYER.
Stories for Younger Children - July 2023
The GI Theater Workshop will present Stories for Younger Children on Thursday, July 13 at 10 A.M. The performance is free and is suitable for children ages 4 and older. The GI Theater Advanced Workshop will present Scenes and Monologues at 11:30 A.M. on Thursday, July 13. This is suitable for audiences aged 10 and older. This performance is also free. Both performances will be presented in the high school auditorium, 1100 Ransom Road.
GAC Receives Federal Funding - June 2023
From left: Supervisor John Whitney, Golden Age Center Recreation Supervisor Jen Menter, Congressman Brian Higgins and Deputy Supervisor Pete Marston.Congressman Brian Higgins was at the Golden Age Center Monday, June 26th to announce Federal Funding in the amount of $850,000.00 for HVAC needs at the facility. Thank you Congressman Higgins for your support of Grand Island, we are most appreciative of the funding to ensure a better environment for our residents while they enjoy various programs and activities at the Golden Age Center.
Election Results - June 2023
Supervisor Grand Island (REP)
Michael H. Madigan 54.94% 834
Peter J. Marston Jr. 44.80% 680
Town Council (REP)
Daniel F. Kilmer 37.01% 917
Thomas A. Digati 32.20% 798
Joseph V. Spinella 30.55% 757
Kid Biz Success - June 2023
Photos by Mary StewartKid Biz 2023 took place on Saturday, June 17th and was very well attended, with many participants!.
17th Annual Paddles Up Niagara - June 2023
Beaver Island State Park, Grand Island, New York: Meet at Shelters 2B, launch from the far end of the beach. Registration will open Tuesday 6/20/23 @ 4:30 p.m.
Paddles Up Niagara is a family friendly and safe way to experience the natural areas and unique habitats of the Niagara River. Whether you are a novice or an experienced paddler, you will enjoy spending the morning with an enthusiastic paddling community. Guides and safety paddlers will be on hand to assist and answer your paddling questions.
Eco Tour Paddles at 7:00 and 7:30 a.m.; Group fun paddle at 10:30 a.m.; Eco Hike at 8:00 a.m. Exhibitors, food and more - for more info visit: www.niagararivergreenway.com/paddles-up
Passports on the Move - June 2023Erie County, NY - Erie County Clerk Michael P. Kearns announced that his office will be conducting a "Passports on the Move" outreach on Tuesday, July 18th from 5pm to 7pm at the AAA Travel and Insurance Center located at 100 International Drive in Williamsville. A second outreach event is also planned for Tuesday, August 22nd from 5pm to 7pm the AAA Travel and Insurance Center located at 1737 Sheridan Drive in Tonawanda.
This community event is for first-time passport applicants only. Reservations are required and can be made for either date by contacting the Erie County Clerk’s Outreach Center at (716) 858-8864. "I am pleased to make this popular service available to residents across the Northtowns, along with our community partners at AAA of Western and Central New York," said County Clerk Kearns. "Our main objective is to make County government more customer-centered, including offering easily accessible locations for travelers to apply for their passport."
Applicants will be able to apply for a passport card, passport book or both. Payment must be in the form of check or money order. No cash or credit cards will be accepted. "I encourage anyone planning an upcoming vacation, the Buffalo Bills game in London, or college students preparing for a semester abroad to schedule an appointment for our 'Passports on the Move' event as the current wait time to receive a passport can be as along as 13 weeks," Kearns stated.
"International travel is up more than 200 percent this year compared to last year based on AAA booking data, and the surge in demand is leading to passport processing delays at the federal level, so AAA recommends that travelers apply for passports as soon as possible," said Elizabeth Carey, Director of Public Relations and Corporate Communications at AAA Western and Central New York. "AAA is pleased to partner with the Erie County Clerk's office to offer this much needed service, which simplified the application process for travelers."
A certified copy of birth certificate and proof of identity such as a current New York State driver’s license or non-driver identification card is required in order for any application to be accepted. Passport photos can be taken on-site and are available for $8.95 for AAA members and $12.95 for non-members.
Current passport holders with less than 6 months validity remaining are encouraged to follow the instructions on how to renew their passport by mail at travel.state.gov/passports. Passport applications, a list of all required documents and a schedule of fees are available by visiting erie.gov/passports or by contacting the Erie County Clerk’s Office Outreach Center at (716) 858-8864.
4th of July Parade and Dick Bessel Independence Day Run - June 2023Tuesday, July 4, 2023... The Town of Grand Island will hold it’s 53rd annual 4th of July Parade and 47th annual Dick Bessel Independence Day Run on Tuesday, July 4, 2023.
Parade applications available at https://grandislandny.myrec.com or by emailing or calling the Recreation Department. Registration for the Dick Bessel Independence Day Run is available at score-this.com. Run applications are also available on the Recreation Department website or HERE. The Recreation Department can be contacted by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 716-773-9680.
Road Closure and Event Timeline Information: Road closures will take place between 8:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
8:30 a.m. – G.I. Blvd. closes from traffic circle to intersection of G.I. Blvd. and Baseline Rd.
8:45 a.m. – Baseline Road closes from Alvin Rd. to Whitehaven Rd.
9:00 a.m. – kids run starts
9:10 a.m. – adult run starts
9:45 a.m. – approx. - Baseline Road opens
9:45 a.m. - approx. – parade starts
11:30 a.m. – approx. - parade ends
12:00 p.m. – approx. - all roads open
Purple Heart Day Ceremony - June 2023Erie County, NY - Erie County Clerk Michael P. Kearns will again honor veterans that have been bestowed the Purple Heart by adding their name to the William J. Donovan Purple Heart Recipients Book of Merit. Kearns is asking veterans who were awarded the Purple Heart or their surviving family members to submit their request to his office no later than July 28th in order to be added to the 2023 edition and be part of this year’s Purple Heart Day Ceremony.
Purple Heart veterans or their families must complete a short application that can be obtained online at erie.gov/clerk/PurpleHeartForm or by email at email@example.com as well as provide proof the award was issued. Those with additional questions can call the Erie County Clerk’s office at 716-858-6787. "I think it is important to honor the brave men and women who have served and sacrificed for our Country. They deserve to be recognized and I am pleased we are able to maintain a record of our local heroes at the Erie County Clerk’s Office", stated Kearns.
The complete volume of the William J. Donovan Purple Heart Book of Merit is on display year-round at the Erie County Clerk’s Office in Old County Hall located at 92 Franklin Street, Buffalo. It presently holds five hundred eighteen (518) names of those honored with the Purple Heart from Erie County. Kearns established the William J. Donovan Purple Heart Recipients Book of Merit in 2018 and has committed to add to the book each year with new recipients. The book is named after Buffalo native and leading advocate for the Central Intelligence Agency, William J. Donovan. Donovan would receive three Purple Hearts during his service in the military, and would go on to heard the predecessor of the CIA, during World War II.
The Purple Heart is the oldest military decoration awarded to members of the United States military who were wounded or killed while serving, on or after April 5, 1917. Originally called the Badge of Military Merit, the Purple Heart was created by George Washington on August 7, 1782. In addition to receiving a purple heart shaped award, the honoree’s name and regiment were inscribed in a “Book of Merit” which was lost after the Revolutionary War and the award was largely forgotten until over 100 years later. Kearns will recognize the William J. Donovan Purple Heart Recipients and honor all Purple Heart veterans during a ceremony on Monday, August 7th which also serves as National Purple Heart Day annually. Full details will be available closer to the event date. In addition, Old County Hall will be lit up purple, August 7-13th, in honor of Purple Heart Appreciation Day and in solemn recognition of all service members injured or killed in action.
Hazardous Air Quality Conditions - June 2023ERIE COUNTY – The latest weather forecasts are predicting very unhealthy air quality conditions to continue through the day Thursday, June 8. The Erie County Department of Health (ECDOH) strongly recommends that individuals remain indoors as much as possible while these poor air conditions persist.
This may mean postponing work outdoors and outdoor sports activities, especially when participants are younger children, older adults or individuals with heart conditions like heart failure or lung conditions like asthma or COPD. Parents and caregivers should insist that children and adults in their care stay inside. Make sure windows and doors are closed.
Employers with workers who spend time outdoors should shift to indoor projects if possible. Limiting the amount of time spent outdoors is another way to reduce your risks and avoid symptoms like eye, nose and throat irritation, coughing, sneezing, fatigue, wheezing and shortness of breath.
ERIE COUNTY..June 7, 2023 – As of this writing (12:30 p.m.), Airnow.gov records a "very unhealthy" air quality for the greater Buffalo area. Air quality alerts from NYS DEC are expected to continue at least through this evening. Given the hazardous air quality conditions created by Canadian wildfire smoke, the Erie County Department of Health is strongly recommending that coordinated outdoor activities, such as children’s sports events or adult sports leagues, be postponed for a later date, once air quality improves.
Employers with workers who spend time outside should consider postponing outdoor work, shifting to indoor work, limiting the time spent outdoors, or providing N95 masks. Workers with heart or lung disease and older adults should also avoid physical activities outdoors until air quality conditions improve. Erie County residents should stay up-to-date with current air conditions from sources like Airnow.gov, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and the National Weather Service – Buffalo.
National Fuel Gas Company Foundation Announces Grants - June 2023(May 30, 2023) WILLIAMSVILLE, N.Y. – The board of directors of the National Fuel Gas Company Foundation (Foundation), the charitable giving arm of National Fuel Gas Company (National Fuel), recently held its quarterly meeting and approved Foundation grants totaling $351,500. According to David P. Bauer, Foundation President and President and CEO of National Fuel, a portion of the approved funding was granted to nonprofits proposed by members of National Fuel’s four employee resource groups. Grants also were awarded to agencies where employees chose to volunteer during Earth Week as part of Days of Doing, an annual company-wide community service initiative.
"Aligning National Fuel's philanthropy with organizations supported by our employees, through employee nominations and volunteerism, brings giving and service together at greater levels and amplifies our ability to improve the health and vitality of local communities," Bauer said. "We are proud to work alongside many nonprofits and to support their important missions." The board approved the following grants put forth by employee resource groups.
In New York: Every Bottom Covered, Inc., GLYS WNY, Inc., Haven House, Pride Center of WNY, Inc., WNY Veterans Housing Coalition and WNY Young Achievers Award/Black Boys Read Too, Inc.
Sandy Beach Yacht Club "Cars and Cigars" - June 2023
Sandy Beach Yacht Club "Cars and Cigars" is on Saturday, June 10th, 11:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. Fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Western New York. See FLYER. Website.
Native Plant Sale - May 2023Native Plant Sale on the historic Alt Farm,2489 Whitehaven Road, Saturday, June 3rd from 10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. This is a fundraiser to support the educational and outreach activities of the Citizen Coalition foir Wilflife and Environment. FLYER.
Memorial Day Ceremony - May 2023Monday, May 29, 2023 – 10:00 a.m.
The Town of Grand Island, Charles N. DeGlopper VFW Post #9249, American Legion Post #1346 and Grand Island High School Wind Ensemble will honor the men and women who made the supreme sacrifice for our country while in military service. They are remembered each and every day and will be honored on Memorial Day.
Veterans, family members and the community are cordially invited to attend the program on Monday, May 29, 2023, at 10:00 AM at Charles N. DeGlopper Memorial Park. There will be a reception following the ceremony at the Charles N. DeGlopper Memorial Post #9249 located at 2121 Grand Island Boulevard.
For questions on the ceremony please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call at 716-773- 9680. Location: Charles N. DeGlopper Memorial Located at the intersection of Grand Island Boulevard and Baseline Road Nearest Address – Walgreens - 2320 Grand Island Boulevard, Grand Island, NY 14072.
Grand Island School Elections - May 2023Proposed budget: Yes 959 No 620
Proposition 2: Yes 979 No 593
Proposition 3: Yes 925 No 641
Candidates (Elect 2): Susan Marston (i), 949, Ashli Dreher (i), 835, Andrew Grinchishin, 704, Jennifer Chin, 545
May is Motorcycle Safety & Awareness Month - May 2023News from Erie County Clerk Michael P. Kearns
A time to remind motorists and motorcyclists to safely share the roadways. Warmer weather has arrived, daylight hours are longer and it is finally spring. Motorcycle riders across Erie County are tuning up their bikes and getting ready for the riding season on the open road. Motorcycles are inexpensive to purchase, fuel efficient, fun to ride and easy to park. In Erie County alone, there are more than 21,000 registered riders who use their motorcycles for commuting, touring and other recreational activities. According to the National Safety Council, although motorcycles make up only 3% of all registered vehicles and 0.6% of all vehicle miles traveled in the United States, motorcyclists accounted for 14% of all traffic fatalities, with fatalities among motorcycle riders and passengers increasing by 8% from 2020 to 2021.
I ask all motorists, especially new drivers, to be alert to the presence of motorcycles and to share the road safely. Motorcyclists often ride to one side of the lane and at times the rider can hide in your vehicle’s blind spot. Always look twice before turning or changing lanes to be sure your path is clear. Allow more following distance for motorcycles -- two or three car lengths is recommended, more if the roads are wet or visibility is poor. Riders should follow motorcycle safety protocols: wear protective gear at all times, including a helmet that meets or exceeds the U.S. Department of Transportation standard, ride within your skill limits, avoid riding in poor weather conditions, use turn signals, and never ride impaired or distracted. Riders can also benefit from any motorcycle safety programs offered to learn the critical skills needed to ride safely, including seasoned riders who want to reinforce safe driving practices. Course graduates may also qualify for insurance premium discounts with some insurers. Class locations and fees can be found at nysmsp.org.
Before hitting the road this driving season, I remind motorcyclists that their motorcycle registration expires annually on April 30th, so take time to visit the Erie County Auto Bureau to ‘Renew Local’. In addition, those who drive a motorcycle need to be properly licensed, as 43% of fatal bike accidents involve an unlicensed driver. Take the time to get properly licensed – not only because it’s the law, but because doing so may save a life. I urge everyone to use caution when sharing the road this summer. When we share the road, we share the responsibility of keeping each other safe. Together, the more we raise awareness and follow the rules of the road, the safer everyone is. Let’s ride smart, ride safe, and enjoy the season. For more information on motorcycle licensing and registration visit erie.gov/clerk/autobureau or call the Clerk’s Outreach Center at 716-858-8864.
GI Community Education Summer Programs - May 2023Registration is open for the Grand Island Community Education Summer Enrichment Programs. Go to https://www.grandislandschools.org/. Click on the Community tab, then Community Education or go to https://www.grandislandschools.org/domain/34.
UPK Lottery Deadline May 12 - May 2023The application deadline for the 2023-24 Grand Island Central School District UPK lottery is approaching. Applications will be accepted until 2 p.m. on May 12. All are invited to attend the live lottery, which will be held at 1 p.m. on Wednesday, May 17, 2023, in the Professional Development Room 137 of Grand Island High School, 1100 Ransom Road. For questions, call Jill Morrish at 716-773-8818.
Erie County Opiate Epidemic Task Force Meets - May 2023May 1, 2023...ERIE COUNTY, NY – Erie County Opiate Epidemic Task Force members met at SUNY Erie Community College North Campus today for its first in-person meeting since 2020.
Erie County Department of Health (ECDOH) Commissioner Dr. Gale Burstein presented data that outlined the troubling, tragic increase in opioid-related overdose deaths in 2022. In 2021, the Erie County Medical Examiner’s Office confirmed 286 opioid-related overdose deaths in 2021, compared to 306 deaths with 2 probable deaths in 2022. 2022’s total is higher than the previous peak of 301 deaths in 2016. Through April 28, 2023, ECDOH has confirmed 51 opioid-related overdose deaths with another 94 probable cases – an unofficial total of 145 deaths that unfortunately will increase this year.
Opioid-related deaths associated with fentanyl and cocaine have increased dramatically over the past six years. 57% of opioid-related deaths in 2022 involved cocaine, compared to less than 20% of cases in 2016. The increased proportion of deaths involving cocaine indicates a different population of people at risk for opioid poisoning – individuals who use cocaine occasionally or irregularly. Narcan can reverse the effects of an opioid poisoning. Text 716-225-5473 with your address to receive free Narcan by mail.
United States Attorney for the Western District of New York Trini Ross addressed the group with an update on law enforcement activities to combat drug trafficking and distribution. "We’re trying to reframe the problem from overdoses to poisoning,” Ross said. “Working together, law enforcement and all other entities will make a difference. We have to keep pushing forward … This (fentanyl) is poison, and we need to start treating it like that."
Representatives from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration gave a summary of how and where drugs are entering the United States – part of a $500 billion industry. They also presented data on the lethality of pills and fake pills seized by law enforcement. Representatives from NY MATTERS explained its referral platform that links patients to care within 24-48 hours. The MATTERS team has also expanded its harm reduction outreach. They have plans for 15 vending machines that contain fentanyl test strips and naloxone (Narcan). They have also distributed more than 440,000 fentanyl test strips to organizations and individuals.
The Harm Reduction Workgroup is continuing naloxone trainings and medication deployment conducted by the department at unique sites including bars, festivals, concert venues. A Workplace Committee is forming to plan education and activities with local employers. With federal funding, ECDOH is starting a program to train first responders on the opioid epidemic and Narcan administration. ECDOH is working with all 97 fire companies to provide access and training. Through this effort, ECDOH will provide leave-behind materials for first responders at the time of overdose or as appropriate. “By leaving materials behind, we’re working to engage clients in a way that is more effective,” said Project Coordinator Jennifer Garrigan. ECDOH is also adding direct links to NY MATTERS at outreach events through technology.
“You are establishing a healing pathway for families,” said Deb Smith, chair of the Family and Consumer Support and Advocacy Workgroup. She emphasized underlying issues of stigma against and lack of compassion for people who use drugs, and that these deaths in our community are preventable. “No one deserves to be poisoned,” she explained. “We, as families, feel that we should have to wait for anything to develop a flexible plan to change lives.”
Emergency Response Planning Team - April 2023
From left: David Khreis-GISCD; Justin Bridenbaker, Water; Tom Cecere, Parks; Mark Sadkowski, GIFC; Pete Marston, Deputy Supervisor; Dick Crawford, Highway Superintendent; Dr. Brian Graham, GISCD Superintendent; John Whitney, Town Supervisor; Greg Butcher, Emergency Services; Robert Westfall, Town Engineer; Cody Clarke, Water; John Podlucky, Wastewater; Skip Mrkall, Deputy Highway Superintendent; Tom Franz, GIPD(not pictured).This group has come together as what they are calling the "Emergency Response Planning Team". In December of 2022 we experienced what was deemed a "once in a generation" Blizzard event that began on Friday, December 23, 2022 and continued through Monday, December 26, 2022. The storm hit with a mix of rain, heavy snow with drifts of 3-4 feet, gusty winds estimated at 70mph on the Island and bitterly cold temperatures. The result of those elements brought white out conditions, extreme snow drifts, road closures including the bridges, all of which made it impossible to travel or for crews to plow and clear roads.
Much was learned from those that worked both boots on the ground and behind the scenes to aid our community. They have continued to meet and use that experience to put into place several practices, procedures and partnerships that will provide quicker and better services for our residents in any type of situation, not just a snow event.
Meet the School Board Candidates Night - May 20232023-2024 Proposed Budget
The voting will take place on Tuesday, May 16, 2023, 8 a.m. - 9 p.m. at the Grand Island High School gymnasium.
The Grand Island PTA Council will sponsor a Meet the Candidates Night at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, May 10, in the Professional Development Room of Grand Island High School, 1100 Ransom Road. Candidates are incumbents Dr. Ashli Dreher & Susan Marston. Also running are Jennifer Chin and Andrew Grinchishin. Candidates bio's - Jennifer Chin, Dr. Ashli Skura Dreher, Andrew Grinchishin, Susan Anstett Marston
Easter Activities - April 2023
Photos by Mary StewartThis years Easter egg hunt and activities took place at Veterans Park and the Grand Island Library on Friday, April 7th. It was a big success for kids, parents and grandparents. Activities included an egg hunt, three craft stations, photo booths, a visit with the Easter bunny and more. This year the Golden Age Club raffled off an Easter themed basket along with their sale of baked goods, hot chocolate and coffee. The proceeds will be used to support senior activities around Grand Island.
Maple Grove Cemetery Meeting - May 2023Maple Grove Cemetery Meeting will take place on Thursday, May 2nd at 6:00 p.m. at the Grand Island Memorial Library, 1715 Bedell Road, Grand Island.
ECDOH Hosts Free Rabies Vaccine Clinics - April 2023ERIE COUNTY, NY — The Erie County Department of Health (ECDOH) has opened registrations for two free rabies vaccine clinics in May.
Saturday, May 6, 2023, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Town of Tonawanda Highway Garage, 450 Woodward Avenue, Kenmore 14217 (Located off Military, North of Kenmore Ave.)
Saturday, May 13, 2023, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Erie Community College – South Campus, 4041 Southwestern Blvd., Bldg. 7, Orchard Park 14127
Registration is available at https://bit.ly/ECMay23 and appointments are required. Up to three pets will be accepted per appointment. Individuals who are unable to access online registration may call (716) 961-6800 during business hours to schedule an appointment. Dogs, cats and ferrets three months of age and older are eligible for a vaccination. Pet owners are asked to bring proof of their pet’s vaccination with them to the event in order to receive a three-year vaccination certificate; otherwise, a one-year certificate will be given. Dogs must be secured with a collar & leash or restrained in a carrier; cats and ferrets must be restrained in a secure carrier. Please do not use retractable or extended leashes.
ECDOH expresses sincere thanks to the Niagara Frontier Veterinary Society, the Medaille College Veterinary Technology Program, the SPCA Serving Erie County and the Erie County Medical Reserve Corps for providing volunteers and support in coordinating free rabies vaccination clinics for our community. Additional clinics will be announced for fall 2023.
April is National "Donate Life" Month - April 2023News from Erie County Clerk Michael P. Kearns
Erie County Clerk Kearns Urges Motorists to Register as Organ Donors
Each year during the month of April, my office is pleased to join Donate Life New York State (NYS) in celebrating National Donate Life Month, in an effort to raise awareness of the lifesaving impact of organ, eye and tissue donation and honoring those who have saved lives through the gift of donation. By providing the opportunity for our customers to enroll in the NYS Donate Life Registry, our local DMV offices are they key to saving and healing the lives of thousands of New Yorkers in need of a transplant. The Gift of Life comes in many different forms through many different stories, personalities, lives and backgrounds.
Just one person who donates organs (hearts, lungs, liver, kidneys, pancreas and intestines) can save up to eight lives, while a tissue or eye donor (corneas, bone, skin, heart valves, tendons, veins, etc.) can improve more than 75 lives by restoring eyesight, helping fight infections in burn patients and preventing the loss of mobility and disability. As you read this, over 8,100 New Yorkers are waiting for a life-saving transplant, including close to 800 people here in Western New York. Thousands more are waiting for life-enhancing tissue and eye donations.
We are very proud that our Erie County Auto Bureau plays a significant role in saving lives through the NYS Donate Life Registry. I am pleased to report since 2017, close to 196,000 Erie County motorists enrolled in the Donate Life Registry at their local Auto Bureau. Erie County has also surpassed the state-wide statistic by registering 58% of customers when they checked the box “YES” to this life-saving cause compared to 46% state-wide. These unprecedented enrollment numbers are something the staff of the Erie County Auto Bureau is very proud of.
I want to thank the staff of the Erie County Auto Bureau for their efforts in raising awareness and providing motorists with valuable information on the importance of organ, tissue and eye donation. Together with our community partners at Connect Life we have made substantial strides in the number of enrollments in Erie County, but we still have much work to do.
I encourage all motorists, 16 and older, to come to any Erie County Auto Bureau office to enroll and add the “Organ Donor” designation to your driver license or non-driver ID. Simply check “YES” and sign the New York State Organ Donation consent on the driver license application or upon registering your vehicle in-person for the first time. When you do, a symbol of a heart and the words "Organ Donor" will be printed on the front of your new driver license or non-driver identification card at no extra cost. So, when someone asks you: “Do you have a heart?” you can proudly answer: “YES!” According to Connect Life, 83 percent of current registrants have done so through their local DMV when applying for or renewing their driver’s license, learner’s permit, or non-driver ID. To learn more about saving lives through organ, eye, tissue and blood donation or enroll, please contact Connect Life Blood and Organ Donor Network at (716) 529-4300 or go to the Donate Life Registry website at donatelife.ny.gov.
Clean Up Grand Island - April 2023Saturday, April 29th from 8:00 a.m. - Noon.
We are looking for volunteers to come help clean up the environment all over Grand Island! Clean UP Grand Island is an event organized by the Town of Grand Island, Grand Island Chamber of Commerce, Grand Island Rotary & Niagara River Greenway to encourage the local community to come together and spruce up our beautiful Island. With the snow melted away and the foliage not yet in bloom, it's easy to identify areas where trash & debris have accumulated over winter and are in need of removal. All that's needed is a few hours of your time, a little passion to keep nature clean and a heart of service. You can put a team together or attend as individual. Either way, please join us and help Clean UP Grand Island! Check out the Clean UP Grand Island 2023 Facebook page.
Congressional Art Competition for High School Students - April 2023Rep. Brian Higgins is inviting high school students in the 26th Congressional District to take part in the annual Congressional Art Competition. The winner will be displayed in the Capitol in Washington, D.C. Students living in the cities of Buffalo, Niagara Falls and Tonawanda can participate, as well as those in the towns of Amherst, Cheektowaga, Grand Island, Tonawanda, West Seneca, Cambria, Lewiston, Lockport, Niagara, Pendleton, Porter, Wheatfield and Wilson. Artwork should be submitted by April 18 to Higgins' office in the Larkin at Exchange Building, 726 Exchange St., Suite 601. Western New York themes are encouraged.
All submissions will be displayed in the lobby of the Larkin at Exchange Building from April 24 to May 8 and on Higgins' social media accounts. Families will be invited to a reception May 8, when winners will be announced. Judges from the local art community will select the winning artwork. The winning student and a guest will receive complimentary airline tickets to a ribbon-cutting ceremony June 20 in Washington, D.C., along with the winners from other districts. For more information, call Higgins' office at 716-852-3501 or visit higgins.house.gov/services/art-competition.
Island YAMfest Photos! - March 2023
The Grand Island Art Department held its first annual K-12 "Youth In Art Month" Festival or "YAM Fest" last Friday and Saturday at the Grand Island Community Center. The Art Department would like to congratulate all of our artists on a truly wonderful showing of their artistic talents. Thank you to everyone who came out and to all those who helped make this possible. A special thanks goes out to the Grand Island Parks and Recreation Department for providing the space and art center and supporting the Arts in our community!
Island YAMfest! - March 2023
The Grand Island Central School District K-12 Art Department and the Studio @ Nike Base Park will present the first-ever Island YAMfest! (Youth Art Month Festival) on Friday and Saturday, March 24 and 25. The event will include an art show by GICSD students in kindergarten through 12th grade and will take place at the Town of Grand Island's Nike Base Park, 3278 Whitehaven Road. Among the scheduled events:
Friday, March 24: Opening reception from 6 to 7 p.m. in the Community Center. Art show from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Community Center. Art activities from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. in the Activity Center.
Saturday, March 25: Art show from 9 to 11 a.m. in the Community Center. Art activities from 9 to 11 a.m. in the Activity Center.
Town of GI Family Easter Activities - March 2023
Town of Grand Island Recreation Department Easter Activities are scheduled for Friday, April 7, 2023 from 9:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. at Veterans Park. There will be family friendly activities on the Easter Egg Trail and inside the GI Memorial Library. Bring your basket or bag to collect eggs. See trail map flyer and information flyer.
Talk of Mary Burnett Talbert by Lillian S. Williams - March 2023Riverside-Salem present "Talk of Mary Burnett Talbert" by Lillian S. Williams. It takes place at the Grand Island Welcome Center on Sunday, March 26th at 4:00 p.,.m. Historian Williams’ research on Talbert — an early 20th century civil rights reformer, suffragist and human rights advocate — has spanned over four decades and two continents. Everyone is welcome. See flyer for details.
West River Shoreline Improvements - March 2023
New York State has awarded a contract for the removal of invasive species along the West River shoreline.
DEC Announces Annual 'Buffer in a Bag' Program - February 2023News from the GI Conservation Advisory Board
Free Seedlings Available to Qualified Landowners for Streamside Plantings
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Basil Seggos today announced that the application period for the Trees for Tribs' "Buffer in a Bag" program is now open. Qualifying private and public landowners may apply for a free bag of 25 tree and shrub seedlings for planting near streams, rivers, or lakes to help stabilize banks, protect water quality, combat climate change, and improve wildlife habitat.
"Small-scale streamside plantings help decrease erosion, slow floodwaters, sequester carbon, and protect fish and wildlife habitat," said Commissioner Seggos. "I encourage New York landowners with waterside properties to participate in DEC's 'Buffer in a Bag' program to bolster the State's efforts to protect water quality and help safeguard communities from flooding."
To qualify, landowners must have property in New York State with at least 50 feet bordering a stream, river, or lake, and provide photos or a map of the planting location. Previous recipients are encouraged to reapply to continue to build riparian buffers. Applicants are eligible for one bag of 25 seedlings and recipients are chosen on a first-come, first-served basis. A total of 350 bags will be available statewide for this round of applications.
Seedlings are provided by DEC's Colonel William F. Fox Memorial Saratoga Tree Nursery. The Trees for Tribs program is managed by DEC's Division of Lands and Forests and supported by the State's Environmental Protection Fund (EPF). Governor Hochul's 2023-24 Executive Budget sustains the EPF at a historic $400 million. The EPF provides funding for critical environmental programs such as land acquisition, farmland protection, invasive species prevention and eradication, enhanced recreational access, water quality improvement, and an aggressive environmental justice agenda.
Visit DEC's website for more information about the Buffer in a Bag application process and requirements. Applications are due by 3 p.m. on April 7, 2023. Contact email@example.com with questions and visit DEC's Trees for Tribs webpage to learn more.
Major Traffic Disruptions Coming This Spring - February 2023The demolition and replacement of the Beaver Island overpass, that connects Grand Island Boulevard to the entrance of the South Grand Island Bridge, is scheduled to begin in March of this year (2023). At the same time, water lines are scheduled to be replaced along Baseline Road, between Bush and Alvin during the same time period.
Because of these projects, major disruptions will be experienced by Grand Island commuters this spring and into the rest of the year. Supervisor Whitney told us that no official alternative routes have been identified by the NYSDOT as of yet. Given the limited number of alternatives to access the entrance to the South Grand Island bridge for those living in the area, it is reasonable to assume that both truck and car traffic will be utilizing the ramp from Beaver Island Parkway and its associated feeder streets.
It is also unclear where the commuter and truck traffic from Thermofisher and Fresenius will be directed, but it seems likely that some combination of West River and Love or Whitehaven will be used. Therefore, people living in these areas should expect a sharp increase in local truck and car traffic.
If the Long Road warehouse development is approved, the construction traffic that would be added to our roadways would add to the congestion on our roads and bridges this year.
Earned Income Tax Credit Information - February 2023News from Erie County Clerk Michael P. Kearns
Federal and State Tax Credits can add up to almost $7,000 in EITC Refund.
If you worked in the past year and earned $59,187 or less, you can get your federal and state taxes e-filed for free, and you may qualify for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). That is why I am pleased that the Erie County Clerk’s Office is raising awareness of the critical support of the United Way’s MyFreeTaxes program.
The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program provides low and moderate-income individuals and families with reliable assistance by opening access to tax credits and other benefit programs and offering free tax preparation services to help working families and individuals file tax returns. Let VITA help you navigate through the somewhat confusing aspects of tax preparation including applying for the Earned Income Tax Credits. See details HERE.
American Red Cross Blood Drive - February 2023
American Red Cross Blood Drive on Friday, February 10th at 11:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. at the Grand Island Community Center at the Nike Base, 3278 Whitehaven Road. See FLYER.
Morinello Staff to Hold February Mobile Office Hours - February 2023The staff of Assemblyman Angelo J. Morinello (R,C-Niagara Falls) will offer mobile office hours at Grand Island Town Hall, 2255 Baseline Road on Tuesday, February 7 and again later in the month on Tuesday, February 21 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. Residents and elected officials are welcome and encouraged to stop by to address any ideas or concerns.
GI Distinguished Alumni Seeking Nominations - February 2023The Grand Island Distinguished Alumni committee is seeking your input for nominations. We are looking for exemplary candidates who have graduated at least ten years ago and have made significant contributions to their field of expertise. Worthy candidates must also demonstrate a sincere concern for humanity through their charitable actions. We will be reviewing all of the nominations and selecting the best candidate(s) who exemplify the distinguished Grand Island alumni tradition. Recipients or a representative, if given posthumously, will be invited to speak to our high school students at a date and time to be determined.
Complete the form to the best of your knowledge and submit your nomination. Thank you for your input! All nominations should be in by February 20, 2023 CLICK HERE to nominate someone.
Senior Wishes Seeking Wish Applicants - February 2023
Buffalo, NY, February 2, 2023... Do you have a wish? Founded by the United Church Home Society, Senior Wishes’ goal is to enrich the lives of deserving seniors by providing an experience to be cherished and remembered. More than 400 wishes have been granted since 2014, including traveling to visit long-missed family, attending a sports or cultural event, providing supplies to continue an abandoned hobby or lessons to learn something new.
Qualifying seniors may submit an application which is reviewed bi-monthly by a volunteer wish granting committee. After approval, a Senior Wishes representative will work together with the senior to plan the details of their wish experience. Community members are encouraged to reach out to deserving seniors, talk to them about their unfulfilled dreams, and help them fill out the paperwork. According to Wendy Miller Backman, Executive Director, “It is so fulfilling to grant a wish to a senior who has no other way of making their wish come true. Watching them have an experience for the first time, reuniting with their loved one, or just fulfilling a basic need brings so much joy.”
Wish recipients must be 65+ and a resident of Western New York with an annual income under $38,000 for a household of one or under $44,000 for a household of two. Permanent residents of care facilities are exempt from the income qualification. No medical diagnosis is required. Vacations, medical items, furniture, household repairs, bill payments and travel outside of the continental U.S. are excluded.
American Red Cross Blood Drive - January 2023
American Red Cross Blood Drive at Grand Island Fire Hall on Tuesday, January 24th. Chance to win trip to Super Bowl. See FLYER.
New Yard Signs Available! - January 2023
CRED4GI has purchased 150 new yard signs to display across Grand Island. We will be handing out the signs at the Visitors Center, between 6-7pm tonight (Thursday, Jan 12) and tomorrow night (Friday, Jan 13). We have also purchased stickers to paste over the old "No Amazon Warehouse" signs. We have been monitoring the Town Board meeting agendas and they have yet to vote on ordering independent consultants to refute the findings of the developer (that conclude there will be no issues with traffic, noise, pollution, etc). We want the Town Board to order independent consultants to review ALL aspects of this project and still believe that the project does not comply with the zoning requirements of a B1 property.
2023 Town/County Tax Bills Mailed - January 2023Town Clerk Patricia Frentzel announced that the 2023 Town/County Tax Bills have been mailed. If you have changed banks, have paid off your mortgage or do not have an escrow account and did not receive a tax bill, please contact the Town Clerk’s office at 773-9600 ext. 620 or 600. The office will be open extras hours: Saturday, February 11 – 9:00am – 12:00pm; Tuesday, February 14 – 8:30am – 6:00pm; Wednesday, February 15 – 8:30am – 6:00pm.
Checks should be made payable to Town Clerk. The last day to pay without penalty is February 15. Envelopes must show a legible postmark of February 15 to be accepted on time. Taxpayers should call the office for correct amounts for payments made February 16 and later. Payments can be made until June 30, 2023. After this date, payments must be sent to the County. ONLINE TAX RECEIPTS AND PAYMENTS - SERVICE FEES APPLY www.grandislandny.us. DEBIT AND CREDIT CARDS ACCEPTED AT COUNTER - SERVICE FEES APPLY.
Tax Bill Preparation - January 2023
Seated L to R: Ann Dlugokinski, Martha Muller, Evelyn Lewis.
Town Clerk, Pattie Frentzel announced that members of the Golden Age Center were busy this week preparing the 2023 Town and County Property Tax Bills for mailing to residents. The regular office hours for collection are Monday – Friday from 8:30am - 4:30pm. The office will be and open on Saturday, February 11, 2023, 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM. and open until 6:00pm on Tuesday, February 14th and Wednesday February 15, 2023. The final day of collection without penalty will be Wednesday, February 15th.
Standing L to R: Jackie Sullivan, Linda Clark, Kathy Lechner, Jean Schlegal, Town Clerk-Pattie Frentzel, Liz Wilbert.
Thruway Authority Announces Upcoming Changes to Service Areas - January 2023Jan. 1, 2023 - The New York State Thruway Authority today announced upcoming changes that will impact 11 service areas on the New York State Thruway starting Sunday, Jan. 1, 2023. The changes are part of the project to redevelop the 27 Thruway service areas. The project, which began in Summer 2021, is funded through a public-private partnership, and no toll dollars or state tax dollars are being used.
Effective Jan. 1, 2023, the Ramapo service area (located on I-87 south between exit 16 and exit 15A) and the Warners service area (located on I-90 west between exit 39 and exit 40) will close for construction. Both facilities will be entirely rebuilt and will include updated restaurant concepts, Taste NY food and drink products, outdoor seating, seasonal food trucks, playgrounds and pet walking areas among other amenities. Fuel services will remain available at both locations during construction. To ensure continuity of services to Thruway customers during construction, no two consecutive service areas in the same direction of travel will be closed for renovations at the same time.
Following a competitive bidding process, Empire State Thruway Partners was awarded a contract to rebuild 23 of the 27 service area restaurant buildings and provide significant renovations and upgrades to the remaining four. Three new Thruway service areas have already reopened including Indian Castle, Chittenango, and Junius Ponds. Eleven service areas will be closed for construction as of Jan. 1, 2023.
The Thruway Authority's 27 Service Areas are accessible to the 250 million vehicles that travel on the Thruway system every year. Thruway service areas are open 24 hours a day and offer motorists various food and retail options, restroom facilities and fueling for passenger and commercial vehicles. Taste NY Farm Markets and Tourism Information Centers are also available at select locations.