WDNY Local News Thursday, March 7, 2019

Written by on March 7, 2019

Livingston County sheriff’s deputies have charged a man from Geneseo with abusing a 3-month-old child in his care. Sheriff Thomas Dougherty says 25-year-old Brandon Augsbury was arrested after an investigation that started when the baby was taken to Strong Memorial Hospital with what was called severe bruising and broken ribs that had started to heal. Investigators say the abuse happened in the town of York while Augsubry was taking care of the child. The charges against him include assault, endangering the welfare of a child and harassment. Augsubry was arraigned and his bond was set at $20,000. Child Protective Services is involved in the case and says the investigation is ongoing.

DEC officers are working to protect an endangered owl that uses Livingston County as a feeding ground during its winter migration. The short-eared owl likes to spend time in grassland fields, making the county a perfect spot for a stopover. However those same flat lands make the owls fairly easy to spot, and there have been reports of people flocking to certain areas to get pictures—which upsets not only the owls but the people who live nearby who have to deal with increased traffic and what one report calls bird paparazzi. The DEC is reminding people that purposely disturbing, flushing, or chasing an endangered or threatened species is considered harassment and is illegal and says enthusiasts should keep a reasonable distance and avoid trespassing or otherwise disturbing the habitat.

Some local highway officials think the Governor is shortchanging the funds needed to maintain and improve roads and so they are going to Albany to show their feelings. At issue is the Consolidated Local Street and Highway Improvement Program or CHIPS which hasn’t seen an increase in funding for seven years. An area group is joining with the  County Highway Superintendents Association and the Association of Town Superintendents of Highway to push for an additional 150 million dollars for the program, which they say is needed to maintain local transportation systems. The groups say tight local budgets make paying for road improvements much more difficult without state help.

Democrats in the state Senate say they’re still moving forward with plans to increase education spending in this year’s budget.  The news comes after Comptroller Tom DiNapoli released a revenue projection lower than what some lawmakers were expecting.  If the Legislature wants schools to get more funding using DiNapoli’s estimate, they’d need to take money from other areas or raise taxes.  Education is one of the biggest spending areas in the state budget. 

Livingston County residents will have a chance to learn more about some invasive species that have the potential to cause big problems later this month in Lakeville An invasive species update to talk about the Spotted Lantern and Giant Russian Hogweed is planned for March 13th at the watershed education center at Vitale Park. It starts at 7 PM and registration is required. [You can find out more with an e mail to info @ conesuslake.org.]

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