Jumpstarting careers 

Entrepreneurs don't do things in half measures. They jump right in. After the proper training, naturally.

Just ask the members of the Austin Steward Young Entrepreneurs Program. Last summer, these students began learning skills such as cashiering, bookkeeping, and marketing in preparation for the recent opening of the Jump Off Campus Store at the James Madison School of Excellence.

The students' training included many memorable moments. Surprisingly, waking up early during the summer wasn't one of them. LaShanna Milton enjoyed learning how to match personal skills with career paths during a presentation by Catholic Family Services' Chris Bell, one of several community speakers.

With their training completed, Milton and her fellow entrepreneurs sell items that appeal to Madison's students and staff at the Jump Off Campus Store. Bestsellers include colorful mugs and Madison logo t-shirts and baseball caps. Not all items jump off the shelves, though. Some fly off the shelves, like baseball caps from the students' October buying trip to New York City. Priced at $5 each, they sold out in an hour. In response to this success, more clothing will be offered this spring.

Who's the role model for these entrepreneurs? Thankfully, it's not The Donald. Angelica Peterson for one admires her uncle, who owns a private investigation firm.

This summer, program manager Linda Terrell will work with another group of young entrepreneurs. They'll eventually operate a vending cart at sporting events. The application process starts in April. Students from Madison and other high schools can apply.

In the meantime, Jaron Anthony wants the community to know that he and the rest of the Jump Off Campus Store staff are available for "entry-level employment." So skilled, yet so modest!

Employers and potential entrepreneurs can call Linda Terrell at 359-9482 for details.

--- Linda Kostin, www.junkstorecowgirl.com

Pittsford's outcome

Republicans in Pittsford won a nail-biter --- three nail-biters actually --- in the village board elections last week. The margin for one seat came down to the closest possible margin: a single vote. Republican appointee and incumbent board member Tim Galli received 182 votes and his opponent, Independent (and Democrat-endorsed) Harold Danko, received 181.

That means at least 363 voters turned out on Tuesday. Even though that's less than half the 1,000 registered voters in the village, Pittsford residents (some of them anyway) have something to be proud of, whatever their party affiliation. That 363 is more than 20 times the 18 who showed up for the last village election.

--- Krestia DeGeorge

Haney in the Lej?

An outspoken Democrat with a long history of government service wants to be elected to the County Legislature --- replacing another outspoken Democrat with a long history in elected office.

Paul Haney, who served on City Council for 12 years and later was Monroe County finance director under Tom Frey, says he'll run for the 23rd District seat currently held by Bill Benet. Benet, who represents part of the southeast area of the city, can't seek re-election because of term limits.

Haney, who is 64, said on Monday that he's running because he's "concerned about the loss of institutional memory" that term limits will create in the legislature next year. "I really believe that over the next few years, the county's problem is going to be financial," he said.

Haney has frequently served as a financial analyst for local Democrats, and he's no wallflower. Discussing his candidacy this week, he was aggressive as usual. Being a Democrat in the Republican-dominated legislature, he said, "I won't have much influence, but I'll at least bring some honesty."

He called the county's fiscal problem "a totally manufactured crisis," caused by former County Executive Jack Doyle's tax cuts. "Doyle," he said, "just ran the county into the ground" by reducing the county's property-tax rate when property values rose.

"If the tax rate had been kept flat," said Haney, "we'd be rolling in money in this county. We'd have money for anything reasonable they wanted to do."

--- Mary Anna Towler

COMIDA watch

This month's round-up of businesses receiving public assistance (mainly in the form of tax breaks) from the County of Monroe Industrial Development Agency in exchange for creating or retaining jobs:

The Churchville Fire Equipment Corp., 340 Sanford Road South, for the purchase of two new service trucks; two new jobs.

Parrone Engineering, 349 West Commercial Street, East Rochester, to buy new computer equipment and software; one new job.

TDMLSE, LLC (a dental practice), 539 Long Pond Road, to build an office building in Greece; one new job.

The Rochester Home Builders' Association, 2024 West Henrietta Road, to build an office building in Henrietta; two new jobs.

LeFrois Development, LLC, 1020 Lehigh Station Road, Henrietta, for construction of a new storage facility; two new jobs.

Mendon Pediatrics, PLLC, Assembly Drive, Mendon, for renovations and to purchase new equipment; three new jobs.

Webster Office Associates, 1015 Ridge Road, Webster, to construct an office building in Greece to be leased to OcuSight Eye Care Center; two new jobs.

Activists from the group Metro Justice have complained that these incentives aren't being used for their intended purpose: to attract large, industrial employers from outside the region. Instead, the activists contend, they're being used by area companies to unfairly undermine competition from other local businesses.

---Krestia DeGeorge

A new Montage

The Montage Grille, the defunct downtown live music hotspot at 50 Chestnut Street, returns with a grand reopening on Friday, May 6, with The Skycoasters. New owner Tony Sapienza (who also owns Taylor's Night Club in Pittsford) plans on taking a more mainstream approach by serving appetizers and featuring cover bands on Fridays, r&b on Saturdays, and country on Sundays. Weeknights will be left for touring acts like jump swingers Little Charlie and The Nightcats on July 18 and busty blues shouter Candye Kane on August 29. Keep reading City for more details.

--- Frank De Blase

Airing out

It's been a busy few weeks for the air in New York State.

Or more precisely, the future air quality. You could be forgiven for not being able to follow all the related events transpiring on the subject. First President Bush's Clear Skies bill died in committee. Then the EPA released emissions rules on nitrogen oxides (NOx) and sulfur dioxides (SO2) that won nearly universal, if somewhat tepid, acclaim (see "Clearing the air," March 16).

On the heels of that came similar emissions rules governing mercury from the EPA, which, to the horror of environmentalists, included a cap-and-trade system. (Environmentalists say mercury is far more dangerous in smaller quantities than other emissions, and a cap-and-trade system could result in "hot-spots" of concentrated mercury contamination.)

If that's not enough, on Friday came news that Attorney General Eliot Spitzer, along with the AGs from New Jersey and Connecticut, won a settlement that requires $1.1 billion in upgrades at an Ohio Edison plant near the West Virginia and Pennsylvania borders. That's billion with a "B," more money than Monroe County's entire budget for 2005, in case you're counting.

The coal-fired power plant will cut back emissions of NOx and SO2 by 70 percent or over 200,000 tons. Spitzer's office plugged the benefits to Adirondack ecosystems and the lungs of Buffalo and Rochester residents. Meanwhile, environmentalists, including Environmental Advocates of New York, used it to take a not-so-thinly-veiled dig at the Clear Skies bill, which is expected to be revived eventually and would replace much of the current Clean Air Act.

"Thanks to Attorney General Eliot Spitzer's efforts, another corporate lawbreaker will cut its illegal pollution, making New York's air cleaner," said EANY's Christine Vanderlan, in a statement Friday. "This proves once again that the Clean Air Act works."

--- Krestia DeGeorge

Correcting ourselves

An article in City's March 16 issue gave an incorrect date for the forum featuring candidates for Rochester mayor. The forum was held on March 8.

An item in the March 16 Metro Ink section referred to former City Newspaper writer Joan Collins Lambert as a Cornell professor. She is not a professor, but the director of Cornell Labor Programs in Rochester.

The March 9 article "'A total labor movement'" misquoted Rochester & Genesee Valley Labor Federation President Jim Bertolone. Bertolone's statement should have read "union members [emphasis added] often make so much money that 'they identify more with... doctors and lawyers...'"

The same article refers to United Auto Workers member Dan Thomas. The correct name is Don Thomas.

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