Aliano’s Ristorante seeking Batavia grant, loan to help pay for expansion project

BATAVIA – Batavia aldermen Tuesday recommended giving Aliano’s Ristorante a $25,000 tax increment financing grant and a $75,000 low interest loan so Aliano’s can reconfigure its kitchen and expand its business.

The full City Council is set to vote on the recommendation next month. Aliano’s opened in December 2011 at 90 N. Island Ave. in downtown Batavia.

Tax increment financing is a tool that allows municipalities to earmark property tax revenues from increases in assessed values within a designated TIF district.

Mario Aliano, owner of Aliano’s Ristorante, wants to enlarge the restaurant’s kitchen area and make upgrades to kitchen equipment.

In addition, he proposes to open Aliano’s Express, a carry-out, delivery and catering business at 70 N. Island Ave., immediately south of his existing restaurant. Aliano’s Express plans to offer more than 30 entrées.

“I want to do a large amount of catering and delivery,” Aliano told aldermen during the city’s Joint Committee of the Whole meeting.

The project is expected to cost $208,000, which includes about $108,250 for the expansion and $99,750 to purchase equipment and for other expenses. The low interest loan would be for five years at an interest rate of 2.75 percent.

In a related project, building owner Alex Group will replace an existing, undersized and faulty grease trap with a new 55-gallon, code-compliant trap.

In a memo to aldermen, Batavia economic development consultant Chris Aiston said that the existing grease trap cannot adequately handle grease refuse from the existing kitchen operations, and that grease sometimes enters the city’s sanitary sewer system.

The Alex Group also will install a kitchen floor drain system as the kitchen currently is without floor drains.

The Alex Group plans to apply for a downtown matching grant between $10,000 and $20,000 to help pay for the project, Batavia City Administrator Bill McGrath said.