regional news

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media

After serving eleven years as the Onondaga County Executive, Joanie Mahoney is stepping down for a job as the chief operating officer at the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry in Syracuse. County legislature chairman Ryan McMahon is seeking to fill out the remainder of her term.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

After more than a year, Congress has passed legislation to study the feasibility of designating Fort Ontario and the Safe Haven Holocaust Refugee Shelter Museum in Oswego as a national park. 

The House passed the legislation in January 2017. The Senate passed the bill last week. 

In 1944, Fort Ontario acted as the only emergency shelter in the United States for nearly 1,000 refugees who escaped the Holocaust.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media

Republican gubernatorial candidate Marc Molinaro said a compromise approach to replace the aging Interstate-81 viaduct in downtown Syracuse seems to be the most appropriate way to move forward. Molinaro also criticized Gov. Andrew Cuomo for taking too long to make a decision.

Speaking in Syracuse Thursday, Molinaro weighed in on the I-81 debate and said a tunnel with a street-level community grid above it, makes perfect sense.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News (file photo)

Rachel May has defeated longtime incumbent state Sen. Dave Valesky in a primary and will be the Democratic nominee in the race for the 53rd state Senate District in November. 

Rich Mitchell / Flickr

Gov. Cuomo’s former closest aid received a prison sentence Thursday day of six years after being convicted of illegally gaining over $300,000 in bribery schemes.

Brian Wansink, the Cornell professor who authored six articles retracted by the Journal of the American Medical Association Wednesday, has been removed from all teaching and research at the university, and will retire at the end of this academic year.

“I have been tremendously honored and blessed to be a Cornell professor,” Wansink said.

A leading medical journal has retracted six food research articles by a Cornell University marketing professor, saying the results can’t be verified.

The papers under question include a 2005 study that said people eat more when served food in large bowls and a 2013 article that said hungry grocery shoppers buy foods with more calories but not more food. They appeared in journals published by the JAMA Network, which include the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News (file photo)

As summer comes to an end, Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh’s administration is anticipating the problems that plague the city during the winter months. This year, the city will try a new sidewalk snow removal program.

U.S. House of Representatives/Julio Urrutia

Rep. John Katko (R-Camillus) and his Democratic opponent Dana Balter are responding to President Donald Trump’s latest round of tariffs, including $200 billion on Chinese goods. Over the past year, reaction to the tariffs have been mixed across the region.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO Public Media

Onondaga County lawmakers have been poring over potential renovation plans this month for Syracuse’s minor league baseball stadium, NBT Bank Stadium.

The county needs to figure out how much it needs to spend to keep the New York Mets in central New York. The baseball team, a year ago, became the parent club of the Syracuse Chiefs. Deputy County Executive Bill Fisher said the important part of this project is making the stadium, which has been called one of the worst in the International League, attractive enough so the Mets will stay on for the long term.

The general election for governor in New York is heating up, with the Republican candidate, Marc Molinaro, calling for the resignation of a former advisor to incumbent Andrew Cuomo, while the sitting governor rallied against President Trump.

Molinaro is making  a statewide string of appearances to focus on what he says is rampant corruption in the Cuomo Administration.

“This governor is allowing almost a corrupted criminal enterprise to function within state government,” Molinaro said. “And it needs to come to an end.”

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News (file photo)

If voter turnout is any indication, last week’s primary race in central New York could mean a more active electorate is in the making. 

Onondaga County Democratic Elections Commissioner Dustin Czarny estimates 24 to 25 percent of registered Democrats came out to the polls in Thursday’s state and local primary. That’s a lot more than usual for a state and local election.

"It was 8 percent in 2014, 8.6 percent the last time we had a governor’s primary," said Czarny. "So to have 24 percent in Onondaga County is incredible.”

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media

Law enforcement officials in central New York are supporting “red flag” legislation introduced by Rep. John Katko (R-Camillus). The bill aims to allow police to temporarily restrict access to firearms of an individual at extreme risk to themselves or others.

Adirondack Regional Tourism Council

A hot and humid end of summer could result in dampened fall colors in parts of New York this fall. 

Taryn Bauerle, an associate professor of plant science at Cornell University, said temperature and moisture are the major drivers of fall colors. 

"If these trees have a lot of water available and pretty warm temperatures, they just aren’t going to shut down and produce that fall foliage as quickly than we might usually expect," said Bauerle. "So we could potentially have a delayed fall foliage showing and a bit muted as well.”

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media

Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney released her proposed budget for 2019. Mahoney highlighted a positive outlook for the county. She said her guess is it will be a pretty smooth budget process.

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

NEW YORK (AP) — In a year awash with liberal challengers aiming to retire establishment Democrats, Andrew Cuomo was an obvious target.

Cuomo/Nixon campaigns

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo easily beat back a primary challenge from activist and actress Cynthia Nixon on Thursday, thwarting her attempt to become the latest insurgent liberal to knock off an establishment Democrat.

Cuomo, who always led in the polls and outspent his rival more than 8 to 1, seldom mentioned Nixon by name during an often-nasty campaign, instead touting his experience, achievements in two terms as governor and his work to push back against President Donald Trump.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News (file photo)

In what could be a stunning victory, Democratic challenger Rachel May leads incumbent state Sen. Dave Valesky by 600 votes in Thursday’s Democratic primary election in the 53rd State Senate District. May did not declare victory Thursday, and Valesky did not concede. 

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News File Photo

A rare Thursday primary in New York means voter turnout will likely be low, but one official thinks it will still be higher than the last state primary in September 2014. 

Lt. Governor's Office/Jumaane Williams

The Democratic primary for lieutenant governor is turning out to be closer than the governor’s race — according to the polls, anyway.

New York City Councilmember Jumaane Williams is challenging incumbent Kathy Hochul for the post.

Williams said he brings a different vision to the office. He said he wants to be independent and sees the lieutenant governor’s role as similar to the post of New York City public advocate, an elected position that is meant to represent the needs of the public.

Cuomo/Nixon campaigns

Thursday is primary day in New York, and the biggest race is between Democratic incumbent Governor Andrew Cuomo and challenger, actor and education advocate, Cynthia Nixon.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO Public Media

Democratic congressional candidate Dana Balter is using a Texas court case to highlight what she claims is complicity by her opponent, Rep. John Katko (R-Camillus), in the dismantling of the Affordable Care Act. 

Marco Varisco / Flickr

Democratic primary voters on Thursday have a choice of four candidates for state attorney general after former AG Eric Schneiderman resigned in May over allegations he physically abused several women that he dated.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

The city of Syracuse remembered 9/11 and those lost in the terrorist attack at a somber ceremony at Forman Park. A moment of silence stretched on for 17 minutes -- the time between the first and second attacks on the twin towers in New York City 17 years ago.

Mayor Ben Walsh says it was powerful.

"Oftentimes we get caught up in our day to lives and daily activities,” Walsh said. “And standing in silence for 17 minutes and reflecting back on that day, on those we lost and those who still serve, it was very touching.”

Sometimes silence says more than words.

J J / via Flickr

Syracuse Common Councilors Monday approved the latest contract between the city and police department, but it was not without some concerns.

Lawmakers voted 7-2 to approve a contract for 2016 and 2017 that include two-percent raises each year. But while they agreed on this pact, many lawmakers have eyes on the next contract, which is being negotiated now. 

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

The number of police officers in the city of Syracuse that wear body cameras will jump significantly by the end of the year, thanks to a $300,000 state grant. 

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Gov. Andrew Cuomo travels in taxpayer-funded aircraft far more than other big-state governors, according to an examination of travel records by the New York Times.

City of Syracuse

The city of Syracuse has started taking steps to "demystify" local government, according to Mayor Ben Walsh.

A new performance management program is now online, that can tell citizens of the city what goals government has, and whether they are being reached. It can be as basic as how quickly potholes are patched, to whether the city is duplicating services by sending workers to the same scene more than once. 

Walsh said this tool will help the city be more accountable to taxpayers.

Lauren Rosenthal / NCPR

Democratic congressional candidate Tedra Cobb held her first-ever press conference Tuesday in Canton, in an effort to clarify her platform and turn the page on a turbulent summer.

New York State Attorney General's Office / Flickr

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood subpoenaed all eight Roman Catholic dioceses in the state Thursday as part of a broadening civil investigation into the handling of sex abuse allegations by church leaders.

The subpoenas seek documents relating to abuse allegations, payments to victims or findings from internal church investigations, according to a law enforcement source familiar with the investigation but not authorized to speak publicly.

Pages