News

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Lake Ontario is on the decline, but that doesn’t mean the worst is over.

The Army Corps of Engineers announced it doesn't expect the water in the Great Lakes to go down too much, too soon.

Keith Kompoltowicz is the chief of the Corps' watershed hydrology branch in Detroit, Michigan.

"Currently all the lakes are on their seasonal decline," he said via phone Tuesday. "But additional records for the month of August are still likely on a few of the lakes."

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

The New York State Fair opens its gates for a 13-day run today, with more than a million visitors expected to descend on the Syracuse fairgrounds.

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The first meeting of the commission created to devise a public campaign finance system for New York's political races is scheduled for Wednesday. Advocates hope the commission, which has been slow to start, will start taking steps toward a final report due in December.

The commission, announced in March, does not yet have a staff or a schedule of promised public hearings, but advocates for public campaign financing in New York say they hope that will be announced at the meeting. 

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The head of the state’s Republican Party says there’s no need to require New Yorkers to buy new license plates beginning in 2020, if their current plates are still readable and in good condition. 

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After economic development corruption scandals, Gov. Andrew Cuomo and State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli have finalized a plan to restore the comptroller's auditing powers over economic development contracts.

In 2011, Cuomo persuaded the state Legislature to agree to limit the comptroller's oversight ability for some economic development projects. They included the $750 million subsidy for the Solar City project, as part of an initiative Cuomo called the Buffalo Billion.

At the time, Cuomo said the additional oversight slowed down the bidding and construction process.

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The city of Syracuse is entering into an agreement with a cybersecurity company to test the city’s network vulnerabilities, free of charge. This comes after the city school district and county libraries suffered cyberattacks last month. The agreement passed the Syracuse Common Council unanimously, but some councilors were skeptical. 

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ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York officials are asking the public to help choose a new license plate design.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo says people can vote on the governor’s website for one of five plate designs. Four of the designs include the Statue of Liberty while one features the Mario M. Cuomo Bridge over the Hudson River.

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A new exhibit coming to the Museum of Science and Technology in Syracuse, focuses on the brain and how it functions and can sometimes malfunction. One goal is to emphasize that brain-related conditions, which can be hard to understand and often stigmatized, should be treated like any other physical disease.

Credit USACE Europe District / via Flickr

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - New York health officials have issued emergency regulations restricting medical exemptions from vaccination for children attending school or child care.

The increased scrutiny of medical exemptions was announced Friday and follows the elimination of religious exemptions. The new regulations aim to keep people from obtaining medical exemptions for non-medical reasons.

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In recent decades, Republicans have dominated elected offices in Onondaga County. This week, Grant Reeher speaks with one Democrat who hopes to change that. Tony Malavenda is challenging incumbent Ryan McMahon in this year's race for Onondaga County Executive. They discuss the rationale behind his campaign, economic development, I-81, housing, poverty and more. 

Abuse lawsuits filed against priests in the Syracuse Diocese

Aug 16, 2019
Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

A handful of lawsuits were announced on Thursday against the Syracuse Roman Catholic Diocese, which covers part of central New York and the Southern Tier.

A new state law reopens the window for victims so they can sue their abusers.

Jason Smith / WRVO News (file photo)

The state ethics commission has settled with a former Assembly member and a former Senate staffer in two cases involving sexual harassment

The case against former Assembly member Angela Wozniak from the Buffalo area dates from 2016, when she was accused of harassing a male staffer, after Wozniak, who was married, had a brief consensual romantic relationship with her employee.

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

Gov. Andrew Cuomo proposed legislation Thursday to impose a penalty of life in prison without parole for acts of domestic terrorism, including mass shootings.

Karen DeWitt / WRVO News

It was an emotional day Wednesday as hundreds of childhood sexual abuse survivors filed lawsuits in New York courts on the first day of a one-year window of opportunity for victims to seek civil action against their abusers. 

Susanne Robertson and her two sisters were orphans at St. Colman's Home in Watervliet, near Albany, where she said they were routinely abused by the nuns and other staff there. When one of the girls reported the sexual abuse to a nun at the home, she was transferred to an orphanage for mentally disabled children. 

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media

After four years of trying, the city of Fulton has finally won $10 million in funding from the state’s annual Downtown Revitalization Initiative competition. Fulton’s application seeks to use the funding to create jobs, strengthen infrastructure and enhance its waterfront and cultural experiences.

Brian Turner / Flickr

Wednesday is the first day of a yearlong legal window to allow victims of childhood sexual abuse to sue their alleged abusers. Hundreds of cases are expected to be filed on the first day alone.

The survivors bringing suit Wednesday were previously shut out of the courts due to a strict statute of limitations. Under the Child Victims Act, approved by Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state Legislature earlier this year, victims can bring criminal charges against an alleged abuser until they reach the age of 28, and can initiate a civil lawsuit until they are 55.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media

Protesters in Syracuse are demanding Rep. John Katko (R-Camillus) do something on gun control following the recent shootings in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio. Protesters also want Katko to call out the racism and xenophobia, they said is coming from President Donald Trump and rising in the U.S. 

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Industrial hemp is a burgeoning new business in New York, with a wide variety of uses, from food to beauty products and even building material. But farmers in central New York are having difficulty obtaining normal banking services, even after the 2018 federal farm bill legalized hemp across the country.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News (file photo)

New York’s senior U.S. senator said that he will push for legislation in the upcoming federal budget to provide funds for local boards of elections to harden their security against potential threats by foreign governments. 

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Water levels in Lake Ontario may be on the decline, but some of the damage from record-high levels remains. The shoreline in many communities is being wiped away, threatening homes and businesses.

Some who live along the lake are trying to adapt by beefing up their shorelines. Given that these events are unprecedented, Roy Widrig with New York Sea Grant said many property owners and even contractors are making mistakes that can make their situation worse.

Sandy Creek Central School District

Several school districts located in rural areas of central and northern New York are participating in a nationally funded program to address and potentially overcome some of the biggest obstacles facing their students.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO Public Media

Surgeons from 18 upstate hospitals and health agencies hope changing the way they prescribe medication can impact the opioid crisis. 

Mike Saechang / Flickr

 

In the wake of two mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, there's been renewed discussion about states and even the federal government adopting what are known as red flag laws to get guns out of the hands of potential killers.

New York's red flag law was approved last winter and takes effect later this month. 

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media

The new Catholic bishop of Syracuse was ordained Thursday. Some see it as an opportunity for more transparency from church officials, regarding sexual abuse by clergy. 

Beit Hatfutsut Museum / Safe Haven Holocaust Refugee Museum

This week, Oswego celebrated the small but significant role the city played during World War II. It was the only place in America to serve as a camp for mostly Jewish European refugees during the Holocaust. Many say the legacy of this story is the lesson it can teach, one that's still very relevant today. 

Jason Smith / WRVO News (file photo)

New York State will add relief to homeowners to a program meant to rebuild and recover from record high water levels along the Lake Ontario shoreline this year.

Local governments and businesses have already submitted applications for part of the $300 million Resiliency and Economic Development Initiative, also known as REDI. Oswego Mayor Billy Barlow said his city’s application focuses on raising parts of the Wright's Landing Marina, as well as other improvements to the marina and the International Pier.

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is continuing to offer his views in the national debate about gun control. He's asking Democratic presidential candidates to endorse four gun control measures previously adopted in New York. 

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media

The alleged killer of Bianca Devins, 17, of Utica, who was murdered last month, posted images of her death on social media that remained visible on platforms like Instagram for more than a week, even after users flagged them as violating community guidelines. Rep. Anthony Brindisi (D-Utica) is now calling on Instagram to conduct an independent audit, and the Federal Trade Commission to open a special probe into what went wrong.

Wallyg / via Flickr

A new poll shows voters have mixed opinions about New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.  

The Siena College survey finds New Yorkers think Cuomo has made the state a better place in the nine years since he was elected governor. They give him high points for accomplishments like protecting the rights of New Yorkers, ensuring accessibility to health care and a high-quality education, and effectively managing state government.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media

About 70 people marched in the streets of downtown Syracuse Tuesday in a silent procession to remember the lives lost in the Hiroshima and Nagasaki nuclear bombings, 74 years ago, this week. Approximately 200,000 people died in the attacks. Demonstrators are calling on elected officials and organizations to endorse the national “Back from the Brink” campaign, which outlines policy changes in the U.S. to prevent nuclear war.

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