With the New York State budget completed, Grant Reeher speaks with Democratic State Senator Rachel May and Republican Assemblyman Will Barclay to evaluate the $212 billion dollar budget.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo's office

Large internet service providers will be required to officer plans for high-speed connections at $15 per month to low-income customers starting in the middle of June after legislation on the mandate was signed into law Friday.

New York state will also partner with philanthropic organizations to provide free high-speed internet access to 50,000 students in low-income school districts for one year.

“For America, broadband holds great power,” Cuomo said. “It will either be the great equalizer for society, or it will be the great divider.”


Amazon is investing in central New York's workforce, as it gets closer to opening up a massive distribution center in the town of Clay. The company is expected to open up a five-story, $3.8 million fulfillment center by the end of this year.  It will be one of Amazon’s most automated distribution centers, relying heavily on robotics.

So it makes sense that the online retailer is investing $1.75 million in the new Syracuse STEAM school’s robotics and computer science programs, according to Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon.

Onondaga County increasing pop-up clinics at schools

Apr 16, 2021
Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News (file photo)

Fresh off the heels of Onondaga County’s first high school pop-up vaccination clinic, officials are saying it’s a good start.

Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon said at least 150 students and staff received their Covid-19 vaccinations at Baldwinsville’s Baker High School on Thursday. Next week, the county plans to hold more pop-up clinics at Liverpool High School and East Syracuse Minoa High School, with the goal of getting more students aged 16 and up vaccinated with parental permission.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media

The city of Syracuse will resume its ShotSpotter program to detect where gunshots are being fired. The program was disbanded last year due to budget cuts. It comes at a time when violent crime is up in the city, with five homicides so far this year, including an infant who was shot and killed this week.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News (file photo)

Eight Onondaga County Republicans are suing to keep their Democratic challengers off of a second party line on this year’s election ballot.

The plaintiffs in the lawsuit are Onondaga County Legislature Chairman Dave Knapp, Legislator Jim Rowley, Legislator Deb Cody, Legislator Cody Kelly, Legislator John McBride, Mark Olson, Joe Carni, and Colleen Gunnip.

The lawsuit alleges that the Working Families Party failed to properly authenticate its nominating petitions for candidates, submitting signatures that were electronically reproduced instead of the original signatures.

Payne Horning / WRVO News

Syracuse city officials are wrestling with how they can hold the management of Skyline Apartments accountable, after years of significant problems. The city has been warning Green National, the management of Skyline, about the lack of security, problem tenants and drugs at the complex.

Karen DeWitt / WRVO News

State lawmakers, along with restaurant owners and their workers, are pressing for a two-year extension of takeout alcoholic beverages. They said the practice -- authorized at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic -- has allowed the businesses to keep their doors open and avoid some layoffs.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, in one of hundreds of executive orders issued in 2020, allowed alcoholic drinks to be ordered and delivered along with takeout food. 

Dan Taylor-Watt / Flickr

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York will push back its curfew for bars and restaurants an hour to midnight, starting Monday, as the state continues to relax coronavirus-related restrictions, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said.

The governor also announced during a telephone briefing Wednesday that auto and horse racing events will be able to accommodate spectators at 20% capacity starting April 23. Spectators will be required to wear a mask, social distance and provide proof of a recent negative test or completed vaccinations.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

After three years in the making, a full-service grocery store is opening its doors in downtown Syracuse Wednesday. 

The Syracuse Cooperative Market food store’s soft opening Wednesday brings everything you need from a full-service grocery store to a 2,500 square foot spot next to the new Salt City Market, according to co-op general manager Jeremy DeChario.

“We have meats, cheeses, dairy, bread, paper towels, napkins, ice cream, frozen pizza, canned tomatoes,” said DeChario. “I’ve got pet food, that’s a big one for folks downtown. The works."

Madison Ruffo / WRVO News

Vaccination clinics across central and northern New York had to make a lot of adjustments in a short time Tuesday after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration announced that they’d be putting the Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 vaccine on pause after six reports of a rare blot clotting disorder traced to the vaccine.

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr


New York paused administering the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine Tuesday, after the federal Food and Drug Administration and Centers for Disease Control recommended halting the doses because a few recipients developed blood clots.

Out of the 6.8 million Americans who have already received the J&J vaccine, six women developed blood clots after receiving the doses. One died, and another was hospitalized in critical condition.

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

New York state will halt use of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine after the federal government, Tuesday morning, recommended a temporary pause of the product due to concerns about a rare side-effect that caused blood clots in a handful of recipients.

Appointments for the Johnson & Johnson vaccine at state-run sites will still be honored but those individuals will instead receive the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

Onondaga County will begin going into schools this week and offering coronavirus vaccines to eligible teens. Officials are planning a pop-up clinic at the Baldwinsville School District on Thursday, according to County Executive Ryan McMahon. He said that district, one of the biggest in the county, was chosen after a survey showed the most interest from families and district officials, in getting shots in teens’ arms.

Karen DeWitt / WRVO News (file photo)

Criminal justice advocates in New York state say they hope to build on recent victories, such as the legalization of adult recreational use of marijuana, to gain more reforms for members of Black and brown communities who are incarcerated at a higher rate than white New Yorkers. 

Advocates and progressive-leaning Democratic lawmakers hope that in the legislative session’s remaining weeks, measures that reform the state’s parole system will be passed.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media

An infant was killed and two children injured after a shooting on Syracuse’s southwest side Sunday evening. Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh said Sunday night’s tragic shooting that killed an 11-month-old child is the definition of senseless.

“How could anyone in their right mind point a gun at a car with children in it in broad daylight and pull the trigger,” said Walsh at a Monday briefing about the incident.

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Monday that New York state will distribute 35,000 COVID-19 vaccines directly to state’s and New York City’s public colleges and universities — where some schools have already begun offering the vaccine — with the aim of vaccinating as many college students as possible before the end of the spring semester.

Cuomo said the state will ship vaccines directly to campuses.

Some rights reserved by SalFalko / Flickr

Gov. Andrew Cuomo will appoint three new judges to New York’s highest court this year, and a group of state lawmakers is asking that at least one of them be representative of the LGBTQ+ community after the court’s only openly gay judge retired this year.

Four openly LGBTQ+ state lawmakers are urging a panel that vets potential nominees to the high court to give Cuomo options representative of the LGBTQ+ community.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media

New York state passed a law this year that allows personal caregivers to visit nursing homes, even during public health emergencies, like a pandemic. Some caregivers waited a year to see their family members in nursing homes because of COVID-19. Mohawk Valley Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-New Hartford) is trying to get similar legislation passed on the federal level.

Bureau of Labor Statistics

The Bureau of Labor Statistics recently reported that the national unemployment rate for March was around 6%. Meanwhile, that number for New York State was still at around 8.8% as of February.

WRVO Public Media (file photo)

Despite COVID-19, maybe even bacause of it, interesting things are happening at the Everson Museum of Art in Syracuse. This week, Grant Reeher speaks with the museum's executive director and CEO, Elizabeth Dunbar, and Syracuse artist Jaleel Campbell, who has a solo exhibition at the museum titled "Homecoming."

If the city of Syracuse’s proposed budget passes, it will use part of the $126 million it’s receiving from the American Rescue Plan stimulus package to bring city government back to pre-pandemic levels. Mayor Ben Walsh introduced a $265 million budget Thursday that returns City Hall to normal, and it couldn’t have happened without the federal help.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media

Negotiations continue between Oneida County and the U.S. Department of Justice over a settlement agreement, after the Justice Department said it was suing the county for voter disenfranchisement in last year’s congressional race between Claudia Tenney and Anthony Brindisi. The county may be limited in what it can do.

NEW YORK (AP) — Republican U.S. Rep. Lee Zeldin announced his candidacy for governor of New York on Thursday with an attack on incumbent Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo, the subject of investigations over sexual harassment allegations and COVID-19 deaths among nursing home residents.

“The bottom line is this; to save New York, Andrew Cuomo’s gotta go,” Zeldin, a fourth-term Congress member from Long Island, said in a news release.

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

Progressive Democrats in the New York State Legislature took a victory lap after passing a budget that achieves many of the groups’ long-term goals, including a substantial increase in taxes on the wealthy and the fulfillment of a 15-year-old court order to fully fund the schools. Meanwhile, Gov. Andrew Cuomo, embroiled in several scandals, put the best face on items that did not go his way.

Progressive advocate and director of Invest in Our New York, Rebecca Bailin, spoke at a rally held in the April sunshine outside the Capitol, just below the windows of Gov. Cuomo’s offices.

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

Gov. Andrew Cuomo commented for the first time on Wednesday about allegations that he gave priority to COVID-19 tests for his family and friends, last spring when the tests were scarce.


Following years of fines, penalties, and criminal investigations, the City of Oswego is taking action against a nursing home and is enlisting the public's help for the effort.

Gary Colmey

Marijuana activists have waited years for New York state to finally make cannabis legal. Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed it into law last week. But some opponents have concerns with how the government will run the rollout.

Gary Colmey is a cannabis activist and the owner of Gary’s Indoor Garden Supply in Rome. He said watching the state Assembly and Senate debates on marijuana legalization last week, was historic and something he’ll always remember.

Marco Varisco / Flickr

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York will spend billions of dollars of federal funds over the next year on schools and relief for struggling businesses, tenants and landlords under a spending plan that New York’s Legislature took final votes on Wednesday.

The state Senate passed the budget legislation Wednesday morning, while the 150-member Assembly spent Wednesday afternoon finishing debate and votes. Gov. Andrew Cuomo has said he’ll sign the budget.

Governor Andrew Cuomo's office

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — An aide who accused New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo of groping her at his official residence told a newspaper in her first public interview it was a frightening physical encounter in which the Democrat slammed a door and said “I don’t care” when she warned someone might see what he was doing.

“It was almost like I felt like a piece of garbage to him. I felt degraded,” she said.