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Cuomo opens state fair; faces anti-fracking protestors

Ellen Abbott/WRVO

As Governor Andrew Cuomo opened the New York State Fair in Syracuse today, every step he took on the fairgrounds was dogged by protesters opposed to hydrofracking.

As Cuomo walked through the fairgrounds with his two daughters, whether it was to taste a sausage sandwich, or shake hands with the dairy princess, protesters holding signs and chanting were never far away.  

The object of their angst, the pending Department of Environmental Conservation decision on whether to allow hydrofracking in New York state.  

Hydrofracking is a controversial method of extracting natural gas from under shale deposits by shooting chemical-laced water deep into the earth.  Cuomo continues to say that he wants the decision based on science, but doesn'.

"And DEC, the state's environmental agency, is going through an exhaustive scientific review and will make the decision based on the science and the facts," said Cuomo.

Those against fracking say it will be bad for the environment. Those who want the drilling process allowed say it will bring much needed jobs and revenue into the state of New York at a time when that is needed. There have been reports that the governor might allow limited fracking in communities that want it.

But Cuomo refuses to say when the decision will be made. In the meantime, Cuomo says protesters are a part of his job.

"I was talking to the girls about it when we were walking around, and it's one of the joys of the job, I guess," said Cuomo.

Ellen produces news reports and features related to events that occur in the greater Syracuse area and throughout Onondaga County. Her reports are heard regularly in regional updates in Morning Edition and All Things Considered.