John DeFrancisco http://wrvo.org en Oversight board approves Cuomo's loan request for Tappan Zee Bridge http://wrvo.org/post/oversight-board-approves-cuomos-loan-request-tappan-zee-bridge <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">A key oversight board approved half of the amount </span>Gov<span style="line-height: 1.5;">. Andrew Cuomo had sought for a loan from a clean water fund to help pay for the construction of the </span>Tappan<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> Zee Bridge. But the meeting included accusations from a board member that Cuomo administration officials are trying to hide bad news about future toll hikes on the bridge and the rest of the New York State Thruway.</span></p> Thu, 17 Jul 2014 09:30:00 +0000 Karen DeWitt 58993 at http://wrvo.org Oversight board approves Cuomo's loan request for Tappan Zee Bridge Groups urge no vote on Tappan Zee Bridge loan http://wrvo.org/post/groups-urge-no-vote-tappan-zee-bridge-loan <p></p><p><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small; line-height: normal;">Environmentalists are urging a key review board to vote no on a request from the Cuomo administration to help finance the rebuilding of a major Thruway bridge with a fund designed for municipal clean water projects. &nbsp;</span></p> Tue, 15 Jul 2014 10:26:32 +0000 Karen DeWitt 58881 at http://wrvo.org Groups urge no vote on Tappan Zee Bridge loan GOP senators say Democrats will neglect upstate http://wrvo.org/post/gop-senators-say-democrats-will-neglect-upstate <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Senate Republicans have a new strategy in what’s shaping up to be an election battle for control of the New York state Senate. They say now that a group of breakaway Democrats is abandoning them and rejoining the rest of the Democrats, the Senate will be dominated by New York City liberals who won’t care about upstate and Long Island.</span></p> Mon, 30 Jun 2014 09:34:00 +0000 Karen DeWitt 58039 at http://wrvo.org DeFrancisco says upstate New York will suffer, following IDC decision http://wrvo.org/post/defrancisco-says-upstate-new-york-will-suffer-following-idc-decision <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Upstate will be the big loser if a new power change in the state Senate goes through, according to one high ranking state Senate Republican.</span></p> Fri, 27 Jun 2014 10:23:01 +0000 Ellen Abbott 57998 at http://wrvo.org DeFrancisco says upstate New York will suffer, following IDC decision State Senate passes medical marijuana bill http://wrvo.org/post/state-senate-passes-medical-marijuana-bill <p><strong>Updated, 3:50 p.m.:</strong></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">After a lengthy debate of several hours, the medical marijuana bill was approved in the state Senate, and now goes to the desk of </span>Gov<span style="line-height: 1.5;">. Andrew Cuomo, who has said he'll sign it.&nbsp;</span></p><p>Sponsor Sen. Diane Savino says she’s "gratified" by the larger than expected number of yes votes, including some surprise votes from traditionally conservative senators.</p> Fri, 20 Jun 2014 19:29:08 +0000 Karen DeWitt 57666 at http://wrvo.org State Senate passes medical marijuana bill Cuomo says medical marijuana bill isn't dead yet http://wrvo.org/post/cuomo-says-medical-marijuana-bill-isnt-dead-yet <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Gov</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">. Andrew Cuomo said today that there's still a chance the state legislature could pass a medical marijuana bill that he would sign.</span></p> Thu, 12 Jun 2014 19:19:13 +0000 Catherine Loper 57235 at http://wrvo.org Cuomo says medical marijuana bill isn't dead yet Is Cuomo deal with Working Families Party good for upstate? http://wrvo.org/post/cuomo-deal-working-families-party-good-upstate <p>The fallout from Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s new alliance with the progressive Working Families Party continues at the state Capitol, with those who say they represent upstate interests dismayed at the development.<br /><br />Brian Sampson, with the business friendly group Unshackle Upstate, had planned to begin his organization’s final push on several items they wanted to see passed in the legislature. But he arrived at the Capitol just after Cuomo struck a deal with the progressive Working Families Party to help Democrats take over the state Senate.<br /> Wed, 04 Jun 2014 09:31:45 +0000 Karen DeWitt 56786 at http://wrvo.org Is Cuomo deal with Working Families Party good for upstate? State Senate is sticking point for legalizing medical marijuana http://wrvo.org/post/state-senate-sticking-point-legalizing-medical-marijuana <p></p> Mon, 28 Apr 2014 09:49:18 +0000 Ellen Abbott 54929 at http://wrvo.org State Senate is sticking point for legalizing medical marijuana State senator and local boxing coach entering the ring for charity http://wrvo.org/post/state-senator-and-local-boxing-coach-entering-ring-charity <p></p><p>A boxing match this weekend between a state senator and the founder of a youth program in Syracuse will raise money and the profile of the North and West Area Athletic and Education Centers. State Sen. John DeFrancisco and local boxing coach Ray Rinaldi will be the only ones on a fight card that’s meant to raise money and promote awareness for a program that keeps inner city kids out of trouble.<br />&nbsp;</p><p></p> Fri, 25 Apr 2014 11:47:28 +0000 Ellen Abbott 54832 at http://wrvo.org State senator and local boxing coach entering the ring for charity Senate public finance provision raises questions http://wrvo.org/post/senate-public-finance-provision-raises-questions <p></p><p>The New York state Senate for the first time includes Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s plan for public campaign financing in its budget resolution.&nbsp; The sparsely worded proposal has left supporters and opponents trying to sort through the political tea leaves.</p><p>The inclusion of public campaign financing would seem to signal an abrupt change of policy for Republicans, who co-lead the Senate. The GOP has long maintained that a matching small donor plan using public funds is a waste of the taxpayers’ money, and would only lead to more annoying robo-calls.</p> Sun, 16 Mar 2014 22:47:00 +0000 Karen DeWitt 52742 at http://wrvo.org Could N.Y.'s new homeland security college land in Syracuse? http://wrvo.org/post/could-nys-new-homeland-security-college-land-syracuse <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">New York state plans to create the nation’s first college dedicated to homeland security and emergency preparedness, which backers say is a necessary measure given the major storms and terrorist threats the state has dealt with.</span></p><p>And there are efforts to headquarter that new college in Syracuse.</p><p>State Sen. John DeFrancisco, a Republican from Syracuse, says the idea to create a homeland security and emergency preparedness college came from him and the state Senate, which he pitched to the governor.</p> Mon, 24 Feb 2014 15:00:32 +0000 Ryan Delaney 51808 at http://wrvo.org Could N.Y.'s new homeland security college land in Syracuse? Final decision on I-81's future is 18 months away, DOT says http://wrvo.org/post/final-decision-i-81s-future-18-months-away-dot-says <p></p><p>New York’s transportation commissioner says a final decision about the future of the elevated stretch of Interstate 81 through downtown Syracuse will be made in a year and a half.</p><p>DOT Commissioner Joan McDonald discussed the future of the aging raised highway at a budget hearing today in Albany. "It's not an easy project," she said.</p><p>McDonald says her department will be out in March with more information on what impact to other roadways changes to I-81 could create, then it's on to the next step.</p> Fri, 31 Jan 2014 04:37:00 +0000 Ryan Delaney 50656 at http://wrvo.org Final decision on I-81's future is 18 months away, DOT says Senator DeFrancisco says Cuomo's Moreland Commission is a risky proposition http://wrvo.org/post/senator-defrancisco-says-cuomos-moreland-commission-risky-proposition <p></p> Fri, 29 Nov 2013 13:53:27 +0000 Ellen Abbott 47836 at http://wrvo.org Cellphones for vets program starts 6th season http://wrvo.org/post/cellphones-vets-program-starts-6th-season <p>For the sixth year in a row, State Sen. John DeFransisco is asking central New Yorkers to go through their junk drawers to help someone in the military.</p><p>“You got some old cellphones," DeFransisco said Monday, "don’t let them gather dust.”</p><p>Instead DeFransisco is asking people to turn them in to locations across central New York bearing the "Cellphones for Soldiers" logo.</p> Mon, 25 Nov 2013 20:43:00 +0000 Ellen Abbott 47652 at http://wrvo.org Cellphones for vets program starts 6th season New series of public meetings being held to decide I-81's future http://wrvo.org/post/new-series-public-meetings-being-held-decide-i-81s-future <p></p> Wed, 25 Sep 2013 11:27:49 +0000 Ellen Abbott 44681 at http://wrvo.org New series of public meetings being held to decide I-81's future Geriatric ER at Upstate University Hospital helping more seniors http://wrvo.org/post/geriatric-er-upstate-university-hospital-helping-more-seniors <p></p> Tue, 24 Sep 2013 20:05:21 +0000 Ellen Abbott 44647 at http://wrvo.org N.Y. regulations like 'death by a thousand cuts,' say manufacturers http://wrvo.org/post/ny-regulations-death-thousand-cuts-say-manufacturers <p>The one phrase that kept coming up at Friday's New York State Senate hearing on regulatory reform in Syracuse, was "death by a thousand cuts." Manufacturers were the focus today as lawmakers travel around the state trying to identify regulations that are getting in the way of business.<br><br>One of the regulations State Sen. John DeFransisco called asinine at today's hearing, springs from the Wage Theft Prevention Act. Employers are required to provide employees with a yearly notice regarding their compensation, information that is already on their paycheck.</p> Fri, 20 Sep 2013 20:30:15 +0000 Ellen Abbott 44484 at http://wrvo.org N.Y. regulations like 'death by a thousand cuts,' say manufacturers NY Senate hearing places focus on special tax breaks http://wrvo.org/post/ny-senate-hearing-places-focus-special-tax-breaks <p></p> Thu, 05 Sep 2013 10:21:51 +0000 Karen DeWitt 43683 at http://wrvo.org NY Senate hearing places focus on special tax breaks Senate passes bill forcing landlords to pay taxes http://wrvo.org/post/senate-passes-bill-forcing-landlords-pay-taxes <p>The New York State Senate has passed a bill that would authorize public welfare officials to withhold rent from landlords who have not paid their real estate taxes.<br><br>In many cases, publicly funded subsidies meant to help families pay their rent are paid directly to landlords through social services programs. In October, the Syracuse Post-Standard reported that two landlords received more than $400,000 in government aid for rent while neglecting to pay over a million dollars in property taxes to the city.<br> Wed, 19 Jun 2013 18:30:37 +0000 Julie Alderman 39822 at http://wrvo.org DeFrancisco: Cuomo's abortion rights provision a "non-starter" http://wrvo.org/post/defrancisco-cuomos-abortion-rights-provision-non-starter <p>A top Senate Republican says Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s abortion rights provision in a women’s equality bill stands little chance of passage in the chamber.</p><p>Senate Finance Committee Chair John DeFrancisco, from Syracuse, is one of the leading members of the Senate GOP conference. He says it’s unlikely that his house will pass Governor Cuomo’s proposal to codify into New York law the abortion rights in the federal Roe v. Wade decision.</p> Tue, 11 Jun 2013 15:37:57 +0000 Karen DeWitt & Ryan Delaney 39347 at http://wrvo.org DeFrancisco: Cuomo's abortion rights provision a "non-starter" Women's groups targeting state Senate over abortion provision http://wrvo.org/post/womens-groups-targeting-tate-senate-over-abortion-provision <p>Women’s groups are putting pressure on the state Senate’s ruling coalition to take up <a href="http://www.wrvo.org/post/after-weeks-waiting-cuomo-releases-womens-equality-bill" target="_blank">Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Women’s Equality Act</a>, which includes&nbsp; an abortion rights provision.</p> Tue, 11 Jun 2013 10:01:00 +0000 Karen DeWitt 39319 at http://wrvo.org Proposed state legislation would double littering fines http://wrvo.org/post/proposed-state-legislation-would-double-littering-fines <p>Fines for littering would double if a bill approved by the New York State Senate passes the Assembly. The idea is to crack down on the people who dump trash on the side of roads.<br><br>It poses driving hazards and costs a lot to remove. And Syracuse-area Sen. John DeFrancisco says litter that lines the highways just looks bad. Mon, 03 Jun 2013 13:21:31 +0000 Ellen Abbott 38873 at http://wrvo.org D.A. Fitzpatrick supports unsealing juvenile records involving sex crimes http://wrvo.org/post/fitzpatrick-unsealing-juvenile-records-involving-sex-crimes <p>Juvenile records are automatically sealed in New York state, so they don't prejudice a prosecutor or judge, but state Sen. John DeFrancisco is proposing&nbsp;an exception. He wants those records be&nbsp;available to court officials if they involve sex crimes. Mon, 06 May 2013 19:48:39 +0000 Ellen Abbott 37110 at http://wrvo.org Area state senator wants Medicaid reform http://wrvo.org/post/area-state-senator-wants-medicaid-reform <p>No state spends more on Medicaid than New York, earning it the nickname of the Cadillac of Medicaid programs. But that may soon end. One of the reasons the state spends $54 billion a years on the federal health care program for the poor, are 31 optional services that the state can sign on for -- ranging from transportation, to prescription drugs, to private nurses. Fri, 15 Mar 2013 21:14:08 +0000 Ellen Abbott 34802 at http://wrvo.org DeFrancisco thinks state lawmakers can deliver budget on time - again http://wrvo.org/post/defrancisco-thinks-state-lawmakers-can-deliver-budget-time-again <p>The hearings are over; the New York State Assembly and Senate have put together their respective spending plans. Now this week, lawmakers in Albany get down to the details of hammering out a state budget that both chambers can agree on. Senate Finance Committee Chairman John DeFrancisco of Syracuse believes it can be done before the April 1 deadline. Mon, 11 Mar 2013 13:42:06 +0000 Ellen Abbott 34566 at http://wrvo.org Miner has some fun with home video before State of the City http://wrvo.org/post/miner-has-some-fun-home-video-state-city <p>Mayor Stephanie Miner poked some fun at her fellow central New York politicians in a video played before Thursday night's State of the City address. Check out the cameos by Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY), state Sen. John DeFrancisco (R-Syracuse) and Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney (R). Fri, 25 Jan 2013 15:32:49 +0000 WRVO News 32376 at http://wrvo.org State law proposed to withhold state payments to some tax delinquent landlords http://wrvo.org/post/state-law-proposed-withhold-state-payments-some-tax-delinquent-landlords <p>Proposed state legislation would allow social services officials to withhold rent payments for low-income housing when the landlords haven’t paid their taxes. Mon, 21 Jan 2013 12:27:58 +0000 Durrie Lawrence 32139 at http://wrvo.org Cell Phones for Soldiers drive help military overseas http://wrvo.org/post/cell-phones-soldiers-drive-help-military-overseas <p>If you have an old cell phone stashed in a drawer that you don't use any more, you can help a soldier overseas keep in touch with home.&nbsp; Central New York's "Cell Phones for Soldiers" annual collection drive continues, as does the need. Tue, 01 Jan 2013 10:46:00 +0000 Ellen Abbott 30345 at http://wrvo.org DeFrancisco and Valesky on the Independent Democratic Conference http://wrvo.org/post/defrancisco-and-valesky-independent-democratic-conference <p>The new iteration of the New York state Senate will look different in 2013 with the new power sharing agreement in place between Republicans and breakaway Democrats, and two central New York lawmakers will be in the thick of it.</p><p> Wed, 26 Dec 2012 15:37:21 +0000 Ellen Abbott 31044 at http://wrvo.org Will new state Senate coalition be good for upstate NY? http://wrvo.org/post/will-new-state-senate-coalition-be-good-upstate-ny <p>Some supporters of the new state Senate coalition between Republicans and the Independent Democrat Caucus say it will keep upstate New York concerns on the table. Some area politicians believe that wasn't the case when Democrats had control of the New York state Senate in 2009 and 2010. Wed, 12 Dec 2012 21:14:37 +0000 Ellen Abbott 30401 at http://wrvo.org