Roker on the true 'Storm of the Century'

31 minutes ago

The most devastating hurricane in American history was not named Katrina or Sandy, but was a storm that struck Galveston, Texas in 1900. TV weatherman Al Roker has written a book about this storm, the people caught in it, and the lessons that were learned from it. Roker recently returned to his alma mater Suny Oswego and spoke with WRVO's Catherine Loper about his new book "Storm of the Century.”

Feds move to curb overdose deaths

17 hours ago

The federal government wants to curb the number of deaths from opioid drug overdoses. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) hopes to make in-roads by funding intervention and prevention.

HHS Secretary Silvia Burwell recently announced initiatives that target heroin and opioid deaths and dependence across the country. $133 million has been allocated to programs for treatment and education.

Chris Jones, director of science policy at HHS, says much of the education about opioids needs to be directed at medical professionals.

The MRI, or magnetic resonance imaging, has become an increasingly used diagnostic tool. But, some patients are quite apprehensive about having this test. This week on WRVO's health and wellness show “Take Care,” hosts Lorraine Rapp and Linda Lowen speak with Dr. Scott Buckingham, a Syracuse radiologist, about the advances in MRIs and their use -- and how to cope with the test if you're claustrophobic.

jamelah / via Flickr

Friday is the deadline for New Yorkers to vote in this year’s elections. But there’s an added avenue to register to vote by the midnight deadline.

Central New York Regional Economic Development Council

Central New York's proposal for the state's economic development competition includes one project with the potential to create up to 2,000 jobs. Those jobs could go to a part of Syracuse that needs it the most.

Karen Dewitt / WRVO News File Photo

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has been speaking out about the need for national gun control laws in recent days, but Cuomo says he doesn’t know when a key provision of New York’s own gun safety laws will be enacted.

Cuomo most recently appeared on Hardball with Christ Matthews on MSNBC.

“I passed what is probably the toughest  gun law in the nation,” said Cuomo, who said illegal guns continue to come to New York thorough other states with looser laws.

“The states can’t do this, it has to be the federal government,” Cuomo told Matthews.

jetsandzeppelins / Flickr

New federal rules aim to protect farm workers from the risks associated with exposure to pesticides, and advocates in New York are applauding the changes.

Now, children under 18 will not be allowed to handle pesticides. Adult farm workers will have to be trained each year on how to protect themselves from the chemicals used around them. They used to be trained every 5 years.

It’s been 23 years since the Environmental Protection Agency updated its standards.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

A coalition of peace organizations are making a 165-mile walk from Syracuse’s Hancock Air Base to the Niagara Falls Air Base, to bring attention to the military's drone operations that take place there. One of the goals is to educate the public on what it is like being in Afghanistan, where the fear of drones is a part of life for many.

For Julienne Oldfield and about 20 others, the day started at the Hancock Air Base where protesters have rallied against drone warfare for years.

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, facing questions about the ongoing federal probe of contracts associated with his Buffalo Billion economic development project, was reluctant to say much about the progress of the investigation.

Cuomo was asked by journalists whether he or anyone on his staff has been questioned or subpoenaed by federal prosecutors looking into the awarding of state contracts as part of the massive economic development protect in western New York.

“I have not,” said Cuomo. “But I don’t want to get into commenting on the U.S. Attorney’s investigation.”

Governor Andrew Cuomo / Flickr

Gov. Andrew Cuomo shot down rumors Wednesday that he might call a special session in December on raising the minimum wage to $15.

A Syracuse company has won $100,000 in federal funding to help it reduce electronic waste.  

Sitting in a garage on Shonnard Street in Syracuse is the prototype for something called a “depopulator,” which could revolutionize the way old electronics are recycled. It’s the brainchild of engineers at the Advanced Recovery and Recycling Company. President Byron Tietjen says it essentially shakes the circuit boards while they’re being heated to about 370 degrees Fahrenheit, and the electronic parts from the printed circuit board just fall off.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Many Syracuse residents came out to voice their support last night, for a proposed local hiring ordinance for the city’s construction and service contracts. One concern is to make sure contractors can connect with residents who have the right skill sets.

Last year, Charles Rivers of Syracuse was going to school full-time, working two part-time jobs, one seasonal job and struggling to make ends meet.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

The Central New York Regional Economic Development council is bullish that its proposal for the New York State Upstate Revitalization Initiative will be a winner.  

Doug Kerr / Flickr, Creative Commons

Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre spoke to the Canadian media Monday explaining that over the weekend, he and city officials had re-examined their plan to release wastewater in the river. He told reporters that despite strong opposition, the plan has to continue.

“Is there a way to take some option in between? Can we use some temporary ways instead of sending that to the River? The answer is no,” Coderre said.

Ryan Delaney / WRVO News file photo

Despite a tumultuous summer, Wall Street saw its best performance in the first six months of this year since 2011. A report from the New York state comptroller's office released Tuesday found that the securities industry earned more than $11 billion first half of 2015, a 29 percent increase from the same period last year. In addition to higher profits, Wall Street salaries, bonuses and employment are all on the rise.

City of Syracuse/Department of Aviation

Updated at 7:00 a.m. Tuesday:

American Airlines has released the name of the pilot who died during a flight from Phoenix to Boston early Monday. That flight was diverted to Syracuse after the pilot became incapacitated. 

EPA Regional Director Judith Enck is calling central New York to take action when it comes to climate change.

Enck admits that taking on climate change is a big issue. But she says individuals shouldn't shy away from it.

“Sometimes climate change can be an overwhelming issue. You get paralyzed, you don’t know what’s the first thing you can do to address. But I actionably think there are no shortage of steps to take to reduce carbon pollution,” said Enck, in a recent interview with WRVO News.

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who has been somewhat reticent about speaking out on the national stage, has lately been talking about the issue of gun violence, saying it should be a key topic in Congress and in the 2016 campaigns.

Cuomo called in to the New York City cable news channel NY-1 to talk about a potential hurricane, which later veered away from the East Coast. But quickly, the conversation turned to the recent mass shooting in Oregon and what to do about gun violence.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

According to the latest federal figures, there are more than 1,200 endangered species in the United States. Scientists across the country are trying to figure out ways to keep many of these species from dropping off the face of the Earth. 

Walking down the steep trail towards the bottom of Chittenango Falls in central New York, Cody Gilbertson carries a big white styrofoam cooler. But there aren’t any picnic treats for humans inside. Gilbertson’s cooler is filled with several plastic containers, stuffed with leaves that endangered Chittenango Ovate Amber Snails are munching on.

Shopping season for the Medicare Advantage plans is underway.

In Monroe, Ontario, and Wayne Counties, the average premium for 2016 Medicare Advantage plans is $74 dollars, about a 10 percent increase over last year.

On average in New York state, most monthly premiums are steady, but out-of-pocket costs for medications are up.

Older adults in New York may find they’re paying less each month for Medicare Advantage.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Rep. John Katko (R-NY) spoke at a rally to save the Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant on Monday. The owners of the plant said they may have to close it next year because it is no longer profitable with the low price of electricity. Katko said nuclear energy is clean energy and with new federal carbon emission standards, New York state can't afford to lose nuclear power plants.

Key Foster / Flickr

The Onondaga County Drug Task Force continues to look for ways to keep prescription drugs out of the wrong hands. A new pilot program launched this month will place them in the hands of police.

Nine police agencies, including the Onondaga County Sheriff’s Department, are putting out collection bins in their offices for unused prescription and non-prescription drugs, as well as used needles.

Gail Banach, of the Upstate New York Poison Center, says the idea is to create a safe place to drop drugs that otherwise could be abused.

Nuclear Regulatory Commission

Elected officials from the local, state and congressional level have organized a rally in support of the FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant in Oswego County. This comes after news that there is a possibility that it could close. Lower electricity prices are squeezing the profits from some nuclear plants. 

stgermh / Flickr

Questions continue about economic development practices by Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration, including the proposed sale of valuable piece of land from one state agency to another state entity for a dollar .

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara is reported to be probing contracts awarded as part of Cuomo’s Buffalo Billion project, with questions over the timing of campaign contributions to the governor, as well as criteria used to choose the vendors.

10 women inducted at the National Women's Hall of Fame

Oct 4, 2015
Kelly Walker / For WXXI News

Ten women whose influence continues to be felt in the fields of science, the arts and civil rights are the newest inductees into the National Women's Hall of Fame. They include dance pioneer Martha Graham and Feminist Majority founder Eleanor Smeal. 

Also chosen to be inducted on Saturday were the founder of the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, Nancy Brinker, and Carlotta Walls LaNier, the youngest member of the Little Rock Nine. 

Matthew / Flickr

Over the last several decades, Americans have been searching for the ultimate diet that will result in the greatest weight loss for everyone. Low-carbohydrate diets are currently among the most popular, with proponents saying they are the ticket to losing weight. But how do low-carb diets actually compare to low-fat diets?

This week on “Take Care,” we interview a researcher who studied that very question. Kevin Hall is a senior investigator at the National Institute of Diabetes & Digestive & Kidney Diseases, one of the National Institutes of Health. His main research interests are the regulation of food intake, macronutrient metabolism, energy balance, and body weight.

A healthy night's sleep starts with a healthy mattress

Oct 4, 2015
Flashy Soup Can / Flickr

Doctors do not prescribe mattresses, yet they can be the cause of countless aches and pains. Mattresses are important but what goes into choosing the right one?

This week on “Take Care,” Ed Perratore, senior editor for Consumer Reports, looks at how the right mattress can make all the difference.

Congressman John Katko has tried to position himself as a moderate within the Congressional Republican Party.  One local Democrat who’s not convinced about this is Eric Kingson, the Syracuse University professor recently announced his candidacy for Katko's 24th district seat.  This week on the Campbell Conversations, host Grant Reeher talks with the Democratic challenger, and explores his views about Katko’s voting record, and Kingson’s own plans for expanding the Social Security program. 

Note: This conversation took place before House Speaker John Boehner announced his intention to resign from Congress at the end of October.

Low-carb vs. low-fat: which diet works better?

Oct 2, 2015

Low-carb diets are currently very popular, and have been extolled for everything from helping lose weight to preventing disease. One group of scientists decided to test a low-carb diet head-to-head with a low fat diet to see which one caused dieters to lose more body fat. This week on WRVO's health and wellness show “Take Care,” hosts Lorraine Rapp and Linda Lowen speak with the leader of the study, Kevin Hall, a senior investigator at the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, which is part of the National Institutes of Health.

When the House of Representatives voted recently to defund Planned Parenthood, central New York Republican Rep. John Katko (R-Camillus) said he voted to stop funding the organization temporarily while the House investigated a series of videos allegedly showing Planned Parenthood executives discussing the sale of fetal body parts for research -- which is illegal.