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State GOP Party Chair Ed Cox is calling on all Republicans to support Donald Trump for president / Ellen Abbott

Rep. John Katko (R-Camillus) still hasn’t publicly endorsed Republican Donald Trump for president, and state party officials aren’t too happy about it. Katko is running for reelection in a congressional district that has changed parties for the last five election cycles, and has expressed concern over Trump’s tone and divisive rhetoric, saying Trump will have to earn his vote. New York State Republican Party Chair Ed Cox says he understands Katko’s reluctance.

-JvL- / Flickr

A commission is considering granting as much as a 47 percent pay raise for state lawmakers, and the proposal is generating some backlash, including from Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

The idea of raising state lawmakers pay by nearly 50 percent comes at a time when dozens of senators and assembly members have been indicted, arrested, and jailed for corruption, including the two former legislative leaders, who are both facing prison time.

401(K) 2012 / Flickr

New York's energy consumers will foot the bill for the decision by the Public Service Commission (PSC) to save the state's nuclear power plants, which is part of a clean energy initiative. But the commission said the increase in energy rates to subsidize the plants will actually save the state and consumers a lot of money in the long-run.

PSC Chair Audrey Zibelman said supporting nuclear power plants, many of which are on the brink of closure because of competition from cheap natural and oil, will help New York reduce its carbon dioxide emissions and thus energy costs.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

The Republican Party has opened up a political headquarters for the Donald Trump presidential campaign in Syracuse. Elected officials, volunteers and Donald Trump fans crowded into an Erie Boulevard office space to get a pep talk from state Republican Party Chairman Ed Cox as the area’s Trump headquarters officially opened on Friday.

"The momentum is on our side, the big mo. And by the way, what does that mean? Come November 8, we’re going to have a Republican President of the United States, Donald Trump,” Cox said. “And that’s what it’s all about.”

Julia Botero / WRVO News

Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-Willsboro) visited New York Air Brake in Watertown Friday on a campaign stop. She spoke about how the Import-Export bank helps U.S. manufacturers compete internationally. Stefanik helped reform the bank.

“When American workers are able to compete on a level playing field there is no other country that is manufacturing the highest quality of products that the U.S. is,” said Stefanik.  

After her brief speech, the question and answer period turned to the presidential campaign.

Great Lake Ontario National Marine Sanctuary

Shipwrecks are a big draw for divers and tourists in the great lakes. Now – for the first time in 20 years -- more communities are getting help in preserving and showing off their underwater treasures. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is expanding its national marine sanctuary program. For Oswego and other communities on the Great Lakes, that designation would bring federal funding and a boost to tourism

Ryan Delaney / WRVO News File Photo

Republicans in central New York are still angry with Rep. Richard Hanna (R-Barneveld) and his decision to back Democrat Hillary Clinton instead of Republican Donald Trump in the race for president.  

Nuclear Regulatory Commission

If the recently approved nuclear subsidies can save the FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant in Oswego County, it likely will not be with Entergy as its owner.

FitzPatrick spokeswoman Tammy Holden said Entergy is pleased with the New York Public Service Commission's (PSC) decision to subsidize the state's financially struggling nuclear power plants, but she said that did not change the company's mind about their earlier decision to close the plant. Entergy is in negotiations with Exelon, owner of the Nine Mile Point and Ginna nuclear plants in upstate, for the sale of FitzPatrick.

Farmers hit hard by drought

Aug 8, 2016
Gabe Altieri / WSKG News

A severe drought continues to affect most of New York, and it's especially taking a toll on farmers in Tompkins County. Producers in the area say they've received about six less inches rain than an average season thus far.

Recent rainfall hasn't done much to help either. In fact, farmers say, at this point the season is pretty much a wash. "You tell people 'it's dry, it's dry' and then they say 'oh, it rained.' No, it didn't rain for two months. So [the season] is pretty much shot," said Chandler Benson, an organic dairy farmer in Lansing. 

Chris Potter / Flickr

You care about your health, but it can be expensive. Between doctor’s visits, co-pays, and prescription medication, the final bill can be more than you expect. But what if there was a way to make it cheaper?

This week on “Take Care,” Matthew Chaiken tells us about his new company Blink Health, and how they’re able to cut out the middle man when it comes to buying prescription drugs at the pharmacy. Chaiken co-founded Blink Health with his brother Geoffrey in 2014, and they launched the company’s website and mobile app this past February.

Mindful eating: Let your body tell you when you're full

Aug 6, 2016
Scott Kidder / Flickr

You may feel you don’t always eat because you’re hungry, but to fulfill other emotions, such as boredom, stress, sadness or anger.

Overeating can often be a result of mindless eating when we’re feeling these emotions, according to this week’s “Take Care” guest, Dr. Lynn Rossy. Rossy is the author of the book "The Mindfulness-Based Eating Solution: Proven Strategies to End Overeating, Satisfy Your Hunger, and Savor Your Life,” and is a licensed clinical psychologist for the wellness program at the University of Missouri. She is also on the board of directors for the Center for Mindful Eating.

We've heard a lot about infrastructure during this campaign season, and it's a perennial issue in central New York. This week on the Campbell Conversations, we're joined by Jack Kelly, who has written an intriguing new book on one of the biggest infrastructure projects in American history, and the biggest in upstate New York; the Erie Canal. Kelly’s book is called Heaven’s Ditch: God, Gold and Murder on the Erie Canal. 

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

An Onondaga County grand jury has determined that the fatal shooting of a man by a police officer in Syracuse on Father’s Day was justified. Hundreds of people were at a cookout that turned violent. Onondaga County District Attorney William Fitzpatrick said it started with a group of individuals that drove by and open fired on the crowd.

Being mindful of your eating

Aug 5, 2016
Michelle Hurwitz / Flickr

Sometimes physical hunger isn't the only reason we choose to eat. Mindless eating, a topic we explore this week on "Take Care," can bring comfort and mask other issues.

This week on WRVO's health and wellness show, hosts Lorraine Rapp and Linda Lowen speak with Lynn Rossy, a clinical psychologist at the University of Missouri's Wellness Program. Rossy helps people learn to check in with their bodies, recognize when they're full and avoid overeating.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

It’s summer camp season across central and northern New York. Among the traditional kind of camps that teach swimming, theater or arts and crafts, is a first in the area only for girls who are interested in science, technology, engineering and math. 

Le Moyne College recently wrapped up its first ever, all women high school summer camp that focuses on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines.

The goal of the camp, according to camp director Meriel Stokoe, is to attract young women to the STEM fields.

Payne Horning / WRVO News

Complaints from Utica residents about the city's roads have reached a fever pitch. 

"It has been a long time since required paving has been increased and there is a big public outcry to fix the roads, it was blatantly apparent in the last campaign season," said Common Council President Michael Galime.

timlewisnm / Flickr

Education groups, dismayed by the federal education secretary’s threat to punish schools in New York with high opt-out rates for standardized tests, say he’s re-igniting controversy that state education officials have been trying to calm for the past year.

U.S. Drought Monitor.

Parts of western and central New York, including the Southern Tier, remain in a severe drought category according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. More dry weather could impact the state in the months ahead.

Jason Smith / WRVO News

Oswego's mayor is asking city residents to conserve water, saying the city's water supply is at critically low levels. 

Health insurance premiums likely to go up in New York

Aug 4, 2016
Pictures of Money / Flickr

New York State will soon release the rates it’s approved for premiums for health insurance.

Insurers filed their requests to the state earlier this year for the premiums they want to charge in 2017. In general, they asked for bigger increases than they have in the past.

But bigger increases to premiums are expected across the country. Cynthia Cox, Associate Director of Health Reform and Private Insurance at the Kaiser Family Foundation, said this expected boost is a correction of sorts.

Payne Horning / WRVO News

Women only make up about a quarter of Congress, but that may change this year. 

Many high-profile elections this fall feature female candidates, including here in upstate New York; from Democratic challenger Colleen Deacon in central New York's 24th Congressional District to former gubernatorial candidate Zephyr Teachout, a Democrat running in the 19th Congressional District. 

Syracuse University women and politics professor Kristi Andersen attributes it to an increasing effort by political parties and organizations to recruit women for local offices. 

Wallyg / Flickr

A routine oversight hearing by the state Assembly turned testy when the state’s economic development czar endured over two hours of questions about Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s economic development programs, which are currently under federal investigation.

Jason Smith / WRVO News File Photo

The Onondaga County Legislature has solidified the future of minor league baseball in Syracuse.  Lawmakers agreed Tuesday on a new deal for the Syracuse Chiefs to rent the county-owned NBT Bank Stadium for the next decade.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) added his voice to a chorus of criticism regarding Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s comments to the Muslim parents of an Army captain killed in Iraq.

“We ought to revere our Gold Star mothers,” Schumer said. “We ought to praise them. We are to not be criticizing them. My heart goes out to these people who made the ultimate sacrifice and criticism of them is very, very wrong.”

Julia Botero / WRVO News

Every island in the Thousand Island has a story. Today we're looking at Grindstone Island, the fourth largest in the St. Lawrence River. 

Grindstone is considered part Clayton and can be seen from the village's main street, but it’s only accessible by boat. A large community lives there during the summer and a few stick it out all year. 

There's no grocery store on the island but there is a dance hall and a Methodist Church. One Sunday in the summer, the United Methodist Church has a service outside on the banks of Aunt Jane's Bay.

Payne Horning / WRVO News

While many cities in upstate New York have established a permanent winter parking policy, Oswego continually revisits the issue. 

WRVO News File Photo

Democratic congressional candidate Colleen Deacon is calling out her Republican opponent, Rep. John Katko (R-Camillus), for not criticizing Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump over comments he made about Gold Star parents of a U.S. Army captain killed in Iraq in 2004.

During the Democratic National Convention, Khizr Khan, father of Capt. Humayun Khan, talked about the loss of his son in Iraq. Trump tweeted several apparent criticisms of Khan and his wife, and the public feud has continued for nearly a week. 

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News (file photo)

Rep. Richard Hanna (R-Barneveld) Tuesday became the first Republican member of Congress to say he will vote for Democrat Hillary Clinton for president in November. 

NY amateurs hope legalizing pro MMA will help them, too

Aug 2, 2016
Bret Jaspers / WSKG News

Screaming fans crowded Magic City Music Hall in Binghamton one night in April to cheer on their favorite fighter at an amateur mixed martial arts match. It was hard to tell who was more invested: the fighter, or their families. 

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

The Syracuse Common Council has authorized what the Syracuse Police Department would purchase if the city wins a U.S. Department of Justice grant for police body cameras.

The pilot program would include 10 body cameras, docking stations, a server and ballistic shields. They are asking for funds totaling more than $100,000, which the city would split evenly with Onondaga County. The Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office would purchase their own equipment from their portion.

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